I love Halloween, and one of the things I look forward to every year is carving the guts out of a nice big pumpkin to make a jack-o-lantern and then roasting the seeds inside.

Here's my recipe for garlic oven-baked pumpkin seeds, the perfect post-pumpkin-carving treat.

Oven-Roasted Pumpkin Seeds With Garlic

Pull the guts out of your pumpkin and place all the seeds into a strainer or colander. Pick the seeds out of the pumpkin meat and pull out as much of the pumpkin's guts as you can. The less orange you see in your strainer, the better.

After you've pulled most of the pumpkin innards off of the seeds, run the strainer under a steady stream of cold water and swirl your hand around in them releasing the rest of the seeds from the orange goop they are attached to. Do this for a few minutes, picking away any orange you see. There will be some left on some seeds, and that's just fine. Hopefully you'll have a strainer full of seeds that looks like this:

Beano, TSM

Some people will tell you that you should now leave the seeds out overnight to dry. This might yield a better result in the end, but after I spend this this much time gutting a pumpkin and cleaning seeds....I want to eat them! So, I shake out as much water as I can and pat the seeds dry with clean rag or paper towel. Then transfer the seeds into a large bowl.

Now comes the seasoning, all of the following ingredient amounts are not exact. The more seeds you have, the more of the ingredient you will want to add. (This is how much I used for the seed-yield of five small to-medium-sized pumpkins.) the secret is to have enough oil and butter covering the seeds to allow the seasoning to stick to the seeds without leaving puddles of liquid on your baking sheet.

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 stick butter (melted)
  • 1 teaspoon crushed sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon on chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated garlic (The more you like garlic the more you can add, this was enough to just give them a hint of garlic.) Also, You can use garlic powder, but I like the granulated kind much better for these. And you could press fresh garlic as well, but you'd have to press a LOT of it.)


Stir/toss the seeds and all those ingredients in the bowl until all the seeds are pretty evenly coated.

Next place aluminum foil on a cookie sheet and spray it lightly with a non-stick cooking spray (you may want to use 2 or 3 cookie sheets so you can make more seeds at once) and pre-heat your oven to 250 degrees.

Spread out your seeds on the foil-covered cookie sheet. You want to have them spread out as much a possible, if you have lots of seeds stacked on top of other seeds they won't cook right. (This is where having multiple cookie sheets could come in handy if you make a lot.)

Now, place the cookie sheet in the oven at 250 and let them bake for about 2 hours. You will want to use a spatula to stir and flip the seeds on the cookie sheet about every 15-20 minutes to keep them from sticking to the foil. the 2-hour time might bit a little shorter or a littler longer depending on how dry your seeds were to begin with. Once the majority of your seeds start turning a golden brown they are done. If seeds are still soft, keep cooking them, if seeds are black or burnt, you've cooked them too long.

Pull them out of the oven, let them cool and they are ready to eat. And they should look something like this:

Beano, TSM