Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe — Introducing a delightful copycat recipe that brings the flavors of Cracker Barrel to your kitchen! 🍽️
Try our Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe and savor the sweet and savory goodness of these tender carrots cooked to perfection. Whether you’re a fan of dining out or just looking to recreate a restaurant favorite at home, this dish will satisfy your cravings. Get ready to elevate your carrot game to a whole new level!
What Are Cracker Barrel Carrots?
Cracker Barrel Carrots are a popular side dish served at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store restaurants. These carrots are known for their sweet and savory flavor profile, tender texture, and classic Southern-style preparation.
They are often cooked with butter, brown sugar, and other seasonings, resulting in a comforting and delicious dish. Cracker Barrel Carrots are a favorite among customers who enjoy homestyle Southern cooking and are often served alongside other Southern classics like fried chicken, biscuits, and gravy.
Why You Will Love This Recipe!
You’ll fall in love with this Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots recipe because it captures all the delicious flavors of the classic side dish served at the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store.
These carrots are sweet, tender, and glazed with a rich combination of butter, brown sugar, and seasonings, making them perfect for your meals.
Whether you’re a fan of Southern comfort food or just looking to add some sweet and savory goodness to your dinner table, these carrots will surely become a family favorite. Plus, making them at home allows you to enjoy that iconic Cracker Barrel taste anytime you want without leaving your kitchen.
Get ready to savor the delightful taste of these carrots with each and every bite.
Ingredients Needed For Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe
Get ready to recreate the famous Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots with these simple ingredients:
Remember the step-by-step directions and detailed ingredient list are below, in the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post, as well as the nutritional information.
- Carrots: You’ll need fresh, whole carrots for this recipe, as they’ll be peeled and sliced into thick rounds.
- Butter: Unsalted butter adds richness and a smooth texture to the glazed carrots.
- Brown Sugar: Brown sugar brings a delightful sweetness to the dish and forms the base of the glaze.
- Ground Cinnamon: A touch of ground cinnamon adds warm, aromatic flavors that complement the carrots beautifully.
- Salt: A pinch of salt enhances the overall taste and balances the sweetness of the brown sugar.
- Nutmeg (Optional): This spice can be added to elevate the flavor profile for those who enjoy a hint of nutmeg.
- Water: Water creates the glaze and helps cook the carrots until tender.
These simple ingredients come together to create a side dish that’s both comforting and delicious. Your family and guests will ask for seconds of these Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots!
How To Make Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe
Creating the delightful Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots is a breeze. Follow these steps to whip up this classic side dish:
Place baby carrots inside a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer, cover with a lid, and simmer for 6 minutes or until carrots begin to soften.
Drain half the water from the saucepan. Add in butter, brown sugar, and salt and stir. Place back on heat and simmer for another 5 minutes or until carrots are tender but not completely soft.
Drain the remaining water—top carrots with a pinch of nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
While the classic Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots are already a delicious side dish, you can always add your own twist to suit your taste preferences. Here are some recipe variations to consider:
- Honey-Glazed Carrots: Replace the brown sugar with honey for a different flavor profile. Drizzle honey over the cooked carrots for a luscious glaze.
- Maple-Glazed Carrots: Like the honey variation, you can use pure maple syrup instead of brown sugar for a distinct maple glaze.
- Citrus Zest: Add a citrusy freshness by grating some orange or lemon zest into the glaze. The bright citrus notes complement the sweetness of the carrots.
- Toasted Nuts: For added texture and flavor, consider sprinkling some toasted nuts like almonds, pecans, or walnuts over the glazed carrots just before serving.
- Fresh Herbs: Add a touch of freshness by tossing in some finely chopped fresh herbs like parsley, thyme, or chives at the end of cooking.
- Spices and Heat: For a spicier kick, experiment with spices like ground ginger, allspice, or cayenne pepper. Adjust the spice level to your liking.
- Parmesan Cheese: For a savory twist, grate some Parmesan cheese over the carrots before serving—the salty, nutty flavor pairs well with the glaze’s sweetness.
- Caramelized Onions: Caramelize some onions separately and mix them into the glaze for an extra layer of flavor and sweetness.
- Fresh Lemon Juice: Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the cooked carrots to add a refreshing citrusy zing.
- Balsamic Reduction: Drizzle a balsamic reduction over the carrots for a rich and tangy glaze that complements the sweetness of the carrots.
