7 Pumpkin Seed Recipes You’ll Fall in Love With
Pumpkin seeds are much more than something you remove when carving a jack-o’-lantern. These tiny treats can be used to prepare delicious fall dishes. In fact, pumpkin seeds create savory sauces, satisfying salads, magnificent muffins, and sweet, crunchy cakes. The best part? They are packed with nutritional benefits. Livestrong writes that a 1-ounce serving of pumpkin seeds contains 8.5 grams of protein, and is a great source of iron, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and zinc. Here are 7 recipes delivering you pumpkin seed perfection.
1. Zapotec Pumpkin Seed Sauce
Saveur’s recipe calls for beans, pumpkin seeds, chicken stock, shrimp, onion, and epazote, creating a rich sauce that pairs perfectly with chicken breast. Penzeys Spices explains that epazote adds a sweet, mild flavor to food and is traditionally used to prepare Mexican dishes.
- 1 cup dried great northern beans
- 6 star anise pods
- ¾ pound or 3 cups whole pumpkin seeds with hulls
- 3 dried chiles de árbol, stems and seeds removed
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1½ ounces dried shrimp
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons crumbled, dried epazote
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Carefully pick over beans and rinse. Place in medium saucepan and add enough cold water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil over high heat and boil rapidly for 1 minute. Remove from heat and let beans sit for 1 hour. Put star anise in a small saucepan with 1 cup water, bring to the boil, and reduce liquid by half. Remove from heat and set aside. Meanwhile, spread pumpkin seeds evenly on a baking sheet. Bake until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely. Place pumpkin seeds in a food processor fitted with steel blade. Pulse for 3 minutes.
The seeds will break up, but bits of hull will still be visible. Do not overprocess. Working in small batches, place the pumpkin seeds in a medium-mesh sieve over a bowl and shake the fine particles through. After each batch, pour a cup of water through the sieve to rinse as much as possible. Discard fibrous residue. Pour strained liquid into a pitcher. Any bits of hull will then rise to the top and can easily be skimmed off. Add strained liquid to semi-cooked beans. Heat a griddle or small cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.
Rinse the chiles under cold running water, then dry roast them on the griddle, letting them cook for about 15 seconds on each side. Do not let them scorch, cook just until the aroma is released. Purée the chiles in food processor or blender with 1 cup chicken stock. Add the purée to the beans and pumpkin seed liquid. Add dried shrimp, onion, epazote, anise infusion, and remaining chicken stock. Bring to a boil over high heat. Adjust seasonings. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 45 minutes or until beans are thoroughly cooked.
2. Fall Greens Salad With Pumpkin Seeds and Asiago
This satisfying salad is a perfect side to enjoy with a number of elegant autumn entrées. Whole Foods Market’s recipe calls for butter lettuce, baby spinach, roasted pumpkin seeds, Asiago cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette, creating a salad that’s crisp, crunchy, and bursting with fresh flavors.
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 2 bunches watercress, trimmed, leaves torn into bite-size pieces
- 1 head red leaf or butter lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces
- ½ cup roasted, salted pumpkin seeds
- 3 ounces aged Asiago cheese, grated or shaved thinly with a vegetable peeler
Directions: In a large bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, honey, mustard, and shallot. Drizzle in oil while whisking constantly to make a vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper. Add spinach, watercress, and lettuce, and toss gently to coat. Scatter pumpkin seeds and cheese over the top and serve.
3. Cherry-Pumpkin Seed Muffins
Herbivoracious transforms The Farm To Table Cookbook: The Art of Eating Locally’s cherry-almond muffins into a fabulous fall breakfast by using pumpkin seeds instead of almonds. This recipe for palate-pleasing pumpkin seed muffins yields 12 servings. If you’re in the market for a delicious drink to enjoy with your morning meal, follow The Coconut Frontier’s instructions to prepare homemade pumpkin seed milk.
