Carving pumpkins this weekend? You will want to be sure to save those pumpkin seeds to make these crunchy, sweet & salty Cookie Butter Candied Pumpkin Seeds & Pecans then...
Each fall when we visit our favorite pumpkin patch, my son goes on the quest to find the largest pumpkin that he can possibly fit his two arms around.
At first, I thought it was just a boy thing.
Or maybe he wanted a larger surface area for carving.
This year his true intentions came to the surface...
As soon as we got home with pumpkins in hand, he set right to cutting open his and cleaning out all the pumpkin goop and carefully separating the seeds and placing them in a bowl of their own.
Once his pumpkin was cleaned out, he so generously offered to cut up and scrape clean the other two pumpkins that we had brought home from the patch.
As soon as all 3 pumpkins were gutted and lidded, he proudly handed me a large bowl full of raw pumpkin seeds and begged me to roast them that night.
Now it all made sense!
In my son's mind, a larger pumpkin had to mean more seeds, right? ;)
Funny enough, the pumpkin little miss picked out- aka, the smallest pumpkin- ended up having the most seeds in it.
So yes... after all of his hard work, I went about rinsing, patting dry, and coating a large portion of the pumpkin seeds with olive oil and Kosher salt and roasting them in the oven.
But even after making 3 baking sheets full of plain salted roasted pumpkin seeds, I still had almost half the bowl of seeds left.
So I decided to make a little treat that this mama could enjoy with the rest. ;) You all know by now that I am sucker for all things sweet & salty, so I decided to make candied pumpkin seeds with a sprinkle of salt. But I couldn't just stop with regular ole candied pumpkin seeds. I had to go and add some cookie butter and pecans to the mix...
Cookie Butter Candied Pumpkin Seeds & Pecans
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30-40 minutes
Ingredients (2 cups of candied seeds & pecans)
- 1 1/2 cups of fresh pumpkin seeds, rinsed & patted slightly dry
- 1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 tbsp cookie butter (or Biscoff spread)
- Kosher salt, for sprinkling
In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin seeds and pecan pieces. Set aside.
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. Lined a large baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, combine the brown sugar and butter. Heat over medium heat until the butter is completely melted and the sugar has dissolved. Allow the mixture to come to a low boil for 2-3 minutes.
Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the cookie butter. Don't worry if the mixture seizes just a little as it cools for a minute. Just quickly add it to the pumpkin seeds & pecans in the bowl and stir to coat well. The mixture will become smooth as you coat the seeds & pecans with it.
Spread the coated seeds & pecans evenly in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Lightly sprinkle with some of the Kosher salt.
Bake for 30-40 minutes, being sure to stir the seeds/pecans a few times during the baking time.
The pumpkin seeds should be toasty when done. (Just try one to see if it is. If it is not, place the baking sheet back in the oven for a few more minutes until they are.)
Allow the candied pumpkin seeds and pecans to cool completely on the baking sheet. Once cooled, break up the larger pieces and store in a airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
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Yep. This stuff is addictive, folks. I am just providing full disclosure now. ;)
It has all the goodness of toasted pumpkin seeds with a hit of candied pecans and an almost brittle-like texture.
I would just like to present further evidence that the only reason my son picks out a 30 pound-ish pumpkin each year is so he can have more toasted pumpkin seeds...
Those 3 pumpkins he cut and gutted this past Sunday evening?
Four days later, they are still sitting out on my porch with nothing carved into them! No faces, no fun designs, nothing spooky.
Just plain, hollowed out pumpkins with stemmed lids. ;)
Do you carve pumpkins each year just for the seeds? What is your favorite way to enjoy them?
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