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My tried and true method that I’ve developed after years and years of roasting pumpkin seeds. It wouldn’t be Halloween in our house without these Perfect Roasted Pumpkin Seeds.
It’s not Halloween without crunchy, salty, roasted pumpkin seeds. They are packed full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals and they taste incredible. Maybe this will help offset the effect of the little chocolate candy bars I keep stealing from the Halloween stash in our pantry.
Here is my method, tried and true.
Which Pumpkins Have the Best Seeds?
In my experience, the larger the pumpkin the more seeds it will yield. So go big but not too heavy. According to The Kitchn, large is good but sometimes the heavier ones tend to have less seeds.
Choose a pumpkin that appears fresh, has a sturdy stem and a flat bottom so it will stay put while you’re carving. Small surface scratches are okay but avoid pumpkins with any deep cuts or bruises.
He has no idea what he’s in for.
If you are as crazy about pumpkin seeds as we are and want to be sure you’ll have enough, grab an extra pumpkin just to be sure.
Pumpkin Carving Tips
Here is the big man wielding a big knife.
Once you’ve used your artistic skills to draw the perfect face for your Jack O’Lantern, use a large, sharp knife to cut around the stem at a slight angle to create the lid. Cutting on an angle will ensure the lid will not drop straight down inside the pumpkin when placed on top.
Use a scooping tool, like a large metal spoon, to scrape and thin the wall of the pumpkin where you will be carving the face a bit so that it will be easier to cut through from the front.
How to Prepare Pumpkin Seeds for Roasting
- Use a large metal spoon to scrape out the seeds and strings.
- Transfer the seeds and strings to a colander.
- Place the colander in your sink and rinse the seeds with cool water. While rinsing, sort through them with your hands and pull out the stringy pumpkin guts.
- Place some newspaper on the counter next to the sink for the stringy guts. This allows you to just roll it up and toss the mess when you’re done. There will be some bits of pumpkin still mixed in with the seeds. Just get out as much as you can.
How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds
Spread the rinsed seeds on a rimmed baking sheet. Unless you are an excellent pumpkin string picker, there will most likely still be some small bits of pumpkin innards left behind. Don’t worry, we’ll get those later.
Leave the baking sheet on your kitchen counter overnight so the seeds can dry. They will not roast as well if you put them in the oven when they are wet. It will be easy to pick out any remaining bits of pumpkin the next day.
The following day you will toss the dry seeds with some olive oil and garlic salt and roast them till toasty and golden brown. Use a spatula to stir them occasionally while roasting.
Remove them from the oven, taste, and sprinkle with a little additional garlic salt if needed.
I dare you to try and eat just one!
The seeds are delicious served warm from the oven.
After they cool, transfer them to an airtight container and they will stay fresh and tasty for at least a week or more.
Be sure to watch the video at the end of this post to see this process in action.
Did you know that other seeds are also delicious roasted? Check out my recipes for Roasted Acorn Squash Seeds!
These seeds are excellent and it turned out okay for the pumpkin too. Happy Halloween!
Perfect Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- 1 ½ cups raw pumpkin seeds
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon garlic salt plus additional if desired
- nonstick cooking spray
- Use a large metal spoon to scoop the seeds from your pumpkin and place them in a colander. Place the colander in your sink and rinse the seeds with cool water, removing as much of the stringy pumpkin guts as you can. Place some newspaper next to your sink for the stringy guts. This allows you to just roll it up and toss the mess when you're done. There will be some bits of pumpkin still mixed in with the seeds and this is okay. Just remove as much as you can. Drain the seeds well, pour them out on to a rimmed baking sheet, and allow them to dry overnight. The following day, pick out any remaining pieces of dried pumpkin.
- Preheat oven to 325 F degrees. Spray a clean rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
- Toss the seeds in a large bowl with the olive oil and garlic salt. Spread the seeds on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown, stirring about halfway through.
- Taste and season with additional garlic salt if desired.