Squash Seed Extraction 101

To save squash seeds, you need to first split the squash open and then scoop out the seeds.

We’ve tried several ways to split and scoop.

Here are some ways we split squash and how we like to extract the seeds.

Alternative Splitting Techniques

Over the years we’ve tried a few splitting squash open a few ways. Here’s a video of some of those methods.

This made for quick splitting but it left a real mess for removing the seed from the squashed debris.

Splitting Squash With An Ax

Of all the many methods we’ve tried, using an ax has been the quickest.

In the case of a butternut squash, we first split the neck from the bottom.

We then do some detail work to split the bottom in two.

We toss the split seed cavities into a bin. These will move onto the extraction station.

Splitting Station Setup

Here’s what the splitting station looks like in use.

I hold the squash neck in my left hand for the initial split. I then drop the neck into the bin on my left. One hand motion away!

I then split open the seed cavity. And then quickly drop these in the bin on the right.

On to the next squash!

Extracting Seed From The Cavity

We use a shop vac to extract seed from the seed cavity.

We learned this great technique from Petra and Matthew at Fruition Seeds

Some Squash Husks Go To The Compost

I Roast Some Squash For The Freezer!

And What About The Seeds?

After this we still need to use screens and water to remove the filaments from the squash seed. That will be for another post!

How do you extract seed from your squash?

5 thoughts on “Squash Seed Extraction 101

  1. N’est-il pas possible d’offrir ces courges taillées à un/des organisme-s du genre popote roulante, cuisine communautaire, au lieu de les envoyer au compost ?

    1. Dans ce cas, c’était des grandes courgettes zucchinis vides. Elles sont très fibreuses et ne seraient pas vraiment un cadeau. Notre équipe a pris les courges comestibles pour congeler.

  2. Thanks for your tips. I enjoy them. Re: extracting squash seeds, I wonder if a food bank would welcome your squash rather than throwing them into the compost. That’s a lot of food which could be a beautiful meal for a lot of people.

    1. The Squash in the picture going to compost are actually oversized fibrous zucchini. They aren’t really great eating. Our staff took home all the edible squash to freeze. We’re 14 at the farm so we can pack away a lot of squash for the winter!

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