Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

‘Tis the season for carving pumpkins! Now . . . what to do with all of those seeds?

My husband and I stopped by one of our favorite roadside stands yesterday and picked out two beautiful (and very large) pumpkins. I have a feeling we’re going to get around to carving them tonight and I could not be more excited!

I was thinking of doing something completely different this year, instead of the boring smiley face. The smiley faces are definitely cute but they are starting to wear on me. I think that carving a dog might be the way to go this year. We’ll have to see how it turns out. I’m nervous about this one.

I do have a confession to make, though. Creating the design can be fun (and frustrating) at times; however, my absolute favorite part about carving pumpkins is digging in and scraping out the mushy, pumpkin guts. Yes, I know I’m weird like that. Perhaps it just brings back fond memories of my childhood. My older brother hated the guts so I always thought it would be a good idea to grab a bunch and fling them at him. I guess I considered it a payback . . . I mean, I was the younger sister. We loved each other so much growing up (read: major sarcasm).

But then again, what’s not to love about carving pumpkins . . . creating the design, scraping out the guts, carving the design, lighting up the pumpkin and roasting the pumpkin seeds . . .

How To: Roast Pumpkin Seeds

  1. Separate the seeds from the stringy membrane. Rinse the seeds just until they are free of any membrane matter.
  2. Heat the over to 350 degrees F.
  3. Put the seeds on a paper towel and pat dry for a few minutes.
  4. Spray a baking sheet with butter-flavored nonstick cooking spray or brush lightly with a coating of vegetable oil. Put the seeds on the baking sheets in a single layer, turning to coat lightly with the spray or the oil. Sprinkle the seeds lightly with salt, if desired.
  5. Put the baking sheet in the oven. Cook the seeds for 10 to 20 minutes, or until brown and slightly crisp, turning once. Allow to cool before eating.
  6. Store seed in an airtight container.

To liven them up a bit, feel free to sprinkle the seeds with different spices, instead of using salt.

  • For a savory taste: Use garlic salt (1/2 teaspoon) and Worcestershire sauce (2 teaspoons)
  • For a lemony taste: Use lemon pepper (1 teaspoon)
  • For a fall taste: Use cinnamon (1 teaspoon), ginger (1/2 teaspoon), salt (1/2 teaspoon) and allspice (1/2 teaspoon)
  • For a spice taste: Use cayenne pepper (1 teaspoon), thyme (1/2 teaspoon), salt (1/2 teaspoon) and pepper (1/2 teaspoon)

What do you usually sprinkle over top of your pumpkin seeds?

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