Steam-Roasted Carrots with Cumin

By • February 18, 2014 17 Comments

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Author Notes: If you don't have any of these spices, or if you don't want to use them, skip them. The beauty of this recipe is in the method -- adding water right before you roast, and covering the pan -- so feel free to swap spices and play. Make it something new.

I like to add these carrots to grain salads, vegetable ones, or eat them all on their own.

This recipe is adapted from April Bloomfield's A Girl and Her Pig.
Kenzi Wilbur

Serves 4

  • 4 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • Flaky sea salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/8 teaspoon red chile flakes, or more to taste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 30 or so young carrots, scrubbed and left unpeeled (1 pound)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • A handful of small, delicate cilantro sprigs
  1. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  2. If you have any crazy large carrots, cut them in half lengthwise -- you want everything to roast at more or less the same rate.
  3. Put the minced garlic in a large mixing bowl along with the cumin, coriander, chilies, and the olive oil. Stir well.
  4. Add the carrots and toss well -- I like to do this part with my hands -- so they’re thoroughly coated. Add a big, three-finger pinch of salt. (If you're using kosher salt, just scale back slightly.)
  5. Put the carrots in a large shallow baking dish in one layer. (Alternately, just use two smaller dishes.) Make sure you scrape out all of the extra oil and spices, too. While tilting your baking dish, pour the water into one fairly clear corner. Then tip it back onto the counter, so the water spreads out evenly and the carrots don't lose their spicy coating. Cover the dish tightly with foil and put it in the oven.
  6. Cook the carrots for 25 minutes, then remove the foil and cook for an additional 25 to 30 minutes, or until they're browned and soft, but not so much that they're falling apart.
  7. Serve warm, as a side, part of a salad, or anything you like.

Topics: Christmas

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Comments (17) Questions (0)


4 months ago cpc

The first time I made this I wasn't impressed and not terribly fond of cumin/carrot combo even though I like cumin. Based on others comments, I decided to alter the spices and instead used 3/4 teaspoon each of coriander and allspice and 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger (could have used more) and then added 1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses to the oil spice mixture. I liked the flavour much better and the low maintenance recipe is so easy I used it for Easter.


6 months ago fearlessem

Love cumin with roasted carrots -- and the recipe I use has me parboil them first -- I like how this serves the same function in one pan! I highly recommend adding sliced avocado, cilantro, and lime to the carrots when they have cooled to room temp -- it is an amazing combination!


9 months ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

This is one of my go-to sides. My current spin is to toss the carrots with garam masala and slice up some onion to add to the mix. LOVE!


10 months ago EmilyC

Used this technique for Brussels sprouts. Tossed them with olive oil, Aleppo, sea salt and honey. So good!

10 months ago Kenzi Wilbur

Kenzi is the Managing Editor of Food52.

You genius, you.


10 months ago EmilyC

Haha -- not hard to seem genius when working from genius! This technique is so cool.


10 months ago Tarragon

These were excellent and quite versatile, I made them 2 days in a row. On the second day I cut regular carrots into 2 inch chunks. I think this would be a good way to roast broccoli when one uses the entire stalk as well as the florettes.


10 months ago EmilyC

Great idea for broccoli! Will have to try.


about 1 year ago EmilyC

These were my contribution to Mother's Day dinner. So, so good. Love the steam-roasting technique, one that I look forward to trying with other vegetables as well.


about 1 year ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I finally made these. I added some radishes to the roasting party, and went with ras el hanout. Beyond delicious!


over 1 year ago Tereza

These would make such a beautiful side! Love the inspiration. I also love adding honey for a little extra sweetness.



over 1 year ago Debra Regan

These were delicious. Cooked carrot-hating husband even raved about these tasty treats.


over 1 year ago Matilde

i looooveeed it! paired it with "requeijão" (a portuguese cheese that somewhat resembles ricotta or cottage cheese) and parsley instead of cilantro. perfect!


over 1 year ago Mulzee

I just made these tonight and they were delicious. I did 50 minutes total cooking time and they were perfectly browned and still a tad crunchy. I'm curious to try this cooking method but with caramelised onions and a bit of brown sugar! Will definitely be making these again. Thanks!


over 1 year ago Jenali

I was thinking about how I want to use the carrots I already have for a side dish. I'm so glad I stumbled upon this recipe. I will be trying it tonight!


over 1 year ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Kenzi, these carrots look absolutely delicious!

over 1 year ago Kenzi Wilbur

Kenzi is the Managing Editor of Food52.

Shhhh I'll tell you all about them tomorrow! :) (But so glad you think so -- they're my new favorite.)