How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds contain high protein and fiber, making it a great snack to boost up your energy. Therefore, do remember to save up these nutritious seeds and not throwing them away. Especially during the Halloween season, why not make a delicious and most importantly, healthy snack from all the leftovers from the pumpkin carving session.

Here is how you prepare to roast the pumpkin seeds in a few simple steps. First of all, you scoop out all the seeds of the pumpkin into a bowl by using your hands, a spoon or a carving object depends on your preference. After you have done scooping out the seeds, separate them from the flesh and strings. This can be quite a difficult task but you can do it by rinsing the combined seeds and flesh in a strainer under running water. As the water runs through the seeds, rub the seeds between your fingers in order to separate the seeds from the flesh. Then, you may rinse the seeds again under cold water to discard the pulp. One tip to take note is that it is easier to remove the seeds from the pumpkin before removing the pulp from the pumpkin. Therefore, it is advisable to reach in the pumpkin and pull the seeds off the pulp carefully. This step saves you a lot of work as it will only remove the seeds.  

Once the seeds are rinsed, you may soak them in salt water as the salt water helps to deactivates enzyme inhibitors which could cause irritation to stomach. The seeds may be soaked for few hours before drying with paper towels. After the seeds are dried, you may season the seeds. This is the step in which you can be as creative as you want. You can either simply sprinkle the seeds with additional salt or be more creative. Firstly, remember to toss the seeds with some honey or olive oil so that your seasonings will stick. You may try a few combinations of either sweet or spicy. If you prefer sweet snack, season the seeds with honey, cinnamon or sugar. If you prefer spicy, season the seeds with olive oil, paprika or pepper. You may also try seasoning the seeds with peanut oil, crumbled seaweed or melted butter.  

Now, you can prepare to roast the seeds. There are a few ways to roast the seeds. One of the method is by roasting the seeds in a pan by constantly and continuously shifting them around to prevent the seeds from sticking to the pan and to ensure the seeds are roasted evenly. Another method is by using the microwave by simply putting the seeds and heat for two to three minutes. Then, take the seeds out and stir a few times before reheat for another one minute. You may repeat this step until the seeds are crispy enough. Besides the pan and microwave, you may also use the oven to roast the seeds. Preheat the oven to 160°C and leave the seeds until they become brown. This will usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes. It is advisable to shake the seeds around for every five minutes to avoid burning.      

Once the roasting process has been completed, the seeds should be set aside to cool and ready to be served. Apart from eating the seeds alone, you may try sweet seeds as topping on your yogurt or savory seeds to be added into your soups or salads.