How to Make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Roasted pumpkin seeds are my favorite thing about Halloween. There’s nothing I like more than crunching away while carving a Jack o’Lantern and listening to a wolf howling from my CD player.

Today I’m sharing how I roast pumpkin seeds. It’s a two step cooking process that results in ultra-crisp seeds and the ability of the seeds to take on a lot of flavor. What kinds of flavor? At the bottom of this post I’ve linked to some delicious flavor recipes that use this pumpkin seed method.

How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds: General Instructions

These instructions begin with a full large pumpkin. At the end, not only will you have delicious roasted pumpkin seeds but you will also have a pumpkin that is ready for carving. There’s a printer-friendly version of the instructions at the bottom of this post. 

Cut a circular 5-8 inch diameter hole in the top of the pumpkin encircling the stem (use a sturdy serrated knife and a sawing action).

Use the stem as a handle to remove the the circular cut out. Using two fingers, squidge off any seeds that cling to the lid.

 

Put these seeds into a colander. Use a knife to trim the fibrous strands off of the pumpkin lid. Discard the fibrous strands and set the lid aside.

Dive into the pumpkin with one hand. Grasp a bundle of seeds in your fingers. Gently tug on them while squeezing your fingertips together at the point where the bundle of seeds meets the pumpkin fibers until the seeds release. Put the seeds into the colander detaching any bits of orange pumpkin fibers that have come along for the ride (don’t worry if you can’t get them all off. A lot more will come off in the rinsing step). Repeat until all the seeds have been removed from the pumpkin cavity. You should get 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups.

Put the colander into the sink. Rinse the seeds under a long full blast of water. Swish them around under the water to help detach any stubborn pumpkin fibers. Line a large bowl with paper towels. Pour the seeds into the bowl. Wrap the towel around the seeds and pat them dry.

Preheat the oven to 325ºF. Line a large pan with parchment paper. Heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil over medium heat. Add the pumpkin seeds. It is inevitable that some water has clung to the seeds so stand back a bit and beware of spattering. Stir the seeds to coat them all with the oil. Cook stirring occasionally until well-browned, about 4-5 minutes.

Meanwhile, stir your seasonings together in a medium-sized bowl. You can use 1 teaspoon of coarse salt (1/2 teaspoon table salt) and 1/2 teaspoon of coarse black pepper or one of the flavor combos linked to below. Transfer the seeds to the bowl of seasonings and stir to coat. Pour the seeds onto the parchment-lined pan and put the pan into the oven. Roast the seeds until they are dry and crisp, 15-18 minutes.

While the pumpkin seeds are roasting, use a metal serving spoon to scrape all the stringy fibers away from the inside of the pumpkin. Discard them. Now your pumpkin is ready for carving!

Cool the seeds on the pan. Transfer to a serving bowl or store roasted pumpkin seeds for up to 3 days in an airtight container.

Once you’ve got the method down, here are some delicious flavor combinations to try out:

Birthday Cake Flavored Pumpkin Seeds

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds with Pesto and Parmesan

Chewy Maple and Pumpkin Pie Spice Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Salty Sweet Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Sticky Sweet Sriracha and Soy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Enjoy your roasted pumpkin seeds!

 

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How to Make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds


  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes

Description

A two-step cooking process results in extra crisp pumpkin seeds that really absorb the flavor of great seasonings.


Ingredients

  • 1 large pumpkin
  • 2 tbsps vegetable oil
  • seasonings of your choice

Instructions

  1. These instructions begin with a full large pumpkin. At the end, not only will you have delicious roasted pumpkin seeds but you will also have a pumpkin that is ready for carving.
  2. Cut a circular 5-8 inch diameter hole in the top of the pumpkin encircling the stem (use a sturdy serrated knife and a sawing action).
  3. Use the stem as a handle to remove the the circular cut out. Using two fingers, squidge off any seeds that cling to the top.
  4. Put these seeds into a colander. Use a knife to trim the fibrous strands off of the pumpkin lid. Discard the fibrous strands and set the lid aside.
  5. Dive into the pumpkin with one hand. Grasp a bundle of seeds in your fingers. Gently tug on them while squeezing your fingertips together at the point where the bundle of seeds meets the pumpkin fibers until the seeds release. Put the seeds into the colander detaching any bits of orange pumpkin fibers that have come along for the ride (don’t worry if you can’t get them all off. A lot more will come off in the rinsing step).
  6. Repeat until all the seeds have been removed from the pumpkin cavity. You should get 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups.
  7. Put the colander into the sink. Rinse the seeds under a long full blast of water. Swish them all around under the water to help detach any stubborn pumpkin fibers. Line a large bowl with paper towels. Pour the seeds into the bowl. Wrap the towel around the seeds and pat them dry.
  8. Preheat the oven to 325ºF. Line a large pan with parchment paper (this is not necessary if you plan to season your pumpkin seeds with some simple dry spices. However, some of my recipes call for some added sweeetness which can stick. The parchment saves you the work of scrubbing stuck sugars off of the pan later on).
  9. Heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil over medium heat. Add the pumpkin seeds. It is inevitable that some water has clung to the seeds so stand back a bit and beware of spattering. Stir the seeds to coat them all with the oil. Cook stirring occasionally until well-browned, about 4-5 minutes.
  10. Meanwhile, stir your seasonings together in a medium-sized bowl. You can use 1 teaspoon of coarse salt (1/2 teaspoon table salt) and 1/2 teaspoon of coarse black pepper.
  11. Transfer the seeds to the bowl of seasonings and stir to coat. Pour the seeds onto the large pan and put the pan into the oven. Roast the seeds until they are dry and crisp, 15-18 minutes.
    While the pumpkin seeds are roasting, use a metal serving spoon to scrape all the stringy fibers away from the inside of the pumpkin. Discard them. Now your pumpkin is ready for carving!
  12. Cool the seeds on the pan.
  13. Transfer to a serving bowl or store roasted pumpkin seeds for up to 3 days in an airtight container.