Brown Sugar Glazed Carrots with Cider
Serve Brown Sugar Glazed Carrots with Cider at the holiday table this year. This glazed carrots recipe adds a hint of sweetness and some tanginess to the table and pairs well with so many dishes. All you need are about 30 minutes and a handful of ingredients to make them, too! Makes 4 servings, but can be doubled.
This post contains affiliate links.
My sister and I both have food allergies, but hers are significantly worse than mine.
Whenever I’m cooking, I always wonder how I would fix a dish for her if she was coming to dinner, as she cannot touch a carrot without breaking into hives.
It’s led to some pretty awesome discoveries… like sweet potatoes are delicious in pot pies and orange bell pepper works nicely in a tomato sauce to add some sweetness.
However, this dish is not something I can adapt for her, as the main component is carrots.
Why I love this recipe:
This potluck recipe I have for y’all today was adapted from a friend’s mom, and it is just utterly delightful.
This quick and easy carrot recipe brings a little bit of everything to the table.
You’ve got some sweetness from the carrots themselves, as well as the brown sugar. (But it’s not overwhelmingly sweet… this is DEFINITELY a savory dish.)
The hard cider adds moisture and flavor to the carrots themselves. So doe the stock. And then there’s acidity in the mustard.
When I got to planning our little impromptu Christmas potluck, this recipe popped back into my mind… and I adapted it.
My rendition of these carrots makes for more of a sauce, and the carrots are delightfully sweet when cooked down in it.
More side dishes that are great for a potluck: Fresh Green Bean Casserole from Scratch | Parmesan Broccoli with Pine Nuts | Creamed Cornbread Casserole | Cranberry Chutney | Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles | Honey Roasted Carrots
Looking for more holiday dishes to make? Check out my Thanksgiving Recipe Index for more ideas.
What you need to make this recipe:
The Speckled Palate participates in affiliate programs. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Please refer to my disclosure page for more information about these affiliate programs.
- Sharp knife and cutting board
- Vegetable peeler
- Skillet or saucepan
- Liquid measuring cup
- Wooden spoon
Let’s talk ingredients!
In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.
Here’s what you need:
- Carrots—I like to use the regular-sized ones, peel them and chop them down instead of purchasing and using baby carrots.
- Extra virgin olive oil—or another neutral oil. The carrots are going to cook in this.
- Dark brown sugar—to add a bit of sweetness to the carrots without overpowering their natural flavor.
- Alcoholic cider—we recently updated this recipe to use the full can of cider. It will cook down out of the carrots and the alcohol should cook out.
- Vegetable stock—to add a bit more flavor. If you don’t have this and are not a vegetarian (and are not serving vegetarians), chicken stock would also work.
- Spicy brown mustard—or your favorite flavorful mustard. Dijon could work nicely here, too.
- Kosher salt and black pepper—you add these to taste. We like a medium grain kosher salt and to crack our own black pepper, but you do you!
Variations on this recipe:
- Use different carrots. We used the classic orange carrots, but you could easily use yellow or purple carrots or a combination of them here. Baby carrots also work in a pinch.
- Make it gluten free. This carrot side dish recipe should be naturally gluten free, but read the ingredients on your mustard and stock to confirm.
How to make Glazed Carrots with Brown Sugar and Cider
Trim the tops and bottoms off the carrots. Peel them with a vegetable peeler, then chop into 1″ pieces.
Pour the olive oil into a skillet over medium heat.
Once warm, add the carrots and sauté for 5 minutes. They will not be softened yet, but you might have a little bit of color on them.
Sprinkle in the sugar, stirring to coat, and cook for about a minute.
Pour in the cider and stock, and bring to a boil.
Stir in the mustard. Season with salt and pepper. Stir, stir, stir.
Partially cover the pan, and lower heat to medium low. Simmer for another 15-20 minutes or until the carrots are tender and most of the liquid has evaporated.
Remove the lid and continue cooking until the liquid transforms into a thick sauce.
Serve warm, and enjoy.
Frequently Asked Questions
These glazed carrots feature regular-sized carrots, as well as some dark brown sugar, alcoholic cider, stock and mustard.
The combination of carrots with a little bit of acidity and sweetness really lets them shine.
Yes, you can make this recipe the day before and then reheat in the microwave before serving.
Quick tips and tricks to the best Glazed Carrot recipe
- Prep it ahead of time. Get those carrots peeled and chopped days in advance, and keep them in the fridge until it’s cooking time.
- Double or triple the recipe for a crowd.
