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 If you’ve been looking for a fast, easy, and healthy way to cook carrots that tastes scrumptious, this easy Sautéed Carrots recipe has you covered! They’re perfectly tender and the ideal mix of sweet and savory.

A large pan full of healthy sauteed carrots with thyme

Why You’ll Love This Easy Side Dish

  • Picky Eater-Friendly. With their natural sweetness, carrots are especially pleasing. I have a hunch even the pickier eaters will approve this one, especially if you add the honey or maple syrup, which let’s be honest—no one at the table is likely to mind in the least.
  • Pairs with Everything. As with my Roasted Carrots, these easy sautéed carrots are as versatile as it gets. They’ll mesh well with any other flavors you have on the table.
  • No Oven Required. Whether it’s a hot day outside or you just don’t feel like turning on your oven, sautéed carrots (or Sautéed Brussels Sprouts or Sautéed Spinach) are the move. They are faster to make than roasted too.
  • Healthy. Sautéing is one of the healthiest ways to cook carrots. You need only a small amount of butter or coconut oil, simple seasonings, and water to help them soften.
Sauteed honey carrot slices in a bowl with fresh herbs

How to Make Sautéed Carrots

The Ingredients

  • Carrots. Carrots are vitamin-A and potassium superstars! This recipe calls for 2 pounds of carrots and will yield 6 servings, which makes it great for meal prep. Feel free to scale it up or down as needed.
  • Unsalted Butter or Coconut Oil. A very moderate amount (about ½ tablespoon per pound) yields sautéed carrots that taste legitimately yummy and not at all like “diet” food. If you’d like the carrots vegan, use coconut oil in place of the butter. I find it tastes more rich and satisfying than olive oil.
  • Honey or Pure Maple Syrup. Both are absolutely scrumptious with carrots and enhance their natural sweetness. We use honey most often, but maple syrup is a fun change of pace and also a good option if you’d like the sautéed carrots vegan.
  • Herbs. Whatever you have in your refrigerator! A tablespoon or two perks up the carrots and adds freshness. If given the choice, parsley or thyme are my favorites (as they are on Sautéed Mushrooms).

The Directions

  1. Boil the Carrots and Water. Keep covered until they’re tender.
  2. Add the Butter and Honey. Cook until the water evaporates.
  3. Stir in Fresh Herbs. They’re delicious in this recipe. ENJOY!
A white bowl full of a healthy vegetable side dish

Recipe Variations

  • Garlic. Add 3 cloves of minced garlic to the pan with your carrots with the herbs, salt, and pepper. Cook 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
  • Balsamic. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar over the top of the carrots during the last minute or two of their cooking time, and toss to coat.
  • Thyme. Use thyme as your fresh herb in this recipe. It’s a delicious pairing!
  • Brown Sugar. Swap the honey/maple syrup in the recipe for 1 to 2 tablespoons of light or dark brown sugar. You could play around with adding a pinch of cinnamon (I’d omit the herbs if using cinnamon though or try rosemary).
  • Slow Cooker Carrots. Try my Crockpot Carrots recipe instead.

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Keep the carrots in an airtight storage container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • To Reheat. Gently rewarm the carrots in a large skillet on the stove over medium-low heat until hot. You can also rewarm them in the microwave.
  • To Freeze. Store leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Leftover Ideas

Toss leftover carrots into Instant Pot Mac and Cheese to bulk up the veggies. Leftover carrots would also be tasty in Quinoa Salad.

A pan full of thinly sliced vegetables with herbs

What to Serve with Sautéed Carrots

A white bowl with healthy sauteed carrots and thyme

Recipe Tips & Tricks

  • The More the Merrier. You can add more veggies to this recipe for variety, as long as those veggies cook in a similar amount of time. Sautéed carrots with onions (slice the onions thinly) or sautéed carrots with broccoli (cut the broccoli into florets like in this Roasted Broccoli and Carrots recipe) would both be tasty twists.
  • No Mushy Carrots. If there’s one thing that I insist you do, it’s watching your carrots while they’re boiling. Make sure that your carrots aren’t cooking too quickly. We want crisp-tender carrots, not mushy ones.
  • Use the Herbs. Unless you’re pairing your carrots with super bold flavors (like those in a stir fry), don’t skip the addition of fresh herbs. I promise it’s worth it! The flavors of the fresh herbs pop against the carrots, and their bright green color adds a nice touch for presentation purposes.

Sautéed Carrots

4.74 from 45 votes
How to cook perfect Sautéed Carrots. This quick and healthy side dish is fast enough for weeknight dinners but tastes special enough for company!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 20 minutes

Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds carrots peeled and cut into diagonal, 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter use coconut oil to make vegan
  • 1 tablespoon honey or pure maple syrup optional
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs of choice: parsley, dill, and thyme are all delicious

Instructions
 

  • In a large saute pan or deep skillet with a tight-fitting lid, place the carrots, water, salt, and pepper. Bring the water to a boil, then cover the pan and reduce the heat to medium low. Cook for 7 to 8 minutes, until the carrots just reach fork tender (don’t let them turn mushy).
  • Uncover, add the butter and honey, and stir and cook until the water evaporates (and the coconut oil melts, if using). Remove the pan from the heat.
  • Stir in the herbs. Add a finishing sprinkle of salt or pepper to taste. Enjoy hot.

Notes

  • TO STORE: Keep the carrots in an airtight storage container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Gently rewarm the carrots in a large skillet on the stove over medium-low heat until hot. You can also rewarm them in the microwave.
  • TO FREEZE: Store leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 6)Calories: 90kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 1gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 5mgPotassium: 484mgFiber: 4gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 25374IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 50mgIron: 1mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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  1. The carrots didn’t have any flavour at all when I tried this recipe. But it isn’t sauteeing, it’s steaming. Steaming the carrots in a pan and tossing them with butter while the water evaporates doesn’t make them sauteed.1 star

    1. I’m sorry you to hear had trouble with the recipe, Chris. I know it’s frustrating to try a new recipe and not have it turn out. I (and many other readers) have enjoyed them, so I really wish they would’ve been a hit for you too! It’s hard to say what went wrong without being in the kitchen with you.

  2. I noticed some carrots sitting in my refrigerator so I stumbled upon this recipe and thought I’d give it a go. Just finished this recipe and added a splash of balsamic vinegar at the end and lots of Tyme. Came out wonderful, both my husband and I love it. Thank you!4 stars

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