Elevate your next dinner with this oven-roasted carrot side dish. A quick par-boil on the stove plus a high heat oven to finish is the best way to get tender and caramelized carrots. We go beyond basic with some sweet-tart roasted grapes, fresh mint, and a sprinkle of crunchy dukkah to finish. Dukkah is an Egyptian seasoning of ground toasted nuts, seeds, and whole spices that compliments the end result beautifully. This vegetable side has all the comforting and familiar aspects of sweet roasted carrots, but in a salad-like presentation that’s bursting with flavour. Ready in 30 minutes.
I love dukkah in general, but especially as a topping for roasted root vegetables. There’s something about the sweetness and the toasted nuts/spices that works so well. This seasoning originated in Egypt, but is enjoyed all over the Middle East and in Northern Africa. At its core, it is well-crushed toasted nuts (I use hazelnuts here), seeds, whole spices, and salt. A popular way to serve it is with fresh bread and a bit of olive oil. Dunk the bread in the oil and then dunk it in the dukkah. So delicious! You can read more here.
As far as this vegetable side goes, I’ve learned over the years that the best roasted carrots go for a little par-boil on the stove first, like in this harissa carrot and parsnip salad. After just 5 minutes on the stove and about 20 in the oven, you get perfectly tender carrots with a bit of caramelization. I used to just slap raw carrots in the oven, but I found that the outsides would be shrivelled while the inner part was still too firm. The extra boiling step is worth it for this roasted carrot side dish!
More roasted carrot recipes:
- Vegan Holiday Farro Salad with Roasted Carrots, Pomegranate & Mint
- Vegan Barley Risotto with Roasted Carrots
- Roasted Carrot & Harissa Chickpea Dip
- Roasted Carrots & Rice with Zingy Turmeric Broth
The soft and caramelized roasted grapes are such a fun surprise with those roasted carrots! They have a tangy flavour that compliments the toasty dukkah and sweet carrots. I also find that this is a great use for those less-than-ideal grapes that I sometimes end up with. The high heat brings out more sweetness and flavour!
Served with a sprinkle of fresh mint, this veg side is colourful and just a lovely pairing for whatever you’re serving up. I like to have a little bowl of the dukkah on the side as well.
You can cut the carrots up to a couple days ahead of time and store them submerged in water in the fridge. I just chop mine into simple diagonal slices! If the carrot is extra thick, I will cut it down the center lengthwise first. The dukkah can also be made up to a couple weeks ahead of time. Just keep it in a sealed jar at room temperature.
Oven-Roasted Carrot Side Dish with Grapes & Dukkah
- 2 lbs (907 grams) carrots, scrubbed (and peeled if you like)
- 2 cups red grapes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
Dukkah (makes extra)
- ½ cup toasted hazelnuts
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon Nigella seeds, optional
- 1 teaspoon coriander seed
- 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground chilies, optional
- 10-12 fresh mint leaves, finely sliced
- You could use shelled pistachios, walnuts, or even almonds (or a mix) in the dukkah! I just like the hazelnut flavour with the carrots.
- If you don’t have a food processor/mini processor, just chop the hazelnuts up fine and then stir those together with the sesame seeds, nigella seeds, salt, and chillies. Also replace the whole coriander and cumin seed with an equal amount of ground coriander and cumin, and then stir those in with the rest!
- You can make the dukkah a couple weeks in advance. Keep it in a sealed jar at room temperature.
- Leftover dukkah is great sprinkled on top of dips, served with fresh bread and olive oil, or as a topping for salads.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
- Cut the carrots into 2-inch pieces. If your carrots are thick, cut them in half down the middle before cutting into 2-inch lengths.
- Set a medium saucepan of water over high heat. Once the water is boiling, add a god pinch of salt and all of the carrots. Bring the carrots to a boil and then simmer for 5 minutes. Drain the carrots thoroughly and blot them dry with a clean towel.
- Add the carrots to a large bowl along with the grapes, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine. Spread the carrots and grapes out on the baking sheet in a single layer, spreading everything out as much as you can.
- Roast the carrots and grapes in the oven for 20-25 minutes, stirring them up at the halfway point. The finished carrots should be tender and a slightly browned.
- While the carrots are roasting, make the dukkah. In a food processor or mini food processor, combine the hazelnuts, sesame seeds, Nigella seeds, coriander, cumin, salt, and ground chilies. Pulse until everything is coarsely ground. Set aside.
- Transfer the roasted carrots and grapes to a serving platter and top with the sliced mint and sprinkles of dukkah. Enjoy warm.