The Best Way to Cook Zucchini and Carrots

One of my greatest joys in life is making vegetables taste good to other people. When someone is especially excited about a tasty piece of zucchini I made, I am a happy girl.

You’re already rolling your eyes I know, but stay with me.

Zucchini and carrot “fries” are my quiet specialty. They make a great snack or side to burgers and sandwiches. Where you would normally throw a side of fries/chips or a side salad, why not throw the best vegetables you’ve ever tasted instead? Zucchini and carrot fries are an excellent addition to a plate in both color and flavor. And I’m not even going to talk about the healthy part – we’re all smart people here.

The trick here is roasting. Roasting at a high temp in the oven for about 20 minutes can work some serious magic. (Caramelization is always your friend.) Feel free to throw some other veggies in the mix too. Zucchini is my favorite because it takes on seasoning so well – but peppers, sweet potatoes, green beans, etc. can all be transformed in the same way.

Follow these simple steps and you’ll be on your way to making some shockingly delightful savory treats that you can feel awesome about.

1. Preheat oven to 220 C/425 F

2. Cut your veg into 8-cm/3-inch sticks, making sure they are even in thickness.

3. Line a baking tray with baking paper and a light layer of olive oil.

4. SEASON – go with the usual salt&pepper and branch out to one or two of the following (Choose Your Own Adventure-style): paprika, cumin, cayenne, crushed red peppers, thyme, rosemary, sage – really, whatever takes your fancy and suits your meal. Using premixed spice blends is a great option too – Italian, Mexican, Old Bay – you know, just not all at once.

(Today I used salt&pepper + smokey paprika and crushed red peppers.)

Lightly toss your vegetable batons with a tablespoon or so of olive oil (not too much) and the herbs and spices.

5. Spread your seasoned veg over your lined tray and roast, tossing halfway through, for about 20 minutes or until golden and slightly browned at the edges.


208 thoughts on “The Best Way to Cook Zucchini and Carrots

  1. Yum. looks so good, got some organic crookneck squash today going to try this with them & reg zuchinni & carrots….

    1. Hmmm, let’s see:
      – smoked paprika is great
      – red chili flakes for a kick
      – cumin and cumin + paprika
      – garlic powder + thyme or rosemary
      – sometimes I like to use ready-made spice blends like old bay seasoning, taco seasoning, moroccan spice blend…whatever you’d like!
      – just classic salt+ pepper is always good.

      Happy roasting!

    2. every spice goes good ๐Ÿ™‚ im a chef and for example for baked potatoesido many spices & herbs like paprika garlic thyme rosmarie ground cumin and some veg oil mix in and put them in the oven !

  2. “One of my greatest joys in life is making vegetables taste good to other people.” Ditto this! Seriously a huge thing! One of the things I am most proud of is that my kiddos LOVE their veggies!
    These look delish… can’t wait to give it a try this weekend alongside our veggie burgers!

      1. You can totally do it, too!
        The secret is to always offer different veggies from when they are ity bity.
        Also, offer diff fruits & diff ethnic flavors.
        Our girls now have adventurous palettes & are very open minded to new &’wierd’ foods because this is how they were raised. ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. @Anita “The secret is to always offer different veggies from when they are ity bity.
        Also, offer diff fruits & diff ethnic flavors.”

        I have been diligent about that secret from the very beginning, yet my son will eat absolutely NOTHING. I’m actually a very good cook. I have hardly a complaint from the adult set. The only way I get veggies into my son is with smoothies, popsicles, and healthy muffins. It’s a struggle! Hopefully these help!

  3. Tried this and loved the way the veges turned out but the zucchini came out a little to soft. Will try to make them bigger next time.

  4. Love this! Great idea – I always find myself walking away from markets with too many veggies (blame the sweet prices!) and nothing to do with all of it. I’ll definitely be saving this! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. We are having neighbors over for dinner tonight,, good idea for a side veggie. We often cut zucchini in 1/4″ thick strips the length of the veggie, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and season with Greek seasoning mix, then grill on George Foreman. We eat it as a veggie or great on chicken panini’s grilled on George Foreman as well.

  6. McCormick and Mrs. Dash both have DELICIOUS no salt seasonings. Both are easily found in the spice aisle. They both have a few different mixes for variety!

  7. The vegetables really look good. I do not like vegetables. I am going to try these tonight. Thank you so much for the recipie.

  8. I have always put my asparagus with olive oil and S&P into a small brown paper bag. Close it and put it on a baking sheet. 400 degrees for 20 mins. It leaves all the flavor and doesnt boil out the vitamins.

    1. I’m going to try the asparagus that way tonight – I’ve been just putting the spears on a cookie sheet sprayed with olive oil then seasoning with S&P, garlic & Parmesan cheese

  9. I found this recipe on Pinterest. I made it today to take to a ladies’ luncheon. It was a hit! Not only was it delicious, but easy to make.

