These beautiful Maple Glazed Carrots with cayenne make the perfect holiday side dish for Christmas or Thanksgiving. Prepared carrots are brushed with maple syrup, brown sugar and butter then gently roasted in the oven for a slightly sweet and spicy carrot recipe that everyone will love.
There are carrots, and then there are Maple Glazed Carrots with a touch of cayenne.
They’re quick, easy and bursting with flavor. The perfect holiday recipe for Thanksgiving, Christmas or any day!
It's a great glazed carrot side dish that's is definitely something you'll want to have on hand for a weeknight or for the holiday season.
They are a perfect compliment to main courses and offer a sweet warming flavor with just a touch of spice from the cayenne pepper.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
You can use any kind of carrots you like, even baby carrots.
This recipe is great to serve at Thanksgiving, Christmas or other holidays.
It can easily be made into a vegan side dish.
You can control the level of spice by deciding how much cayenne pepper to add. Or omit it completely.
It's a veggie dish that kids will love.
Ingredients & Tools
Carrots: You can choose whatever carrots you like to make this dish. Baby carrots, bunched carrots, large or small carrots.
Butter or Dairy Free Butter: This binds the glaze together and makes the carrots have a delicious buttery flavor. Use standard butter to keep this a vegetarian side dish or a vegan butter or margarine to make it dairy free.
Maple Syrup: Adds a sweetness to the carrots that compliments the natural sweetness of the carrots.
Brown Sugar: A touch of brown sugar adds sweetness and caramelization.
Whole Cloves: Adds a bit of warming spice.
Cayenne Pepper: Optional but adds a great layer of flavor and can be customized to your desired spice level.
Step By Step Tutorial
Maple Glazed Carrots is a super easy side dish that's packed full of great flavor. Follow this step by step photo tutorial for perfect results.
Then, scroll down to the recipe card for the full list of ingredients and the detailed method.
PREP: Preheat the oven to 400F/200C.
Prepare the carrots by trimming any tops to ½”, peel or scrub them, and cut any large ones diagonally into two pieces.
Flavor: Lay the carrots onto a baking sheet. Use two baking sheets if necessary.
Dot small cubes of the butter (or vegan butter) over the carrots, drizzle with the maple syrup and sprinkle with the brown sugar, cloves and cayenne, if using.
Season with salt and pepper and toss gently, then spread out onto a single layer.
Roast: Roast in the oven for 45 minutes or until lightly browned, turning halfway through. Then you'll have perfectly caramelised Maple Roasted Carrots!
Make sure that the carrots you use are all the same size, this will make them cook evenly in the oven. You can cut any larger ones lengthwise.
If you're using whole carrots, there's no need to peel them however make sure they are scrubbed really well to remove any dirt.
Make sure your carrots are in a single layer when baking. You may need to use 2 baking sheets depending on the size and amount of carrots you are cooking.
Since cooking time depends on the size of the carrots, check them halfway by piercing one with a fork to check that it’s soft and to make sure they don't overcook or undercook.
Goes great for Thanksgiving with a homemade Vegan Tofu Turkey.
Contrasts perfectly with a side of Green Beans Almondine.
Looks great next to this Roasted Brussels Sprouts Christmas Tree.
Chop them up and add them to this Green Salad with Pumpkin Seed Dressing.
Serve next to these Parmentier Potatoes with Rosemary and Garlic.
Top with fresh herbs after plating.
Add any leftovers into a Winter soup or stew (like this Vegan Vegetable Stew)
Control your level of spice by adding a little or a lot of cayenne pepper.
Top with flaky sea salt for an excellent contrast of flavor.
Roast with some parsnips for a nice mix of veggies.
Make it gluten-free: To make this roasted carrots recipe gluten free, make sure your maple syrup and brown sugar is free of gluten containing ingredients.
Make it vegan: To make these roasted carrots vegan, use a vegan butter for the glaze.
Storage and Freezing
Freezing: Although this glazed carrots recipe can be frozen after it's cooked, the texture may change slightly as it's thawed to be a bit more mushy.
Storage: Store this cooked carrot side dish in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Reheating: Maple roasted carrots can be reheated in the oven at 300 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until carrots are warmed through. They can also be microwaved.
How Do You Soften Carrots Quickly? The best way to soften a carrot is to parboil them. This means they are boiled in water until they are cooked halfway so that it shortens the cooking time. You do not need to parboil carrots for this recipe but if you do, cut down the cooking time and test until they are tender to your liking.
What's The Healthiest Way To Cook Carrots? Carrots can be cooked a variety of different ways, but the most healthy way to do it is by steaming, boiling, roasting in the oven or microwaving them.
Can You Overcook Carrots? Carrots can be overcooked and become mushy. This is why it's recommended that you check on them every 15-20 minutes in order to make sure they are tender but still have a slight crisp when serving.
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Get the recipe
Maple Glazed Carrots
- 1 lb (450g) carrots
- 2 tablespoons butter or dairy free butter
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 8 whole cloves
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne powder optional
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400F/200C.
- Prepare the carrots by trimming any tops to ½”, peel or scrub them, and cut any large ones diagonally into two pieces.
- Lay the carrots onto a baking sheet. Use two baking sheets if necessary.
- Dot small cubes of the butter over the carrots, drizzle with the maple syrup and sprinkle with the brown sugar, cloves and cayenne, if using. Season with salt and pepper and toss gently, then spread out onto a single layer.
- Roast in the oven for 45 minutes or until lightly browned, turning halfway through.
If you like things spicier, use more cayenne. Try adding red chilli flakes, dill, thyme leaves, or sage Top with fresh herbs after plating. Add any leftovers into a Winter soup or stew (like this Vegan Vegetable Stew) Control your level of spice by adding a little or a lot of cayenne pepper. Top with flaky sea salt for an excellent contrast of flavor. Roast with some parsnips for a nice mix of veggies. Use any sized carrots, just cut them into similar sizes so they cook evenly. Baby carrots, chopped carrots all work, just check and adjust cooking time accordingly. Storage: Store this cooked carrot side dish in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Reheating: Maple glazed carrots can be reheated in the oven at 300 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until carrots are warmed through. They can also be microwaved.