Recently I came across a name of a dip that was new to me. It’s called Sikil Pak, and it’s Mexican – more specifically, from the Yucatán. The dip has no beans in it. Instead, the base is ground pepitas, or pumpkin seeds.
The name doesn’t sound typically Mexican because the origin is Mayan. That civilization lived primarily on the Yucatán peninsula. Sikil and Pak actually translate to pumpkin seeds and tomatoes.
Although habanero chile peppers are listed in this recipe I found from Bon Appetit, I could only find ghost peppers at my store. I used two small chocolate-colored peppers and one red.
On YouTube, I discovered a slightly different version of Sikil pak made by chef Rick Bayless, a top expert of Mexican cuisine. He suggests a few shortcuts in his video, and also uses orange and lime juices. There’s most likely not only one recipe for sikil pak, but what I made was so good, I’ll never alter it!
1 cup pepitas
1 medium onion, cut in 1” pieces
2 habaneros, halved and de-seeded
1 pound tomatoes, quartered and squeezed slightly to remove seeds
3 garlic cloves, peeled
Sea salt, to taste
2 ounces extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Reserved 2 tablespoons pepitas
Chips, for serving
Preheat the oven to a high roast setting. I like 375 degrees F convection.
Meanwhile, toast the pepitas in a skillet until golden brown. Let cool. Set aside 2 tablespoons for garnish.
Place the onion, habaneros, tomatoes and garlic to a baking dish and dry roast until somewhat charred.
Using a food processor, process the pepitas until almost smooth, then add the vegetables, salt, and the olive oil. Taste for salt.
Before serving, stir in the chopped cilantro.
Top with more cilantro leaves, and the 2 tablespoon pepitas.
Serve with chips.
That sounds delicious, Mimi, and so unusual using all those pumpkin seeds as a base.
I know. I just had to make the recipe just for that reason!
I adore pepitas, so this is totally right up my alley!
And it’s very tasty. Kind of addicting!
very intriguing!!!!!! love the sound of it….
It’s very good!
Oooh this sounds wonderful, such a creative way of eating pepitas!
So different and so good!
I love the look and sound of this dip, and I understand that pepitas are really healthy . Love your beautiful tablecloth – so festive !!
Thanks, Judee! The dip is excellent!
Thanks for sharing this very different dip. I always have pepitas in my pantry. I like to top a bowl of soup or a salad with them. So, you know I will be making this.
I love pepitas, too! I put them on salads, in pestos… They just so good, especially toasted.
Wow, this sounds fantastic, Mimi! Like you, I had never heard of Sikil Pak either. We do love a good dip around here, and the flavors of this one are screaming my name. I need to make a batch!
It’s really good. And very addicting!
This sounds delicious Mimi, and I must say I’ve never heard of it before so thank you for the information. However, I think it might be possible that this dish was originally Vulcan in origin.
Vulcan?!!! That’s funny.
Sounds like a wonderful addition to the super bowl menu. Thanks.
It will be! You’ll love the dip.
We’ve always got pepitas on hand, I add them to everything! I love the sounds of this dip, we can go through a lot of dip around here :) Perfect for upcoming Super Bowl!
I think you’ll really like the dip!!!
Love this idea. Roasted pepitas are always on the menu here with a few in a salad or for snacking. Now as a dip- we are on it. Yum
I use them in some pestos as well. They’re a really versatile seed, but I’ve never used them like this!
This is new to me. I’ve also never heard of Sikil Pak but I am going to try this.
You should really love it!
how interesting New to me! and the name sounds a bit middle eastern doesn’t it? I like the sound of adding orange and lime juice I have to say :)
Yes, that version sounds very good as well. The name maybe sounds Thai to me?!!!
I’ve never heard of this either Mimi, but I can tell by the ingredients it would be very morish. Your table setting is so colourful and appropriate.
Thanks, Pauline! It’s very very good!
I’ve never made a dip using pumpkin seeds before. I can see this being tried in summer as a dip to accompany one of my BBQ’s!
You will love it!
This sounds so exotic. I can only image what it must taste like. Thanks for sharing the recipe!
You are so welcome!
Chef Mimi, this looks delicious. Very unusual. Very healthy too. Love it!
Thanks so much. It was really a good and unique dip.
I am a huge lover of Mexican cuisine and I was surprised at the pumpkin seeds – but it immediately reminded me that they’re often used in Moles. This dip sounds amazing and I can’t wait to try it. With the habaneros – ghost peppers sound too scary to me, lol! Thanks for sharing it!
I have one on my blog called pipian rojo, with pumpkinseeds, sunflower seeds, and peanuts! Such wonderful ingredients.
Wow! A very interesting dip! I love toasted pepitas!
Thanks! It was very good!
Toasted pepitas! This sounds really interesting, very different. Have you tried bitchin’ sauce with chipotle, made with ground almonds?
Is that the brand name?! I’ll have to look for it! Thanks!
This recipe for Sikil Pak sounds like a delicious and unique dip, featuring the use of ground pepitas as its base. The fact that it originates from the Yucatán and has Mayan roots makes it even more interesting. The addition of habanero chiles and cilantro also adds depth of flavor to this dish.
It has a very interesting flavor profile! It makes your mouth happy.
I’ve had the pleasure of a lot of Mexican food from a variety of regions but I have never come across this! Wow! I can’t wait to introduce this to my family. It simply sounds amazing!
It’s very good, and very addicting!
This sounds delicious! I love the idea of using pumpkin seeds as a base– I don’t think I’ve tried anything like that before. It sounds very flavorful!
It’s a surprising recipe!
This looks delicious. Very unusual. Very healthy Love it!
Definitely unique. Definitely delicious!
This dip sounds so good! I often use pepitas as a base for pesto. They add such wonderful flavor. :)
I do too! And sunflower seeds are great for pesto, too!
You have the most interesting recipes on your site with this one definitely making the list. What a great dip especially with the added spiciness of your ghost peppers. Thanks Chef Mimi for sharing.
Aww, thanks! I really like trying new things, especially discovering a new food or ingredient.
Mimi, this sounds amazing. What a delicious flavor combination and I love a thicker dip like this. I can also imagine it spread into a wrap or sandwich. I’m going to try it this weekend. :-) ~Valentina
That’s a fabulous idea! I used to make white bean dip sandwiches for my husband and I when we did road trips. The car always smelled like garlic!
Sounds fantastic, Mimi! Definitely need to try this. And one of these days, get down to the Yucatan. They have some fascinating dishes.
They do!!! And lots of sunshine!
Can’t wait to give this a whirl (pun intended). When I saw the title, I assumed it was Thai!
Exactly! I looks Thai, not that I’m familiar with the language beyond recipe names!