I love the flavor of roasted seeds – they’re so nutty and comforting. Often people incorporate roasting seeds into their traditions of carving Halloween Jack-o-Lanterns – scooping out the slimy guts and separating the big white seeds is as much a part of the night as picking a goofy face to carve, or, in my case, a way-too-elaborate spooky creature that involves shading and specialty tools…which I usually regret and give up on halfway through. But pumpkin seeds aren’t the only roastable innards this season!
You probably have already started seeing, maybe even buying, gourds and squashes of all sorts this fall. I personally have a butternut squash and two acorn squashes that are waiting to be devoured for dinner this week (you know I love my veggies).
Most of these seasonal squashes have seeds that are a great size for roasting and taste just as delicious as your typical pumpkin seeds. Tonight when I prep my butternut squash, I’ll scoop out the cavity and pick out the seeds to roast alongside the squash itself. Of course, seeds cook much quicker than the thick flesh of the squash, so if you’re roasting the vegetable whole, you can just put the seeds in for the last 10 to 15 minutes. I love being able to waste fewer parts of the food we eat, and since we even grow some of these in our garden I feel especially grateful for the nutrients they’ve provided to us after we’ve nourished them over the growing season.
So have fun with your gourds this year! My general advice:
- Experiment with flavors. For extra healthy seeds, you can just rely on the natural moisture to adhere salt and seasonings, or you can add a little bit of oil or melted butter depending on the flavor you’re creating.
- Bake at a low temperature. The smaller the seeds, the lower the temp. Anywhere from 275-350°
- Some squashes produce a small amount of seeds, or small sized seeds that can be thoroughly roasted in 15 to 20 minutes. Some squashes produce more seeds, or bigger seeds, that take 30 to 40 minutes to get the perfect roasted flavor.
Here’s my simple recipe for roasted butternut squash seeds:
seeds of one butternut squash (about 1/2 cup)
2 tsp sea salt
- Heat oven to 300°. In a small bowl, mix cleaned and rinsed seeds with salt
- Spread on aluminum foil covered baking sheet.
- Bake for 10 minutes, then toss/shake the seeds. Bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until seeds are lightly browned.