Feel free to get creative and tailor the Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots. These variations can add new dimensions to this classic side dish and perfectly complement any meal.
Here are some pro tips to help you perfect your Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe:
- Choose Fresh Carrots: Select fresh, firm, and vibrant orange carrots for the best flavor and texture. Avoid carrots that are limp or have blemishes.
- Uniform Size: Try to cut your carrot coins into uniform sizes to ensure even cooking. This will help all the carrots reach the desired tenderness simultaneously.
- Don’t Overcook: Be mindful not to overcook the carrots. They should be tender-crisp, not mushy. Overcooking can result in a less appealing texture.
- Stir Occasionally: While simmering the carrots in the glaze, give them a gentle stir occasionally to ensure that all the carrots get coated evenly.
- Adjust Sweetness: Taste the glaze before adding the carrots and adjust the sweetness to your preference. You can add more or less brown sugar to suit your taste.
- Add Butter for Richness: If you want to enhance the richness of the glaze, consider adding a tablespoon or two of unsalted butter. It will give the carrots a silky finish.
- Garnish Creatively: Garnish your carrots with fresh herbs like parsley or chives for a pop of color and freshness. You can also sprinkle some toasted nuts or grated Parmesan cheese for extra flavor and texture.
- Serve Hot: These carrots are best served hot. Keep them warm until you’re ready to serve to enjoy their full flavor.
- Make Ahead: You can prepare and store the glaze in the refrigerator. When you’re ready to serve, reheat the glaze, add the cooked carrots, and simmer briefly until they are heated through.
- Experiment with Variations: Don’t hesitate to experiment with variations of the recipe by adding different ingredients like honey, maple syrup, citrus zest, or spices to customize the flavor to your liking.
Following these pro tips, you can make a delicious batch of Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots that will impress your family and guests. Enjoy this classic and comforting side dish with a touch of homemade flair!
Can I use baby carrots for this recipe? Yes, you can use baby carrots if you prefer. Remember that they may cook a bit faster than larger carrots. You can adjust the cooking time to ensure they reach the desired tenderness.
Can I make this recipe ahead of time? Yes, you can prepare the glaze in advance and store it separately. When you’re ready to serve, reheat the glaze, add the cooked carrots, and simmer briefly until they are heated through. This can be a convenient option for busy meal prep.
Can I make this recipe vegan? Absolutely! To make this recipe vegan, substitute the butter with a plant-based butter or margarine. Ensure your brown sugar is vegan-friendly; some varieties may contain animal-derived ingredients.
Are these carrots sweet or savory? These Copycat Cracker Barrel Carrots have a sweet and slightly savory flavor profile. The brown sugar and cinnamon in the glaze provide sweetness, while the butter and salt add a touch of savory richness.
Can I adjust the sweetness of the glaze? You can adjust the glaze’s sweetness to suit your taste. Taste the glaze before adding the carrots, and adjust the amount of brown sugar accordingly. If you prefer a sweeter flavor, add or reduce it for a milder sweetness.
What can I serve these carrots with? These carrots make a great side dish for a variety of meals. They pair well with roasted meats, poultry, and even grilled seafood. They also make a delicious addition to holiday feasts and special occasions.
Can I use other types of carrots, like rainbow carrots? You can use different carrots, including rainbow carrots, to add color and variety to your dish. The cooking process remains the same, so feel free to get creative with your carrot selection.
Can I make this recipe in a slow cooker? While this recipe is traditionally made on the stovetop, you can adapt it for a slow cooker. Combine the glaze ingredients and carrots in a slow cooker and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until the carrots are tender.
Can I freeze the leftovers? You can freeze the leftover cooked carrots in an airtight container for 2-3 months. When reheating, gently warm them on the stovetop or microwave until heated.
Can I add other seasonings or spices to the glaze? Certainly! Feel free to experiment with additional seasonings or spices to customize the flavor. For example, you can add a pinch of nutmeg or a dash of cayenne pepper for a unique twist on the classic recipe.
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Cracker Barrel Carrot Recipe
- 36 oz baby carrots, , washed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt , to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, to taste
- Place baby carrots inside a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer, cover with a lid and simmer for 6 minutes or until carrots are just beginning to soften.
- Drain half the water from the saucepan. Add in butter, brown sugar and salt and stir. Place back on heat and simmer for another 5 minutes, or until carrots are tender but not completely soft.
- Drain remaining water. Top carrots with a pinch of nutmeg and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.