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Ingredient

Pepitas

unhulled pepitas

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What is it?

Pepitas are pumpkin seeds. Fresh from the pumpkin, each green seed is encased in a beige, slightly tough but edible hull. With their hull stripped away, the seeds are dark green, slightly larger than sunflower seeds, and have a deep, nutty flavor.

Recipes calling for pepitas are often referring to the hulled seeds. A popular ingredient in Mexican cuisine, hulled pepitas are lovely, crunchy garnish for soups and salads. Hulled or unhulled, they also make a great snack on their own, roasted and sprinkled with salt, sugar, or spices.

How to choose:

Look for hulled pepitas in well-stocked grocery stores and natural food stores.

How to prep:

You can hull the seeds yourself by cracking and peeling off the hulls, but this is a tedious task; we recommend that if you need hulled seeds, you buy them that way.

How to store:

After opening the package, store the pepitas in the freezer for up to six months.

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    Recipes

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    Chile-Chocolate Rugelach

    With guajillo chile chocolate and toasted pepitas, this traditional Jewish cookie takes on a Mexican twist.

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    Layered Summer Salad

    This salad-in-a-glass does two great things: The presentation makes a hearty salad much more visually appealing. Also, by using grains and beans as accents (instead of weighing down the salad…

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    Ricotta and Goat Cheese Tart with Fresh Figs

    The flavors of this tart are second only to its beautiful presentation. You can substitute sunflower seeds for the pumpkin seeds, if you like.

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    Parsnip & Parmesan Soup with Pumpkin Seed Pesto

    This silky soup is quite good on its own, but the gorgeous green pesto adds a burst of flavor.

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    Peruvian Quinoa Bowl with Grilled Steak and Vegetables

    Grilled steak and vegetables capture Latin barbecue flavors. Ponzu is a tangy Japanese citrus-and-soy sauce, which is a nod to the Japanese influences in Peruvian cuisine.

  • Recipe

    Cilantro-Pepita Hummus

    This fluffy dip has a creamy, nutty flavor unlike anything you’ll find in a grocery store. Serve with pita, cucumbers, peppers, or carrots.

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    Chocolate Cake with Candied Ancho and Pepitas

    This cake has long been a favorite of mine; the sugar and pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds) on top conspire to make a slightly crackly topping while the cake itself is…

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    Green Cabbage Salad with Spiced Pepitas

    Cilantro, lime, and chili powder give this crisp salad a Mexican flavor. Toss in some Cotija, a crumbly cow’s milk cheese, and you’ve got the ultimate taco topping.

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