  10. I have to tell you … if you roast these veggies or any other on a Pampered Chef stoneware bar pan without the paper liner … they are so much better even! I agree, roasted veggies is the way to go! But on that stoneware pan, the caramelization process works so much better. And roasted cauliflower, tossed in a bit of olive oil and sprinkled liberally with smoked paprika, sea salt & freshly ground pepper … oh my! And because heads of cauliflower are sometimes huge and you have leftovers, go ahead and roast the whole head anyway. Put your leftover cauliflower in a blender or food processor and puree to your preferred degree of puree (smooth or chunky, your choice.) Pour the puree cauliflower into a saucepan. Add chicken broth to the desired consistency and … voila … you have amazing roasted cauliflower soup! So easy, delicious and healthy!

  11. I especially like how you mentioned not using all of the seasonings at once! It reminded me of a story. My mother-in-law once made a chicken dish that we have referred to since as “dog-food chicken”. (She’s usually a good cook until she experiments.) This particular day she chose to mix several styles of seasonings/marinades and the results were disastrous! I tell you – Taco Bell tasted good after that experience! That night for dinner she made a low-country sausage and rice dish which my husband is very fond of. One bite and we found out what she had done with the leftover chicken! I think we had McDonald’s for dinner.

  12. Roasted quartered roma tomatoes, onions, sweet red/orange/yellow bell peppers, and purple/red onions are my favorites so far…gonna try yours (carrots and zucchini) tonight. For seasoning on my blend, it was always salt and pepper before baking after tossed in EVOO and then after they came out of oven, I sprinkled ranch dressing mix powder and parmesean cheese! My family can’t get enough of it when I make it!!!

  13. Tried it and loved it. We experimented with different seasoning, but we liked “salad elegance” by Jonny’s the best.

  14. Perfect munchie food, TY for the easy recipe & variations! Need to keep a container of roasted veggies like this in my fridge for snacking. Love roasted carrots.

  15. Also, if your family is like mine & won’t eat re-heated leftover veggies….if they were delicious at dinner time, well seasoned, etc….just freeze the leftovers until you’re ready to make spaghetti sauce. I’ll buy a simple starter tomato sauce in a jar or can & then puree all my leftover veggies (defrosted) and stir them into the sauce. Wow does it kick up the flavor & the health factor. Great way to sneak in veggies for the kids! Tastes delicious….I get so many compliments.

    1. Thanks for the idea on spaghetti sauce! House with 3 picky toddlers always makes for an interesting dinner. I’ve been looking for ways to sneak in veggies!

  16. I tried this technique w Brussel sprouts and could have eaten them all before serving them! I never liked Brussel sprouts before! Delish!

  17. Have lots of extra carrots lately with my Bountiful Basket so I will try this and see how I like them!! Got 2 bunches of Celery today trying to figure out what I’m going to do with all that besides give it away!! I love celery but not that much!!!:-)

  18. sprinkle some maple syrup on the veggies… try it before you say I’m crazy.. you won’t be sorry! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I love that! I put maple in salad dressings sometimes but haven’t roasted with it – will definitely have to try it soon ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. I have a sugar free maple syrup that I use in a salad dressing. I’ll try my sugar free maple on the veggies for the flavor without the calories.

  19. Great idea but with another type of oil. Olive oil loses its properties at high temperature and should not be used for cooking.

  20. i roast off yams or sweet potato as fries and beets into chips…i prefer to use unsweetened coconut oil than extra virgin oil..i has better omega 3’s and withstands the heat of frying and roasting much better…bon

  21. I place the vegetables in foil, add the seasoning and oil, then fold over the side to seal it. Then put it on the BBQ rack for about 20 minutes.

  22. This looks HEAVENLY!!! I have done roasted veggies in finely diced thyme and rosemary + salt/pepper and it was absolutely delicious. Thanks so much for posting!

  23. I tried it tonight with paprika and red pepper powder, flavour was delicious, but they were soggy! How can I avoid this in the next batch??

  24. Try it with Brussels sprouts split them down the middle with a little evoo garlic powder salt 400 degrees 20 – 25 minutes and WOW

  25. Great recipe!I’ve never tried roasting zucchini’s like that before. But I’ve done it with carrots- If you want a slightly sweeter version of this, try drizzle a little honey over the veggies. It makes carrots taste DIVINE!

  26. Another great idea is to briefly marinate in honey / whole grain mustard and roast. This glazes the vegetables up a treat, and tastes sweet. (Great on mini pork sausages also as an apperitif or party snack) Also good to whizz the leftover veggies into homemade tomato pasta sauce after. Maple Syrup would work too, brilliant on parsnips in fact which is how I usually roast carrots and parsnips. Should be pure maple though.

  27. So do you cook them for 20 minutes and then turn and then cook another twenty. Or cook ten minutes turn and cook another 10??? please help these look fabulous!

  28. I sometimes use Lipton’s Onion Soup Mix on vegetables like this and then roast in the oven or in aluminum foil on the grill. I don’t use a full packet of the soup mix, just sprinkle some over the veggies that have been coated lightly with oilve oil.

  29. Made these tonight for dinner. I substituted coconut oil for the olive oil. Seasoned with Lawrys season-all and basil. Most amazing thing I’ve ever eaten. I want to cook an entire 5-lb bag of carrots like this!! Thanks so much for this recipe!!

