How to make pumpkin lanterns

How to make pumpkin lanterns

Find out how to make these party perfect pumpkin lanterns.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do not To do in March

Do not To do in April

Do not To do in May

Do not To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do To do in September

Do To do in October

Do To do in November

Do not To do in December

Carved pumpkin faces are great, but sometimes a simpler design does the job just as well.

You could use a knife to cut the holes, but a drill with a hole cutter bit attached will do a much quicker and neater job of it. Especially handy if you need to create lots for a party.

After more uses for your pumpkins and squashes? Try this pumpkin bird feeder, then use the flesh from inside in a composting trench, which will enrich the surrounding soil with nutrients.

For full advice on how to grow pumpkins and squashes, you’ll find everything you need in our grow guide to pumpkins and squashes.

Find out how to make these easy pumpkin lanterns in a few simple steps.


You Will Need

  • Drill with holesaw bit attachments
  • Pumpkins
  • Bowl and spoon
  • A sharp knife

Total time:

Step 1

Cut a circular hole around the stalk, angling the blade towards the pumpkin’s centre. Dig out flesh and seeds with large spoon.

Scooping out pumpkin flesh
Scooping out pumpkin flesh

Step 2

Using the hole cutter, drill through the sides, making lots of equally spaced holes. If you like, experiment with the placement of your holes to create patterns.

Using a hole cutter to make holes in the pumpkin
Using a hole cutter to make holes in the pumpkin

Preserve your pumpkins for longer

Once your pumpkin has been carved and drilled, you can delay the onset on mould and rot with a nifty trick. Fill a bucket or other container large enough to hold your pumpkin with around 11 litres of water, then stir in three teaspoons of bleach. Immerse your pumpkin for two minutes, making sure its underwater for the duration, then remove and leave to dry. In an hour or two it should be ready for display. A thorough spraying of WD-40, inside and out, is also said to work.

Red watering can