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The Easiest Way To Roast A Pumpkin
I still remember the first time I roasted a pumpkin because it wasn’t too long ago! I received a pumpkin in my CSA that my now husband and I decided to join together. Deciding to do that CSA was a lot of firsts for me! It was my first time doing a CSA, the first time I made dandelion green pasta noodles, the first time roasted a whole pumpkin, the first time I roasted radishes… the list seriously goes on and on. Most of the vegetables I received weekly I didn’t even know what they were. I spent a lot of time Googling and trying to figure out what to make every single time we got a new box. So, if anything if you are just learning how to cook, do not get discouraged! I was in your shoes 10 years ago! Back to pumpkins…
When I got a pumpkin in our CSA box, I seriously thought that people only made pumpkin pie with them. How uninformed I was! But, it was still an adventure for me because I had never roasted my own pumpkin, never made a pumpkin pie, and this also ended up being one of the most memorable experiences for me of using what I had to make it work. I was so stressed over roasting that pumpkin!!! I kept scrutinizing the instructions that I could find online on what to do. They all made it sound so easy! But here I was, a beginner, not knowing much about cooking at all. Now, I laugh at myself when thinking about it. Because really, there isn’t a “right way” to roast a pumpkin (or butternut squash or acorn squash or any other type of winter squash)! The process is really simple and you’ll be sure to get it down after trying it just once. Here are the main steps:
- Cut it up the best you can. For a larger pumpkin, this may mean you have cut it into pieces instead of in half. I always air on the side of caution because the last thing you want to do is cut yourself.
Scoop out the seeds. Don’t throw them out though! Remove the pumpkin from the seeds and roast on a sheet pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper for 15 minutes at 250 degrees. They make for a tasty snack or a delicious salad topper!
- Place the pumpkin pieces on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes. When the timer goes off, test it with a fork. If the fork goes through easily, it is done. If it is still hard, keep cooking. Just don’t burn it!
- Once cooled, scoop the pumpkin out from the skin (like you would a butternut squash) and store in the fridge until you’re ready to make your pumpkin recipes!
Yes, it really is that easy! Most of the time, I just throw it in there just like that. I don’t coat it with olive oil or salt and pepper. It is going to cook just fine like that! Of course, you can do all of those things and sometimes I do. It just depends on how I am feeling that day. The most important thing to do is don’t stress! If you aren’t able to use all your pumpkin right away, toss it in the freezer in zip lock bags until you’re ready. It will keep for about 3 months this way ensuring you have pumpkin ready all winter long!
You will be able to make several recipes out of the pumpkin depending on the size of the pumpkin. The last time I roasted a pumpkin, I was able to make 5 different recipes from just one pumpkin! Below are my favorite recipes!
Get the Recipe
How to Roast a Pumpkin
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Cut pumpkin in half or into several pieces, whichever is easiest for the size pumpkin you are using.
- Scoop out the seeds.
- Place on baking sheet and coat with cooking fat and salt and pepper if desired.
- Roast for 30 minutes. Then test it with a fork. If the fork goes through easily, it is done. If it is still hard, keep cooking. Be careful not to burn it!
- Let the pumpkin cool slightly. Then scoop out the pumpkin from the skin. Store in the refrigerator until you're ready to use it!
- Optional: add to the food processor for a smoother pumpkin puree.
- If you want a smoother pumpkin puree, add the cooked pumpkin to a food processor and pulse on high until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Freeze any leftover pumpkin in an airtight ziplock bag for up to 3 months!
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