Tips For Picking And Carving A Pumpkin Like A Pro This Halloween

Pumpkin carving is a beloved Halloween tradition, and a creative DIY project. If you spend hours in your TV room watching the mad skills of pumpkin carving artists on competition shows like Outrageous Pumpkins and Pumpkin Wars, but all you can manage is a basic Jack-O-Lantern, read on for tips on how to pick and carve a pumpkin like a pro this Halloween!

Cute Little Girls Pulling Their Pumpkins In A Wagon At A Pumpkin Patch One Fall Day.Picking The Perfect Pumpkin

Some pumpkins have an obvious personality right out the patch, and all they need is a little help to bring it out. Whether you prefer a perfectly round, classic Connecticut Field, or a hefty, monster-sized Prizewinner, is all up to you. Here are the best varieties for carving:


  • Medium orange
  • Round and easy to carve
  • 7-10 lbs.

Autumn Gold

  • Golden-orange and glossy
  • Long stem and easy to carve
  • 7-10 lbs.

White Lumina

  • Ghostly white
  • Round and smooth
  • 7-10 lbs.


  • Light orange
  • Oval with shallow ribs
  • 10-12 lbs.

Connecticut Field

  • Medium orange
  • The classic Halloween pumpkin
  • 15-20 lbs.


  • Dark orange
  • Tall and ribbed with a thick stem
  • 20-30 lbs.


  • Red-orange with shallow ribs
  • The most uniform of the giant varieties
  • 75-200 lbs.

When picking a pumpkin for carving, it should feel sturdy and light for its size, and it should sit flat on the ground. Gently tap it and listen for a hollow sound. Check for scratches and bruises, and apply pressure to the bottom to make sure it feels fresh and firm. Make sure the stem is strong and secure, and always cradle your pumpkin in your arms when carrying it rather than lifting it from the stem.

10-23-20 RTA3-Pumpkin CarvingCarving A Pumpkin Like A Pro

A stainless farmhouse sink is the ideal place to wash your pumpkin and remove any dirt before carving. As with any DIY project, make sure you also have the proper tools before you begin, including a large metal spoon or scoop, a vegetable peeler, a thin filet knife, and a small paring knife from your cutlery tray. For the easiest way to clean out a pumpkin from Better Homes and Gardens, click here.

Search online for beginner or advanced pumpkin carving patterns, based on your skill level, or sketch out your own creation on paper before making the first cut. Good Housekeeping recommends holding the pumpkin in your lap, or place a plastic cloth on your kitchen island countertops or backyard patio table to use as a workspace.

Trace your design onto your pumpkin using a Sharpie marker. Then, start with small, rough cuts, and smooth out the edges before finishing. Remember, when carving pumpkins with children, adult supervision is required for safety. According to Real Simple, spraying your pumpkin inside and out with a mixture of water and bleach will help preserve and protect your masterpiece when finished.

Happy Halloween from TheRTAStore!


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