Using fall flavors to jazz up vegetables and create pomegranate balsamic roasted carrots. Topped with pomegranate arils, crumbled feta, fresh dill, and spiced pistachios, these carrots just might steal the show!
Pomegranate Balsamic Roasted Carrots
- 2 lb carrots peeled and quartered or cut into sixths lengthwise depending on size
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
- salt and pepper
- ¼ cup pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon honey
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ½ cup pistachios toasted
- ¼ cup crumbled feta
- ¼ cup pomegranate arils
- 2 tablespoons fresh dill
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Toss together carrots with 2 tablespoons olive, fresh thyme, salt, and pepper. Spread the carrots in an even layer on a baking sheet. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and roast in the oven for 30-35 minutes or until tender.
- Meanwhile, make the spiced pistachios. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a nonstick saute pan over medium heat. Add honey and paprika, stirring to combine. Add pistachios, tossing to coat. Simmer for 1 minute, then remove from heat and spread pistachios on wax paper. Let cool.
- Combine pomegranate juice with balsamic vinegar and honey. Remove carrots from the oven and remove foil. Pour juice on top, tossing to coat.
- Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees. Continue roasting carrots for another 7-8 minutes or until glazed.
- Transfer carrots to a serving platter and top with crumbled feta, pomegranate, fresh dill, and ¼ cup spiced pistachios. Serve immediately or at room temperature.
Watch how to make this:
It may be strange but I never liked cooked carrots. Give me a bag of raw baby carrots and I'll go to town, but I'll pass on the cooked carrots. It wasn't until a couple of years ago that I realized that roasted carrots aren't all that bad. In fact, if you dress them up and roast them properly like these pomegranate balsamic roasted carrots, they can be pretty delicious. The crumbled feta, spiced pistachios, pomegranate, and dill doesn't hurt either. I will say though, I'll still pass on boiled or stewed carrots.
If you're looking for a simple but tasty side dish recipe, this pomegranate glazed carrot dish is the one for you! Take something as basic as a carrot and take it to the next level with sweet, tangy, and savory elements.
- Carrots: You can use the most common orange carrot or have more fun with it and use a variety of colors including purple, red, yellow, and white.
- Pomegranate juice: The sweet and tart juice is one of the base flavors for the glaze. I used bottled juice but you can use fresh as well.
- Balsamic vinegar: A dark, sweet-sour vinegar from Italy. If you don't have balsamic vinegar, you can use apple cider vinegar instead.
- Honey: The natural sweetener balances the tart pomegranate juice and vinegar while also sweetening the pistachios. You can also use maple syrup instead.
- Pistachios: The slightly sweet and earthy nut is a great finishing garnish that adds texture and another layer of flavor.
- Feta: The crumbly tangy cheese adds a creamy, salty element to the carrots.
How to Make Pomegranate Balsamic Roasted Carrots
Step 1: Prepare carrots
Slice the carrots into quarters or sixths depending on how thick they are. You can also use smaller baby carrots and keep them whole if they're not that thick.
I went with basic regular carrots but if you want them to look really spectacular, try different colored carrots.
Toss the carrots with olive oil, salt, pepper, and fresh thyme and roast them in the oven covered with aluminum foil. Why do we cover the carrots? Since they're a thick root vegetable, if you roast them uncovered, the thinner ends can get burnt while the inside is still raw. The cover helps cook the carrots more uniformly.
Step 2: Prepare toppings
While the carrots are cooking, prepare the remaining ingredients. Combine the ingredients for the glaze, crumble some feta, chop fresh dill, and prepare the pomegranate.
For the spiced buttered pistachios, all you have to do is melt some butter, add honey and paprika, and toss it with the pistachios. You can also prepare the nuts several days in advance.
Step 3: Putting it all together
Toss the carrots with the pomegranate balsamic mixture and continue roasting them in the oven at a higher oven temperature until beautifully glazed. Since the carrots are already tender, we just want the sugars in the glaze to caramelize. Hence, the higher the oven temperature.
Remove the carrots from the oven and transfer them to a serving platter. Top the carrots with all of the toppings including the pomegranate, dill, feta, and spiced pistachios.
If you thought carrots were boring, try these pomegranate balsamic roasted carrots, and hopefully, you'll change your mind!
Can I replace the carrots with another vegetable?
Another this recipe was intended for carrots, you can replace it with another vegetable such as sweet potatoes or Brussels sprouts.
Can I use pre-cut baby carrots instead of peeling and cutting larger carrots?
Absolutely, using pre-cut baby carrots can save you time. Adjust the roasting time accordingly, as baby carrots may cook a bit faster.
Can I make this dish ahead of time and serve it later?
While the carrots are best when served immediately, you can roast them in advance and reheat them before serving. However, add the toppings like feta, pomegranate, dill, and pistachios just before serving to maintain freshness and texture.
For more side dish inspiration check out these sauteed green beans with parmesan crisps!