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Pumpkin Seeds & Family Traditions

As a child, my mom, brother and I would go to my grandma’s for Halloween. My dad always worked late as a car salesman and we lived in an apartment complex so there wasn’t really a place for us to trick-or-treat.

My grandma’s house was – and still is – like haven for us. It was our second home, or maybe even our first one. I lived there at certain points throughout my childhood and it was always a place that was filled with love, warmth and people. My Grandma Leah had 7 children and as he oldest grandchild of her oldest daughter, many of my aunts and uncles still lived there while I was growing up.

Having the constant flurry of activity always made it a fun place to be for my cousins and I. We grew up having donut day there on Saturday mornings, celebrating Christmas around a tree full of presents and trick-or-treating on her quiet street each year filled with neighbor’s that all knew one another.

pumpkin seeds

Food of the season

Like all holidays, food in our family was a big focus. Each year she would make a big batch of chicken noodle soup that was perfect for warming your belly after you spent hours in the cold, Midwest weather asking for candy.

When we finally finished trick-or-treating, we would go to her basement, dump out our candy and trade. We would eat our soup, munch on homemade pumpkin seeds that she cooked up and all would be right with the world.

We always left with our bellies full and our hearts even fuller.

pumpkin seeds

pumpkin seeds

Growing and changing

As my cousins and I all grew, the traditions started to go by the wayside. People wanted to trick-or-treat with friends from school and in their neighborhood. The older kids (myself included) went off to college and life shifted for a long time.

Now with us living in Michigan, we won’t see our family for Halloween so we are making new traditions with our friends here. As all things for me, the traditions I want to make revolve largely around family and food.

Because we won’t be at our house for the holiday, since we don’t live in a traditional neighborhood, my food has to be transportable. So making pumpkin seeds to bring to our friend’s house seems like the perfect way to infuse some of my old traditions with our new life here.

pumpkin seeds pumpkin seeds pumpkin seeds

Mine & her’s

Pumpkin seeds remind me of my Grandma Leah and her house at this time of year. While they certainly aren’t her chicken noodle soup, they are a perfect little snack that allows me to use more of the pumpkins we carve up. And, that’s something I love.

These also aren’t my grandma’s pumpkin seeds. I’m pretty sure her recipe was a couple tablespoons of olive oil and salt. And making them that way is plenty good, but I think I like my recipe a bit better.

My pumpkin seed recipe combines olive oil and salt too. However, it uses a few other savory flavors that make these a good substitute for anyone craving potato chips or similar munchies. You can see how I make them in the video below.

You can find the full recipe below and tell me what your favorite Halloween memory is! Thank you for visiting today and I hope you’ll stop back soon! 🙂

For more farmhouse recipes, click here.pumpkin seeds

Perfect Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are one of my favorite Halloween treats and I hope our recipe becomes your's too. 
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: pumpkin seeds, pumpkin seeds recipe
Author: Rachel Quenzer


  • 2-3 cups pumpkin seeds You can get this from about 3 pie pumpkins.
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1.5 tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika


  • Using pie pumpkins, scrape out the seeds and wash them. You don't have to get each little string of pumpkin off but you should get the big clumps off. 
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 
  • Add pumpkin seeds and olive oil to a bowl. Mix well. 
  • Then add all your spices to the bowl and using your hands mix again. Make sure all the seeds are coated so they all have a little flavor. 
  • Add the seeds to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Make sure they aren't overlapping too much so they all cook evenly. 
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes. Check after 20. Depending on the crispiness you like that might be all you need. 
  • Let cool and serve! 

pumpkin seeds

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