Candied Carrots are one of those classic recipes that are equally as simple as they are delicious. Complete with a buttery glaze, this vegetable side dish is the perfect recipe for holiday dinner tables, family gatherings, or any time you’re looking to level up your side dish game.
The Best Candied Carrots Recipe
This Candied Carrots recipe uses just a few simple ingredients to get flavorful, perfectly cooked carrots with just a touch of sweetness in every bite. These are so easy to whip together, we sometimes put them on our weeknight menu. But they’re more traditionally found on our holiday table alongside our ultimate whole roasted chicken, grilled lamb chops, or prime rib. Plus they’re a welcomed healthy side dish option for the picky eaters in the group. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full nutritional information.
What You Will Need
- carrots – You can be flexible with the type of carrots used. Both whole carrots and baby carrots will work! Either way, try to find similar sized carrots to help them all cook evenly.
- butter – Helps to spread all the yummy flavors over the carrots. Unsalted butter or salted both work. Just be sure to taste test the final product and adjust seasonings as needed.
- maple syrup – Just a bit to heighten the natural sweetness from the carrots.
- brown sugar – Rounds out the sweetness just enough.
- bourbon – A great way to add a bit of extra flavor that adds subtle sweet and spicy notes.
- ground cinnamon – Pairs perfectly with the maple syrup to add cozy, warming flavors.
- kosher salt – Just a bit to heighten flavors throughout.
How To Make Candied Carrots
Start by assembling and preparing all of your ingredients to make the cooking process smooth and efficient.
Next, fill a large pot with water and bring it to a boil on the stove top. Once the water is boiling, add in the carrots and then reduce the water to a simmer and let the carrots cook for 8-10 minutes. Check to see that the carrots are tender before draining the water and set them aside.
While your carrots are boiling, bring a large skillet to medium-high heat and add the remaining ingredients. Whisk everything in with the melted butter so that it forms a uniform sauce. Let it all simmer for a bit, while stirring occasionally, so that the beautiful glaze thickens up a bit.
Lastly, add the tender carrots to the skillet and toss so that they get covered in that yummy sweet glaze.
Give your delicious candied carrots a taste and add any additional bourbon, butter, or salt as desired.
What Protein Goes Best With Carrots
This is one of our favorite ways to turn a bag of carrots into an inexpensive side dish for family gatherings. Since these are candied, and therefore feel a bit more fancy, we usually save them for a special occasion and serve them alongside our ultimate beef tenderloin, at Christmas dinner alongside our holiday ham, or with our smoked turkey.
But because this is such an easy candied carrot recipe, it could easily be served up as part of an easy weeknight dinner. No matter how you serve them, they’re sure to become one of your favorite side dishes.
Nope, feel free to omit this ingredient. They’ll still turn out delicious.
You can use whole carrots or baby carrots. Just note that cooking time will probably have to be adjusted for baby carrots since they’ll probably be a bit smaller than the whole carrot variety.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
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The most delicious Candied Carrot recipe with sweet brown sugar, maple syrup and a touch of bourbon – perfect for any holiday meal!
- 8 medium/large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 2–4 tablespoons butter (reg. or dairy-free)
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar (sub coconut sugar)
- 1 tablespoon of bourbon
- 1/8 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- pinch of kosher salt
- Fill a large saucepan with water. Bring to a boil and add carrots. Reduce to simmer and let cook 8-10 minutes. Drain.
- Meanwhile, bring a cast iron skillet to medium-high heat. Add butter, maple syrup, brown sugar, bourbon, cinnamon and kosher salt. Let butter and melt and whisk to combine. Let simmer, stirring occasionally, until it thickens a bit.
- Add carrots and toss in the glaze. Taste and add any additional butter, bourbon or salt, as desired.
- Bourbon: feel free to omit the bourbon, if desired.
- Baby Carrots: you can use baby carrots if you want – I would recommend slicing them in half lengthwise first – you can keep them whole, but then you will need adjust the cook time accordingly.
- Storage: store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- Serving Size: 4 oz
- Calories: 50
- Sugar: 5 g
- Sodium: 132.3 mg
- Fat: 2 g
- Carbohydrates: 7.3 g
- Protein: 0.4 g
- Cholesterol: 5.1 mg
Keywords: candied carrots