6 Brilliant Grandma Tips That Make Pumpkin Carving So Much Easier

published Oct 21, 2022
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Lit jack-o-lantern
Credit: Sarah Crowley

October is official pumpkin-carving season. While fun in theory, turning a pumpkin into a jack-o’-lantern can be a bit of an arduous task. The inside of a pumpkin is sticky and slippery and the flesh is quite hard, which makes it difficult to create the exact design you want. Not to mention, carved pumpkins can start to brown rather quickly.

Luckily, though, there are a few “grandma” tips that can help make carving your pumpkins much easier this fall. Barbara Costello aka Babs from BrunchwithBabs on TikTok, has a few helpful pieces of advice.

Babs’ Pumpkin Carving Tips

  1. First, carve your pumpkin sitting down not standing up over a table or counter. Babs puts the pumpkin right in her lap.
  2. Carve the pumpkin from the bottom, not the top! Slicing out the bottom allows you to place the pumpkin right over the candle instead of sticking the candle inside.
  3. Then, use an electric hand mixer to loosen all of the pumpkin insides and make them easier to remove.
  4. Then, (yes, there’s more!) get out your favorite cookie cutters and use them to cut out shapes for eyes, mouths, and other designs that would otherwise be difficult to create with just a carving knife. Simply use a mallet or meat tenderizer to hammer the cutter into the surface of the pumpkin and then push the shape through.
  5. If you want to go the extra mile with carving your pumpkin, though, there are a few extra things you can do. Babs recommends rubbing a little bit of Vaseline around the insides of the cut-outs of the pumpkin to prevent them from drying out and browning.
  6. Plus, once your pumpkin is finally turned into a full-on jack-o’-lantern, give it a fresh fall scent by sprinkling a few dashes of ground cinnamon on the top of the pumpkin before placing it over the candle. This would also work well with pumpkin pie spice!