How to roast pumpkin seeds is such a simple thing, and they are so good for you. Pumpkin seeds are a nutritional powerhouse and high in protein and important minerals. Toss with a little olive oil and sea salt, then roast for a few minutes. Snack on them, add to salads, or garnish soups. They are addictive! I always keep a container in the fridge. If you've never made them, here is how to roast pumpkin seeds.
Green pumpkin seeds are called pepitas, which means little squash seeds in Spanish. They are common in many cuisines around the world. You can buy them at most stores. Pepitas have a wonderful nutty flavor and make for a healthy, tasty snack or soup and salad garnish. These green beauties are harvested from specific pumpkin varieties that produce hulless seeds. They are more tender and less fibrous than standard shell-on pumpkin seeds.
Why You'll Like This Recipe
- It's easy and fast.
- Use them for snacking, or for soup and salad garnishes.
- Enjoy them year round.
- Filled with nutrition: nutrient dense.
Many pumpkin seed recipes have you use a fresh pumpkin, but not for this recipe. In the photo below, see the typical green pumpkin seeds and an heirloom variety grown in Oregon (Amazon link). They are delicious!
- Raw green pumpkin seeds (or the heirloom
- Olive oil
All you need is a rimmed baking sheet and some foil or parchment paper.
Using the raw green pumpkin seeds, there is no slimy pumpkin flesh to deal with, you don't have to clean seeds, and no soaking in salt water.
Roasting pumpkin seeds is a couple of simple steps and takes just a few minutes in the oven.
- Scatter the deep green seeds in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet covered with aluminum foil
- Toss with 1 teaspoon of olive oil, avocado oil, or coconut oil and a few pinches of sea salt.
- Bake at 300 degrees for about 20 minutes. Watch so they don't burn.
- Trust your nose. When you smell them, check them.
- Cool the roast pumpkin seeds on the counter then package
Another way to toast them is at low heat, 170 degrees. I've read articles that say the healthy fats in pumpkin seeds are better persevered roasted at lower heat. I've done it both, and like the idea, but I prefer the toastier, richer taste of pumpkin seeds roasted at a higher temperature. And 300 is not high. Try them both then decide for yourself.
How to Store
Store them at room temperature in an airtight container in the pantry, or if you prefer, refrigerator.
Want to add additional flavor? Toss them in a small bowl with the olive oil, then add you preferred spices such as smoked paprika, cumin, ancho chili powder, curry powder, black pepper, granulated garlic or garlic powder. Try a spice blend like pumpkin pie spice blend or cajun seasoning blend. You get the idea.
Pumpkin Seed Nutrition
These flat, dark green little seeds are a nutritional powerhouse. Just 1 ounce provides 8 grams of protein. Pumpkin seeds are good source of iron, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin E and magnesium.
Pumpkin seeds also contain high levels of phytosterols, which help keep our hearts and brains young. Researchers are finding they might help reduce the risk for diseases such as Alzheimer's.
Ways to Enjoy
Toss them in salads. I especially love them in salads with a pumpkin oil vinaigrette.
- Sprinkle on top of oatmeal
- Sprinkle on pumpkin polenta
- Garnish soups, like this cream of asparagus soup.
- Add to granola
- As a crunchy snack alone or as part of a nut mix
- Sprinkle in plain Greek yogurt sweetened with a little honey or maple syrup
- Eat them out of hand as a snack
Ever tried pumpkin seed milk? It's a beautiful pale green color and tastes terrific. The recipe is here. It's a nice change up from almond or cashew milk and great for those with nut allergies.
Roasted Pepitas Seeds
- Rimmed baking sheet half sheet size
- 8 ounces raw green pumpkin seeds raw green pumpkin seeds, about 1 ½ cups
- 1 teaspoon olive oil avocado oil, coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Pre-heat oven to 300ºF. Line a half size rimmed baking sheet with foil. Toss pumpkin seeds with oil and salt (and any spices if using). Toast for 20 minutes. Cool, package and enjoy.