These honey roasted carrots and parsnips are a simple yet delicious side for both special occasions and weeknight dinners.
Looking for a vegetable side that’s special enough for a holiday meal but easy enough for a weeknight dinner? Then look no further than these honey roasted carrots and parsnips.
Roasting carrots and parsnips is easy and delicious. Sweet carrots and creamy parsnips pair perfectly with almost any cold weather meal; just pop them in the oven while you prepare the rest of your dinner and 30 minutes later you’re ready to serve.
What is a Parsnip?
If you aren’t familiar with parsnips you may have already come across them and assumed they were white carrots, as they do indeed look similar to carrots although a bit larger. They are in fact root vegetables like carrots and belong to the same family, but where they differ most is their flavor. While also sweet, parsnips are starchier and creamier than carrots when cooked and have a hint of spice to them.
It’s that starchiness that makes parsnips so wonderful when roasted. A well roasted parsnip is creamy and tender on the inside and golden on the outside much like a roasted potato but with a sweeter flavor. Parsnips are best in the colder months of the year, so now is the time to enjoy them.
(Here are a few notes about the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe. As always find the full list of ingredients and directions in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.)
- Carrots – Go for medium to large sized carrots (too small or too thin and they will burn).
- Parsnips – Go for small to medium parsnips for the best flavor and texture. Parsnips can get quite large and develop tough cores in the process so stick with small to medium sized parsnips that are similar in size to your carrots so that they cook evenly.
- Olive Oil – To coat the vegetables.
- Honey – Adding a touch of honey enhances the natural sweetness of the vegetables. Feel free to substitute maple syrup for a vegan version.
- Fresh Thyme – A sprinkle of fresh thyme pairs well with the vegetables and the sweetness of the honey.
How to Make Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips:
(Here are the basic steps and some helpful tips on how to make the recipe. Find the full directions in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.)
The key to making great roasted parsnips is parboiling them before roasting.
What is Parboiling?
Parboiling is simply when something is initially cooked in boiling water, but not cooked all the way through. You may have used this technique before when roasting potatoes as some recipes will call for the potatoes to first be boiled before being coated with oil and subsequently roasted in the oven. This ensures that the centers come out tender before the outsides burn and it works for carrots and parsnips as well. Parboiling will give you perfectly cooked and tender results every time and only takes a few extra minutes, so it’s well worth the effort.
- Once you’ve peeled and cut your parsnips and carrots into evenly-sized pieces they’ll take a quick dip in boiling water before being drained and then coated in a mixture of olive oil, honey and thyme leaves.
- From this point they’ll take about 20-25 minutes to roast in the oven. When they’re done, they’ll be golden on the outside and fork tender on the inside. Serve them warm and enjoy!
These honey roasted carrots and parsnips are a simple yet delicious side for both special occasions
and weeknight dinners.
- 1 pound/454g parsnips, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 pound/454g carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 Tablespoons/30ml extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ Tablespoons/31 g honey (or substitute maple syrup)
- 6-8 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- ⅛th teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the parsnips and cook for 3 minutes, then add the carrots and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Drain well and return to pot.
- Toss carrots and parsnips with the oil, honey, thyme, salt and pepper directly in the pot. Pour vegetables onto prepared baking sheet and spread in a single layer.
- Roast until parsnips and carrots are golden around the edges (about 20 to 25 minutes) stirring once halfway during cooking time.
- Remove from oven and serve warm.
VARIATIONS: Use maple syrup instead of honey for a vegan version.
STORAGE: Roasted vegetables can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
DIETARY INFO: Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegetarian, Paleo, Egg-Free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free, No Refined Sugar
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 280Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 607mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 8gSugar: 19gProtein: 3g
Nutritional information for recipes contained on this website, such as calories, fat, carbs, etc. are only estimates and are not guaranteed to be accurate.
Sylvie Shirazi is the recipe developer and food photographer behind Gourmande in the Kitchen. For the last 10 years she's been making eating more healthfully easy and accessible with gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and vegan recipes that are free from processed ingredients.