Food & Nutrition

Crispy Baked Pumpkin Seeds

bowl of seeds with text overlay
Sheet pan of roasted pumpkin seeds with text overlay

Crispy baked pumpkin seeds are a childhood favorite when making carved pumpkins. They are easy to make and can be customized with either sweet or savory seasonings. So if you are making this year’s Jack-o-Lanterns, save the seeds to make this simple, healthy snack!

a bowl with baked pumpkin seeds in it

Table of contents

Roasted pumpkin seeds are a delicious healthy snack to make from Jack-o-lantern seeds or when you have leftover seeds from cutting a fresh pumpkin or making pumpkin puree.

If there was a food movement of “snout to tail” for pumpkins, then these Crispy Baked Pumpkin Seeds would definitely fall into that category. If you’re like me, food waste is a big pet peeve, so I always love having a way to doctor up scraps to make them into something yummy to eat!

They are a favorite childhood treat at Halloween time and a great project to try with children. Plus they make a healthy snack for grownups too!

pumpkin seeds and pulp closeup

Ingredient Notes

the ingredients in bowls on a white table with text labels overlay

Pumpkin Seeds

Typically roasted pumpkin seeds are made with the fresh raw seeds of a carving pumpkin, but you can also use seeds from a cooking pumpkin (like the kind you use to make pumpkin pie.) I actually prefer the seeds from a pie pumpkin because they are smaller and less pithy or woody than Jack-o-lantern seeds.

One large (1-foot diameter) carving pumpkin yields about 1 cup of seeds. A pie pumpkin usually has about 1/2 cup of cleaned seeds each. The amount of seeds each pumpkin has depends on the variety and varies from pumpkin to pumpkin.

Neutral Cooking Oil

For classic roasted pumpkin seeds use a neutral cooking oil such as avocado, refined peanut or organic canola oil.

Salt

I like to use coarse kosher salt for seasoning toasted pumpkin seeds. It is less salty, pinch for pinch, than iodized table salt and easier to sprinkle. You can also skip the salt if following our directions for cinnamon sugar pumpkin seeds in our variations to try.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds: Step-By-Step Instructions and Photos

sorting and cleaning the pumpkin seeds

Step 1: Remove Pulp

Remove orange pumpkin pulp and fibrous strands from the seeds and place the seeds in a colander.

Step 2: Rinse Seeds

Rinse the pumpkin seeds under cool running water. Swish with your hands to separate the pumpkin pulp and let it settle to the bottom of the colander.

drying the seeds and seasoning them

Step 3: Dry Seeds

Spread the seeds on a few layers of paper towels and blot dry. Measure the seeds to determine how much oil you will need.

Step 4: Season

Transfer the seeds to a medium bowl. Drizzle with oil using 1 teaspoon per half cup of seeds. Sprinkle with salt (and optional seasonings other than sugar.) Stir well to coat.

roasting the pumpkin seeds

Step 5: Spread on Pan

Spread the seeds on a rimmed baking sheet (avoid dark colored pans to prevent burning.)

Step 6: Roast the Pumpkin Seeds

Bake until the seeds are lightly browned, fragrant and crisp, stirring occasionally, 15 to 25 minutes. Cool completely before storing at room temperature in an air-tight container.

TIP: TO AVOID BURNT OR BITTER SEEDS

Times vary depending on the pumpkin so check them every 5 minutes. The seeds will darken quickly toward the end, so if you notice they are dried out and sound crispy when you stir them, do not let them get too dark.

FAQs and Expert Tips

How many cups of seeds does a pumpkin have?

One large carving pumpkin has about 1 cup of cleaned seeds and a small pie pumpkin has about 1/2 cup.

Are pumpkin seeds low-carb?

1 serving of pumpkin seeds (2 tablespoons) has 8 grams of carbs and 3 grams of fiber giving them a total of 5 net carbs so in moderation they can be enjoyed on a low-carb diet.

