Indulge in the sweet and savory goodness of our Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips Recipe. These tender root vegetables are oven baked to perfection with a delicious honey glaze. Perfect as an easy side dish for a weeknight dinner and they’d made the perfect addition to a holiday dinner.
This post has been updated from the original, posted November 15, 2016
I adore these Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips. It’s a great dairy-free side dish that’s simple, delicious and can be served warm or at room temperature, ideal for a weeknight meal. Oh…but there’s a subtle sophistication to this parsnips recipe worthy of any special occasion as well.
Why you’ll love these Roasted Carrots
- Easy: A weeknight meal needs an easy side dish that goes into the oven freeing you up to do other things.
- Colorful: Purple and orange carrots plus red onion, caramelized parsnips and oranges make this dish bright and beautiful.
- Delicious: When you roast vegetables in the oven on a sheet pan, their natural sweetness comes out. It’s a great way to make veggies that the whole family will love.
- Gorgeous: Would make an awesome Dairy-free Thanksgiving Side Dish.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Parsnips: When fresh parsnips are cooked, they become sweet, earthy and savory. If this is your first time making parsnips, you’re in for a real treat! A delicious way to get in some Vitamin C, iron, potassium, magnesium and fiber.
- Carrots: Go for the rainbow carrots for some added beauty and diversity of nutrients.
- Oranges: The vitamin C in oranges helps you absorb iron found in veggies like parsnips. Plus they’re full of natural sweetness.
- Onion: The red onions turn sweet in a good way!
- Fresh thyme: The thyme leaves add super savory flavor to the mix. Substitute with 1 teaspoon dried thyme if you don’t have fresh.
- Honey and olive oil: Mixed together they make a simple honey glaze that caramelizes the veggies when they roast. Runny honey works best for this carrots recipe. For a vegan version of this recipe that uses no oil, use maple syrup mixed with balsamic vinegar.
How to make it
Step 1: Prep your ingredients. Give the parsnips and carrots a good scrub with a vegetable brush or peel them. Cut parsnips and carrots in long pieces of similar size, so they’ll cook evenly. Don’t discard the carrot greens, use them to make carrot top pesto.
Step 2: Wash the outside of the oranges to remove any pesticides or debris. The cooking process will soften the skins, making them edible. Cut the oranges in half through the stem, then cut each half in thin half moons. Do the same with the onion.
Step 3: Place parsnips, carrots, onions and oranges in a large bowl.
Step 4: Whisk together olive oil and honey in a small bowl and pour honey mixture over vegetables. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper and mix until well combined.
Step 5: Transfer vegetables onto prepared baking tray. Evenly distribute fresh thyme sprigs throughout. For best results, use a large rimmed baking sheet and spread them into a single layer. If needed, use a second baking pan.
Step 6: Roast in preheated 425 degree oven for 35 minutes, mixing half way through. Veggies will be tender and golden when perfectly cooked.
Step 7: Remove the woody stems of the thyme, leaving the leaves. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with fresh parsley if desired.
Debra’s Pro Tips
- Larger parsnips will be a bit woody in the center, so remove that part, or buy smaller parsnips. Small parsnips will be sweeter too.
- The orange skins will be soft and delicious after they’re roasted, so enjoy them!
- Large Carrots mean less peeling/less work!
- Include halved brussels sprouts next time…a great green addition.
- If you’re looking for gluten-free side dishes for holiday meals, this parsnip recipe would be fantastic for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner and it’s the perfect vegetable side dish for Passover as well.
How to Serve Store and Reheat
- Honey roasted carrots and parsnips can be served at room temperature or straight from the oven.
- The perfect easy side for any main dish.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days.
- Reheat in a 375 degree oven for 15 minutes, until heated through.
It’s not necessary to first boil your parsnips before roasting. However, it’s a good idea to take out the woody center in the middle of larger parsnips that can be tough and bitter. Cut parsnips into similar sizes so they’ll roast in the same amount of time.
You do not need to peel root vegetables like parsnips and carrots before roasting, but you do need to clean them well. Use a loofah or vegetable brush to remove all debris and gnarly roots from the outside before trimming and roasting.
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Honey Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- 2 lbs carrots
- 1 lb parsnips
- 4 naval oranges
- 1 red onion
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme
- Preheat oven to 425. Line a heavy baking tray with unbleached parchment paper.
- Prep veggies: peel parsnips and carrots and cut lengthwise into ¼" strips. Thinly slice onion. Cut oranges in half through the stem and then cut into ¼" thick half moons.
- In a medium sized bowl, toss cut veggies in olive oil, honey, salt and pepper. Mix until evenly coated.
- Turn veggies onto prepared baking pan. Spread evenly and then add the sprigs of fresh thyme on top.
- Roast in preheated 425 oven for 35 minutes, mixing once half way through.
- Remove thyme stems and transfer to serving platter or bowl. Sprinkle on some chopped fresh parsley or fresh thyme leaves if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days.