Best Recipe for Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

Best Recipe for Roasting Pumpkin Seeds

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I just love living in the Northwest! There are actual seasons here. The fall colors are almost in full swing and the pumpkin patches are starting up. And Halloween is just three weeks away!

Which speaking of pumpkins… As promised, I wanted to show you what to do with those pumpkin seeds you saved from the last post on how to make pumpkin puree. I hoped you saved them!

Pumpkin seeds are one of those caveats from making your own puree (you definitely won’t get those out of a can!) or carving a jack-o-lantern. So today I’m stoked to walk you through the best recipe for roasting pumpkin seeds. This recipe is little different from what you’ll find at most sites (believe me, I’ve looked). And for how easy it is to roast pumpkin seeds, I won’t say it is quick. In fact, this method will be a little longer than most I’ve found. But it really does make them so much better!

But don’t fret too much if you are limited on time. I will add one of the standard “quicker” baking temperatures just in case you’re in a time crunch. And speaking of crunch…

The Best Way to Roast Pumpkin Seeds

I always did my pumpkin seeds the same way that most people are familiar with but a few weeks ago I decided to consult my favorite cookbook, The Joy of Cooking, and see what they suggested doing. And what I found was something a little different from what I’ve ever done before. If you aren’t familiar with The Joy of Cooking; you are seriously missing out on one of the best, most comprehensive, and basic cookbooks out there.

With most recipes you’ll find a little variation in oven temperatures and baking times but as a whole they are all pretty much the same. You simply collect the seeds from the pumpkin and pull out most of the stringy, slimy, pumpkin goop. Wash them in cold water and lay them out to dry. Once dry, coat them in oil (or butter) and seasonings of choice. Pop them in the oven at around 300-350 F for a little under an hour and they’re done!

While most steps in this recipe will be similar, there are some important changes to keep in mind. First, preheat your oven to 250 F. Separate the pumpkin seeds from the majority of the pumpkin bits but you really don’t have to be that thorough. This is where kids can be super helpful and love to do it. I mean come on, it’s slimy and squishes in between your fingers. What kid wouldn’t love it?

Now, before you start to break out the colander, this is where things change compared to most. The Joy of Cooking suggests that you don’t wash the seeds. Seriously don’t do it. Not only will your seeds taste so much better but there is a fringe benefit to skipping the water rinse. It actually ends up being a little less a pain in the process as it cuts out washing them and the drying time. I mean really. Who wants to wait almost an entire day to roast these little guys anyways?

Coat your pumpkin seeds in oil and some salt if you desire but no seasonings yet. If you aren’t sure how much oil to use, a good standard to follow is a tablespoon of oil per cup of seeds. Throw the oil, salt, and seeds in a plastic bag to coat them. Spread them out on a baking tray and put in the oven for between an hour to an hour and a half. This time really depends on how crunchy you want them. I like a bit of crunch to my seeds so I leave them in there the full hour and a half. But if you like them a little softer, I would suggest pulling them at the hour mark instead.

Once they are done, you can eat them like this is you want to. But if you want to add some seasonings, turn your oven temperature up to 350 F. Place the seeds back in that same bag you used before. Add about 1/2 tsp of oil and seasonings. Toss to coat evenly and spread them back on the tray. Put them in the oven for only 5 minutes and they’re done. Pretty easy right?

5 from 1 vote
Savory Pumpkin Seeds Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hr 35 mins
Cooling Time
10 mins
Total Time
1 hr 45 mins

This method uses a lower oven temperature and a basic savory seasoning mix. It requires a longer baking time but the seeds will come out very crunchy without tasting burned.

Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: best oven roasted pumpkin seeds, best recipe for roasting pumpkin seeds, best way to roast pumpkin seeds, savory roasted pumpkin seeds
Servings: 1 cup
Calories: 448 kcal
Author: Tina
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds unwashed
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • salt (optional)
Savory Seasoning Mix
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. onion powder
Roasting Seeds
  1. Preheat oven to 250 F.

  2. Separate seeds from pumpkin pulp but do not wash.

  3. Put seeds, oil, and salt in a plastic bag and toss to coat evenly.

  4. Spread them on a baking sheet and place in the center of the oven.

  5. Bake seeds for 1 - 1 1/2 hours.

Toasting Seeds with Seasoning Mix
  1. Turn oven temperature to 350 F. while seeds cool for about 10 minutes. 