- Make it ahead of time. These keep well in the fridge, so you can make them 1-2 days beforehand then reheat before serving. You might need to add an extra splash of stock if they’re too sticky.
- How to store leftovers: Let cool completely, then transfer to an airtight container. Keep in the fridge for up to a week.
Here’s how you can make them:
Brown Sugar Glazed Carrots with Cider
Serve Brown Sugar Glazed Carrots with Cider at the holiday table this year. This glazed carrots recipe adds a hint of sweetness and some tanginess to the table and pairs well with so many dishes. All you need are about 30 minutes and a handful of ingredients to make them, too!
- 1 lb. carrots
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
- 12 oz. alcoholic cider / hard cider
- ½ cup vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- Trim the tops and bottoms of the carrots. Peel them, then chop into 1" pieces. (You could also use baby carrots for this, though they will not be as thick as carrots that you cut down yourself.)
- Pour the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Once warm, add the carrots and sauté for 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle in the sugar, stirring to coat, and cook for about a minute.
- Add in the cider and stock. Bring to a boil, then stir in the mustard. Season with salt and pepper.
- Partially cover the pan, and lower heat to medium low. Simmer for another 15-20 minutes or until the carrots are tender and most of the liquid has evaporated.
- Remove the lid and continue cooking until the liquid has reduced to a thick sauce.
- Serve warm, and enjoy.
You can easily double or triple this recipe for a crowd.
Make it ahead of time. These keep well in the fridge, so you can make them 1-2 days beforehand then reheat before serving. You might need to add an extra splash of stock if they're too sticky.
How to store leftovers: Let cool completely, then transfer to an airtight container. Keep in the fridge for up to a week.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 144Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 274mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 4gSugar: 13gProtein: 1g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.
MMMM, your dishes always look so good. Growing up i inhaled carrots. To bad they didn’t make me see better
Thanks so much, Aleshea! Like you, I inhaled carrots when I was growing up and are still quite fond of them to this day. It IS a shame they didn’t help either of us see better, though!
I am not a huge fan of cooked carrots so I am always looking for a way to jazz them up. I will have to try this dish.
Let me know what you think, Amanda, if you do indeed try this dish! I think these carrots are lovely, but I enjoy carrots in any form, soooo…
I can’t imagine a life without carrots. I eat a bag of baby carrots like almost every day. Cooking them in hard cider sounds like a much tastier dish though!
Haha, love that, Kelly! My eating habits with carrots are kind of all over the place, which is amusing. Some weeks, I can down a bag in a day. Other weeks, I’ll only add them to dishes I’m cooking. And other weeks, I won’t touch them at all. Either way, they’re always delicious, and it’s hard to get much better than cooking ’em in hard cider.
Oh my heavens, those look amazing. I might make these for our Christmas dinner. Thanks for sharing.
Aww, thank you, Tiffany! If you do make them for your Christmas dinner, please let me know what everyone thinks!
Looks awesome – pinning for later. I’m not a carrot fan, but perhaps I might like these!
Fingers crossed that you do like these, Krystal! They were a hit in our house, so I hope they’re one in yours, too.
So many vegetables! I think my mother-in-law would really like this one–there’s always a glazed carrot of some kind on her holiday table.
Lots of veggies for us this week, ma’am! That’s awesome that your mother-in-law is a fan of glazed carrots! I’d never really done anything with them before this recipe, and I’ll definitely be doing more of it in the future because they are just so. good.
Whoa, these carrots look delicious! I could definitely do these as an easy side dish during the holidays.
Thanks, Jessica! This is definitely an easy side dish, and if you make it, I’d love to know what you think of them!
I’m not really a fan of cooked carrots unless it’s in pot roast.
Your photos make this look yummy, though!
Thanks, Joyce! It surprises me that a lot of folks aren’t huge carrot fans, but to each their own. And these carrots take on such a nice sweetness when they cook down that they’re kind of hard not to love… but again, to each their own. 🙂
What a unique recipe! I love raw carrots and carrots with warm honey. I’m sure this could work itself into the rotation. I’m printing this now.
Thanks, Reginia! I hope you like this as much as we did because we gobbled these carrots right up! Also, I love that you sometimes eat carrots with warm honey. Never tried that, and now I’m intrigued.
I love this recipe! I need to try cooking carrots this way – so different! Especially with that glaze – it looks and sounds delicious! I like carrots a lot but usually just eat them raw!
I am a carrot fan, Erin. These look great. Pinning this. Visiting from SGBC.