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Homemade Pumpkin Seed Butter (or Pepita Butter)

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A creamy pumpkin seed butter made with only two ingredients. It’s rich and soft, full of nutrients and flavor, perfect for breakfast or as a snack. All you need are the seeds and about half an hour of your time. You can make it slightly salty, or you can make it sweet.

tall jar of creamy pumpkin seed butter with a spoon sticking in it.

Why love this seed butter?

  • A great alternative to peanut or cashew butter, almond butter, or any other seed or nut butter. Learn How to Roast Peanuts for Peanut Butter as well.
  • Nut-free butter if you have a nut allergy.
  • Healthy recipe: this delicious pumpkin seed butter is full of healthy fats, antioxidants, vitamin E, and a good source of iron.

What goes into the recipe?

collage of two pictures of pumpkin seeds and a teaspoon of salt.

Ingredient notes

Pumpkin seeds:

  • You can use pre-roasted or raw pumpkin seeds, salted or unsalted.
  • If pre-roasted: skip the roasting step.
  • If raw: toast them in the oven.
  • If salted: adjust the salt amount you are adding to the butter.
  • You can make pepita butter; pepitas are sometimes easier to find at the grocery stores. They are pumpkin seeds that grow shell-free in Styrian pumpkins or oilseed pumpkins.
  • You can’t make the homemade pumpkin butter with regular leftover pumpkin seeds still in their shell.
  • I prefer to use organic pumpkin seeds, but that is up to you.

Tip: You can make the pumpkin seed butter salty or sweet.

  • Salt: use preferably fine sea salt (or Kosher). If using table salt, you might need less; start with ½ teaspoon and add more to taste. The spread should be slightly salty.
  • Sweetener: Use a sweetener of choice.
  • Stevia: However, if using stevia, make sure you know the kind you are using. There are two kinds of stevia. The one you can use as you would sugar, which means you can replace the sugar in a 1:1 ratio. You can also buy very concentrated stevia that is a few hundred times sweeter than regular sugar. In this case, use a tiny amount to taste.
  • Regular sugar, coconut sugar, or xylitol are excellent as well. Use to taste.
  • Maple syrup or honey to taste

Food processor:

  • You will need a good food processor or a high-power blender that can manage processing at high speed for a longer time. I use Thermomix for this purpose.
  • Make sure that you stop the machine regularly and scrape the sides and the bottom of the bowl.
  • If the machine gets too hot, make pauses every few minutes to avoid overheating the food processor.

How to make the spread?

Roast:

  • Place raw seeds on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil in a single layer (1).
  • Roast in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until crisp and light golden brown.
  • Check after about 10 minutes; the roasting time depends on your oven; some ovens run hotter than others (2).
  • Transfer the seeds immediately to a large plate or bowl. If you leave them on the hot tray, they will continue roasting and turn too dark.
  • Let cool for about 10 minutes, then transfer to the bowl of the food processor.
collage of two pictures of pumpkin seeds on a tray before and after roasting.

Process:

  • Place roasted seeds in the food processor or blender (3).
  • Start processing them, scraping the bowl regularly, and pausing from time to time if the machine gets too hot. It will take about 15-20 minutes, depending on the kitchen appliance you are using.
  • Stage 1: Crumbly seeds (4).
  • Stage 2: Clumpy. After a while, the seeds will start releasing their natural oils, and the paste will begin to clump together (5).
  • Stage 3: Smooth. After a few more minutes, the paste will relax; it will become softer and runnier. Keep processing until the paste is perfectly smooth (6).
  • Decide flavor: The spread will be hot at this point, now is the best time to add the salt or the sweetener. It will be easy to mix it into the smooth seed butter, and the heat will dissolve it quickly. Taste and add more salt or sweetener to taste.
  • Transfer the mixture to a clean jar or airtight container.
collage of four pictures of processing pumpkin seeds in a food processor.

FAQ and Expert Tips

How to store?

Cupboard: You can keep the pumpkin seed paste in a cupboard for about two weeks.
Refrigerator: If you want to keep it for longer, place it in the fridge, it will be great for about two months.
Freezer: It will keep for at least six months (probably longer).

How to use it?

Spread it on top of toast, bread, toast, rice crackers, or crisp bread. Top it with fresh fruit like strawberries, bananas, apples, pears, and so on.
Add to smoothies, stir into porridge or oatmeal.
Serve as a dip for veggie sticks or fruit. I love it with apple slices, no matter if the seed butter is sweet or salty.

Tips

Roast the raw seeds. Not only will the pumpkin seed butter taste better (nutty taste), but the roasting process will also make sure that the seeds release their oils better.
Don’t over roast, or the butter will turn slightly bitter.
Don’t overheat the blender or food processor; it should not get too hot, or it might break. Instead, take breaks and let it cool down shortly from time to time.
Make the pepita or pumpkin seed butter runnier if desired. The pure pumpkin seed butter is rather stiff and suitable for spreading. However, you can add a little oil, about 1-2 tablespoons, to make it runnier—for instance, canola, avocado oil, mild-tasting olive oil, or pumpkin seed oil.

overhead view of an open jar with creamy pumpkin seed butter with a spoon in it.

More healthy spreads:

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pumpkin seed butter stirred in jar with a tablespoon

Homemade Pumpkin Seed Butter (or Pepita Butter)

A simple pumpkin seed butter made with only two ingredients if you are counting the salt. Creamy and super healthy spread perfect for breakfast or for a snack.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Vegan Recipes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 10
Calories: 107kcal
Author: Adina

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups g/ 8.5 oz/ 2 cups pumpkin seeds 8.5 oz/ 240 g
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt OR 1-2 teaspoons sweetener + 1 pinch of salt (Note 1)

Instructions

  • Roast: Preheat the oven to 165 degrees Celsius/ 330 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil. Spread the pumpkin seeds on the tray in a single layer. Roast for about 15 minutes, shaking halfway through. Keep an eye on the seeds; they should not get too dark; it depends on your oven.
  • Let cool: Remove from the oven, transfer to a plate, and cool for about 10 minutes.
  • Process: Transfer to the bowl of a food processor (Note 2). Process at high speed for about 15-20 minutes, stopping the machine repeatedly and scraping the paste from the sides and bottom of the bowl. Make a short pause once in a while if your food processor tends to get too hot.
    The butter will go from crumbly to pasty, then smooth.
  • Add salt: Once the butter is perfectly smooth and creamy, add the salt and stir well to mix.
  • Sweetener: If you wish to make a sweet version, add a sweetener of choice and just a pinch of fine sea salt. Then, transfer the butter to a clean jar.

Notes

  1. Sugar, xylitol, stevia, honey, maple syrup – all to taste.
  2. I use a Thermomix. Use a strong food processor or a high-power blender.
  3. Don’t overheat the blender or food processor; it should not get too hot, or it might break. Instead, take breaks and let it cool down shortly from time to time.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/10 of the butter | Calories: 107kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 216mg | Fiber: 4g
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