There are always plenty of pumpkins being carved up at the end of October for Halloween, and a great way to make use of the pumpkin seeds scooped from the flesh is to roast them into a healthy snack.
There is so much potential tucked within the pumpkins themselves, that I’m always amazed at how some people just toss them away. Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of vitamin E, zinc, and magnesium making them a nutritional powerhouse.
I eat them shells and all. Small sugar pumpkins yield small to medium sized seeds that are crunchy and easy to eat. Larger carving pumpkins have bigger seeds that you may want to shell before eating, but to be honest, I never do that. I just roast them and eat them as is, regardless of their size. Delicious.
To make your own batch of roasted seeds for snacking, remove them from the inner cavity of the pumpkin and clean the excess pulp with a paper towel. Some people choose to rinse their seeds before roasting, which you can do as well. Then, spread them (approx. 2 cups) on a baking sheet in a single layer, drizzle with oil (1-2 teaspoons) and season to taste with salt. Roast for 15-30 minutes—smaller seeds will need less time, larger seeds will need more time—in a preheated 350°F oven, or until the seeds are lightly browned.
It’s also easy to season your seeds with additional flavouring if desired. Here are a few of my favourite formulas to add to the method mentioned above:
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup + 1 tsp curry powder + ¼ tsp cumin
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup + 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar + 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
Lastly, to keep seeds crunchy, don’t pack them into a lidded container. Leave them on the baking tray or transfer to a bowl and set out for healthy, happy snacking.
Tell us, are you roasting pumpkin seeds this week? What’s your favourite flavour combination?