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4 Ways to Use Leftover Pumpkin Seeds

4 Ways to Use Leftover Pumpkin Seeds

As the leaves begin to fall, minds drift to pumpkins both for carving fun and for tasting the delicious flavors of your favorite pumpkin cheesecake or autumn hummus. But part of the joy of sculpting this seasonal squash is scooping out the seeds, and rather than relegating these nutrient-dense gems to the trash bin, pumpkin seeds can be a delectable and healthy snack for the entire family.

Never fear! We’ve carved out some unique ideas about what to do with pumpkin seeds that will inspire you to take these treasures to the roasting tray. While these pepitas* may be small, they are packed with nutrition, and are just the trick to treat your body to a great source of protein and unsaturated fats.

*Pepita = pumpkin seed!

On a table there is a small pumpkin and a dish fresh out of the oven of spiced pumpkin seeds.

1) Season with seasonal cinnamon.

The warm, sweet flavor of cinnamon is invariably welcome when the season takes on a chill. This comforting spice (used as a medieval medicine to aid digestion) can be paired with brown sugar and butter for a delightful, roasted, classic crunch of these cinnamon sugar pumpkin seeds that never fail to keep things toasty.

PRO-TIP: To easily remove stubborn pumpkin pulp from the seeds, whirl them around in a big bowl of warm water using your hand to loosen. Let them rest in the water for about five minutes, and the seeds will float to the top!

A woman kneels in a haystack and holds a pile of True Lemon, True Lime, and True Grapefruit packets in her hands. There are small pumpkins surrounding her.

2) Liven them up with True Lemon.

The zest of True Lemon is a fantastic match for pumpkin seeds’ nutty flavor. Mix with olive oil and a sprinkle of True Lemon Pepper spice blend or just a packet of True Lemon along with a pinch of salt and paprika before baking. Low in salt and sugar, these bright flavors will add a fresh zing to any seasonal snack.

PRO-TIP: A simple trick for how to prepare pumpkin seeds: Soak clean seeds in a quart of filtered water mixed with one tablespoon of salt overnight or at least for 8 hours at room temperature. Drain and towel dry well before roasting for easier digestion and super crunchy seeds.

A person at a kitchen counter gently pours honey into a cup using a honey wand. There are pumpkins, ginger root, lemons, and nutmeg on the table. The person is wearing an orange sweater.

3) Put them under the spell of honey.

One of the best pumpkin seed recipes is a simple concoction of olive oil, honey, and a dash of salt. This combination subtlety charms the palate in these honey roasted pumpkin seeds. Whipping up a batch is sure to lift the spirits!

PRO-TIP: Seeds wind up too chewy? Roasted pumpkin seeds are usually a little chewy when they are still warm. Let seeds cool completely before testing for that signature crunch, and if they still remain squishy, pop them back into the oven at 300°F for 5 more minutes to crisp them.

A pile of star anise, cinnamon, cinnamon sticks, pumpkins, and jars of other spices sit on the counter.

4) Summon some spice.

This fiery, roasted pumpkin seeds recipe mirrors the same seasoning we love in Diane Henderik’s Spicy Chickpeas for a delightful kick! Add a splash of olive oil along with equal parts garlic powder, chili powder, dried oregano, cayenne pepper, kosher salt, and a good sprinkling of True Lemon and True Lime, and you’ll have a nibble that will wow even the most perceptive palates.

PRO-TIP: Once pumpkin seeds have fully cooled, serve them in a festive Halloween bowl with a small spoon. They’ll be ready to sprinkle on top of hearty fall soups, crunchy salads, or scooped into a cupped hand for a quick snack.

Fun to customize and even more fun to snack on, these healthy ideas for your leftover pumpkin seeds will ensure you’re never stumped for bewitching flavor combinations.

If you’re in the mood to keep things cozy, koselig, or hygge, warm up with the perfect beverage on a chilly day. This festive dish will take care of the rest of the pumpkin once you have made the most of the seeds! Your autumn-themed meal is now complete. 

The fall season is perfect for savoring time with friends and family or sharing some of these unique flavors. It may even have your front porch brimming with smiles alongside your Jack-O-Lanterns.