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ⅓ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup whole milk
- 8 ounces fresh cherries, pitted and roughly chopped
- ½ cup shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas), toasted in a skillet or oven
- ¼ cup shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas), raw
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease or line 12 muffin cups. Beat butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy, either in a mixer or by hand. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Gently mix half of the flour mixture into the butter, then half of the milk, then the remaining half of each. Do not overbeat or the muffins will be tough. Stir in the cherries and toasted pumpkin seeds. Distribute the batter into the muffin tins, and top with the raw pumpkin seeds. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
4. Spicy Pumpkin Seed Brittle
Looking for a dessert that combines both sweet and spicy flavors? Woman’s Day’s recipe uses pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, salt, cayenne pepper, sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, and butter to create a tantalizing treat.
- 2 cups shelled pumpkin seeds
- 1½ teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon each ground cinnamon and salt
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar corn syrup, golden cane syrup, or light corn syrup
- ½ cup water
- 1 stick (½ cup) unsalted butter, cut up
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Directions: Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Scatter pumpkin seeds in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet; place in oven for 8 to 10 minutes, tossing once or twice, until lightly toasted and fragrant. Line a large baking sheet with 2 sheets of nonstick foil. In a small cup, whisk baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne, if using, and set aside. In a large saucepan, mix sugar, syrup, and water. Cover and bring mixture to a boil over high heat. Add butter; stir until melted.
Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan with the tip in the sugar mixture. Over medium-high heat, cook, without stirring, 20 minutes or until thermometer registers 305 degrees Fahrenheit. Stir in the seeds and vanilla. Remove from heat. Sprinkle the baking soda mixture over top; stir vigorously with a heat-resistant rubber spatula 15 seconds, being careful not to spatter. Immediately pour onto prepared baking sheet; spread with a metal offset spatula as thinly as possible. Let cool. Break into pieces.
5. Crispy Almond-Pumpkin Seed Cookies
- 1 egg, plus 1 egg white
- 3 teaspoons vegetable oil
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sliced almonds, raw and unsalted
- ¾-1 cup pumpkin seeds, green, raw, and unsalted
Directions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix ingredients together in the order they’re listed. In two 10-by-15-inch cookie sheets, cover with wax or parchment paper. Brush wax paper with a thin layer of vegetable oil. Spread mix into both sheets as thin as possible, making sure it fully cover both sheets. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove wax paper when cool. Break cookies with hands to preferred shapes and sizes.
6. Pumpkin Seed Cakes
All you need to create this Green Kitchen Stories recipe is pumpkin seeds and dates. The pumpkin seed cakes are delicious plain but you can also add a marvelous mousse or another tantalizing topping to it as well. It yields 8 mini cakes.
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds
- 8 fresh dates
Raw Chocolate Mousse
- 1 avocado
- 1 ripe banana
- 3 tablespoons raw cacao powder
- 1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs
- 1 tablespoon blueberries
Directions: To prepare the mousse, mix all the ingredients in a blender for about 45 seconds. To prepare the cakes, divide the pumpkin seeds into three equal piles. Add the first pile into a blender and blend for 20 seconds. Add the dates and the second pile of the pumpkin seeds and blend until it becomes a sticky dough. Add the rest of the pumpkin seeds and blend for a short while. Make 8 small balls with your hands and press them until they are ½-inch thick and 3-inches wide.
7. Healthy Pumpkin Seed Pancakes
If you’re looking for a nutritious pancake that’s flourless, low-carb, and delicious, look no further! Food.com’s recipe only calls for 5 ingredients, takes 5 minutes to prepare, and yields 4 servings.
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds (unsalted)
- 1 cup water (room temperature)
- ¾ teaspoon stevia powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Directions: Put all ingredients into blender. Blend until you get a good pancake batter consistency. And more water if needed. Add stevia powder and vanilla and blend to combine. Pour batter onto oiled pan. Cook on medium-low heat until browned on one side, then flip and cook until done. It should take about 3 to 4 minutes on each side, more or less depending on how thick/dense your pancake mixture is.