How to Make Homemade Sunflower Seeds


Make jars of homemade roasted sunflower seeds to include in your Christmas gift baskets or as inexpensive thank-you gifts for teachers, newspaper and mail delivery people or last-minute guests. Mix the seeds with honey, barbecue sauce or onion powder and dehydrated buttermilk to make variety packs. You get 70 mg calcium, 129 mg magnesium, 1,155 mg phosphorus, 850 mg potassium, 237 mg folate and 26 mg vitamin E in a 100-gram serving of plain, dry-roasted sunflower seeds, according to the USDA Nutrient Database for Standard Reference.

Things You'll Need

  • 10 lbs. raw sunflower seeds
  • Colander
  • Paper towels
  • 5 mixing bowls
  • 4 high-sided cookie sheets
  • 1/4 cup red sea or kosher salt
  • 2 qts. water
  • Clean, empty, plastic 18-oz. peanut butter jars with lids
  • Red and green curling ribbon
  • Red and green tissue paper
  • Red and green construction paper
  • White glue
  • 2-inch watercolor brush
  • Optional:
  • Barbecue sauce
  • Honey
  • Onion and garlic powder
  • Paprika
  • Cumin
  • Cheddar cheese powder
  • Dried red chili peppers
  • Dried green and red bell pepper
  • Dehydrated buttermilk
  • Rinse and drain sunflower seeds, stirring them vigorously as they drain to remove any dust or other residue.

  • Spread the seeds in a single layer on paper-towel-lined cookie sheets. Cover with additional paper towels and pat dry.

  • Gently shake the seeds from the paper towels into five mixing bowls. Add your desired flavorings from the list of optional ingredients to four of the bowls and stir until well-coated.

  • Mix red sea salt or kosher salt and water. Soak the remaining sunflower seeds from the fifth bowl in the resulting brine overnight. Drain and pat seeds dry before proceeding.

  • Spread each sunflower seed mixture in a single layer on separate cookie sheets. Roast seeds for 30 to 40 minutes at 300 degrees F.

  • Pour roasted seeds into peanut butter jars and tighten the lids. Decorate with green and red tissue paper flowers and curling ribbon.

  • Make personalized labels from red or green construction paper. Apply white glue with a 2-inch watercolor brush. Press your labels around each jar for a finished appearance.

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