Can you eat pumpkin seeds?

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Carving pumpkins is good fun, but extremely wasteful. The UK alone bins eight million pumpkins after Halloween out of the 15 million that are grown according to Unilever and environmental charity Hubbub. More than half of us don’t see pumpkin as a food, but did you know you can make a range of meals and snacks from pumpkin leftovers? From the flesh to the peel, there are plenty of ways to use up the waste. But what about pumpkin seeds… Can you eat pumpkin seeds?

How to use up pumpkin leftovers

Food wastage experts at Oddbox have revealed exactly how to make the most out of your pumpkin.

You can use the flesh of your pumpkin to make pumpkin wedges.

Just slice the pumpkin into wedges with the skin on or off and drizzle on some oil, honey and cumin seeds, then roast at 200C.

Or, use it to make a pumpkin flavoured hummus by roasting the pumpkin and then blending the flesh with tahini, lemon juice, a bit of garlic and cumin.

You can even use the flesh to make a puree in the blender and add it to a homemade pumpkin spice latte or cocktail!

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It’s tricky to remove the peel, but if you manage to you can use it to make pumpkin crisps.

Sprinkle the peel with salt, drizzle a small amount of olive oil and bake it for 25 minutes on the top rack of a 200C oven until crisp.

If all of this is too technical for you, simply pop the pumpkin straight in the oven and roast it whole.

Slice off the top and remove the seeds and stringy bits, drizzle with oil and a bit of salt and roast at 180C until tender.

You can then stuff it with a filling of your choice such as a stew, chilli, grains, dried fruit, nuts… anything you like!

Can you eat pumpkin seeds?

Yes, pumpkin seeds are delicious and really good for you.

They are a great source of protein and unsaturated fats such as omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids.

Due to their hypoglycaemic properties, pumpkin seeds may help to support your blood sugar balance, which is great for diabetics.

Pumpkin seeds are packed with magnesium, which could help to regulate your blood pressure and your sleep.

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Pumpkin seeds are a superfood since they are full of antioxidants which can fight off damaging free radicals.

Some studies have found people who eat pumpkin seeds are associated with a significantly reduced risk of breast cancer alongside a healthy diet.

There is also evidence pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil can improve cholesterol levels and prevent cardiovascular disease.

Other studies have found pumpkin seeds might prevent or treat urinary disorders.

To enjoy the seeds from your pumpkin, first pick the seeds out of the pumpkin and give them a rinse.

You want to get rid of the stringy fleshy bits with the water and then dry them with a clean tea towel.

Then, place them on a baking tray and coat with an oil of your choice, a pinch of salt, and maybe even chilli flakes.

Roast your pumpkin seeds for about 10 minutes at 180C.

How you eat pumpkin seeds is totally up to you.

Some people eat them as snacks in the same way you’d eat nuts or other seeds.

Alternatively, you could mix them into store-bought granola or nut mixes.

Adding them into your smashed avocado or poached eggs on toast is another way to enjoy them.

You could have them for lunch by scattering them into soups or salads.

Pumpkin seeds can be stirred through rice, couscous, grains and curry to add some texture.

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