These Roasted Pumpkin Seeds are crunchy, nutty, and easy to make. Infused with a hint of salt from boiling, they make for a healthy and satisfying fall snack. This recipe is not only a fun activity for kids, but also a great way to put those pumpkin seeds to good use after carving pumpkins for Halloween.
One of my favorite childhood memories was making roasted pumpkin seeds every year after carving Halloween pumpkins.
As an adult, I still look forward to roasting pumpkin seeds in the fall. The toasty, nutty aroma filling the kitchen is a sure sign of the changing season.
But, what's the secret to well-seasoned roasted pumpkin seeds?
It's all in the pre-roast boil. Boiling the seeds in salted water before roasting seasons them from the inside out.
Today, I’m walking you through how to make the best roasted pumpkin seeds, including which ingredients to use, tips that will guarantee they turn out right the first time, and some of my favorite flavor variations.
Disclaimer: Some links throughout this post are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. You can learn more by visiting my Affiliate Disclosure Page.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Fun Fall Activity- Whether I'm carving pumpkins or making pumpkin puree, I always save the seeds to make these easy roasted pumpkin seeds.
- Healthy & Delicious Snack- Not only are oven-roasted pumpkin seeds tasty, but they're good for you too! Pumpkin seeds are rich in heart-healthy fats, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
- Kid-Friendly- One of my favorite memories as a kid is roasting pumpkin seeds after carving Halloween pumpkins.
- Reduces Food Waste- Food that ends up in a landfill creates methane, adding to greenhouse gases. So, by baking pumpkin seeds, you're actually helping the planet!
- Customizable- Pumpkin seeds can be tossed with an endless variety of seasonings to create different flavors.
- Versatile- They're not just for snacking - add toasted pumpkin seeds to salads, soups, muffins, and breads!
Here are some notes on key ingredients. For a full list of ingredients, check out the recipe card below.
- Pumpkin Seeds- Use sugar pumpkins, pie pumpkins, or carving pumpkins! One 4-pound sugar pumpkin yields about one cup of fresh pumpkin seeds.
- Water- You'll need 2 cups of water for every ½ cup of pumpkin seeds. Boiling the pumpkin seeds in salted water before roasting seasons them from the inside out.
- Kosher Salt- For every ½ cup of pumpkin seeds, use 1 tablespoon of kosher salt.
- Olive Oil- A small amount of olive oil helps the pumpkin seeds become crispy and brown in the oven.
🌱 Sustainability Tip: Opt for homegrown or local pumpkins from farmers' markets in the fall to minimize transportation impact and support local agriculture.
Substitutions and Variations
Here are a few ways you can customize this homemade roasted pumpkin seed recipe to fit your diet and taste preferences.
- Pumpkin Seeds- Swap pumpkin seeds for any other winter squash seeds. Try this recipe with acorn squash, butternut squash, hubbard squash, or delicata squash seeds.
- Kosher Salt- Use coarse sea salt, pink Himalayan salt, or table salt in place of kosher salt.
- Olive Oil- Substitute olive oil with your preferred cooking oil or melted butter.
Toss pumpkin seeds with your favorite spices and herbs before roasting for a flavorful twist. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Here are some notes on any special equipment I used to make this recipe.
- Chef's Knife- A sharp knife is essential for safely cutting the raw pumpkin in half.
- Ice Cream Scoop- The sturdy edge of an ice cream scoop is the perfect tool for quickly removing the pumpkin seeds and stringy bits.
- Rimmed Baking Sheet- A rimmed baking sheet prevents the seeds from spilling over the edge of the pan while in the oven.
- Parchment Paper- Using parchment paper on the sheet pan makes cleanup easier and helps prevent sticking.
- Colander- A colander with fine holes is ideal for rinsing the seeds.
How to Make Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Here is how to roast pumpkin seeds in the oven.
Step 1: Preheat the oven. Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step 2: Remove the seeds. Using a sharp chef's knife, carefully cut the pumpkin in half. Use an ice cream scoop to gently scrape out the seeds and the stringy bits from each pumpkin half. Place them into a colander.
Step 3: Clean the seeds. Rinse the collected seeds under cold running water, separating them from any remaining pumpkin pulp.
Step 4: Boil the seeds. In a small saucepan, combine the clean pumpkin seeds, water, and kosher salt. Bring the mixture to a boil. Allow the seeds to boil for about 10 minutes.
