It was discovered on Tildarg Road in the Co Antrim village.
The alert was sparked some time after 8pm on Wednesday.
Army bomb experts made the device safe and the road has now re-opened.
It is the second time in a week a device has been found on Tildarg Road.
Last Thursday, a bomb was found hidden in a hedgerow.
The viable device was discovered inside a plastic bag in a laneway at around 1pm.
Four houses were evacuated while army bomb experts examined the device and made it safe.
The bomb, which police said was small, was taken away for forensic examination.
Robin Swann, Ulster Unionist MLA for North Antrim, has condemned those responsible.
"This is the second incident of despicable criminal behaviour in the same locality in less than a week. Those responsible seem determined to kill and create as much disruption as possible in what is a quiet rural area.
As a resident of Kells, I can assure those responsible that they represent no-one in this locality, and whatever it is that they are seeking to do, they are not wanted here.
Robin Swann, UUP MLA
"There is no place in Kells for anyone who would seek to leave explosive devices lying around and I would ask anyone who knows anything at all about these incidents to please come forward immediately and assist the Police to catch those responsible and ensure they cannot endanger the safety of others," he concluded.