Last Updated on August 25, 2021 by cmoarz
Halloween is coming up soon and that means it’s carving time! What an exciting time! It’s hard to wait! But there’s just one problem, The earlier you carve your pumpkin, the faster it spoils!
This article will go into how to preserve your carved pumpkin for the entire month of October and defeat the spoiling of your pumpkin!
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to completely stop your pumpkin from rotting away because the decaying process starts almost immediately. But there are some things you can do to slow down the enzyme process and save your pumpkin for longer!
Make sure you get the best pumpkin from the store, to begin with
Luckily you starting early so there should be a great selection for sale near you. Look for one that is most firm and feels heavy for its size Pick a good shape too because they do tend to rot faster than normal pumpkins
Make sure there are no soft spots anywhere to be seen, Don’t be shy, poke that pumpkin all over, If there’s one soft spot then that means the enzymes are already in play and your pumpkin is starting to go bad
Make sure you get a carving knife too, Or else you’re just going to have a plain old pumpkin if you don’t already have one. Here is one I personally recommend this kit.
It comes with a whole set, how cool is that?
2. Gut the pumpkin so they don’t bring the entire thing down!
Gut rot faster than the fruit itself because the enzymes are constantly exposed, which in turn causes the rest of the pumpkin to start to decay.
So once you’ve finished cutting it open, You really need to remove every single last pumpkin gut you can find.
So get yourself a spoon or anything that can scoop out the insides of your pumpkin and do so! The less contact to the inside of the pumpkin means the fewer chances for it to rot away.
And don’t forget to save those seeds, salt them and cook some pumpkin seeds! It is one of my favorite things ever. The salty crunch is just the best! I love this time of year!
3. Seal your pumpkin from the air with a layer of wax or petroleum jelly
You have 2 options here, You can use petroleum jelly or wax, whichever you find easier. Personally, I’ve used both and they are about equal, and petroleum jelly is far easier to apply.
How does it work?
It works by preventing the oxygen from touching your pumpkin, which in turn prevents the enzymes from doing their dirty work.
So once you have finished gutting your pumpkin, It’s time to seal it up!
Wait until after gutting and cutting though because if you do this before it has been cleaned out or carved then there’s a chance that it will spoil faster or your hands could slip and give you a nasty cut.
First, make sure your hands are nice and clean, and apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly or wax (I personally use Vaseline).
It doesn’t matter what side you do first so just pick one, Doesn’t matter really. I find it best to start on the bottom and work my way up top.
I apply a thick layer all over the pumpkin and until it’s completely sealed up.
If you use wax, I suggest orange wax!
It’s tightly sealed in so there’s no way for oxygen to get through. The enzymes can’t get at the inside of your pumpkin and start doing their thing! This method will keep your jack-o-lantern looking fresh for weeks!
4. When you’re not using it, Put it in the fridge
It’s always better to bring your pumpkin in during the day so the sun doesn’t damage it. Even if you have it in the strong shade, I suggest you do this regardless.
When you do, Put it in the fridge.
Doing this will slow down the enzyme process and slow down the decaying of your pumpkin significantly. This is especially important if you are going to be taking it out for more than a day as leaving it out increases decay time by at least 3x!