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Plate of orange thyme rainbow roasted carrots topped with toasted walnuts .
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5 from 1 vote

Oven Roasted Rainbow Carrots

Oven Roasted Rainbow Carrots with sweet maple syrup, tangy fresh orange juice, earthy cumin, and herby thyme. It's all a perfect combo to make these veggies tender and flavorful. Topped with crunchy toasted walnuts, it's a stunner of a side dish fit for your Thanksgiving table. It's also easy enough to accompany any weeknight meal!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Diet: Vegan
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 201kcal


  • 2 pounds long rainbow carrots peeled, if desired; thicker ones halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons high-heat oil olive oil or grapeseed oil work well
  • 1 ½ teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves plus extra for garnish, if desired
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • juice of ½ naval orange
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup raw walnuts


  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Place the carrots on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle the oil over the carrots and sprinkle on the thyme, cumin, salt, and pepper. Toss the carrots well so they are evenly coated. Spread them out into one even layer with space between each carrot. Roast for 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together the orange juice and maple syrup. After the carrots have roasted for 15 minutes, pour the orange maple mixture over the carrots, toss well, and spread back out evenly in one even layer. Roast for another 5 to 10 minutes until the carrots start to brown and caramelize and are tender when pierced with a fork or knife.
  • While the carrots are roasting for the final time, toast the walnuts. Heat a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Add the walnuts and toast, stirring frequently to prevent burning, until fragrant and starting to darken. This should take about 3 to 5 minutes. Watch them closely so they don't burn. Once toasted, pour them out onto a plate in one even layer to cool down. They will continue to crisp up as they sit.
  • To serve, place the carrots on a plate or platter, sprinkle over the toasted walnuts and extra thyme, if desired.


~Parchment paper makes for easy clean up, especially with the sticky maple syrup. 
~Oregano, rosemary, or marjoram can be used instead of thyme.
~Wait to add the maple syrup and orange juice until the last 5 to 10 minutes of roasting. Don't be tempted to add it with the other spices at the start. The high sugar content of these ingredients can burn easily if you add them too soon.
~Don't crowd the pan! Not enough space in between will steam the veggies and make them soggy instead of roasting them to caramelized perfection. Use two pans if necessary.
~ Oil-free? Use a splash of veggie broth instead to help the spices stick to the carrots and line the baking sheet with parchment paper to prevent sticking. They may take a bit longer to get those perfect char marks, but they will eventually brown nicely.
~Store any leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. I do not recommend freezing these roasted carrots.


Calories: 201kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Sodium: 212mg | Potassium: 19mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 214IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 6mg