Pin It In my roasted pumpkin seeds post the other day, I mentioned that these golden-blond beauties can be used for countless enlightened uses beyond straight-up snacking.
The key to creative usage is to think of he seeds as equals to nuts; with that mindset, the possibilities are vast. Case in point? My pumpkin seed, pumpkin spice homemade lara bars.
I never would have guessed years ago that my homemade lara bars post would become my all-time most popular entry, but it has become crystal clear in the years since that these nutritious, delicious bars have tremendous appeal. Plus, they are so easy to assemble, have almost endless variations depending on the nuts and fruits used, and are far less expensive than the originals (especially when the ingredients are purchased in bulk).
I was about to make my weekly batch on Saturday when it struck me that I could use some of my roasted pumpkin seeds in lieu of the nuts. Granted they would not be raw (original larabars are raw), but I was more than willing to make that sacrifice, especially given that the seeds were a delicious, free bonus from our jack-o-lantern fun. In addition, they are incredibly nutritious ( check it out ). Free? Delicious? Nutritious? I was in.
The first step is to finely chop the seeds in the food processor. I'm talking pulverize the heck out of them, as they are more fibrous than nuts. Next, proceed as normal following my homemade lara bar recipe . I opted for a combination of dried cranberries and dates, and because I was in pumpkin mode, I added a bit of pumpkin pie spice (a scant 1/4 teaspoon). Autumn yum.
I strongly advise against using the pumpkin seeds raw unless you enjoy the flavor and texture of hay. They are also almost impossible to chop. Roast and be happy.
I am partial to rolling some of the bar mixture into balls. Make some mini ones--they are an excellent way to resist the leftover Halloween candy (and kids love them in petite form, too).