How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds In 5 Simple Steps
At last, a smart way to separate the seeds from the pulp.
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It's pumpkin season, thus pumpkin seed season. When you're carving Jack-o'-lanterns, don't toss the seeds! When roasted, they make a great, low-calorie snack, and can be used to add crunch to salads and soups. They contain some valuable nutrients (read all about them here) and while you can buy pumpkin seeds at the store year-round (they're called pepitas), they're so much better when freshly roasted with your favorite seasonings added.
How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds, Step-By-Step
1. How to Seed the Pumpkin
Using a spoon, scrape the pulp and seeds out of your pumpkin and into a bowl. If you happen to have a serrated grapefruit spoon, that’s the very best tool you can use here. If not, and you’re having difficulty scraping out the seeds, feel free to cut fibers loose with kitchen shears or a paring knife (carefully).
2. How to Separate Pumpkin Seeds from Pulp
Separate the seeds from the stringy pulp by picking out the seeds and placing them in the colander.
3. How to Wash Pumpkin Seeds
Rinse the seeds in the colander under cold water, rubbing them with your hands to remove more pulp (it’s okay if some pumpkin guts still cling to the seeds). Shake the seeds dry. Don't blot them with paper towels — the seeds will stick. Pumpkin seeds have two parts: a crunchy white hull and green seeds. Both are edible.
4. How Long to Cook Pumpkin Seeds
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Spread the seeds in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet and roast 30 minutes to dry them out. Alternatively, you can toast them in a skillet along with some oil, salt and pepper.
5. How to Flavor Pumpkin Seeds
Toss the seeds with olive oil and salt. Return them to the oven and bake until crisp and golden, about 20 more minutes. You can also get pretty creative with your favorite spice combinations. Toss the seeds in olive oil and salt, then toss them again in one of the spice combos below. If you're not in the mood for making one of these spice mixtures, something as simple as a packet of ranch seasoning will zest things up.
For sweet pumpkin seeds: Cut the salt down to just a pinch and toss the seeds with ground cinnamon and sugar.
For fiery pumpkin seeds: Toss them with cayenne and smoked paprika.
For pumpkin pie-inspired pumpkin seeds: Coat the seeds with an aromatic mixture of cinnamon, ground mace, ground ginger, nutmeg and allspice.
For chocolate pumpkin seeds: Toss the pumpkin seeds in a mixture of cocoa powder, orange zest and powdered sugar.
For Indian flavors: Toss the pumpkin seeds with garam masala. After roasting, mix them with dried currants.
For Spanish flavors: Toss them with smoked paprika and after roasting, mix in slivered almonds.
For Italian flavors: Toss them with grated Parmesan and dried oregano.
For Barbecue: Toss the seeds with olive oil, salt, brown sugar, chile powder and cumin
Can You Eat Pumpkin Seeds Raw?
There’s a little bit of confusion around raw pumpkin seeds. And that’s because supermarkets sell pumpkin seeds (or pepitas) labeled “raw,” much like other nuts and seeds are labeled raw. What this means is they’ve been cleaned and oven-dried or dehydrated. (Roasted pumpkin seeds are cooked at higher temperatures so they become crispy and crunchy).
We do not, however, recommend fishing pumpkin seeds straight out of your jack-o-lantern and chomping down on them.
How to Store Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Store roasted pumpkin seeds in an airtight container for up to two weeks or in the refrigerator for up to two months—if you’re able to resist gobbling them up immediately, that is!
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipes
Did we forget to mention you can use your air fryer to make pumpkin seeds? But of course! You can have crispy, salty pumpkin seeds ready in just 30 minutes thanks to the air fryer.
They're dressed up in Parmesan, tomato, garlic and oregano.
These toasted pumpkin seeds are coated in whisked egg white and everything bagel seasoning before going into the oven for a second bake. The results are fully coated and extra crispy.
A generous dose of bourbon and maple syrup take these pumpkin seeds into adult snack territory.