As I prepare to head home to Philadelphia at the end of the month (I’m not sure I can ever prepare for this), I am trying to use up a lot of pantry items in my kitchen. I’m finding myself using spices a lot more than I did before- I just always forget about them- and have been putting tea bags in my water every day for iced tea. It’s been a good reminder to use certain ingredients and has been a fun challenge to figure out how I can combine different ingredients to get rid of them faster. These Sweet and Salty Roasted Pepitas grew out of this need plus a little experimentation.
I had a big bag of raw pepitas basically since I got to Mexico last August and wanted to find a fun way to spruce them up so I could eat them as a snack. I went for a sweet, salty, and spicy asian theme and they turned out great. I gave them out to some friends too and got rave reviews!
I learned when doing a bit of research on the nutritional properties of pumpkin seeds that pumpkin seeds have a shell (like the ones you get when scooping seeds out of a Halloween pumpkin) and pepitas are shell-less. I had no idea what the difference was before, but now I do and thank goodness, because this is obviously VERY important information.
Pumpkin seeds are little nutritious powerhouses and you wouldn’t even know it. I feel like they’re the middle child or something and don’t get the love they deserve. They are packed with fiber, vitamin K, iron, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, and manganese. I’m not going to pretend that I know what all those things do for our bodies, but I’m pretty sure they do good things. And to make things even better, a 1 cup of pumpkin seeds has 12 g of protein! It’s probably rare that you would eat a whole cup but you get the idea.
Side Note: I was so excited about how cute and clever that little plate was when I was taking the pictures until I realized that pumpkin seeds do not come from sunflowers and then I was bummed. But it’s still really cute, no?!
- 2 cups raw pepitas
- 2 tablespoons raw sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce (not low sodium)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a cookie sheet or use a silpat mat.
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and spread evenly on a cooking sheet.
- Roast the seeds, stirring occasionally for 12-14 minutes, or until golden brown. Keep a close watch since the sugar will burn quickly.
- Let cool completely before transferring to a sealed container.
- Will last up to a few weeks in a container at room temperature.