  2. Place seeds back in the bag with the additional oil, salt, garlic, and onion powder.

  3. Bake for 5 minutes.

  4. Seeds will be ready to eat once cooled or store in an airtight, dry container.

Recipe Notes

For the faster method, omit the extra tsp. of coconut oil. Preheat the oven to 300 F. Toss the seeds with the oil, salt, and seasonings. Spread out on a tray and bake for 40-50 minutes or until golden brown.

If you are still skeptical about not washing the seeds, I urge you to do a taste test. Try a cup of seeds washed next to a cup of seeds unwashed and see what you think. An accurate comparison between the flavor of the two is like the difference between bone-in and boneless chicken. Like bone-in chicken, the pumpkin left on the seeds imparts a subtle rich flavor that you don’t get from washing them. Now that I tried them this new way, I won’t ever wash the pumpkin seeds again. Thank you, Joy of Cooking!

So do you like your pumpkin seeds sweet, savory, or spicy?

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! If you have any questions or would like to share your personal favorite seasoning mix for roasted pumpkin seeds, please leave me a comment below and I will gladly get back to you within 24 hours.

Happy Roasting!

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10 thoughts on “Best Recipe for Roasting Pumpkin Seeds”

  • I would not have thought to leave the pumpkin seeds unwashed. I absolutely love roasted pumpkin seeds! I always loved Halloween time because we would carve our pumpkin and then roast the seeds and let’s face it…kids do not like waiting that extra day to eat the seeds! That part always annoyed me so much! I will definitely have to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Chas! Thanks for visiting Late Summer Mama!

      I love pumpkin seeds too. And I wouldn’t have thought to leave them unwashed as well. I just have always done it the other way and when I read that in The Joy of Cooking, I was a little skeptical I’ll admit. So much so that I did a taste test with a cup of unwashed and washed seeds. I baked them the exact same time and used the same seasonings. I was so surprised at the difference! It’s like the difference between bone-in and boneless chicken. Bone-in chicken has a depth of flavor that boneless chicken always lacks.

      It’s also a great fringe benefit that you can roast them right away by not washing them too!

      I really hope you try this recipe. You won’t regret it! If you have any questions about it just let me know. I am happy to help!

      Thanks again!

  • Great tips! I usually wash the seeds, but you’ve convinced me. I’m not going to wash the seeds and give this recipe a try. I so love pumpkin seeds and I usually spice them up.
    Have you ever smoked them before? I do a lot of BBQ’ing. I’m wondering how that would turn out.

    • Hi JB! Thanks for visiting my post!

      I bet the smoke flavor would taste awesome with pumpkin seeds but I’ve never grilled them before. I would imagine you’d only roast them on a grill for a really short period of time with that intense a flame. If you give it a try, I’d suggest around 10 mins or once you see them turn a golden brown. I think you’ve given me an idea to try out though. Thanks!

      I really hope you give it a try. You won’t regret it! Please let me know how it goes (for either method).

      Thanks again! Tina

  • 4 stars

    What an appropriate season for this beautiful post. And yes, I live in the northwest as well and I absolutely love when the leafs start to fall and the world almost becomes calmer, it’s great!
    I LOVE pumpkin seeds, and always struggle to find the right mixture of seasoning, temperature, and oils. It’s interesting, as an OCD person, to think of leaving all the “muck” on the seeds, but I am most definitely going to give this recipe a try.

    Thanks for the advice!

    • Hi Brooke! Thanks for visiting and giving me some feedback. Always appreciated!

      Yeah, I was a little skeptical at first about leaving the seeds unwashed. But they really do taste better that way. If you are still a little unsure, I recommend that you do some washed and some unwashed with just a little salt. That’s what I did just to make sure this was good advice. And I have to say I’ll never wash them again!

      Thanks again! If you have any questions that come up when you give it a go, let me know and I’ll gladly help out.

    • 5 stars
      UPDATE: gave them a tried both washed and unwashed and absolutely loved them unwashed.

      They dont dry out as much and actually have some better texture to them. All my friends loved it after a pumpkin carving contest!

      • That’s wonderful! It’s so hard to go back to washed seeds after that. I’m really glad that the recipe worked out for you! And thank you for letting me know, it is greatly appreciated.
        All the best,

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