Donít let those pumpkin seeds from your Halloween pumpkins go to waste. Pumpkin seeds contain essential nutrients, while also being low in saturated fat. Try this simple roasted pumpkin recipe for a healthy and kid-friendly snack:
1 cup fresh pumpkin seeds, pulp removed, washed and dried
1 tsp. canola oil
1 tsp. salt
Clean the seeds until there are no signs of pumpkin guts. After picking off the strands, give them a good rinse with water in a colander. Add the pumpkin seeds to a medium-sized pot of water along with one teaspoon of salt. Bring the seeds to a boil and reduce the heat to simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes over medium heat. Boiling the seeds first, helps make the pumpkin seeds easier to digest and produces a crispy outer shell during roasting. Next, place the pumpkin seeds in a bowl, drizzle with oil and stir to coat. Add salt and stir. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Spread on the prepared baking sheet in an even layer. Place the rack in center of oven at 350į. Bake the seeds, stir once or twice and toast until golden brown for about 20 minutes. During the last five minutes of roasting, remove a few seeds and crack open to make sure the inner seeds are not burned. Seeds are ready when the shell is crispy and easy to bite through. The inner seed should have only a hint of golden color to it. They should not be brown. Store the roasted seeds in an airtight container or resalable plastic food storage bag at room temperature. If serving pumpkin seeds as an appetizer, consider putting the seeds in a carved out pumpkin, or a Halloween theme bowl for a simple decoration.
Pumpkin seeds are versatile; use different seasonings to make a sweet or savory treat. Try tossing your roasted seeds with cinnamon sugar, garlic power, Cajun seasoning, chili powder, cumin and cayenne pepper, or pumpkin pie spice. Substitute pumpkin seeds for nuts in muffin and bread recipes, add them to your salad, or mix them with dried fruit and granola for an on-the-go snack. What a easy and tasty snack!