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Maple Pumpkin Kale Chips

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~ raw, vegan, gluten-free, nut-free ~

To keep warm as the weather turns cooler, we often turn to foods that are warm to the touch. But sometimes, all it might take is a wonderful combination of spices to make you feel all warm and cozy inside.

Cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves are just a few of those spices that put the taste of Fall right into your belly.

For this recipe, you can use organic pumpkin puree or you can make your own. It all depends on what is available.  If making your own puree click (here) if you need any guidance.

For best flavor and nutrition, look for organically grown sugar pie pumpkins, a variety known for its excellent sweet flavor and succulent texture.

Look for smooth, heavy pumpkins, between 2-5 lbs,  which are void of cuts or bruises.  Most importantly, look for a deep, rich orange color, a sign of bioflavonoids and thus flavor. If at all possible, select pumpkins with the stems attached, this will indicate a better quality.



Kale Prep:

  1. Selecting Kale:
    • Don’t use wilted / old kale; it can have a bitter undertone.
    • I prefer Curly Kale because all of the folds really hold onto the sauce.
  2. Wash and de-stem your kale.
    • Start by washing the kale and blotting it dry.  You can also use a salad spinner if you own one.
    • Make sure you get as much excess water off of the kale as possible.  If you don’t, it will make your sauce “soupy.”  Set aside.
    • Starting at the bottom strip away the leaf leaving behind only the stem.
    • Tear the remaining leaves into pieces that are a tad larger than bite-size since they tend to shrink.

Sauce Prep:

  1. After soaking the cashews, drain and discard the water. ** to make nut-free use sunflower seeds.
  2. In a high-powered blender combine the; cashews, pumpkin puree, water, sweeteners, and spices. Blend until the sauce is creamy smooth.
    • Due to the volume and the creamy texture that we are going after, it is important to use a high-powered blender.  It could be too taxing on a lower-end model.
    • Create a vortex in the blender; this will help ensure that the sauce is getting fully blended into a creamy texture.
    • What is a vortex?  Look into the container from the top and slowly increase the speed from low to high,  the batter will form a small vortex (or hole) in the center.  High-powered machines have containers that are designed to create a controlled vortex, systematically folding ingredients back to the blades for smoother blends and faster processing… instead of just spinning ingredients around, hoping they find their way to the blades.
    • If your machine isn’t powerful enough or built to do this, you may need to stop the unit often to scrape down the sides.
    • This process can take 1-3 minutes, depending on the strength of the blender.  Keep your hand cupped around the base of the blender carafe to feel for warmth.  If the batter is getting too warm., stop the machine and let it cool, then proceed once cooled.


  1. Place the torn kale into a very large bowl.
  2. Pour tin the sauce and with your hands gently and evenly coat each piece of kale.
    • This is a “hands-on” job.  Stirring with a spoon just doesn’t do the trick.
    • I would suggest removing any jewelry from your fingers.  I have temporarily lost a ring here and there.

Dehydrator Method:

  1. Have the dehydrator trays ready by lining them with non-stick teflex or parchment paper.
    • Don’t use wax paper because food tends to stick to it.
    • Spread all the trays out in advance because soon your hands will be covered in sauce and you don’t want to get it all over.
  2. Place the kale on the non-stick sheets.  You can do this 1 of 2 ways:
    • Lay each piece out semi-flat if you want to create individual pieces.  More time-consuming and chips tend to a be a little bit more fragile.
    • Or, drop clumps of coated kale on the sheets.  This will create hardy clusters that are loaded with sauce and flavor.  This is my preference.
  3. Dehydrate at 115 degrees (F) for about 6-8 hrs or until dry.
    • I tend to pull mine out before it gets 100% dry because I like it a little chewy.
    • The dry time is just an estimate.  The climate, humidity, dehydrator, and how full the machine is can all affect how long it will take to dry.
  4. Store in an airtight glass container and be ready to nibble non-stop till the last crumb is gone!
  5. If the kale chips start taking on some humidity from the house, you can place them back into the dehydrator for a few hours at 115 degrees (F).

