These roasted root vegetables combine the earthy sweetness of carrots and the subtle, nutty flavor of parsnips with the luscious caramelization of honey for a holiday side dish everyone will love.
With the holidays upon us, the demand for a delicious side dish that’s sure to impress is high. Enter these honey roasted carrots and parsnips. They’re vibrant and colorful, beyond easy to make, and pair well with just about any main dish.
Carrots and parsnips are a delectable duo that combine an earthy sweetness from carrots and the subtle, nutty flavor of parsnips. Together with the luscious caramelization of honey and roasted hazelnuts on top, this is a show-stopping side dish perfect for the holidays.
- Why you'll love this Roasted Carrots and Parsnips Recipe
- What are parsnips?
- Ingredients for Roasted Parsnips and Carrots
- How to make Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- Tips for making Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- How to serve Honey Glazed Parsnips and Carrots
- Honey Glazed Carrots and Parsnips FAQs
- Check out these recipes for more side dish options:
Why you'll love this Roasted Carrots and Parsnips Recipe
- It’s vibrant and flavorful
- Requires minimal ingredients
- Made with better-for-you ingredients
- Topped with toasty hazelnuts
- Tossed in a sweet yet savory dressing that caramelizes the vegetables
What are parsnips?
Parsnips are a type of root vegetable, much like carrots. They have a sweet nutty flavor and can be enjoyed fresh or cooked (my preferred method). You can find them in most grocery stores in the fall and winter and want to look for ones that are small and straight.
Ingredients for Roasted Parsnips and Carrots
- Carrots - For the best flavor and an unbeatable presentation, opt for whole carrots instead of bagged baby ones.
- Parsnips - The combination of parsnips and carrots makes for a well-rounded dish that is sweet, nutty, and downright delicious.
- Hazelnuts - Added for extra crunch and a boost of healthy fats. Feel free to swap them out with any other nut you prefer.
- Olive oil - Helps caramelize the veggies while providing a good source of healthy fats. I prefer the strong flavor of olive oil for these honey glazed carrots and parsnips, but you could also use coconut oil or avocado oil, too
- Honey - A natural sweetener that enhances the sugars in the vegetables without the need for refined sugar. To keep this recipe vegan, you could swap it out with maple syrup instead.
- Cinnamon - Just a dash adds a hint of spice and plenty of depth.
- Thyme - Provides an herbal flavor that lightens up the dish.
- Sea salt - Crucial to enhancing the rest of the ingredients.
How to make Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
The only hard thing about making this honey roasted carrots and parsnips recipe is waiting for it to bake! You’ll need a baking pan, parchment paper, and a bowl to whisk the glaze, and your recipe is ready in no time.
Step 1: Prepare the vegetables. To begin, peel the outer skins off the carrots and parsnips. Then, cut the vegetables into long pieces roughly an inch thick, and transfer them to a parchment-lined baking pan. Sprinkle the hazelnuts on top.
Step 2: Create the glaze. In a bowl or jar, mix the olive oil, honey, thyme, and sea salt until they are well combined and smooth. Drizzle the glaze on top of the carrots and parsnips, serving about 2 tablespoons of the mixture, and toss to combine.
Step 3: Bake. Make sure the vegetables are arranged in an even layer in the baking dish and bake until they are soft and tender. Transfer the honey glazed carrots and parsnips and nuts to a serving dish, drizzle the remaining glaze on top, and enjoy warm.
Tips for making Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- Try to cut the carrots and parsnips the same width. It’s okay if some pieces are longer or shorter, but you want the widths to be similar so they cook evenly in the oven.
- Because honey is used, make sure to place a piece of parchment paper down on your baking pan so the vegetables are easy to remove.
- Toss the vegetables well in the olive oil glaze. This is what prevents them from burning in the oven.
- Leave some space between the vegetables on the baking pan. The space allows the edges of the vegetables to get crispy.
How to serve Honey Glazed Parsnips and Carrots
Serve the honey glazed carrots and parsnips while warm with a serving spoon or fork. If you need to warm them up again, simply heat them up in the microwave for 20 seconds. Or, toss them back in the oven in a heatproof dish at 300 F for 5 minutes.
Honey Glazed Carrots and Parsnips FAQs
Yes, I used hazelnuts, because they have a distinct nutty earthy flavor that pairs well with the parsnips. However, slivered almonds or chopped pecans would also go nicely with this dish.
No, parsnips can be roasted raw just like carrots.
Make sure to leave some space in between the carrots and parsnips on the baking pan. This is how you ensure crispy edges.
You don’t have to, but I like to remove the dry outer layer of the carrots to prevent them from overcooking in the oven.
Check out these recipes for more side dish options:
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Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- 5 - 6 large carrots
- 5 - 6 large parsnips
- 1 cup hazelnuts - or other nut
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup honey
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Peel the outer skins off the carrots and parsnips - this is optional but I have found that removing the dry outer layer allows the vegetables to brown better in the oven. Cut the carrots and parsnips into long pieces about an inch thick. Transfer the vegetables to a baking pan with parchment paper for easy clean up. Sprinkle the hazelnuts over top and set aside.
- In a bowl or jar, mix together the olive oil, honey, cinnamon, thyme, and sea salt with a spoon until well combined. The mixture should be slightly thick but thin enough to run off the end of a spoon.
- Drizzle the honey mixture over top of the carrots and parsnips and toss gently with a spatula or with your hands if you don’t mind getting a little sticky. Reserve about 2 tablespoon of the mixture, if desired. Make sure the vegetables are in an even layer and not stacked on top of each other before roasting in the oven for 35 - 45 minutes until the vegetables are soft and tender.
- Transfer the carrots and parsnips and nuts to a serving dish, drizzle with the reserved honey mixture if desired, and enjoy while warm.