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Easy, Ridiculously Good Roasted Carrots

Crazy delicious and easy roasted carrots

I’ll give you once chance to guess where I got this recipe.

easy roasted carrots

I know. That wasn’t even a challenge, was it?

Cook’s Illustrated, of course, is the source. (duh.)

I’ve been trying to add some variety to our vegetable dishes, since the whole steam-and-then-add-butter-salt-and-pepper thing gets awfully boring after a while. And raw veggies are lovely and all, but in the winter, I do tend to like my veggies hot at least some of the time.

So, I logged onto Cook’s Illustrated, browsed the vegetable section, and printed off a bunch of recipes.

This happened to be the first one I tried.

And it was, as I like to say, marvy-fab.

Steamed or boiled carrots are ok, but now I know that they just cannot hold a candle to roasted carrots. Roasting makes them so sweet, you’d swear you sprinkled on some sugar along with the salt and pepper. I could not stop eating them.

And after dinner, I made another half batch because both Sonia and I wanted more.

(Seriously, when is the last time you felt like making another batch of veggies after dinner?? That’s how good these are.)

To make ’em, first heat your oven up to 425° F. (Yup. Won’t be making these in the summertime!)

Then peel your carrots (or don’t, especially if they’re organic). Cut them in half width-wise, and then lengthwise as necessary to make them into even pieces.

How much cutting is involved will depend on the thickness of your carrots. Just make sure they’re fairly uniform so that they cook evenly.

Toss the carrots in a bowl with butter, salt, and pepper. If you can’t eat butter, I’m sure you could use another fat, like coconut or olive oil.

Next, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper* and arrange carrots on the pan in an even layer. Cover the whole pan tightly with aluminum foil.

*this can be made without the parchment if you so desire, especially if your pan is non-stick.

Bake for 15 minutes, and then remove the foil. The carrots should be nice and steamed, and now they’re ready for browning.

Put the carrots back into the oven and roast for another 30-35 minutes, stirring twice, until they’re nicely browned. Your roasting time could vary depending on how thinly you sliced your carrots, so keep an eye on them.

They should look something like this when they’re done.

Plate ’em up, and enjoy.

By the way, I really, really love having a membership to Cook’s Illustrated’s website (and no, they don’t pay me to say that. I happily hand over my subscription fee every year because the recipes and reviews are so stinking helpful.)

I highly recommend subscribing, and hey, maybe someone who loves you muchly will give you a subscription for Christmas.

One can always hope. 😉

Or you can find this carrot recipe AND 1,999 more great recipes in this Cook’s Illustrated cookbook that I use all. the. time.

2024 edit: I now make these even simpler.

  • I use no foil; I just bake them in a bare pan the whole time
  • I stick the pan in the oven with the butter just long enough to melt it, then I remove the pan from the oven, add the carrots, salt, and pepper, and use a spatula to mix it all up. And then I proceed to roast the carrots. That saves me a bowl!
Easy, ridiculously good roasted carrots

Easy, Ridiculously Good Roasted Carrots

Yield: 4 servings

Easy 4-ingredient oven-roasted carrots that are seriously addictive!


  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled, halved crosswise, and cut lengthwise if necessary to create even pieces
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • Table salt and ground black pepper


  1. Heat oven to 425° F. In a bowl, toss together carrots, butter, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange carrots in an even layer on top of parchment, then tightly cover the whole pan with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes. Take pan out of oven, remove foil, and return pan to oven for another 30-35 minutes, or until the carrots are lightly browned. Stir twice during cooking time.
  4. Season with more salt and pepper if desired, and then serve.


You can skip lining the baking sheet with parchment if your baking sheet has a nonstick surface.

This recipe is from Cook's Illustrated's Cookbook.

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Wednesday 12th of October 2022

This is the ONLY recipe you need for cooked carrots. I used to only like raw carrots because cooked just didn’t taste right. But with only better and salt, a little steaming and a little roasting this recipe brings carrots to a whole new level. While the recipe only calls for a little bit of salt, I use about 3/4 of a tablespoon and no pepper. It is DELICIOUS!!


Tuesday 10th of May 2016

My 6.5 y/o son just got a peek in the oven and practically squealed. "Those are my FAVORITE carrots ever! I LOVE those carrots with the black spots!!!"


Wednesday 11th of May 2016

That's hilarious! I love it.


Wednesday 25th of November 2015

Do you think these could be made in a Nesco roaster? We have a 23# turkey this year that will be occupying the oven!


Wednesday 25th of November 2015

I don't know...I'm not familiar with a Nesco roaster. I'm sorry!

Gloria Shaw

Wednesday 21st of October 2015

Hi, I LOVE the sound of these carrots and want to make them this friday as part of a harvest dinner for a fundraising event for our not for my son's school. We are having a harvest dinner with roasted chicken, roasted carrots, green beans and garlic mashed potatoes. Can you please give me an idea of how much I should make and if we can make them a day ahead and reheat? Thank you in advance, I am really looking forward to these.


Thursday 22nd of October 2015

I'm not sure how many people you're feeding, so it's hard to say how many carrots you should make. I'd say that one recipe of these would feed 4-6 people, depending on how many carrots each person eats.

I've never made them a day ahead, but I'm sure it's do-able, although the texture would probably suffer a little bit.


Tuesday 13th of October 2015

i buy unbleached parchment paper and then compost it. not perfect, but better than putting it in a plastic bag and sending it to the landfill.

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