      1. I have two questions. Can you do this with ANY vegetable? Like eggplant? Also about how long do these stay good.. okay a 3rd question. Do you think you can cut and season and the freeze the vegies in portion size bags and then bake in oven whenever? If so about how long would you alter the cook time? My kids love vegies and this would be something new to them… Also what about sweet potatoes… would they take longer than other vegies? Ok so I know that’s more than 2 questions. Sorry..

      2. 1.) Most veggies work well, including eggplants, but cooking time depends on the type of vegetable and the size it’s cut into. I like to cut my eggplants into 1 inch cubes, and roast them for roughly 20 minutes or until soft and silky in texture (undercooked eggplant isn’t the greatest!) 2. Roasted or cooked vegetables can last a while in the fridge. I think you can keep them for 5 days or so and they’re fine. 3. I’ve never tried to freeze the veggies before they’re cooked, but I’d imagine you might want to blanch the vegetables quickly before freezing (place them chopped in boiling water for a minutes or two, so they’re pre-cooked) 4. Sweet potatoes are excellent like this! Again, cooking time depends on what size they’re cut into – the smaller the size, they quicker they’ll brown up and soften. Hope this was helpful!

  30. Haven’t tried this but going to soon. For those familiar with Penzeys Spices, (, they have some wonderful spice blends that would go great with this dish.

  31. Hi there
    I am just starting a blog with my class and love your recipes! Would you mind if I adapt some of them on our Create page? It is a new page to try to inspire them at home and in school without having to trawl the internet. I hope you don’t mind. Please let me know. Thanks. Rachel

    1. I don’t mind at all! When I adapt recipes from other people, I have a link in my post back to their recipe – which I think is just the right thing to do. But the recipes are there to give you inspiration for your cooking – adapt away!

      1. Thanks so much. Of course I will link back. Because it’s a school blog for kids use I am going to be limited to what I put on as I have to be careful of linking. Tricky! Thanks though…great blog.

  32. I used garlic and rosemary – delicious! Definitely need to be tossed halfway through to prevent sticking (I used aluminum foil on the cookie sheet).

  33. After some weird results of roasting broccoli like this, I’m a little gun-shy about trying again. But I know the typical results are delish!

    So a question or two:

    Why so little olive oil? What does an increase in olive oil produce? Mushier veggies? The amount stated doesn’t seem enough to cover all of veggie pieces….?

    1. If you need to use more olive oil, go for it. Too much just might weigh the veggies down, but add it a little bit at a time and give it all a good toss and see what works for you.

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  35. I am wanting to make this for our church small group Sunday night, Anything I should know about reheating or do they taste just as good room temp? I will be making at home and taking them to the meeting.

  36. We love roasted vegetables. One of the seasoning blends that we do is Cavender’s greek seasoning (also available in salt free), Mortons season blend, Garlic and Pepper.

  37. I love this … We often grill them with a zesty Italian mix…. And throw fresh shredded Parmesan sprinkles on them after they come off the heat. My kids love them ๐Ÿ™‚

  38. I have this in the oven right now along with some spaghetti squash. I like using “Spike” Seasoning. It’s a great blend on vegetables. I just used seasoned salt on the spaghetti squash. I have a habit of using too much pepper, so trying something new. Thanks so much for the beautiful presentation!

  39. Great way to cook so many veggies! Sweet potato fries or chunks roasted like this are great with Fajita seasoning from a jar. It seems like the perfect combination for them.

  40. I roasted mush, zuchinni, carrots, yellow peppers with evoo and garlic-salt and pepper and sprinkled parm cheese at the end delish, the next morning used leftovers to make an omelet also delish

  41. Thanks for the awesome recipe! I’ve never tried roasting anything before, but this recipe showed me that it’s really quite simple and it produces super yummy results. This is my husband’s and my new favorite way to eat carrots!

  42. Made these tonight and they were fantastic, I just seasoned with salt, pepper, and chili powder. Sooooo good I will be making these again and again.

  43. The leftovers (if there ARE ANY!) are wonderful cold/room temp in a wrap or on a salad… Um…. Or in a bowl with a drizzle of balsamic and some Bleu cheese crumbles… Just sayin’ ๐Ÿ˜› or on pizza too! These are good cooked on the grill also!

  44. I do asparagus this way, except for the timing — doesn’t take as long, depending on size of the spears. I’ve also done broccoli, yellow squash, cauliflower and French green beans. Cooking times will vary a little, depending on size and thickness of each veggie, check often to avoid over cooking. Zucchini and squashes will need much less time than carrots.

  45. I love this recipe so much!! I use it all the time now. My favorite way to season it though, is with Bacon Salt ๐Ÿ˜€ It adds just a little something, and its vegetarian, so my veggie sister can still have some!

    1. Hi M,

      I’m sorry to report, I’ve never frozen them. My guess would be that the carrots would be ok, but the zucchini would turn to mush. If you keep these in the fridge in an air-tight container they should last 5-6 days.

      Good luck!

  46. So delicous! When I took them out of the oven I put them in a frying pan to make them even more crispy. Thanks for sharing a great recipe!

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