Za’atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

These Za’atar roasted pumpkin seeds are a delicious and easy twist on a fall staple snack. 

Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in Speckled Ceramic Bowl

If you’re carving pumpkins or making homemade pumpkin puree this year, be sure to set aside those fresh pumpkin seeds!

I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t always bothered to do this, but if you enjoy crunchy, salty snacks, these Za’atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds are worth the extra effort.

Cleaning and roasting pumpkin seeds is a great way to reduce food waste and get an extra bang for your buck too. This recipe would also make a fun and easy baking project for kids and adults alike.

Fresh Clean Pumpkin Seeds on Baking Sheet

There are a million and one ways to season pumpkin seeds (both savory or sweet!), but my version offers a new flavor twist: za’atar

What is Za’atar?

Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend made from toasted sesame seeds, sumac, and thyme. It can also include other spices, such as cumin, oregano, and marjoram.

Za’atar has a toasty, herbaceous, and slightly tangy flavor. It is delicious, versatile, and one of my go-to seasonings in the kitchen. 

Shopping Tip: Keep in mind that Za’atar blends will vary in flavor and texture brand-to-brand. I use and recommend Ziyad Za’atar (affiliate link), which comes unsalted and has a great flavor and texture. 

If you haven’t cooked or baked with za’atar, I highly recommend adding it to your spice pantry. It can be used liberally and elevates so many dishes! It won’t go to waste, promise. 

Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds on Sheet Pan

How to Clean Pumpkin Seeds: 

Let;’s be honest, the worst part of any roasted pumpkin seed recipe is scooping and cleaning the seeds, but here are a few tips to make it easy and less messy:

  1. While carving or preparing your pumpkin, scoop the seeds and any attached stringy pumpkin bits and set aside in a large stainless steel bowl. Before washing, use your fingers to sort through and remove/discard any large pieces of stringy bits/pumpkin flesh by hand. 
  2. Fill the bowl with cold water and use your fingers to swoosh and separate the seeds from the gooey pumpkin flesh. The stringy bits should sink to the bottom of the bowl. Use your hands to scoop out the seeds and place in a colander. Rinse several times, rubbing the seeds with your fingertips to remove any gooey residue. 
  3. Transfer the seeds to a large baking sheet lined with a clean kitchen towel. Blot with another clean towel until mostly dry.

Prep Ahead Tip: If you don’t want to prepare the pumpkin seeds right away, you can transfer the cleaned seeds to a covered container and refrigerate them for several days prior to roasting. 

Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in Small Ceramic Bowl

How to Roast Pumpkin Seeds: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (205 C) with a rack in the center position. 
  2. Transfer the clean, dry pumpkin seeds to a standard half sheet pan. Drizzle with avocado oil (or olive oil) and sprinkle with the Za’atar seasoning and salt. Toss until the seeds are evenly coated in the oil and seasoning. Spread the seeds out into an even thin layer. 
  3. Roast for 10 to 20 minutes, tossing the seeds halfway, or until they’re lightly golden and crisp. Note: Roasting time will vary depending on the size of your pumpkin seeds, so watch and check on them often. 
  4. Set on a rack and allow to cool completely before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to a week. 

Other Ways to Use Za’atar: 

I love to sprinkle za’atar on salads (this Mediterranean salad is an all-time favorite!), store-bought or homemade hummus (takes it up a notch!), or add it to extra virgin olive oil for bread or pita dipping. 

It also makes a wonderful all-purpose seasoning for grilled vegetables and meats, such as in these grilled chicken bulgur bowls. When in doubt, add a sprinkling of it! You can even make Za’atar cacio e pepe.

Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds in Bowl

Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Yield: 1.5 cups

These Za'atar roasted pumpkin seeds are a delicious and easy twist on a fall staple snack. This is a great way to reduce food waste during pumpkin carving season or when preparing homemade pumpkin puree from scratch.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (150 grams) clean, dry pumpkin seeds (rough yield of 1 large carving pumpkin) *see recipe notes for cleaning tips
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 tablespoon Za'atar spice blend
  • 2 large pinches Diamond Crystal kosher salt

Instructions

    1. How to Clean Pumpkin Seeds: While carving or preparing your whole pumpkin, scoop the seeds and any attached stringy pumpkin bits and set aside in a large stainless steel bowl. Before washing, use your fingers to sort through and remove/discard any large pieces of stringy bits/pumpkin flesh by hand.
    2. Fill the bowl with cold water and use your fingers to swoosh and separate the seeds from the gooey pumpkin flesh. The stringy bits should sink to the bottom of the bowl. Use your hands to gently scoop out the seeds and place in a colander. Rinse several times, rubbing the seeds with your fingertips to remove any gooey residue.
    3. Transfer the seeds to a large baking sheet lined with a clean kitchen towel. Blot with another clean towel until dry.
    4. Prepare Za'atar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (205 C) with a rack in the center position. 
    5. Transfer the clean, dry pumpkin seeds to a standard half sheet pan. Drizzle with avocado oil (or olive oil) and sprinkle with the Za'atar seasoning and salt. Toss until the seeds are evenly coated in the oil/seasoning and spread the seeds out onto the pan in an even thin layer. 
    6. Roast for 10 minutes to 20 minutes, tossing halfway through with a spatula, or until lightly golden and crisp. Total roasting time will vary depending on the size of your pumpkin seeds, so watch and check on them often. Set on a rack to cool completely before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to a week. 

Notes

Prep Ahead Tip:

  • If you don’t want to prepare the pumpkin seeds right away, you can transfer the cleaned seeds to a covered container and refrigerate them for several days prior to roasting.

Recommended Products

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 175Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 147mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 10gSugar: 0gProtein: 40g

A Beautiful Plate provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician.

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