Have you carved your pumpkins yet?  If you have, I hope you saved the seeds!  Roasted pumpkin seeds are a great snack, and they are well worth the effort.

Pumpkins 2013

Pumpkin seeds are a great source of magnesium, zinc, iron, protein and healthy fats.  So, a great snack for you and your kids!

I made roasted pumpkin seeds yesterday and put them out as an afterschool snack.  I finally had to put the lids back on the jars to stop my kids from eating them all up!  I wanted to save some for their dad to try!

The first step is to scoop the seeds from the pumpkins and clean them.  Kind of messy, but not so bad (like I said, it’s worth the trouble!).  I just pulled the seeds from the pumpkin the best I could and washed them in a colander to remove all the orange pumpkin bits.

Then, I laid the seeds out on a kitchen towel lined with parchment paper to dry.

Pumpkin Seeds Drying

I gave them a stir every now and then and let them dry out overnight.  (I’ve roasted damp seeds in the past and they didn’t turn out as crispy.)

I divided the seeds in half so I could have one plain, salted variety and one spicy variety.  In years past, I’ve made lemon pepper, cayenne, garlic and many other flavors.  Last year the winners with my kids were plain and spicy, so that’s what I went with this year.  Feel free to experiment with your favorite spices!

First, preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

Add one-half of the seeds to a bowl with a spray of olive oil and about a teaspoon of sea salt.  Toss to coat.  You want the pumpkin seeds to be lightly coated but NOT dripping with oil.  It takes very little oil. (Adjust the amount of salt used by the amount of seeds.  Don’t oversalt, you can always add more if they aren’t lightly coated after stirring!)

Plain Pumpkin Seeds

Next, mix up one teaspoon chili powder, one teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt and a pinch of cayenne.  Add that to the other half of seeds, spray with a bit of olive oil and toss to coat.

Spicy Pumpkin Seeds

Give two baking sheets a very light spray of olive oil to prevent sticking and spread the seeds in an even layer.

Pumpkin Seeds on Baking Sheets

Roast in the oven for 10 minutes.

Remove, stir, and return to the oven for 5-8 more minutes.

Careful not to burn the seeds!  Once cooled, they should be crispy.

Add to a glass jar to store and watch them disappear!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

What are your favorite flavors to add to pumpkin seeds?