If you’ve ever wanted to know how to clean and roast pumpkin seeds (aka pepitas as their known in Spain) then you’ve come to the right place. For a few years now I’ve tried roasting pumpkin seeds but they always seemed to have the texture of shrapnel and seemed almost inedible. This year I discovered you can boil pumpkin seeds first which softens the outer shell which speeds up the roasting process and makes them far easier to eat.
Why roast pumpkin seeds?
Every Halloween countless pumpkins around the world are scooped out, carved and then tossed on the compost heap or thrown away. This is such a waste (and bad for the environment) when both the flesh and seeds can be made into delicious and nutritious recipes! If you’ve never tasted roasted pumpkin seeds before you’ll realise you’ve been missing out when you make this recipe!
What do roasted pumpkin seeds taste like?
To my mind they taste a bit like pistachio nuts, very delicious and very moreish!
Are roasted pumpkin seeds nutritious?
If you Google the health benefits of pumpkin seeds then you’re in for quite a long read! They are a super food packed full of nutrients including magnesium, calcium, potassium, polyunsaturated fat and anti-oxidants. So beneficial for heart, liver and bone health amongst other things. They’re also great for those trying to lose weight as keep you fuller for longer as high in dietary fibre. Plus pumpkin seeds can even help with insomnia (I must say I slept well after polishing off a large handful).
What else can you flavour roasted pumpkin seeds with?
Once you’ve boiled your pumpkin seeds in lightly salted boiling water the sky is the limit as to flavourings you can add. Try garlic granules, ground cumin, your favourite curry powder etc or you can go sweet with added sugar and spices. I think pumpkin spice would be fab!
How long do roasted pumpkin seeds last?
You can keep the seeds in an airtight container for up to 3 months but I seriously don’t think you’ll be able to resist them for that long! If you pop the container in the fridge then they’ll last up to a year!
Are Roasted Pumpkin Seeds suitable for young children?
No, avoid giving to young children as the seeds are a choking hazard.
Can you roast other squash seeds?
Yes don’t’ just stop at pumpkins, you can roast the seeds from other squashes like Butternut Squash too!
Can you shell the pumpkin seeds?
Yes, you can but quite fiddly and they are so good as they are, I really wouldn’t bother. But if you’re like my husband who doesn’t like pips in berries then feel free to remove the shells.
Do you need to turn the pumpkin seeds whilst roasting?
No, I didn’t and they were perfectly roasted. However if you have a colder spot in your oven you might like to turn the baking tray around half way through roasting.
What can you use roasted pumpkin seeds for?
As well as just a healthy snack you can sprinkle the seeds on soups, salads or add to granola. Here are some recipes ideas for using toasted pumpkin seeds:
- Curried Pumpkin Soup
- Roast Pumpkin Chickpea Feta Salad
- Apple Celery Salad with Walnuts and Goat Cheese
- Halloween Smoothie Bowl – fun pumpkin design
- Vegan Chickpea Blondies with Sugar-free Pumpkin Caramel Sauce
- Vegan Egg Salad Sandwich
- Easy Toasted Muesli
- Steel-Cut Oats with Seasonal Fruit
So how do you make The Best Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe?
1. Cut a lid out of your pumpkin and scoop out the seeds.
2. Place seeds in bowl and remove any large stringy bits (I had none luckily, was a very dry pumpkin inside).
3. Rinse seeds to remove the rest of the stringy bits.
4. Half fill a pan with cold water, add the seeds, bring to the boil and boil for 10 minutes.
5. Drain the pumpkin seeds.
6. Remove excess moisture by patting dry with kitchen or paper towel.
7. Place seeds in a bowl and coat with rapeseed oil and a good grinding of sea salt.
8. Roast for 10 – 15 minutes on a preheated baking tray at 200C.
9. Once the seeds look golden and are crunchy (test one by eating it), remove from the oven.
10. Serve warm or cool on the baking tray and store in an airtight container.
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The Best Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe (boil & roast method)
- small saucepan
- large metal spoon (slotted)
- baking tray
- small bowl
- serving dish
- 1 medium/large sized pumpkin yields about 85 – 100 g of seeds
- 1 tsp rapeseed oil I use cold pressed
- Freshly ground sea salt
- Using a small sharp knife at an angle cut a lid from the top of the pumpkin.
- Scoop out all the seeds with a large metal spoon (I find a serrated one even better) and place in a bowl.
- Pick out any large clumps of pumpkin “string”. (I was lucky, there was barely any stuck to the seeds).
- Put the seeds in a sieve and rinse with cold water to remove the last of the pumpkin “string”.
- Then put the seeds in a small pan half filled with water with a pinch of salt.
- Bring to a boil and boil for 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 200°C along with a large baking tray.
- Drain the seeds in a sieve (or colander but why dirty another utensil)!
- Tip the boiled seeds onto a clean kitchen towel (or paper towels) and pat to remove excess moisture.
- Put the seeds in a bowl and pour on 1 tsp of rapeseed oil and a good grinding of sea salt.
- Stir well to coat the seeds.
- Spread the pumpkin seeds over the preheated baking tray in a single layer and bake for about 10 – 15 minutes until lightly golden. (My large seeds took 12 minutes).
- Cool a little and enjoy whilst warm or allow to cool on the baking tray before eating and/or storing.