Do I need to boil pumpkin seeds with salt water before roasting?

No, this doesn’t really effect the flavor or texture in a noticeable way.

Do I need to soak pumpkin seeds before roasting?

No this is not necessary either. They are plenty “wet” and do not need to be soaked.

Why are they chewy?

If they are taken out of the oven before fully toasting all the way through they can have a chewy texture once they are cooled.

Variations To Try

In addition to the salt, add 1/4 teaspoon per 1 cup of seeds of any of the following spices:

  • Garlic Powder
  • Paprika
  • Black Pepper
  • Cumin
  • Chili Powder

You can also use truffle salt instead of regular salt, but add it after baking to preserve the flavor.

Cinnamon Sugar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

To make Cinnamon Sugar roasted pumpkin seeds add 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice with the oil, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon sugar or maple sugar as soon as they come out of the oven.

a bowl of roasted pumpkin seeds and dried maple leaves

More Crispy and Healthy Homemade Snacks

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter where I share weeknight meal plans delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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Description

These Crispy Baked Pumpkin Seeds are a delicious healthy snack to make from Jack-o-lantern seeds or when you have leftover seeds cooking fresh pumpkin.


Seeds from 1 pumpkin

Neutral cooking oil (1 teaspoon per half cup seeds)

pinch coarse kosher salt, to taste


  1. Remove orange pumpkin pulp and fibrous strands from the seeds and place the seeds in a colander. Discard pulp.
  2. Rinse the pumpkin seeds under cool running water. Swish with your hands to separate the pumpkin pulp and let it settle to the bottom of the colander.
  3. Spread the seeds on a few layers of paper towels and blot dry. Measure the seeds to determine how much oil you will need.
  4. Transfer the seeds to a medium bowl. Drizzle with oil using 1 teaspoon per half cup of seeds. Sprinkle with salt (and optional seasonings other than sugar.) Stir well to coat.
  5. Spread the seeds on a rimmed baking sheet (avoid dark colored pans to prevent burning.)
  6. Bake until the seeds are lightly browned and crisp, stirring occasionally, 15 to 25 minutes. Times vary depending on the pumpkin so check every 5 minutes. The seeds will darken quickly toward the end, so if you notice they are dried out and sound crispy when you stir them, do not let them get too dark. Cool completely before storing at room temperature in an air-tight container.

Notes

One large pumpkin yields about 1 cup of seeds, but this amount varies by variety and from pumpkin to pumpkin.

Variations To Try

In addition to the salt, add 1/4 teaspoon per 1 cup of seeds of any of the following spices:

  • Garlic Powder
  • Paprika
  • Black Pepper
  • Cumin
  • Chili Powder

You can also use truffle salt instead of regular salt, but add it after baking to preserve the flavor.

Cinnamon Sugar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

To make Cinnamon Sugar roasted pumpkin seeds add 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice with the oil, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon sugar or maple sugar as soon as they come out of the oven. Stir well and let cool completely.

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 12 mins
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
  • Calories: 75 calories
  • Fat: 4 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 8 grams
  • Fiber: 3 grams
  • Protein: 3 grams

Keywords: roasted pumpkin seeds, baked pumpkin seeds,crispy pumpkin seeds,

About the Author

Katie Webster

Katie Webster studied art and photography at Skidmore College and is a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute. She has been a professional recipe developer since 2001 when she first started working in the test kitchen at EatingWell magazine. Her recipes have been featured in numerous magazines including Shape, Fitness, Parents and several Edible Communities publications among others. Her cookbook, Maple {Quirk Books} was published in 2015. She launched Healthy Seasonal Recipes in 2009. She lives in Vermont with her husband, two teenage daughters and two yellow labs. In her free time, you can find her at the gym, cooking, stacking firewood, making maple syrup, and tending to her overgrown perennial garden.

Source: healthyseasonalrecipes.com