My pumpkin seeds recipe selection gives you endless choices of snacks to make!
If you are lucky enough to have a supply of pumpkins (you may grow your own, or have a good local market or supermarket displaying these wonderful nutritious members of the squash family), make sure you save the seeds – there are some amazing flavoured snacks that you can make from them.
Pumpkin seed recipes are so easy to make, it just takes a little time for a tasty end result. Growing pumpkins is a ‘full circle’ – from seed to fruit and back to seed again.
Pumpkins are nutritional powerhouses, full of a variety of nutrients, plant compounds antioxidants to fight off infection and diseases and give your health a real added boost and the seeds are no exception. Just for starters, they contain magnesium, zinc, copper and manganese and are a great source of health omega-3 fats.
They are superfoods in the true sense, and pumpkin seed snacks are easy to transport for a quick boost, rather than reaching for a packet of potato chips or a chocolate bar!
You know how I love experimentation – here are some great ideas for different seasonings and tastes for the roast pumpkin seeds.
The most important part of the process is cleaning off the seeds before roasting, and the simplest method I have found is to wash them in a bowl, using your hands to clean off the ‘stringy bits’.
Drain them in a sieve or colander and leave to dry – this is the longest part of the process. A friend of mine actually uses a hair dryer to speed up the drying!
Once dry, spread them out on a baking sheet or cookie sheet. I like to lightly baste the seeds with 3 tbsp of melted butter or vegetable oil and season with Himalayan salt, or any other natural salt that you like.
Adding ground black pepper also gives them a lovely ‘punch’.
You need to heat the oven to approx 80C/170F in advance and then roast the seeds for about 15-20 minutes.
You will have a lovely crunchy snack to enjoy.
BUT, do keep an eye on them – ovens vary and some may take a little longer to cook, and others could be nicely roasted in under 15 minutes. Use your own judgement.
Add a 1 tsp (or a little more if you like lemon and a bit of heat) of lemon pepper seasoning , such as McCormick, Mrs Dash or Masterfoods to 3tbsp of melted butter or oil – lots of brands of lemon pepper seasoning are readily available in supermarkets.
Add 1 tsp of chilli seasoning (best to use a packet seasoning than a hot chilli spice on its own) mixed with 3 tbsp melted butter or oil, and salt and pepper if you like more heat.
Add ½ tsp of finely chopped rosemary and ½ tsp finely chopped thyme, with the salt and pepper to 3tbsp butter or oil, for a real taste of Southern France. Try mixing these seeds with olives and a little crushed garlic for a tasty pre-dinner party snack with drinks.
If you really crave a sweet snack that is still reasonably healthy, add 1 tbsp of maple syrup or natural honey to the 3tbsp butter or oil. I tried this with a dash of pepper as well and they were yummy!