Step 5: Drain the seeds. After boiling, drain the seeds back into the colander. Use a paper towel to gently pat them dry, ensuring you remove any excess moisture.
Step 6: Oil the seeds. Transfer the seeds onto the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle them with olive oil, tossing to coat. Spread them out into a single, even layer.
Step 7: Roast the seeds. Roast the seeds for approximately 10-15 minutes, stirring halfway through. Keep a close eye on the seeds during the last 5 minutes to prevent burning.
Step 8: Cool and store. Allow the roasted pumpkin seeds to cool completely before enjoying. Once cooled, store them in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
Tips for Success
- Clean seeds thoroughly. Take the time to clean the seeds well and separate them from any pumpkin pulp.
- Boil for best flavor. Boiling the seeds in salted water infuses them with salt from the inside out, ensuring that they're well seasoned.
- Dry seeds after boiling. Remove excess moisture before roasting for the crispiest roasted pumpkin seeds.
- Spread the seeds out. Do your best to spread the seeds out in a single, even layer on the baking pan so that they roast uniformly.
- Watch closely. Pumpkin seeds can burn quickly. Keep an eye on them during the last 5 minutes of roasting to prevent over-browning.
- Cool completely. Roasted pumpkin seeds become crunchier as they cool.
- Get creative. Don't be afraid to experiment with different spices and herbs to give these roasted pumpkin seeds your own spin.
🎃 Seed-to-Salt Ratio: For every ½ cup of raw pumpkin seeds, boil them in 2 cups of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt.
How to Use Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Think pumpkin seeds are just for snacking? Think again! Roasted pumpkin seeds can be used in a variety of dishes to add a crunchy texture and nutty flavor.
One of my favorite ways to enjoy toasted pumpkin seeds is by using them as a topping for soups or salads. Try sprinkling them on a kale crunch salad, an arugula quinoa salad, or a bowl of pumpkin soup.
Finally, turn your homemade roasted pumpkin seeds into a variety of other healthy snacks, such as granola, granola bars, trail mix, and energy bites.
How to Store
To store roasted pumpkin seeds, ensure they are completely cooled before transferring them to an airtight container. They will keep for up to 2 weeks.
Store the container in a cool, dry place to help the pumpkin seeds stay fresh and crunchy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Pumpkin seeds do not need to be thoroughly dried before roasting. Simply pat them dry after boiling in salted water, toss with olive oil, and roast until browned.
Pumpkin seeds may turn out chewy if they were not baked long enough, if they were too wet before baking, or if they were not allowed to cool properly.
Yes, roasted pumpkin seeds are a healthy snack. They are rich in protein, healthy fats, fiber, and essential minerals like magnesium, zinc, and iron.
Of course! The shell of a pumpkin seed is edible. When the seeds are roasted to a sufficient level of crispiness, the shell becomes brittle and easy to chew, making it more enjoyable to eat.
Roasted pumpkin seeds are naturally gluten-free. This recipe is also dairy-free and vegan.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- 1 small (about 4 pounds) sugar or pie pumpkin (for about 1 cup of pumpkin seeds)
- 4 cups water
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a sharp chef's knife, carefully cut the pumpkin in half. Use an ice cream scoop to gently scrape out the seeds and the stringy bits from each pumpkin half. Place them into a colander.1 small (about 4 pounds) sugar or pie pumpkin
- Rinse the collected seeds under cold running water, separating them from any remaining pumpkin pulp.
- In a small saucepan, combine the clean pumpkin seeds, water, and kosher salt. Bring the mixture to a boil. Allow the seeds to boil for about 10 minutes.4 cups water, 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- After boiling, drain the seeds back into the colander. Use a paper towel to gently pat them dry, ensuring you remove any excess moisture.
- Transfer the seeds onto the parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle them with olive oil, tossing to coat. Spread them out into a single, even layer.1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- Roast the seeds for approximately 10-15 minutes, stirring halfway through. Keep a close eye on the seeds during the last 5 minutes to prevent burning.
- Allow the roasted pumpkin seeds to cool completely before enjoying. Once cooled, store them in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
- Seed-to-Salt Ratio: For every ½ cup of raw pumpkin seeds, boil them in 2 cups of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt.
- Get creative: Don't be afraid to experiment with different spices and herbs to give these roasted pumpkin seeds your own spin (see blog post for ideas).
- Storage: Store roasted pumpkin seeds in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.