A little heat and a few spices transform crunchy pumpkin seeds into a snack that you'll want to be making on repeat. And with only 5 ingredients and 10 minutes of effort, there's no reason not to.
Whether it's something quick to grab on the way out the door, something to keep you fueled on a long hike, or a little nibble to enjoy when you're hanging around the campfire, we all need a go-to snack recipe. This is it!
This spicy pepitas recipe combines nutritious pumpkin seeds with a little cumin and cayenne to create a craveable snack that can serve double-duty as a salad topper or trail mix add-in.
Why This Recipe is Great for Camping
- You can make these toasted pepitas ahead of time so you've got a quick and easy snack that's ready for all your outdoor adventures.
- These can be stored at room temperature, so they don't take up precious cooler space.
- They can be customized to suit your taste.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Pepitas--I recommend that you use raw, unsalted pepitas here, but if you can only find salted pepitas, omit the salt from the recipe. You can find pepitas in the bulk section of well-stock grocery stores, or in health food stores. Store the raw pepitas in the fridge until you're ready to toast them.
- Cayenne--If you are sensitive to spice, feel free to reduce the amount of cayenne. If you're uncertain of how much to use, start with a small amount and add to taste.
- Heat the oil in a small skillet over medium heat.
- Stir in the pepitas and spices. Cook until golden brown. Cool before serving.
The word "pepitas" translates to "little seeds of squash" in Spanish, and that is exactly what they are. They are the seeds found in specific varieties of pumpkins, and have no hull. They are commonly used in Mexican cuisine, but are popular throughout North America.
Yes, pepitas are considered healthy as the contain healthy fats, iron, magnesium, and other nutrients.
All pepitas are pumpkin seeds but not all pumpkin seeds are pepitas. Pepitas come from specific hull-less varieties of pumpkins, known as oil seed pumpkins. Unlike the large white pumpkin seeds you may be familiar with when carving jack-o-lanterns, the seeds in these varieties are a green color and have no hull.
Tips and Troubleshooting
- Store the spicy pepitas in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. Refrigerate or freeze for up to 2 months.
- If you want to make a big batch of the spiced pepitas recipe, make them in the oven. Toss them with the oil and spices and roast at 350°F until golden, about 10 minutes.
- These are suitable for gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan diets.
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Tried This Recipe?
- 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil
- 1 cup raw unsalted pepitas
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Warm the oil in a small skillet over medium heat.
- Add the pepitas, salt, and spices, and stir to coat with the oil. Cook, stirring frequently, until the pepitas begin to turn golden.
- Remove from the heat and cool before serving.
- Storage--Store the spicy pepitas in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. Refrigerate or freeze for up to 2 months.
- Making a big batch--If you want to make a big batch of the spiced pepitas recipe, make them in the oven. Toss them with the oil and spices and roast at 350°F until golden, about 10 minutes.
- Dietary--These are suitable for gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan diets.