It’s time to get Chipper for Halloween and carve those pumpkins! There are lots of things to consider when carving your Jack-o-lantern: Should you carve a face or a scene? If a face, what kind of face? Scary? Funny? Share your Jack-o-lanterns photos with Chipper on Facebook for a chance to win a Chipper Plush Clippy!
Once you decide on what to carve, the next thing to consider is what to do with all the pumpkin insides? You can get creative and use if for your jack-o-lantern in some of the examples seen below. No matter what you choose to do, make sure to save those pumpkin seeds!
Pumpkin seeds are not only a tasty fall snack, they are packed with powerful nutrients and have an array of health benefits…like helping your kids fall asleep and providing a great source of fiber!
How To Roast Pumpkin Seeds:
1. Clean the seeds! The first and most difficult step in making your roasted pumpkin seeds is removing them from the stringy insides of your pumpkin. It’s easiest to try and do as much of this when you are first cleaning your pumpkin out. have one big bowl for the guts and another for the seeds. After picking off the strands, give them a GOOD rinse with water in a colander.
2. Boil for 10 minutes in salt water. Add the pumpkin seeds to a medium-sized pot of water along with 1 tsp salt. Bring it to a boil and reduce the heat to simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes over low-medium heat. This method helps make the pumpkin seeds easier to digest and produces a crispy outer shell during roasting.
3. Drain the seeds in a colander and dry lightly with a paper towel or tea towel. The seeds will stick to the towel, but just rub them off with your fingers. Don’t worry, they don’t have to be bone dry – just a light pat down.
4. Spread seeds onto a baking sheet and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil (use about 1/2-1 tsp depending on how many seeds you have). Massage oil into seeds and add a generous sprinkle of vegetable salt or fine grain sea salt will do. Try to spread out the seeds as thin as possible with minor overlapping.
5. Roast seeds at 325˚F for 10 minutes. REMEMBER: The inner seeds cook much faster than the outer shell! they are easy to burn so keep a close eye. Remove from oven and stir. Roast for another 8-10 minutes (if your oven temp is off, this could vary a lot!). During the last 5 minutes of roasting, remove a few seeds and crack open to make sure the inner seeds are not burning (you don’t want the inner seed brown). Cool a couple and pop them into your mouth to test. They are ready when the shell is super crispy and easy to bite through. The inner seed should have only a hint of golden tinge to it. They should NOT be brown.
6. EAT and ENJOY! Remove from oven, add a bit more veggie salt to your own taste, and dig in! There is no need to remove the outer shell; it’s quite possibly the best part.
Pumpkin seeds make a healthy alternative to popcorn or candy, especially during the sweet-craze of Halloween! Be sure to pair it with Vitamin C to absorb the most iron you can.
Pack them in your little one(s) lunch using a plastic baggy or make a gift out them with cute miniature mason jars. Just be sure to share and enjoy!