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What goes well with carrots? Learn the best ingredient pairings, meal ideas, popular flavor combinations, and other helpful tips.
Knowing what goes well with carrots will give you a starting point for putting meals together using the ingredients you already have on hand.
This helps inspire you to create something new or add your own spin by using something outside of these common flavor pairings. Learning to cook this way builds kitchen confidence.
What's A Carrot?
Carrots are root vegetables in the same plant family as celery, chervil (French parsley), dill, fennel, parsley, and parsnips.
The most popular color of carrots is orange, but they're also yellow, white, purple, and red. These are the most common varieties you'll find at grocery stores:
- Imperator carrots - long and fibrous, with a tapered end
- Nantes Carrots - are cylindrical but with no tapered end (a more rounded bottom) and a sweeter flavor
- Baby carrots - a specific variety of larger carrots that have been bred to have a sweeter flavor and are then cut into small, cylindrical shapes
When to Buy
Carrots are in season from fall through spring. Peep the seasonal produce guide to see what else is in season right now.
Carrots are a great staple because of how long they last (at least a month, if not longer when stored well). The key is to keep them cool and damp.
- Wrap your carrots with a damp paper towel.
- Place the wrapped carrots in an airtight container in a cold section of your fridge, either near the back or in the crisper drawer.
How to Prepare
Carrots can be boiled, braised, grilled, roasted, sautéed, simmered, steamed, stir-fried, or eaten raw.
What Goes Well With Carrots?
Celery, chile peppers (red, green - e.g. jalapeño), fennel, garlic, ginger, leeks, onions (esp green), parsnips, peas, potatoes, shallots, spinach, and turnips.
Lemon, lime, orange, and tamarind.
Allspice, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, curry, curry leaves, fennel seeds, mace, mustard seeds (esp black), nutmeg, pepper: black and white, and salt: fleur de sel and kosher.
Anise hyssop, basil, bay leaf, chervil, chives, cilantro, dill, lemon balm, lovage, mint (spearmint and peppermint), parsley (esp flat-leaf), rosemary, sage, tarragon, and thyme.
Nuts & Seeds
Almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts.
Butter, cream, and yogurt.
Bacon, beef, chicken, cod, crayfish, fish, lamb, scallops, and veal.
Apple juice, brandy, honey, maple syrup, mustard, olive oil, raisins, rum, sesame oil, stock, sugar: brown and white (pinch), and white wine.
Popular Carrot Food Pairings
- celery + onions + carrots = mirepoix
- cilantro + lime
- cinnamon + raisins + sugar + walnuts
- cumin + orange
- dill + orange
- lemon juice + olive oil + parsley
- maple syrup + orange
- olive oil + turnips
- pistachios + tarragon
- raisins + yogurt
What to Make With Carrots
Carrots are most commonly used in savory dishes, but they're an incredibly versatile ingredient.
You'll find carrots in roasted meat dishes like easy braised beef and homemade broth, various soups such as Thai red curry soup, and others because they're one of the ingredients that make up mirepoix (along with onions and celery), which act as a flavorful base.
Another favorite way to incorporate them is in noodle dishes like my cold sesame noodle salad.
Need a side dish? Make crispy baked carrot fries or maple and miso roasted carrots. Or you can make delicious homemade juices and dressings such as orange carrot ginger juice or carrot ginger dressing. Carrots are also a popular ingredient in slaws such as roasted cauliflower tacos with jicama carrot slaw.