I love carrots because they’re so versatile as an ingredient. You can stir-fry them, sauté them, cook them in soups and stews, make them crispy in an air fryer, or simply cut them up into nice sticks and serve them as a cold appetizer with a side of homemade ranch.
While I also love making glazed carrots, there are times when I don’t want to fire up my oven or even my stovetop to cook them, and then deal with all the washing up afterward. Luckily, there’s a quick and easy way to make glazed carrots in your microwave.
Is it healthy to cook carrots in the microwave?
One of the most enduring myths about using the microwave is that it causes your food to absorb harmful radiation. However, this has been proven to be false; all the microwave does is to heat up food quickly by agitating the molecules in your food.
However, some nutrients CAN be destroyed if you microwave carrots (or any food, really) for too long. This is why it’s important to follow the recipe exactly so that you still retain the nutrients and texture you want in your carrots and prevent them from being soggy and overcooked in the microwave.
Are orange carrots different from purple, yellow, and red carrots?
While the most common color of carrots is orange, you might notice that there are other colors available such as yellow, red, and purple. Whenever I visit local farmer’s markets, I notice these carrots.
Carrots get their color depending on the type of pigments that they contain, and these pigments contain different nutrients. Orange carrots contain high amounts of beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. Vitamin A is essential for healthy eyesight.
Yellow carrots contain xanthophylls, which are also good for the eyes and muscles. Red carrots contain lycopene, which is known to fight heart disease. Purple carrots contain anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants.
When it comes to carrots, the more different colors you can buy, the better!
Should I peel carrots before cooking in the microwave?
Peeling a carrot before cooking is a matter of personal preference. Some people love the taste of carrot skin, while others find it bitter and unappealing.
For this recipe, you can try removing the peels first because microwaving carrots cause them to become soft and tender. The carrot skins won’t have that nice crunchy texture that you can get from roasting or air-frying carrots.
How to pick good carrots
Picking good carrots is essential to getting a great-tasting dish! If you are picking carrots, look for ones that are brightly colored and have smooth skin. The carrots should be firm and solid; avoid ones that are soggy and limp. You should also avoid carrots that are discolored or black as these are not fresh.
Also, try to choose medium-sized carrots. Larger ones can be tougher and are best suited for soups and stews.
Are carrots healthy for me?
Yes, carrots are packed with nutrients and vitamins! They have high amounts of beta-carotene, vitamin K1, antioxidants, potassium, and fiber. They are linked to good eye health and weight loss.
How to store carrots
If you are going to store carrots, remove the carrot tops and place carrots in a container with a lid. Fill container with water and place in fridge, changing the water every 4-5 days. Carrots stored this way will keep fresh for up to a month.
Our CookingChew Cooking Tips:
1. Experiment with different cuts
In this recipe, we cut the carrots into sticks, but you’re welcome to experiment with other types of cuts! If you want the carrots to cook a bit quicker, you can try to julienne or dice the carrots. However, you would need to adjust the cooking time so that the carrots don’t overcook.
2. Scrub carrots thoroughly
Before peeling and cooking the carrots, make sure to clean them thoroughly! Remember, carrots are root vegetables and no matter how clean they look on the surface, you should always clean them before cooking with them.
Scrub the carrot surface thoroughly with a clean washcloth under running water to remove any dirt or dust on the surface of the carrot especially if the carrots have pockmarks or notches in the skin where dirt and dust can become lodged.
Sweet Glazed Carrots
This is a great recipe for those times when you’re really busy and you have no time to prep and cook complex recipes. It will take around 10 minutes from start to end, and you’ll end up with a nice plate of delicious, tender, and sweet carrots! Carrots have a natural sweetness that come out when they are cooked, and you can highlight this sweetness with a quick glaze.
Take note that for this glaze, it comes out as more like a “soft glaze” rather than the sticky type of glaze that you would see if you cook the carrots on your stovetop or in your oven.
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 T. butter, coconut oil, or margarine
- 2 T. brown sugar
- 1 T. honey
- Dash of salt to taste, especially if using unsalted butter
Prepare the glaze:
- Add butter, brown sugar, and honey in a microwave-safe bowl.
- Cook in the microwave on high for 1 minute or until the butter is completely melted.
- Remove from microwave and set aside.
Cook the carrots:
- Wash the carrots.
- Peel the carrots. We use this peeler.
- Slice into 1/4″ thick batons/sticks.
- Add them to the bowl with the glaze.
- Cover the dish with a lid or microwave-safe plastic wrap.
- Cook the carrots on high for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Carefully remove the lid (be cautious of hot steam) and stir.
- Return to the microwave and cook for another 4 minutes.
- Remove from microwave, add glaze, and stir carrots to coat completely
- Serve and enjoy!
Add some greens to make it pop!
If you want to add a bit of freshness, you can chop up some parsley and sprinkle on top of the carrots before serving. Fresh rosemary also works well! Get a sprig of fresh rosemary, remove the leaves, chop them finely, and sprinkle over carrots before serving.
Don’t throw away those carrot tops!
After removing the carrot tops, don’t throw them away! You can use them to make vegetable stock for soups and stews.
What goes well with glazed carrots?
If you’re lucky enough to find carrots in different colors, you should definitely try making this dish with them! Not only will you end up with a gorgeous-looking dish, it will also be healthier.