How to perfectly roast pumpkin seeds is an easy and fun recipe you can make with your kids.  Learn how to make this addictive, healthy snack in the oven with all your favorite flavor toppings.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
sprinkling salt on roasted pumpkin seeds
Snacks

How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds

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Looking for a great fall activity to do with your kids?  Try roasting pumpkin seeds!  This how to roast pumpkin seeds recipe is super simple, and your family will enjoy making them just as much as eating them.  Crispy.  Crunchy.  Still warm.  Can’t resist.

person holding a spoonful of roasted pumpkin seeds

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What color should roasted pumpkin seeds be?

Roasted pumpkin seeds should be somewhere in the spectrum of a light golden brown color to a dark golden brown color.  Stirring the seeds while roasting helps achieve a more even color.  A good rule of thumb is to stir them every 10 minutes, but keep a close eye on the roasted seeds closer to the end of the cooking time, so they don’t burn.

Are roasted pumpkin seeds good for you?

They most certainly are good for you.  Roasted pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium, potassium, calcium, and zinc.  They are low in calories and are high in fiber and protein.  A serving size of 1/3 cup, is only 138 calories.

closeup of a bowl of roasted pumpkin seeds

Do you have to clean pumpkin seeds before roasting?

Yeah, you do need to clean the seeds from the fibrous pulp.  This step isn’t hard to do; it just gets your hands dirty, and in a few minutes they will be cleaned.  If you aren’t interested in cleaning them, recruit the kids to do this part.  Cleaned seeds roast better and the oil and seasonings also stick better.

What is the best way to clean pumpkin seeds?

There seems to be different opinions on this, so do what seems easiest to you.  Here are some suggestions.

  • Submerge the seeds and the fiber in a large bowl of water.
  • Place the seeds and the fiber in a colander in the sink and let cold running water help to separate the seeds from the pulp.
  • Place the seeds and the fiber in a bowl and separate with your hands, then rinse the seeds under cold running water.

bowl of roasted pumpkin seeds with fall leaves

Do you need to soak or boil pumpkin seeds before roasting?

There are different opinions on this technique.  Some say it helps cook the seed and helps soften the shell.  Others don’t notice a big difference in the overall taste or the crispiness of the roasted shell. 

Some do it for health reasons, as boiling the seeds first removes most of the phytic acid, which will allow your body to absorb more of the nutrients from the seeds.

If you do want to try this, place your cleaned pumpkin seeds in a small pot of water.  Bring it to a boil, add 1 cup of salt, and stir until well dissolved.  Add the pumpkin seeds and let them boil for 10 minutes.  Drain, but don’t rinse, then air dry the seeds or dry them out in the oven before adding the oil and seasonings.

Should pumpkin seeds dry before roasting?

This is another good idea.  It is the secret to the best tasting roasted pumpkin seeds because completely dry pumpkin seeds produce crispy, crunchy, flavorful roasted seeds.  Wet or damp seeds cause steam in the oven and this will prevent the seeds from becoming crispy and crunchy.

There are a few ways you can achieve clean, dry pumpkin seeds.  The first way is to pat them dry with paper towel and allow them to air dry spread out on a baking tray for up to 24 hours.  The second way is to spread them out evenly on a baking tray place them in a 300 F oven and bake for 30 minutes to let them dry them out.

What do you put on roasted pumpkin seeds?

Most people agree to start flavoring your dry pumpkin seeds with a fat; olive or coconut oil are popular choices.  Then add flavor by combining different spices.  The sky is the limit–be creative!  Make sure the seeds are evenly coated in the spices, then spread them out evenly on a baking tray for roasting.

person holding a bowl of roasted pumpkin seeds

What flavor combinations are popular with roasted pumpkin seeds?

  • Sweet: cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey
  • Unami: Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce
  • Aromatics: garlic powder, onion powder
  • Savory: turmeric, coriander, chipotle
  • Spicy: chili powder, cayenne, Cajun seasonings, sriracha powder
  • Cheesy: grated hard cheeses like Parmesan
  • Fruity: lime zest, orange zest, lemon zest
  • Basic: salt and pepper

What to do with roasted pumpkin seeds?

  • Eat the seeds as a healthy snack.  They taste great warm or at room temperature.
  • Sprinkle them on a salad.
  • Make trail mix by adding the seeds to nuts and dried fruit.
  • Grind them up in a food processor to make pumpkin seed nut butter.

Are roasted pumpkin seed shells edible?

Yes, roasted pumpkin seeds with the shell are a popular healthy snack in North America.

sprinkling salt on a bowl of roasted pumpkin seeds

How to Eat Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

The most popular way to eat roasted pumpkin seeds is with the shell still on when they are still warm from roasting or eat them at room temperature.  If eating the shell bothers you, or you are concerned of a chocking hazard with small children, the shell can be cracked and thrown away like a sunflower seed.  There is more fiber, flavor and health benefits if you keep the shell intact.

How to Store Pumpkin Seeds

Since most seeds, including pumpkin seeds, are high in fat, they have the potential to turn rancid.  To prevent this from happening, store the cool, roasted pumpkin seeds in an airtight container in a cool, dark, dry place.

Can you freeze roasted pumpkin seeds?

