Don’t throw out those pumpkin seeds! Instead, use them to create a healthy snack. This Roasted Pumpkin Seeds recipe actually tastes good thanks to a combination of sweet, savory, and spicy seasonings and a few simple tricks to make sure they bake up crispy and never soggy.
Why You’ll Love This Oven-Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe
- No Waste. While I can’t help you with the saggy jack-o-lantern that’s sitting on your front porch a week after Halloween, I can keep you from tossing the seeds in the trash with this easy recipe for crispy baked pumpkin seeds.
- A Healthy Snack. Pumpkin seeds are full of essential nutrients like magnesium, vitamin K, manganese, fiber, healthy fats, and protein. So nutritious, and you get them with the pumpkin for free!
- Versatile in More Ways Than One. Just like Roasted Cashews, you can switch up this roasted pumpkin seed recipe with any seasonings you like. And you can also use these pumpkin seeds in so many different ways! In addition to snacking, try them in Kale Brussels Sprouts Salad, top your Roasted Butternut Squash, or use them as a garnish for Classic Pumpkin Soup and Vegan Pumpkin Soup.
- Roasted Pumpkin Seeds You’ll Actually Want to Eat. Okay, it’s not exactly a revelation that you can roast pumpkin seeds. But it might be a revelation that you can make them into a snack you’ll look forward to eating. These pumpkin seeds aren’t soggy, bland, squash-y, or over-seasoned—promise!
How to Make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Raw Pumpkin Seeds. Whether you get a classic orange carver or one of those fancy green or white heirloom pumpkins, all pumpkin seeds are edible.
- Extra-Virgin Olive Oil. Oil helps your pumpkin seeds bake up crispy-crunchy.
- Sweetener. You can use honey or pure maple syrup.
- Chili Powder. I love chili powder because it brings a lot of different elements to the table—some mild heat, earthiness, and a subtle smoky flavor. It’s not just for making Instant Pot Chili and Chili Mac and Cheese!
- Kosher Salt. My go-to for cooking. Sea salt is also fine here.
- Garlic Powder. For savory flavor.
- Ground Cinnamon or Cayenne. These are optional, but they’ll add some more complexity and depth to the finished roasted pumpkin seeds.
- Scoop the Seeds. Use a spoon or your hands (if you’re carving a jack-o-lantern) to remove the seeds and pulp.
- Clean. Place the freshly scooped seeds in a bowl with cold water and swish them around to remove large bits of pulp.
- Rinse and Drain. Transfer the seeds to a colander and rinse until all the pulp is washed off.
- Dry. The more you dry, the crispier they will be.
- Prepare. Preheat your oven and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Season. Toss the seeds with the oil and honey, then add the seasonings and toss again.
- Roast. Transfer the seeds to the baking sheet, making sure they’re in an even layer. Roast pumpkin seeds until golden brown, about 45 minutes, tossing every 15 minutes for even cooking. Let the roasted pumpkin seeds cool, then ENJOY!
- Garam Masala Pumpkin Seeds. Have garam masala on hand after making Chicken Tikka Masala or Indian Butter Chicken? Swap the seasonings in this recipe with garam masala! You can leave the sweetener in or skip it and simply use oil.
- Cajun Spiced Pumpkin Seeds. Use Cajun seasoning instead of the spices listed above for fiery pumpkin seeds (omit the salt, since most Cajun seasoning contains it already).
- Everything Bagel Pumpkin Seeds. Skip the sweetener and swap the seasoning blend for everything bagel seasoning.
- Maple Cinnamon Pumpkin Seeds. Use maple syrup, omit the other spices, and add extra cinnamon.
- To Store. Store roasted pumpkin seeds in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, or in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
- To Reheat. Let the roasted pumpkin seeds come to room temperature before eating.
- To Freeze. Place the seeds in a zip-top freezer bag or in an airtight container and freeze for up to 6 months.
What to Serve with Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Salads. Use roasted pumpkin seeds to add crunch to salads like my Mexican Salad and Taco Salad.
- Soups. Skip the croutons and use crispy pumpkin seeds as a garnish for Spicy Butternut Squash Soup or Butternut Squash Soup and Chicken Tortilla Soup.
- Granola. Roast your pumpkin seeds with cinnamon and add them to my Healthy Granola, Pumpkin Granola, or Gluten Free Granola recipes.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Colander. I love this colander because it fits over the sink. Genius!
- Rimmed Baking Sheet. A good, heavy sheet pan is a workhorse in the kitchen.
- Parchment Paper. I love that these sheets are pre-cut to the size of a standard sheet pan.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Get the Pulp Off. This is the key to avoiding soggy, squash-y pumpkin seeds! Rinse the seeds and pick over them until all of the pulp is removed.
- Dry the Seeds Well. My second tip for avoiding soggy pumpkin seeds! You really need to dry the seeds well. If there’s any moisture on them, the olive oil will seal it in, leaving you with seeds that are soggy and chewy instead of crispy.
- Make Sure They’re Evenly Coated. Drizzle on the oil and sweetener first and toss until every pumpkin seed is coated—using your hands can make it easier to do this. Then, stir in the spices and, again, make sure all the seeds are coated.
- Keep an Eye on the Oven. Pumpkin seeds can go from golden brown to burnt in a matter of minutes. Check them every 15 minutes or so during baking, stirring each time. Watch especially closely during the last few minutes of roasting.
- Don’t Skip the Cooling. Letting the roasted pumpkin seeds cool before eating will give you a crunchier texture.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Use a spoon or your hands (if you're carving a jack-o-lantern) to remove the seeds and pulp from a pumpkin.
- To clean the pumpkin seeds: While the pumpkin pulp is still wet on the seeds, place them in a bowl and cover with cold water. With your hands, swish the seeds around and remove any large bits of pulp (this softens the seeds and makes them easier to clean more completely). Drain into a colander, then continue rinsing until clean. To dry, spread the pumpkin seeds onto a clean kitchen towel or layer of paper towels. Pat very dry, changing the towels as needed.
- To roast, preheat the oven to 300°F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place the clean, dry seeds in a medium mixing bowl. Drizzle with the oil and honey. Sprinkle with the chili powder, garlic powder, and cinnamon or cayenne. Toss until the seeds are evenly coated, then spread them into an even layer on the prepared baking sheet, breaking apart any seeds that have stuck together.
- Roast pumpkin seeds until they are light golden brown and fragrant, about 40 to 45 minutes, tossing every 15 minutes. Let cool and enjoy!
- TO STORE: Store roasted pumpkin seeds in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, or in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
- TO REHEAT: Let the roasted pumpkin seeds come to room temperature before eating.
- TO FREEZE: Place the seeds in a zip-top freezer bag or in an airtight container and freeze for up to 6 months.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can air dry the pumpkin seeds after rinsing. Spread them on towels and let them sit until they’re completely dry. The amount of time this will take depends on the humidity level in your home.
You can store the seeds in a sealed container or bag for up to 24 hours before roasting, either before or after rinsing. I recommend rinsing them first because the pulp is easiest to remove when the seeds are fresh, but if you’re in a time-crunch, it’s not a big deal to rinse them later.
Yes, you can eat the shells on pumpkin seeds and get some extra fiber into your diet! If you have digestive issues, you’ll want to check with your doctor first.