How to Clean and Roast Pumpkin Seeds

 How to Clean and Roast Pumpkin Seeds

One of our favorite things to do each Halloween is roast pumpkins seeds.

How to clean and roast pumpkin seeds

The Easiest Way to Clean and Roast Pumpkin Seeds

I’ve taken to picking out smaller pumpkins for the grand kids to carve and decorate. The smaller size is great for the kids but if your looking for big pumpkin seeds to roast be sure to buy a big pumpkin. The bigger the pumpkin the bigger the seeds will be.

I believe in waste not want not so as long as the seeds are big enough to crack open and eat I will roast them.

Over the years I have learn a great little trick to get all the stringy pieces of pumpkin pulp off the seeds.

First clean out the inside of the pumpkin as usual. Put everything seeds and pulp into a very large bowl or pot.

Rinse the seeds and pulp under running water. 

Pick out the larger pieces of pumpkin pulp.

Rinse and repeat.

Remove as much of the stringy pumpkin pulp as possible.

Now fill the very deep bowl or pot with water.

The pieces of pumpkin will sink and the pumpkin seeds will float to the top.

Easy way to clean pumpkin seeds

Easy way to clean pumpkin seeds


Once you’ve gotten all the pumpkin pulp removed drain the seeds in a colander.

I’ve seen lots of recipes for flavored pumpkin seeds out there. You’re not going to find that here. We like good old salted pumpkin seeds in this family. The saltier the better.

How to Roast Salted Pumpkin Seeds


Pumpkin Seeds {about 3 1/2 cups}

Large Bowl

about 3-4 cups Water

1/2-1 cup of sea salt

There is a trick to getting really salty pumpkin seeds. Some people just sprinkle the salt on the pumpkin seeds after the have spread them out on a baking sheet. But I have found the best way to get really salty pumpkin seeds is to soak the seeds in highly salted water first.

In a large bowl pour about 4 cups of water. Add a 1/2 cup of sea salt. To help the salt dissolve in that small amount of water it helps to heat the water up in the microwave.

Heat the water for about 2 minutes and stir  until most of the salt has dissolved. You may still have salt on the bottom but that is fine.

Add the pumpkin seeds and let soak for at least three hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

After three hours the water may be a grayish color. Don’t worry it is fine. Drain the pumpkin seeds and spread out in a single layer on a cookie sheet.

Sprinkle about two  more tablespoons of sea salt all over the pumpkin seeds and stir.

Place the cookie sheet in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes depending on how large and how many pumpkin seeds you have. Every five minutes or so rotate the pan and using a spatula flip the seeds. Bake until all seeds are dry. The shell should still be a pale white color.

You don’t want the shell to turn brown. 

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds on Cookie Sheet


How to salt and roast pumpkin seeds.

Salted & Roasted Pumpkin Seeds


 You will have to adjust the amounts of soaking water and salt if you have more seeds. I had about 31/2 cups of fresh pumpkin seeds.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in a Mason Jar

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in a Mason Jar




  1. Great tips!!!! Thank you so much for the lovely explanation.

  2. Hi!

    My mom loves munching on pumpkin seeds that’s why I want to thank you for posting this recipe. I might make one this weekend and surprise her.

    More power to you and your blog. :)

  3. Annemarie Salisbury says:

    We don’t even crack them, but I put a little bit of olive oil and sea salt over them as an alternative to brining them. And we love ‘em. I’m lucky to get them off of the roasting pan; there never seem to be enough seeds! I do like the cracked ones, too (pepitas). But I pay for someone else to do those :)

  4. You actually crack open the pumpkin seeds? I’ve never heard of that. We’ve always eaten the whole thing. THanx for the tips on cleaning & salting!

    • Julie we never cracked them open either, just ate them whole. Imagine how silly I felt when my 5 year old came home from kindergarten and schooled me on how to really eat a pumpkin seed. I doubted her and googled it.. Imagine that my 5 year old was right, but I still can’t break the habit of eating the whole thing lol

  5. We’ve been doing this for years,,but don’t use that much salt,,wow

  6. How do you get them to stay white? Mine started browning in the first 5 minutes.

Speak Your Mind