Save your Jack-o-Lantern to the last-minute like we did? What can we say? We work best under a deadline. Check out our favorite Halloween carving hacks…plus why you should be tossing those pumpkin seeds into your mouth, not the trash!
Hack #1: Simplify the scooping
Pumpkin is great. In fact, it’s a great source of both the antioxidant beta-carotene and potassium. But, really, who wants to be elbow deep in orange squash? By cutting off the top and back of the pumpkin, it makes for easier pumpkin gut scooping and candle placement.
Hack #2: Perfect your design
We don’t know about you, but the spirit of Martha Stewart does not live within us. And we’re totally ok with that! We made our bespoke Nourish Jack-o-Lantern by first sketching out the design using a dry erase marker, which is much more shoot-I-messed-that-up friendly than permanent marker. Alternatively, try punching out a design with some cookie cutters and a rubber mallet. (And then go make some cookies!)
Hack #3: Spice up your life
Pumpkin spice. It’s everywhere! And for good reason, because it’s delicious. For a DIY autumnal air freshener, sprinkle the top of the cut pumpkin lid with a very small amount of ground cinnamon. Then blot it with a paper towel, ensuring there is no loose cinnamon inside. Light and insert the candle and replace the top. In just a few minutes, you’ll be overcome by the intoxicating smell of pumpkin spice!
Bonus hack: Save the seeds!
Natural instinct is to toss the stringy pumpkin innards, seeds and all, but don’t! Pumpkin seeds are a delicious superfood that have got it all – heart-healthy fats, protein, fiber, and a whole slew of vitamins and minerals. They’re especially rich in iron, which helps improve circulation, and magnesium, which helps keep your bones and heart strong. They’re also one of the best food sources of zinc, a mineral that plays a vital role in immunity, wound-healing, and overall skin health. Best of all? Pumpkin seeds are super easy to roast and make for a satisfyingly crunchy and healthy snack!
- Clean the seeds. Annoying but necessary. Make sure no stringy orange parts are left on the seeds.
- Rinse the seeds in water to ensure they are completely clean, then blot dry with a paper towel.
- For 1 cup of pumpkin seeds, drizzle with 1 tsp olive oil and ¼ tsp of salt, and stir to combine.
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spread the seeds in an even layer and place into a 350 degree preheated oven.
- Bake the seeds, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 20 minutes.