These simple Sauteed Carrots are one of my go-to veggie recipes to make for my family. They’re ready from in under 20 minutes from start to finish, and the end result is tender, naturally sweet carrots. The kids love them! (And so do I!)

sauteed carrots on polka dot plate.

Sauteed Carrots

I know we often feel pressure to make lots of complicated recipes for our kids, but most of the time, simple is just as good! These Sauteed Carrots are an example of the types of veggie recipes I make regularly when I’m in a time crunch come dinner (which is always!) and my kids love them.

They’re mild, the flavors of the carrots shine through, and you can let them cook unattended on the stove top while you get the rest of a meal ready.

I like to make extra so I have some on hand to pack in lunches either in a thermos or to eat at room temperature.

(You may also like my Carrot Fries and Roasted Baby Carrots.)

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Ingredients You Need

To make this healthy carrot recipe, you need to have the following ingredients on hand and ready to go.

ingredients in sauteed carrots.
  • Carrots (1 pound or about 6 medium): I usually use regular carrots in this recipe, but you could also use baby carrots or even frozen sliced carrots.
  • Butter or olive oil: You can cook the carrots in either of these, according to your preference.
  • Salt and/or honey, as desired (for kids over age 1)

TIP: I do have some flavor variations at the bottom of the recipe should you want to get more adventurous with flavorings!

Step-by-Step Instructions

Here’s a look at the simple process of making this recipe for healthy sauteed carrots to share with your family. Scroll down to see the full recipe, including the amounts and timing.

  1. Peel and trim the ends of the carrots.
  2. Slice into rounds.
  3. Place a medium skillet over medium heat. Cover and cook.
  4. Remove the cover and cook, stirring occasionally, to let any excess water evaporate.

TIP: Putting the cover on the pan while the carrots cook traps the steam, preventing the carrots from sticking to the pan and resulting in perfectly tender slices.

sauteed carrots in pan.

Sauteed Baby Carrots

Sure! If you want to make this recipe with baby carrots, either slice them into rounds or cut them lengthwise into quarters so they cook just as quickly and evenly as the regular carrots in the recipe shown here.

Recommended Pan to Use

I make this pan-fried carrots recipe in a large nonstick pan since it cooks them evenly. You could use cast iron or stainless steel if you prefer.

sliced sauteed carrots with butter on a plate

Serving Suggestions

These carrots go well with Baked Chicken Tenders, Tofu Nuggets, Salmon Cakes, or really any protein that your family enjoys. I also love them paired with scrambled eggs and toast for a super simple take on breakfast-for-dinner.

Variation: Sauteed Carrots and Broccoli

To mix things up and use another staple veggie, you can make this recipe with carrots and broccoli. Simply add chopped broccoli florets right to the pan with the carrots. Aim for the same volume of veggies (about 1 pound), so reduce the carrots slightly so they all still cook to tenderness.

Variation: Sauteed Carrots with Honey

Many kids love the combination of carrots and honey, and the hit of extra sweetness may be just what your kiddo needs to love this recipe. All you need to do is to drizzle some honey on at the very end of the recipe. This can be a good option for kids who think they don’t like carrots! (Avoid serving honey to babies under 1-year-old though.)

How to Store

To store, let cool and store in an airtight container for 3-5 days. Reheat for about 30 seconds in the microwave or until warm.

Best Tips for Success

  • Try to slice the carrots to an even thickness of about ¼ inch thick so they cook at the same rate.
  • Make this recipe even more fun by using rainbow carrots. You’ll often see mixed bags that have purple, yellow, and sometimes red carrots in the produce section of your store.
  • Use baby carrots if that’s what you have on hand. They may need a little longer to cook.
  • You can cut into sticks and serve these baby-led weaning style. (Or try my Carrot Baby Food.)
  • You can add extra flavor by drizzling with honey, sprinkling with cumin or cinnamon, or trading out the butter or olive oil for toasted sesame oil for an Asian spin.

Related Recipes


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sauteed carrots on a plate

Easy Sauteed Carrots

These simple Sauteed Carrots are one of my go-to veggie recipes to make for my family. They're ready from in under 20 minutes from start to finish, and the end result is tender, naturally sweet carrots.
5 from 11 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Cuisine American
Course side
Calories 97kcal
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound carrots
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (or olive oil)
  • ¼-½ teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1-2 teaspoons honey (optional)
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Instructions

  • Peel and trim the ends of the carrots.
  • Slice into rounds of equal thickness, about ¼ inch thick.
  • Place a medium skillet over medium heat. Melt the butter (or warm the oil). Add the carrots and stir to coat.
  • Cook, covered, for 8-10 minutes, or until soft when poked with a fork.
  • Remove the cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for an additional 2 minutes to let any excess water evaporate.
  • Sprinkle with salt and and honey, if using. Serve warm.

Notes

  • To store, let cool and store in an airtight container for 3-5 days. Reheat for about 30 seconds in the microwave or until warm.
  • Putting the cover on the pan while the carrots cook traps the steam, preventing the carrots from sticking to the pan and resulting in perfectly tender slices.
  • Try to slice the carrots to an even thickness so they cook at the same rate.
  • Use baby carrots if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Make this recipe even more fun by using a pound of rainbow carrots. You’ll often see mixed bags that have purple, yellow, and sometimes red carrots in the produce section of your store.
  • You can add extra flavor by: Drizzling with honey, sprinkling with cumin or cinnamon, or trading out the butter or olive oil for toasted sesame oil for another flavor spin.

Nutrition

Calories: 97kcal, Carbohydrates: 11g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 15mg, Sodium: 79mg, Potassium: 365mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 19119IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 39mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published May 2018.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This is so good! I ended up eating the whole lot! I buy frozen crinkle carrots to avoid up front prep and simply cook a little longer. Delicious!!

  2. 5 stars
    These are a big hit in our house! To the base recipe, we had fresh thyme, honey, and sometimes a bit of grated garlic. My somewhat fussy 4 yr old asks for these all the time

  3. Love these!! I saw this recipe after I had already cut my carrots into sticks but still decided to cook them this way. It took maybe a couple minutes longer since the sticks were a little thicker. I used unsalted butter and then sprinkled them with cinnamon and they were a huge hit with my 23 month old.

  4. 5 stars
    A friend of mine recently told me to make carrots this way and I’m a big fan!! I run the carrots through the food processor to make evenly thin sliced carrots and use butter, minced garlic and salt to season – delicious!! I’m entering the picky eater phase with my toddlers, so I love the variations you recommend and can’t wait to try them with my family!

  5. 5 stars
    Your recipes has changed my toddlers eating and in turn made me absolutely love learning to cook!! The spinach banana pancakes were then first thing I made. Haven’t made one I don’t love yet!