Simple roasted carrots tossed in a light honey butter sauce makes an incredible side dish! This recipe yields enough for 2 to 4 side servings, so you may want to double the recipe—just use two pans in the middle and upper third of the oven, and swap them halfway through cooking.
1 1/2 pounds carrots (I peeled mine because they didn’t look so hot)
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon honey
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut the carrots in half width-wise (as in, through the middle—I didn’t do this for my short heirloom carrots, but you probably should for long standard carrots). Then cut them vertically into halves or even quarters to form long, uniform pieces.
On a large, rimmed baking sheet, toss the carrots with the olive oil and salt. Spread them into a single layer and roast, stirring halfway, until browned and tender, about 33 to 40 minutes, depending on their size. Some of mine got a little too done at their scraggly tips, but I just pinched off those pieces before serving.
When the carrots are nearly done, make the honey butter. In your smallest saucepan or small skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and cook, swirling the pan occasionally, until just faintly golden, about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and stir in the honey.
Transfer the roasted carrots to a serving bowl or platter while still hot and pour the honey butter over them. Toss to coat, season with a sprinkle of pepper, and serve immediately.
Recipe minimally adapted, with permission, from Eating in the Middle, a cookbook by Andie Mitchell. Make it dairy free: I suppose there’s always non-dairy butter, but you could also just toss the roasted carrots with a light drizzle of maple syrup. Or you could make the glaze with a little coconut oil instead of butter (it won’t brown like butter), if you love the flavor of coconut oil. Make it vegan: See above about butter. Maple syrup would be a great substitute for the honey. Change it up: Use maple syrup instead of honey, and/or try adding toasted chopped nuts (hazelnuts, almonds, pecans or walnuts come to mind) or seeds (like pepitas). A sprinkle of fresh herbs would be lovely (like thyme or chopped parsley). You could also rub spices onto the carrots before roasting—a little cumin and coriander would make some delicious Moroccan-flavored carrots.
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