Carving pumpkins can be a fun family tradition, but let’s be honest, pumpkin guts are pretty gross. And while we’re creating our jack-o’-lanterns, we’re tempted to just trash the slimy, messy innards, and then toss the carved gourd a few days later, but there’s actually a lot that could be done with that pumpkin and it’s insides. Here’s how to put your pumpkin to good use after Halloween:
- Toasted seeds - Set the pumpkin seeds aside when you’re carving your jack-o’-lantern and then wash the pulpy part off and lay the seeds out to dry completely. Then toast them with oil, butter, or your favorite seasonings and you’ve got a tasty snack from what you would’ve just thrown away.
- Pumpkin juice - If you’re into smoothies and homemade juices, save the stringy bits when you scoop out your pumpkin and add boiling water to the mess and let it soak for 30 minutes. Then mash the guts with a fork and remove all the solid bits and you’re left with a bright orange liquid to add to juices, sauces, smoothies or other seasonal recipes.
- Pickled rinds - If the rind of your recently carved pumpkin doesn’t show any signs of mold or rot, it can be pickled, if you’re into that sort of thing.
- Bird feed - Dry your pumpkin seeds out but don’t add any salt or seasonings and they make a seasonal treat to leave out for your feathered friends.
- Pumpkin chips - Make this healthy snack by skinning the pumpkin and cutting it into thin, chip-size slices. Toss in olive oil and lots of Kosher salt or other spices you like. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 400 until chips are crispy and golden.
- Food fight - If you’re so burned out from all the carving, costume making, decorating, and trick-or-treating that you don’t feel like fooling with pumpkin guts, channel your inner child and have a messy food fight instead. Just be prepared for your kid to hurl a handful of pumpkin innards at your face.
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