Sikil Pako (Toasted Pumpkin Seed Dip)

Alex Stupak prepares this outstanding Yucatán-style dip (called sikil pak in Mayan) by pureeing pumpkin seeds (sikil) with roasted tomatoes (pak), garlic and chile. Typically served with tortilla chips, it also makes a healthy vegan accompaniment for vegetables. Recipe from Food & Wine America's Greatest New Cooks 

Toasted Pumpkin Seed Dip
Photo: © Christina Holmes
Total Time:
30 mins


  • 2 plum tomatoes

  • 2 unpeeled garlic cloves

  • 1 small green habanero chile

  • 1/2 pound raw pumpkin seeds (1 1/2 cups)

  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

  • 1/4 cup minced white onion, rinsed and blotted dry

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro

  • Pinch of cinnamon

  • Kosher salt

  • Tortilla chips, for serving


  1. Preheat a small cast-iron skillet or griddle. Add the tomatoes, garlic cloves and habanero and roast over high heat, turning occasionally, until the vegetables are softened and charred in spots, about 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate; let cool.

  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, toast the pumpkin seeds over moderate heat, tossing, until lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the pumpkin seeds to a food processor and let cool completely. Pulse the seeds until a coarse puree forms, then transfer to a medium bowl.

  3. Halve the habanero and remove the seeds. Peel the garlic and add it to the food processor along with the tomatoes, habanero and orange juice; puree until smooth. Stir the puree into the ground pumpkin seeds along with the onion, cilantro and cinnamon. Transfer the dip to a serving bowl, season with salt and serve with tortilla chips.

Make Ahead

The dip can be refrigerated overnight. Serve at room temperature.

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