One vegetable you can buy from a local source year round is the humble carrot. Head out to the Muskegon Farmers Market on a Saturday morning (YES! They still have the market in the winter. Inside, of course) and you will be delighted with the variety of local produce available from one of our favorite vendors, Crisp Country Acres. Luckily for me, my children can’t get enough carrots, so we love the year round availability of this tasty and versatile root vegetable.
One way to turn carrots into a delicious and nutritious weeknight side is to prepare maple balsamic roasted carrots. Roasting carrots with balsamic vinegar and pure maple syrup brings out the sweetness in the carrots, almost resembling a sweet potato, minus some of the carbs. I will tell you this:my youngest gobbled these up at dinner, disregarding table etiquette and eating them with his fingers. He even said,”Yum!” People, if this picky eater says,”Yum!” I’m pretty sure they will please every palette imaginable.
To get this side dish on the table faster, I prep a bunch of veggies on the weekend. This also makes packing lunches and making dinner salads a lot faster. A tip for keeping the prepped veggies fresher for longer: these Rubbermaid Freshworks Produce Saver containers. By some packaging miracle (that I’m sure my packaging engineer husband can explain a whole lot better than I can), the veggies really do keep for longer. Better on the wallet and better on the garbage can. If veggies are prepped in the fridge, my family actually eats them. It’s an amazing thing.
Once you have grabbed your carrots, toss them in the balsamic vinegar, pure maple syrup, and olive oil. Using good quality pure maple syrup really gives these carrots a special flavor and sweetness. Spread the carrots on a foil lined pan and pop them in the oven at 425 degrees for 15 min. After 15 minutes, flip them over and let them cook for another 10-15 min or until cooked through.
These carrots are great with pork chops or ham, and even better with some homemade apple sauce or warm cinnamon apples. You can even use this recipe around the holidays in place of your calorie laden sweet potato recipe, since they offer that same sweetness as a sweet potato, but are easier on the waistline.
- 6-8 Medium Carrots
- 1/4 Olive Oil
- 3 T. Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 T. Pure Maple Syrup
- Salt to Taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Peel and cut carrots into spears (if you haven’t already). Add olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup to a bowl. Add carrots to the bowl and toss in the olive oil, vinegar, syrup mixture until evenly coated. Place carrots on the lined pan. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Cook for 15 minutes in the oven. Remove the pan from over and flip the carrots over. Return the pan to the over for 10-15 more minutes, or until carrots are cooked thoroughly.
Don’t forget to leave a comment below if you loved this recipe.
This post may contain affiliate links which may earn me commission if you choose to make a purchase, at no extra cost to you.