When you choose the right spices for steamed carrots, you can experience the full flavor and texture of this nutritious veggie in a whole new way.
Whether you’re looking to turn up the heat with a fiery blend, add some zest with citrusy tones, or simply hint at sweetness with subtle seasonal flavors – steamed carrots have never tasted so good!
I’ve curated a list of 11 tantalizing spices that are sure to enhance your steamed carrot dish like never before.
With options for sweet, savory, tart, and spicy tastes – everyone is sure to find something in here they love.
So get ready for your carrots to receive an exciting makeover; from Moroccan spice blends that transport you around the world, to classic seasonings like garlic powder and thyme that bring back memories of Grandma’s kitchen.
Parsley is one of the most versatile herbs you can use in your cooking.
It has a clean yet peppery taste with a hint of earthiness – so it goes well in a variety of dishes.
Each parsley leaf contains a natural aromatic oil that gives the herb its unmistakable flavor, so sprinkling some on your steamed carrots or any other dish will greatly enhance the flavor.
When adding parsley to foods like steamed carrots, just keep it simple and add about 1-2 teaspoons per portion as too much could overpower other flavors in the dish.
Taste as you go, adjust according to your preference, and enjoy!
Chives are considered a delicate herb, with a subtle onion-y flavor that’s much milder than regular red or yellow onions.
In fact, they also have similarities to leek.
When using chives in your cooking you can expect an additional layer of onion-y sweetness that won’t overpower any other ingredients you may combine it with.
Often times the easiest way to add some subtle flavor is simply by snipping on a few chive leaves.
Absolutely perfect for steamed carrots!
Add the latest at the end when adding seasoning and about ¼ teaspoon should be plenty for 4 servings medium-sized carrots without taking away from any of your other flavors.
Thyme is an herb that has a complex flavor profile, generally providing a sharp, almost minty taste.
Upon further inspection, you can taste the earthiness of it with hints of floral aroma and sweetness.
There is also a hint of pepper that appears in your mouth as the flavors linger on.
As the thyme releases its essential oils while cooking, its aroma becomes even more intense.
When adding thyme to steamed carrots, there isn’t one set amount I can suggest – rather this depends more on personal preference than anything else!
A good guide could be started with about one teaspoon for each three-four servings and then adjust from there.
Why not start off light and work up until you achieve your desired intensity?
Oregano is a wonderfully pungent herb that has an intensely aromatic, camphor-like scent.
It has strong earthy/musty notes blended with hints of green, hay, and mint that create a unique flavor.
There is also some astringency when it hits your tongue and palate.
When added to steamed carrots, where the vegetable’s natural sweetness can really shine through, oregano gives them an incredibly flavorful profile.
For every two cups of carrots you want to steam, add in 1 teaspoon of dried oregano or 2 teaspoons of fresh oregano as garnish after cooking.
Basil is an incredibly versatile herb that can add unique flavors to any dish.
Its flavor Profile consists of subtle yet complex notes of sweetness and savoriness, with hints of peppermint, anise, black pepper, and garlic.
The intensity of its flavor also varies – more for raw basil as opposed to cooked basil.
Hence, adding it at the end of cooking a dish ensures its flavor remains strong and robust.
When adding fresh or dried basil to a dish like steamed carrots, aim for around 1 teaspoon per serving.
Especially if you’re using the herb in the form of flakes – which tend to be more intense than ground herbs – due care should be taken when seasoning with it; you may find 2 teaspoons enough if it’s your first time using this particular product.
Ultimately though, how close your taste buds come to Basil will depend on how much you put in!
Dill is an aromatic herb that adds a unique flavor to any dish.
The feathery green leaves have a bright, sweet taste – reminiscent of anise, parsley, and celery all in one!
Dried dill seed has a more pungent flavor which can be used to make the popular American condiment – dill pickles.
For steamed carrots, it’s recommended to add between 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon of fresh or dried dill depending on how strong you like the flavor.
Start with half and increase as desired. Alternatively, use around two tablespoons of minced fresh dill for every 2 cups of cooked carrots.
Taste test until you reach your desired level of ‘dilly-ness’!
7. Lemon zest
Lemon zest has an intense, tangy lemon/citrus taste with only a hint of bitterness.
It’s the white pith of the lemon that carries most of the bitter flavor and should be avoided when zesting.
One medium-sized lemon yields approximately 1 tablespoon of zest, which is equal to 2 to 3 tablespoons of freshly squeezed juice.
When flavoring food dishes like steamed carrots, adding 1 teaspoon of fresh organic lemon zest will typically suffice if you are looking for a light citrus burst.
However, depending on how much you love lemons, feel free to adjust accordingly!
8. Drizzle of balsamic reduction
Balsamic reduction is a rich, sweet, and oh-so-delicious condiment that’s made from boiling balsamic vinegar until it’s thicker and slightly syrupy.
It packs an intense flavor compared to its original state as balsamic vinegar and can boost the flavor of any dish with ease.
The magical blend of balsamic reduction brings together sweetness, and tanginess all while being balanced with a slight acidity finish.
Many like to enhance the flavors of their balsamic reduction by adding in honey, herbs or spices – allowing you to really customize it according to your taste!
When using on steamed carrots – start off small by mixing in ½ teaspoon or less when making the extra delicious combo!
9. Salt and pepper
Salt and pepper are two pantry staples that add a significant amount of flavor to any dish.
Salt is great for bringing out subtle flavors, while black pepper adds a bit more of an intense flavor.
They’re used as a seasoning for various meals, such as sautéed vegetables or roasted potatoes.
When it comes to steamed carrots, salt and pepper are the perfect addition!
A pinch of each in the steaming liquid is enough so that you can taste the difference on your carrot sticks when served.
Just be sure not to overdo it – too much salt won’t bring out any additional flavors and could even ruin your dish.
10. Garlic powder
Garlic powder has a soft, mellow flavor compared to fresh-chopped garlic.
Not nearly as bold and assertive, but still packed with the distinctive garlicky punch!
Garlic powder is made from dehydrated and ground garlic cloves which adds sweetness to the mix that you don’t get with fresh garlic; think of it like concentrated umami.
On top of this sweet note, you’ll also get a unique caramelly undertone when using roasted or sautéed garlic.
When adding garlic powder to your steamed carrots, use it sparingly!
You won’t need more than ¼ teaspoon or so; too much will definitely overpower the delicate taste of carrots.
11. Onion powder
Onion powder has a concentrated flavor profile that emulates the taste of fresh onions.
It contains powerful compounds and nutrients that add complexity and depth to your dishes, so just a little bit can go a long way!
When it comes to using onion powder specifically in steamed carrots, you’d want to start out by adding 1 teaspoon per cup of cooked carrots.
The flavor is subtle yet distinctive in its own right and will provide an undertone of savory aroma to your dish.
From there, adjust for desired preference!
11 Best Spices for Steamed Carrots
- Lemon zest
- Drizzle of balsamic reduction
- Salt and pepper
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Pick your favorite spices from this collection to use on your carrots.
- Prepare the rest of your delicious meal.
- Enjoy in no time!