Yes, you can freeze roasted pumpkin seeds.  If you are roasting a lot of pumpkin seeds and don’t want food waste, freezing the roasted seeds is an easy option.  Allow the roasted pumpkin seeds to cool completely on the baking tray.  Transfer the seeds to a freezer friendly airtight container or zip-top freezer bag, seal, label with the date and place in the freezer.  Roasted pumpkin seeds can be kept in the freezer for up to 12 months.

How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds

Gather the ingredients: pumpkin seeds, olive oil, and seasonings of choice (I used sea salt and garlic powder).  The seeds in the photo are from a small sugar pumpkin.  A larger pumpkin will give you more seeds, and they will also be larger in size.

Preheat the oven to 300 F.  Using your hands, separate the pumpkin fiber from the pumpkin seeds.  Discard the pumpkin fiber.

plate of pumpkin seeds and bowl of pumpkin pulp

Place the pumpkin seeds in a small sieve or colander and rinse any remaining pumpkin pulp off them by placing them under cold running water.  Allow the seeds to drain for a minute or two by placing the sieve over a bowl to catch any drips.

rinsing pumpkin seeds in a metal sieve

Prepare your baking tray by covering it in foil, then evenly spread out the cleaned pumpkin seeds.  Place the tray in a 300 F oven and bake for 30 minutes.  The purpose of this step is to dry out the pumpkin seeds to help the seasonings stick to the seeds better.

dried out pumpkin seeds on a cookie sheet

Once the seeds are dry, place them in a bowl.  Pour in the extra virgin olive oil and stir until well coated, then sprinkle on your seasonings.  For this photo shoot, we decided to use just sea salt.  Be creative and brave; try new flavor combinations.  Read my post for flavor ideas.

bowl of pumpkin seeds with olive oil and salt

Stir the seed until all of them are coated in the spices.

person mixing pumpkin seeds with oil and salt

Spread the pumpkin seeds on the same baking tray.  I like to sprinkle a bit more sea salt on the pumpkin seeds once they are on the tray.

person sprinkling salt on pumpkin seeds

Place in a 350 F oven for 25 minutes.  Make sure to stir the seeds after the 10 minute and 20 minute mark.  Watch the seeds closely during the last 5 minutes. 

The seeds are done when they are golden brown.  To test, remove 3 seeds from the tray and let them cool to room temperature.  The seeds should be crispy. 

When the seeds are done roasting, sprinkle on more sea salt and garlic powder to taste.  Serve while still warm.

person sprinkling salt on roasted pumpkin seeds

Pro Tips for Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

  • Clean seeds well by rinsing them with cold water.
  • Dry out the seeds before roasting them.  Bake for 30 minutes at 300 F, or air dry for 24 hours.
  • Change up the seasonings according to your personal preference: sweet, savory, salty, or spicy.
  • Need to re-crisp the seeds?  Reheat them at 250 F for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Need a different oil?  Try coconut oil.
  • Want to boil the seeds before roasting?  Boil them for 10 minutes in heavily salted water.  Drain, but don’t rinse.  Allow to dry.
  • Test for donenesss. Let 3 seeds come to room temperature before tasting.  They should be golden brown and crispy when done.

Our Go-To Kitchen Tools for Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

Looking for more delicious pumpkin recipes this fall? Check out these ones.

roasted pumpkin and chicken salad on a plate bowl of roasted pumpkin cubes with a spoon person taking one of the pumpkin dinner rolls

The pleasure of a 5-star review for these roasted pumpkin seeds would be greatly appreciated.

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sprinkling salt on roasted pumpkin seeds

How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds


  • Author: Brooke
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2/3 cup 1x

Description

How to perfectly roast pumpkin seeds is an easy and fun recipe you can make with your kids.  Learn how to make this addictive, healthy snack in the oven with all your favorite flavor toppings.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup raw pumpkin seeds, rinsed and cleaned of pulp
  • 2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • sprinkle fine sea salt
  • sprinkle garlic powder

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 F.
  2. Scrub a small sugar pumpkin (about 700g) with warm water and dry it off with a kitchen towel.  Cut off the stem with a large sharp kitchen knife, then split the pumpkin in half lengthwise.  Scoop out the pumpkin seeds with a spoon and your hands, then place them in a bowl.
  3. Separate the seed from the pulp with your hands, then discard the pulp.  Rinse the seeds with cold water.
  4. Brush a small baking sheet with olive oil and spread out the pumpkin seeds evenly.  Bake the seeds for 30 minutes at 300 F to dry them out.
  5. Once the seeds are dried out, mix them in a bowl with a little bit of olive oil and your spices of choice.  I used just salt at this stage.  Increase the oven temperature to 350 F.
  6. Spread out seeds on the baking tray again.  Roast the seeds for 25 minutes.  Stir the seeds at the 10 minute and 20 minute mark.  The seeds are done when they are crispy and golden brown all over.
  7. Sprinkle more salt on when done roasting and add garlic powder to taste.  Serve while still warm.

Notes

  • The pleasure of a 5-star review for this how to roast pumpkin seeds recipe would be greatly appreciated.
  • 👩🏻‍🍳 Want to see our latest recipes?  Subscribe to our email newsletter to get our latest recipes, fun food facts, food puns, and behind the scenes news about our blog.
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Roasted
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: healthy pumpkin seed recipes, how to roast pumpkin seeds

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