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Maple Sesame Kale Chips

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These guilt-free crispy kale chips are a bit salty, a bit sweet and a bit spicy.

Bowl of kale chips.

I’m not sure how you feel about kale chips — they are not for everyone, as my children have made abundantly clear — but if you’re a fan like I am, this is a wonderful version to try. The recipe comes from one of my favorite new cookbooks, Kale, Glorious Kale by Catherine Walthers.

The crisp, shattering leaves are a bit salty, a bit sweet and a bit spicy; and the sesame seeds add nutty flavor and heft. The first time I made them, I ate the entire batch standing at the stove before I could even photograph them, and then I happily made them again. Kale chips are guilt-free, after all. They’re filling too (well, at least if you eat the whole pan as I do) — make them in the afternoon and they’ll easily tide you over until dinnertime.

What you’ll need to make Maple Sesame Kale Chips

Chip ingredients including maple syrup, sesame seeds, and kale.

How to make Maple Sesame Kale Chips

Begin by pulling the kale leaves off of the tough ribs. Discard the ribs, then thoroughly dry the leaves with paper towels. If the leaves start off wet, they won’t crisp up.

Person using paper towels to dry kale.

Next, toss the kale with the olive oil, maple syrup, salt, cayenne pepper, and sesame seeds.

Sesame seeds over kale in a bowl.

Be sure the leaves are evenly coated.

Bowl of kale tossed with maple syrup and sesame seeds.

Arrange the kale on a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer.

Seasoned kale on a lined baking sheet.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the kale is crisp but not browned. Keep a close eye on it towards the end; the chips go from perfectly cooked to burnt quickly.

Maple sesame kale chips on a lined baking sheet.

Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary, then let cool on the baking sheet.

Bowl of maple sesame kale chips.

Note: My only changes to the original recipe were to reduce the maple syrup by one tablespoon and increase the salt by just a pinch.

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Maple Sesame Kale Chips

These guilt-free crispy kale chips are a bit salty, a bit sweet and a bit spicy.

Servings: 2
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 40 Minutes


  • 5 cups gently packed curly kale (stripped from stalk, torn into pieces a little larger than bite-size, rinsed and dried)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds


  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place the kale leaves in a large bowl. Using a few paper towels, blot the kale to dry thoroughly. Add the olive oil and salt; massage the kale with your hands until all of the leaves are well coated. Add the maple syrup, cayenne pepper and sesame seeds and toss until evenly coated. Most of the sesame seeds should stick to the leaves.
  3. Place the kale in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 25-28 minutes, until the leaves are completely crisp but not browned. Keep a close eye on it; the chips will go from perfectly cooked to burnt quickly. Taste and add more salt if needed. Let the kale chips cool on the baking sheet, then serve.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (2 servings)
  • Calories: 247
  • Fat: 15g
  • Saturated fat: 2g
  • Carbohydrates: 27g
  • Sugar: 10g
  • Fiber: 8g
  • Protein: 8G
  • Sodium: 366mg
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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  • Omg! Ok… I use A LOT of the Once Upon a Chef recipes and I always recommend them to friends and family. This one is another AMAZING one! Most of the time, the kale doesn’t have time to cool before I eat it ALL!! So amazing! Thank you again, Jenn!! You are my hero… ♥️

    • — Lee-Ann Mascis on January 7, 2024
    • Reply
  • I can’t get over how ridiculously DELICIOUS these are!!! My husband claims he doesn’t like kale chips which is fine by me–I will have the entire batch gone within an hour. Thanks Jenn for yet another outstanding recipe.

  • I love this recipe! If I make a few large batches, how long will they save if I store them in an airtight container?

    • Hi Anna, I’d guess they’d last for 2 to 3 days if stored in an airtight container (make sure they are completely cool before putting them in a container).

  • Hi Jenn,
    I made kale chips once and they garnered a unanimous thumbs down. However, when I saw your recipe, I thought they might have a shot at redemption. I was right.
    Delicious! Everyone loves them. Sweet +salty + crisp=perfect!

    Thanks for another great recipe!

  • These are the best kale chips I’ve ever tasted! Makes me want to grow a bunch of kale, so I can make them for friends.

  • I love this recipe! I have tried a few other kale chip recipes from other sites and they were just ok. I think the spices and maple give this just a little something extra to make them fantastic!!!! Making my second batch in two weeks today!

  • These kale chips were a big hit with my kids ages 5-11. They ate the entire batch and asked for more. I loved them too. The best kale chip recipe I’ve ever tried!

  • I have made this several times and it is a great recipe. If I am out of parchment paper, do you have a suggestion? Oil the baking sheet?

    • Do you have non-stick foil? I think that would work well.

  • This is our new favorite snack! I actually ate an entire batch myself , they are so delicious! The mixture of sweet and spicy is perfect. I make them twice a week; now everyone loves eating kale!
    My husband loves your recipes so much he surprised me and purchased your cookbook!

    • — Paulette Derocco
    • Reply
  • Such a nice, yummy treat!

  • Best kale chips ever. Thanks for sharing.

  • Wouldn’t change a thing about this recipe. I loved the sweetness with a light spicy bite. A delicious light snack after lunch and before dinner.

  • Our kale plant has been growing like crazy and my family doesn’t particularly like plain kale chips. Tried this one and it was a hit! Will definitely keep this one as a staple. 🙂

  • What oven temp?

    • Colleen, These should be baked at 300°F. Enjoy!

  • These chips are absolutely addicting, they even pair well with a great red wine. Delicious.

  • Jenn- I happened to have fresh dino kale in my fridge and a container of sesame seeds, so I was thrilled to get this recipe in my inbox. I made it per your recipe except I used my dehydrator instead of the oven. You are right- these kale chips are delicious and addictive! They are a nice sweet change from my usual olive oil, salt and nutritional yeast variety. I will be making these again! The sesame seeds were such a great addition. Thanks!

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