How to Shell Pumpkin Seeds 2022


Pumpkin seeds are also known as pepitas. They are found inside pumpkins and other members of the gourd family. Most pumpkin seeds are held inside a white or yellow casing known as the hull. The seed itself is green and flat. Pumpkin seeds can be eaten as part of a healthy diet, as they are a good source of magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, iron, copper, protein and zinc. While the hull is edible, some people may find it to be too tough to enjoy. You can remove pumpkin shells by cracking and then boiling the seeds. You can also remove the shells one-by-one by hand.


Method 1 of 3:Shelling a Large Batch of Pumpkin Seeds

1Remove the seeds from the pumpkin. If you want fresh pumpkin seeds, you may take the seeds straight from a pumpkin you purchase at a grocery store. To start, carefully use a knife to cut a circle around the top of the pumpkin near the stem. Then, remove the section you cut out.

Use your hands, or a spoon if you'd prefer, to scoop out the insides of the pumpkin.

In addition to scooping out seeds, you'll find some orange pulp. You will have to wash this off the seeds later. Collect the seeds and pulp in a bowl.

2Clean off the removed seeds. When you've fully cleaned out the inside of the pumpkin, you should clean the seeds until they're free of any pulp and juice. You can clean them by placing the seeds and pulp in a strainer. Then, run the strainer under cool water in your kitchen sink until most of the pulp is removed.

It's okay to leave some pulp on the seeds, as some of it can be stubborn to get off. However, you should make sure to get most of the pulp off of the seeds, especially if you plan to roast the pumpkins later. Excess pulp could burn in the oven.

3Roll a rolling pin over the seeds. Now, you can begin the process of removing the hard exterior shells from the pumpkin. These shells are non-toxic, so it's safe to leave them on, but many people prefer the softer seeds within. To start, spread the seeds out on a hard surface, like a counter top or cutting board.

Try to spread the seeds out evenly, so there's little overlap between seeds.

Take a rolling pin. Gently roll the pin over the seeds, using enough force to produce light cracks in the shell.

Do not use too much force here. You do not want to damage the soft seeds within. Just roll hard enough to lightly fracture the surface of the shells.

4Boil the seeds in water for about 5 minutes. Boil a pot of water big enough to hold all your pumpkin seeds. Take your seeds and pour them into the water. The boiling process should cause the shells to gradually fall off.

Keep an eye on the seeds as they boil and remove the seeds from the heat once most of the shells have shed. You'll notice the shells have slipped off of the seeds and are floating in the water or congregated at the bottom of the pan.

This process generally takes around 5 minutes, but it may take slightly more or less depending on how many seeds you're boiling. Less seeds may be ready in a couple of minutes, while more seeds may take closer to 10 minutes for the shells to shed.

5Remove the seeds and let them cool. Once the shells are gone, remove the seeds from the heat. Strain them over the sink, using a sifter or strainer, and then set them out to dry.

You can set the seeds over tray or countertop covered in paper towel to absorb the water.

If there are any small bits of shell left on the seeds, you can pick these bits off using your fingers once the seeds are dry to the touch. Make sure to wash your hands first.

Method 2 of 3:Shelling Pumpkin Seeds One at a Time

1Remove and clean the seeds. If you're taking seeds from a fresh pumpkin, you'll need to remove the seeds first. Remember, cut a circle around the stem of the pumpkin. Remove the section you cut by lifting the stem and then scoop out the pulp and seeds using your hands. To clean, you can place the seeds in a strainer and run them under cool water in your sink.

Be sure to get most of the pulp off, especially if you're cooking the seeds in the oven. You do not want them to burn.

Set the seeds out on an open surface and pat them dry with a paper towel. If they're still slightly wet, you may have to wait a bit before you begin shelling them.

You can roast the seeds before shelling them if you prefer them cooked.

2Take a seed and gently fold it until it cracks. You may not want to shell a large amount of pumpkin seeds for a big recipe. If you just want to eat the pumpkin seeds, you can shell them as you go. To start, pick up a single pumpkin seed. Fold the seed slightly.

To fold, hold one half of the seed between your thumb and index finger. Grasp the other end of the seed using your thumb and index finger with your other hand.

Fold the seed in half. Keep folding until the shell cracks slightly. This should not take too much effort, and pumpkin shells are not particularly rough.

3Peel off the shell. Once the shell has cracked, you can simply pluck the shell off using your fingers. Dig your thumb into the crack you made and pull upward until the shell cracks in half completely. Pull one half of the shell off, and then the other.

If there are any small bits of shell remaining, consider running the seed under water to remove.

Method 3 of 3:Eating the Seeds

1Have the seeds as a snack raw. Many people enjoy eating pumpkin seeds raw. They're a fairly nutritious food as they are rich in fiber and a good source of magnesium, copper, selenium, and zinc. If you're vegetarian or vegan, pumpkin seeds can be a healthy snack as they're rich in protein.

Most people can eat pumpkin seeds without a problem, especially if the shells are fully removed. However, if there are small traces of shells remaining on the seeds, you may get a slight stomach ache.

If you're serving pumpkin seeds to kids, it's a good idea to be extra cautious about removing the shell to prevent choking.

2Fry the pumpkin seeds. There are many different ways you can prepare pumpkin seeds. One way is to fry them in olive oil. Spread out some olive oil over a frying pan. How much you will need depends on how many seeds you are frying, but it should be enough to coat the pan.

Allow the oil to heat for a few minutes and then throw in your seeds. Cook the seeds over the oil until they begin to make a popping noise.

From here, add about a tablespoon of table sugar. Continue frying until the seeds pop again. Remove the seeds from the heat, let them cool, and enjoy.

3Roast the pumpkin seeds. You can also roast the pumpkin seeds in an oven heated to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Then lay the seeds out on a baking pan.

If you like your seeds plain, you can put them in the oven as is. Some people prefer to sprinkle them with curry powder, chipotle flakes, or cayenne pepper. Clove, cinnamon, or nutmeg can be used for sweet pumpkin seeds.

Bake the seeds for about 20 minutes, or until they're golden brown.