Spicy Bourbon Glazed Carrots
These glazed carrots are made with simple ingredients, and are easy to make non-spicy for the kids. Perfect for the holidays or a casual dinner!
If you think glazed carrots are boring, you need to try my version! Made with bourbon, brown sugar, and a little kick of spice to warm up your palette, you won’t be able to stop eating them!
Of all the recipes I’ve shared here on the blog, this one is definitely one of my favorites! It hits so many different flavor notes, and is so easy to make it either spicy, or sweet. I like these glazed carrots with a kick of cayenne pepper, but not so much that your mouth is on fire… just a warm backnote that pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the rest of the dish.
My husband actually isn’t a fan of cooked carrots… at all. Usually because they can be SO sweet that they’re practically dessert (which I love but he doesn’t), so when I was developing and testing this recipe, I knew I wanted to cut back on the sweetness, while still making them reminiscent of the classic glazed carrots.
Plus, I knew I wanted to use some booze, and bourbon is definitely my favorite alcohol to cook with. Don’t worry about these carrots tasting like bourbon, they definitely don’t… and all the alcohol gets cooked out. The bourbon just adds a great, subtle extra bit of warmth to the dish. Oh, and if you have some bourbon leftover, here are some great ideas to help use it up.
- drink it! Bourbon on the rocks is my favorite drink of all time, but I know not everyone likes it
- Make some Overnight French Toast Casserole
- Whip up some Bourbon Vanilla (no churn!) Ice Cream
- Make these finger-lickin’ Bourbon Cider Boneless Wings
- Serve up this Bourbon Orange and Mustard Glazed Ham
One thing I love about these glazed carrots, aside from the bourbon, is that they only use 5 ingredients (plus salt and pepper)! That’s my kind of easy recipe! Plus, it’s all made on the stovetop, so if you’re making these carrots as a side dish for a holiday dinner, you won’t have ANOTHER thing to bake in your oven. I know how precious oven space can be during the holidays.
You can actually have these carrots on your table in less than 30 minutes, and at least ten of those minutes are spent peeling the carrots. Isn’t that such a tedious job? If you’d like to skip all that, you can grab a few bags of baby carrots and chop them into slices. My local grocery store had a good price on organic whole carrots, so I suffered through the peeling lol.
How much are you wishing you had a spoonful of those carrots? That glaze is ridiculously amazing… you’ll be wanting to lick the bowl clean!
For the garnish, you can opt for no garnish, sprinkle on some minced parsley or minced chives and call it a day.
Spicy Bourbon Glazed Carrots
- 3 lbs whole carrots, peeled and sliced into circles
- 8 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
- 1/2 cup quality Bourbon or whiskey
- 2/3 - 3/4 cup light brown sugar - depending on how sweet you like carrots
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper - (feel free to adjust to your tastes)
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper - (adjust to your tastes or omit completely)
- minced fresh parsley and/or minced chives - for garnish (optional)
- Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to a large skillet and heat on HIGH heat. Add half of the carrots and cook about a minute. Remove from skillet and add remaining half of the carrots and cook about a minute. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- Add bourbon (carefully - step back a little when you add it), and let cook 30 seconds to let alcohol evaporate. Turn heat down to MED, add remaining 7 Tbsp of butter.
- Add brown sugar and stir to melt it into the butter. Transfer carrots back to skillet, stir to coat carrots in the butter mixture. When mixture is bubbling, cover with lid and cook 5-6 minutes.
- Take off the lid, add salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper (if using), and stir to combine. Keep cooking, uncovered, about 5-7 more minutes or until glaze is thick and syrupy.
- Sprinkle with garnishes, if using, and serve hot.