Pumpkin seeds are air fried to a crispy delicious perfection in salt, garlic powder or your favorite seasonings. They take less time than traditional roasting methods and make a healthy and nutrient-packed snack.
Air frying pumpkin seeds from your seasonal pumpkins is an easy way to make a delicious and healthy homemade snack. In this air fryer recipe, pumpkin seeds turn out perfectly crisp and delicious.
All you need to roast pumpkin seeds in your air fryer is a tiny bit of olive oil, salt, garlic powder, and about 20 minutes. Although, you can use any cooking oil and your favorite seasonings (see below for suggestions) without changing the method, cook time, or temperature.
You'll need fresh pumpkin seeds from any pumpkin, whether it be an air fried whole pumpkin, pressure cooked whole pumpkin, or the uncooked jack-o-lantern you carved! (Don't forget to use the pumpkin to make homemade puree too.)
Pumpkin seeds are a nutrient-packed filling snack great for munching on while on the road, at work, or in between meals. These addicting air fryer pumpkin seeds won't last long, so make as many as you can!
If you're lucky enough to have some leftover beyond a day, they are great tossed in salads and granola, in baked oatmeal, mixed into savory pasta dishes, as soup garnishes, and as a crust for fish and meat.
If you love pumpkin during the Autumn months, make sure to try these pumpkin recipes next:
- Chocolate Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
- Quick Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Nutmeg Crust
- Pumpkin Cornbread with Sugared Walnut Topping
How to Clean and Prepare Pumpkin Seeds for Roasting
There are 2 ways to clean pumpkin seeds.
First, pick off as much pulp that's stuck to the seeds as possible and discard it. Then you can put the seeds in a colander and run cold water over them while removing the leftover pulp. Hold the seeds under the running water while rubbing them between your fingers to further loosen stuck pulp.
Or, put the seeds in boiling salted water for a minutes, then remove, dry and pick off any leftover pulp.
Before seasoning, you should also thoroughly dry the seeds. This is easiest done by putting them in one layer on top of a clean cloth dish towel rather than a paper towel. Then put another towel on top of the seeds, press down, and leave them like this for about 5 minutes. Pumpkin seeds often stick to paper towels when drying, causing small bits of paper to get stuck to the seeds. It can be a pain to remove the paper.
In addition to the olive oil and salt, use your favorite seasonings instead of the garlic powder. Some great seasonings for pumpkin seeds are:
- Paprika, smoked or sweet
- Cayenne pepper
- Black pepper
- Chili powder
- Garlic salt
- Nutmeg and cinnamon
- Cinnamon sugar
Pumpkin seeds are flavorful on their own, so they really only need about one teaspoon of seasonings per cup of seeds. You can of course add more or less than this depending on your personal preference.
- Remove seeds from the pumpkin. Clean off the pulp and any liquid by rinsing them under cold running water. Gently rub between your fingers to remove stringy pulp. (see above for boiling seeds instead)
- Place the seeds between 2 cloth dish towels in one layer. Press down and allow to dry for 5 minutes. Transfer the dried seeds to a small mixing bowl.
- Toss with the olive oil, salt and garlic powder. Mix with a spoon or your hand until oil and seasonings are evenly distributed.
- Place seeds in the air fryer basket or tray overlapping as little as possible (some overlap is fine). Air fry at 350°F for 5-10 minutes, initially checking at the 5 minute mark and every 2 minutes after until they begin to turn brown.
- Remove from the air fryer and let cool before enjoying.
Tips for Making the Perfect Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Boiling pumpkin seeds to help remove the pulp is an extra step that significantly lengthens the time of this recipe. With a little patience, you can remove all of the pulp without doing this.
- Air fry them in one layer as best you can, working in batches if necessary, to ensure they are evenly crisp all around.
- Because air fryer brands and models may vary slightly, make sure to check on the seeds around the 5-minute mark. They can go from not being done to burning quite quickly!
- Cook time will vary based on your seed size too. Small seeds with take less time to air fry than large ones.
- There is no need to flip the seeds or shake the air fryer basket halfway through. I have made these multiple times, with and without flipping/shaking. There was no noticeable difference in texture and crispiness.
- Season lightly prior to roasting if you're unsure how you much you want your seeds flavored. You can toss them with more seasonings once they're cooked.
FAQs for this Recipe
Pumpkin seeds are full of fiber, protein, omega-6, vitamin K, phosphorus, and magnesium, among many other vitamins and minerals. They are a fantastic way to consume many vitamins and are a great part of any diet.
Roasting pumpkin seeds will alter their nutritional value, just as cooking often removes some of the vitamins and minerals in many foods. Pumpkin seeds are safe to eat raw if you prefer to retain their full nutritional benefit.
Roasted pumpkin seeds can be eaten with the shell intact. There is no need to remove the shell and squeeze out the insides- this is a lot of work! You'll get more nutrients and flavor when popping the entire seed in your mouth, shell and all.
After roasting at home, pumpkin seeds can be refrigerated for longer life but they do not need to be. They will keep for about 1 week at room temperature, 1 month in the refrigerator, and 3 months in the freezer. However you choose to store them, make sure you keep them in an airtight ziploc bag to prevent moisture from entering.
Air Fryer Pumpkin Seeds
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds
- ½ teaspoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- Remove pumpkin seeds from the pumpkin. Clean off the pulp and liquid by rinsing them under cold running water. Gently rub between your fingers to remove stringy pulp.
- Place the seeds between two cloth dish towels in one layer. Press down and allow to dry for about 5 minutes. Transfer the dried seeds to a small mixing bowl.
- Toss seeds with the olive oil, salt and garlic powder. Mix with a spoon or your hand until oil and seasonings are evenly distributed.
- Place in a single layer (as best as possible, some overlap is okay) in the air fryer basket or tray. Air fry at 350°F for 5-10 minutes, initially checking at the 5 minute mark and every 2 minutes after (see notes).
- When just beginning to brown, remove from the air fryer and let cool. Store in an airtight ziploc bag.