October is a time for warm apple cider, brisk strolls in the park and a special time with friends and family. Not only does fall bring beautiful weather, it also brings wonderful produce to our gardens. The pumpkin plant provides a medium for jack-o-lanterns and fall decorations, and it’s the source of some pretty great nutrients, like magnesium, protein and zinc. When carving your autumn jack-o-lanterns, repurpose the seeds from the “guts” of your pumpkin to create a kid-friendly snack filled with your favorite fall spices.

What You Need

  • 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 6 tablespoons white sugar
  • a pinch of salt • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

 What You Do

  1. With parent supervision, pre-heat the oven to 250 degrees F.
  2. Layer pumpkin seeds (removed from pumpkin pulp) onto a baking sheet. Then, toast the seeds for about 45 minutes, stirring the seeds occasionally until dry and toasted.
  3. In a medium sized bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of sugar, the salt and the pumpkin pie spice.
  4. In a pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the toasted pumpkin seeds to the heated oil and stir in the remaining sugar. Stir the pumpkin seeds and sugar until the sugar melts. This should take less than a minute.
  5. Pour the seeds into the bowl of spiced sugar. Stir the seeds until coated. Cool, serve and enjoy this fall treat!

The YMCA of Austin encourages a healthy lifestyle, a focus on education and an appreciation of our environment. This fall, we are offering more than 26 Afterschool Care Sites in four Austin-area school districts. Y Afterschool provides opportunities for physical, social-emotional and cognitive learning experiences. To learn more about the youth programming offered at the YMCA of Austin, visit: www.austinymca.org.



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