Carrots are a vegetable I take for granted. Not any more thanks to Roasted Carrots!
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Caramelized at the edges and tender within, this sweet and savory side is kid friendly, healthy, and can pair with whatever you are cooking for dinner tonight.
However, there’s another nutritious orange vegetable that’s been stealing the show around here lately: carrots!
- Carrots are packed with vitamins, especially vitamin A.
- Carrots can last for 3 to 4 weeks in the refrigerator, making them convenient to keep on hand.
- You can roast them at the same time as other vegetables, like in this Roasted Potatoes and Carrots recipe.
- On a budget? Carrots are one of the most affordable types of produce. (Looking for more long-lasting, inexpensive produce? Check out this Sauteed Cabbage.)
Today I’ve included a recipe for the absolute best roasted carrots.
The trick is all in the size you cut them.
Plus, I’m giving you a few yummy, easy ways to season the carrots that will keep your meals feeling fresh.
5 Star Review
“These are delicious and so easy. I sold them to my family as “carrot fries” and they gobbled them up. This one is definitely a keeper.”— Beckey —
How to Roast Carrots
The size you cut the carrots is everything.
Unlike Sauteed Carrots, which maintain their size during cooking, roasted carrots shrink significantly in the oven. For this reason, you’ll want to cut them into larger pieces.
How to Cut Carrots For Roasting
- Scrub the carrots and trim off the stem end. You can leave the skin on roast carrots.
- If the carrots are large in diameter, slice them in half lengthwise.
- To make sure you enjoy the fully tender-inside, caramelized outside roasted carrot experience, cut your carrots into 1 ½-inch long pieces.
- I like to cut my carrots on the bias (diagonally), which gives the nicest presentation, but regular pieces work well too.
- The cut carrots look very large on the pan, but trust me, they’ll shrink and roast up just right.
Once you have the carrots cut, the next important step is oven temperature.
The best temperature for roasting most vegetables is 400 degrees F.
It’s hot enough to caramelize the vegetables, but not so hot the outsides char before the insides are tender.
- Carrots. Roasting is a healthy, tasty way to cook carrots. The oven brings out their natural sweetness.
Using Baby Carrots
- The vegetables labeled “baby carrots” that is sold in most U.S. grocery stores are actually peeled, cut portions of mature carrots (an actual baby carrot would be one that is harvested prior to growing to full maturity, which is not the case for most sold conventionally).
- Personally, I prefer the texture and flavor of whole, larger carrots for roasting and save baby carrots for snacking.
- That said, you can follow this same recipe for roasted baby carrots. Check them a few minutes early and adjust the cooking time as needed.
- Olive Oil. Heart-healthy olive oil is key to helping the carrots caramelize and keeps them from drying out or burning.
- Honey. Honey is a lovely pairing with carrots (hence why I use it in these Crockpot Carrots) and makes the carrots a little sticky and sweet. I leave it as optional, but if you are cooking for kids, it certainly helps make the carrots extra enticing!
To make the roast carrots vegan, use pure maple syrup or additional olive oil in place of honey.
- Herbs. While you can make roasted carrots with just good ol’ S&P, adding a mix of dried and/or fresh herbs gives them another dimension of savoriness.
- Cut the carrots into 1 1/2-inch thick slices.
- Top with the olive oil, honey, and seasonings. Toss to coat.
- Spread them into a single layer. Roast carrots at 400 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes, until fork tender. ENJOY!
- Parmesan Roasted Carrots. Sprinkle the carrots with 2 tablespoons of grated Parmesan prior to serving or during the last few minutes of roasting.
- Mediterranean Roasted Carrots. Add a pinch of dried oregano and cumin with the thyme. Sprinkle the roasted carrots with feta and mint prior to serving.
- Sweet and Spicy Roasted Carrots. Omit the thyme. Roast the carrots with a few pinches of chili powder, a pinch of cinnamon, and a pinch of cayenne.
- Garlic Roasted Carrots. Omit the honey. Toss the carrots with 1/2 to 1 teaspoon garlic powder prior to roasting.
- To Store. Roasted carrots can last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- To Reheat. Arrange it in a single layer on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Reheat at 400 degrees F, just until the carrots are hot. You also can rewarm them in a skillet or the microwave.
Meal Prep Tip
Chop the carrots up to 3 days in advance and store in the refrigerator, then roast away.
What to Serve with Roasted Carrots
- Chicken. Baked Bone-In Chicken Breast or Grilled Chicken Breast are classic pairings.
- Pork. For a special, homey meal, pair carrots with Air Fryer Pork Chops or Grilled Pork Tenderloin.
- Grains and Legumes. Carrots are a yummy addition to flexible, hearty salad recipes like this Quinoa Chickpea Salad.
- Sandwiches. Up the nutritional value of your next BLT or Air Fryer Grilled Cheese.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Parchment Paper. Makes cleanup a breeze.
- Good Quality Chef’s Knife. One of the most critical tools in your kitchen.
Non-Slip Cutting Board
When’s the last time you replaced your cutting board? This one stays in place while you use it and can go right in the dishwasher.
Did you make this recipe?
Let me know what you thought!
Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked the recipe.
These roasted carrots are easy enough for a weeknight and cozy enough for company. I hope they make their way into your oven and onto your plate today!
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely! Choose a vegetable that will roast in about the same amount of time; sweet potatoes, parsnips, and cauliflower would all work well.
If your roasted vegetables aren’t crispy, it is likely because you over crowded the pan. This will cause the vegetables to steam instead of roast. Be sure they carrots are in a single layer and the pieces are not touching. If they are, divide them between two sheet pans and roast in the upper and lower thirds of your oven.
Absolutely! No changes to the recipe are needed. Simply keep an eye on them and adjust the cooking time as needed.
- 2 pounds carrots
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey or pure maple syrup; or 1 additional tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves* finely chopped, or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. For easy clean up, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat baking mat.
- Scrub the carrots and dry well (no need to peel). If any of the carrots are thick, cut them in half lengthwise (if they are narrow, leave them whole). Cut the carrots crosswise on the diagonal so that they are in 1 1/2-inch slices (the pieces will look large but will shrink once roasted).
- Place the carrots in the center of the baking sheet, then drizzle with the oil and honey. Sprinkle the salt, pepper, and thyme over the top. Toss to coat the carrots evenly, then spread them into a single layer (if all of the carrots will not fit in one layer, place half on a second parchment-lined baking sheet and bake in the upper and lower thirds of the oven instead; if the carrots are crowded, they will steam instead of roast).
- Roast in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until the carrots are browned and tender, tossing once halfway through (if the carrots are on two pans, switch the pans’ positions on the upper and lower racks halfway through).
- Sprinkle with the fresh parsley and toss once more to coat. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired. Enjoy hot.
- *Fresh thyme has a much better flavor than dried. It’s worth using the fresh here, though dried can work in a pinch.
- TO STORE: Roasted carrots can last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- TO REHEAT: Arrange it in a single layer on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Reheat at 400 degrees F, just until the carrots are hot. You also can rewarm them in a skillet or the microwave.
READ: Roasted Carrots