Note: Parental supervision is required to carve a pumpkin since a sharp knife needs to be used - do not attempt alone.
Choose a firm, ripe pumpkin. Any shape will do, whatever appeals to you. Make sure there are no bruised or rotten spots and the stalk is firmly attached.
Have an adult cut the top off the pumpkin using a sharp knife. Cut on an angle so when you put back on the pumpkin it won't fall through.
Scoop out all pumpkin seeds and 'guts'. A soup ladle makes a good scoop. You can scrape off a layer inside the pumpkin to make smooth and 'gunk' free. Make sure base inside pumpkin is flat.
Either draw a face on your pumpkin or use a pumpkin pattern. You can attach your pattern to the pumpkin with straight pins. You can find many free patterns online.
If you are using a pattern, poke a straight pin around the edges of the eyes, nose and mouth of the pattern through the paper into the pumpkin skin. When you have poked around all the part remove the pattern paper. The outline where you cut will be visible with tiny pin holes.
Have an adult cut out the outlined areas with a sharp knife. Be very careful doing this.
Once you have your eyes, nose and mouth cut out check inside to make sure all seeds and pulp have been removed. Place a candle in the base of the pumpkin. Tea light candles work well.
Place your pumpkin in a safe area away from anything flammable and on a sturdy surface. Light candle and replace lid!
Pumpkin Carving Tip:
If you cut the bottom off instead of the top, you have a few benefits.
1.) Easier to pick up, just grab by the stem.
There you go!
2.) You can make the pumpkin level if it’s angled oddly.
3.) You don’t have to worry about putting a top on at the right position, or worry about it falling in as the pumpkin begins to shrivel up.
4.) You can put the candle on your porch, or wherever, and just place the pumpkin on top.
Thanks to Ariel in Portland, OR for this submitted tip
Happy Halloween! from everyone at Kids' Turn Central!
Check out these Pumpkin Carving Patterns online.