Oven Method:

  1. Please use as a guide and closely monitor the kale chips as they cook.
  2. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees (F), anything higher, and risk burning the chips.
  3. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper and place the kale chips on the baking sheet in a single layer.
  4. Bake for 10 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for another 15 minutes.
    • The bake times will vary based on your oven, but it’s a good starting off point!
  5. Once you pull the tray from the oven, allow the chips to cool on the baking sheet.
  6. Store in an airtight glass container and be ready to nibble non-stop till the last crumb is gone!

15 thoughts on “Maple Pumpkin Kale Chips

  1. Robin says:

    What temp and time for the pumpkin kale chips? I do not have a dehydrator :-(


    • amie-sue says:


      Many people bake kale chips around 275-300 degrees for about 10-40 minutes. I know that time frame is all over the board but from the reading I do, that is what I am seeing. I don’t ever bake mine but my suggestion would be to only turn your oven to the lowest temp possible, keep the door ajar while baking and then just keep a close eye on them to determine the time. It will depend on how thick the coating is of the sauce on the kale too. I hope you give this recipe a try. Let me know how it goes. amie sue

  2. Gina Thomas says:

    Hi Amie Sue,
    I made your ginger miso kale chips for my mother-in-law yesterday and she loves them. I can’t wait to make these maple pumpkin kale chips to eat and share them with her next weekend (I’m gonna have to make extra batches just in case if I eat a whole batch by myself in one sitting). How many bunches of kale did you use for this recipe? And just out of curiosity, can you just dehydrate the maple pumpkin sauce to make cereal out of it or do you think I have to add some kind of flour or flax seed or chia seed to them? Or maybe I can just add chia seeds to make it a pudding for dessert or breakfast?

    • amie-sue says:

      Good evening Gina,

      Well, I suppose it helps to add the star ingredient, now doesn’t it?! lol Thanks for pointing that out, I added it to the ingredient list… 1 head of kale.

      To be honest, you can just eat the sauce all by itself, it is thick and creamy. I was thinking of doing the very thing you brought up about dehydrating the sauce. I am going to use almond pulp instead of cashews though. I will try that this week and let you know. :) It is kind of you to share your kale chips… I struggle sharing mine. lol They are just soooooooo darn good! Thank you for checking in. Many blessings, amie sue

    • amie-sue says:

      UPDATE: Gina… if you follow nouveauraw on Facebook… I posted a picture of the the cereal version that I just slid into the dehydrator!

  3. Angie says:

    I’m making these tonight… I have them sitting in my bowl, marinating. Just have to make dinner first and then will stick them in the dehydrator! Can’t wait… my first non-savoury kale chips :)

  4. Kris says:

    I don’t use any kind of agave. what could I use to substitute?

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello Kris,

      It is just 1 Tbsp, so you could just use more maple syrup, raw coconut nectar, make a date syrup by blending a few dates in water… it isn’t much so you should fine to try these. Have a blessed day and let me know how it turns out. Blessings, amie sue

  5. Maureen says:

    Hi Amie-Sue, could I just substitute the stevia for more agave…. I have made these before and remember the mix tasted like pumpkin pie… I thought if thickening the mix with kelp and making pie ? Any thoughts on that? Your sour cream kale chips by the way are fabulous!, I felt like I was in a sweat shop making them… I couldn’t keep up with demand!!

  6. Maureen says:

    Thanks For the links I will definitely give them a try….. I Love Cheesecake!

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  8. Maj says:

    Did I miss something? This recipe was labelled nut-free but unfortunately, it isn’t.

    • amie-sue says:

      Hello Maj,

      I am sorry that it took me a bit to respond to you. I have been on a “walk about” for the past 6 weeks (see blog posting). I am not fully integrating back into things but I wanted to start tackling some of the questions that have been collecting. :) All that to say, I appreciate your patience with me. :)

      Instead of cashews, you can use sunflower seeds. :) Have a wonderful day, amie sue

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