Pumpkin Seed Milk
- To soak the pumpkin seeds, place them in a glass or ceramic bowl or large glass jar, and cover with filtered water.
- Add 1 teaspoon Celtic sea salt and splash of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, cover the container with a breathable kitchen towel, and allow to soak at room temperature for 8 hours. (For more information on soaking read here.)
- Drain, and discard the soaking liquid (do not use this to make the milk). Rinse the almonds several times to remove the anti-nutrients and enzyme inhibitors.
- Throw the rinsed pumpkin seeds, water, and salt in your blender, and blast on high for 30 to 60 seconds, until the nuts are completely pulverized. Use whole milk to maximize nutrition. Or strain for a smoother, more commercial-style milk for use in recipes.
- To strain, place a nut milk bag or knee-high piece of sheer nylon hosiery over the opening of a glass bowl, jar or jug. Pour the milk into the bag, twisting the bag closed, and gently squeezing it to pass the liquid through. Empty the almond pulp aside. You can dehydrate this for use in smoothies or to make crusts. Or make this quick easy body scrub.
- Rinse your blender container, and pour the strained milk back in. Add the vanilla, sweetener, and any flavorings, and blast again, until smooth and creamy.
- Store the milk in a sealed container in the fridge. Activated pumpkin seed milk (made with soaked pumpkin seeds) will keep for 2 to 3 days in a very cold fridge. Unsoaked pumpkin seed milk will keep for about 5 days.
Pumpkin seed milk is a fun way to include these nutrient-rich seeds into your diet.
Pumpkin seeds are one of the highest plant-based sources of protein containing all essential amino acids. A handful of pepitas makes up almost half of the recommended daily allowance of protein. Pepitas are also a rich source of iron, with one cup delivering almost half of the RDA of iron. Pepitas are also a good source of zinc, to bone health, and prostate health in men. Pumpkin seeds are also a good source of calcium, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, and copper; as well as Vitamins A, B and E.
Loaded with heart-healthy unsaturated fats and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, pumpkin seeds are anti-inflammatory avengers that help regulate blood pressure and cholesterol for heart health. They also contain tryptophan to alleviate anxiety and aid sleep.
Purchase raw pumpkin seeds from a supplier with a high turn over to ensure maximum freshness and quality, and store in a sealed glass container in the fridge, and consume within a couple of months. Or scoop seeds out of pumpkins and dehydrate the seeds.
Pumpkin seeds have a subtle sweet and nutty flavour. Some pumpkin seeds have a creamy husk, but the majority of pepitas are flat and dark green in color, so your milk will have a green tinge to it.
Pumpkin seed milk has a small amount of texture. You don't really need to strain it. In fact, you'll get more nutritional benefit if you don't strain it. However, for a silky smooth texture like a commercial-style milk for use in recipes, strain in. Use the smooth pulp for crackers, savory balls, and crusts. I like to add some salt on the pulp and eat it with a spoon!
Pumpkin seed milk does have a distinctive flavor. I sweeten it and add a bit of vanilla extract to lift and brighten the flavor. Pumpkin seed milk is delicious mixed with some carrot juice and a pinch of cinnamon. Try my sugar-free pumpkin pie smoothie.