Spiced Pepitas

This is one of my favorite recipes for the fall…..spiced pepitas. They are terrific as an alternative to bar nuts while watching a fall football game! Warning….these are addictive!

Pepitas are a hulled green pumpkin seed. They are what is inside that white seed you get when you carve a pumpkin. However, getting to the green seed is really something you should not try at home. Purchase the hulled green pepitas at a high end grocery store (often they are in the “by the pound” binds you find in a lot of produce areas) or on line at Nutsonline.com. Pepitas are sold raw or roasted. You are going to roast them with the spices so you would want to purchase the raw pepitas.

If is also important to use Hungarian smoked paprika in this recipe, not just plain paprika. The Hungarian smoked paprika has a sweet smoky flavor and is essential in this recipe. You can purchase Hungarian sweet paprika at www.Igourmet.com

Pepita storage – As with most seeds and nuts, pepitas have a high oil content so they will go rancid quickly. Purchase in amounts you will use and store in a tightly sealed plastic bag. Pepitas can be placed in the freezer in freezer proof bags and frozen for up to 6 months or more.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups of raw pepitas (hulled green pumpkin seeds)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • a touch of salt and black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • For a “sweet addition” add some dried cherries or cranberries to the finished spiced pepitas.

Instructionstossing in oil

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Place the pepitas in a large mixing bowl.    In a smaller container, combine the paprika, salt, pepper and sugar.    Sprinkle the spice mixture on top of the nuts.    Drizzle with the extra virgin olive oil.pepita on parchment paper

Have a baking sheet pan ready. It should be lined with parchment paper.   Gently toss the nuts with the olive oil and spice mixture to evenly coat the pepitas.    Spread the pepitas on the prepared parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake in the oven for 7 to 8 minutes.   Remove and let cool. Store in an airtight zip lock back or air tight container at room temperature. Will keep for several days. Do not refrigerate.finished pepita photo

If you like, add dried cherries and dried cranberries to the pepitas to make a unique Autumn trail mix.

 

 

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