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3 Step Carrot Salad

3 Step Carrot Salad

Simple does not have to mean basic, and this three-step, three ingredient salad is proof.

The first thing you’ll notice is the unique flavor and texture of this salad. The carrots aren’t too hard in the way that thickly shredded carrots can be, and the dressing isn’t too acidic in the way that salads dressed only with lemon can be.

But how can that be? Carrots, lemon, and salt are the only ingredients, so how? How can it be so good?!

The answer is actually kind of technical and probably something that all of my fellow food nerds will appreciate. This salad’s unique flavor is created when the tangy lemon mingles with the natural sweetness of the carrot; drawing out some of the moisture (a process known as macerating). This means that the carrot is “dressed” in a mixture of lemon juice and carrot juice making it a bit more complex and interesting.

The texture is also created by using the medium-sized holes on your box grater. That’s the key to nailing this recipe.

Using the larger holes on the grater will result in a hard salad with an unpleasant texture, but the medium size offers a perfectly delicate crunch. The acid in the lemon helps here too by softening the carrot slightly.

The result is a tangy and crunchy side salad that’s tasty enough to be served on it’s own as a simple side dish. It’s also nice to add on top of a green salad, or served with some store-bought veggie sushi to round out a weeknight takeout meal.

It also makes a great accompaniment to grain bowls and it’s fun to stir into vegan yogurt with a pinch of cumin or curry powder and black pepper.

However you serve this 3 Step Carrot Salad, it will be delicious. I’m sure of it because this recipe is a staple in my kitchen. I make it several times a month.

I hope it will become a favorite of yours too. Enjoy!

Serves 2

  • 1-2 large carrots
  • 1/2 of a lemon
  • sea salt
  1. Place a box grater into a large bowl to catch all of the grated carrot.
  2. Wash and dry the carrot, then grate it on the medium side of a box grater.
  3. Add lemon juice and two big pinches of salt. Mix well, add more lemon or salt to taste, and then serve.
  1. This salad great for meal prep because it lasts around three days in the fridge. The flavors only get better the next day as the lemon marinates the carrot.
  2. You can change up the flavors with dried spices like curry powder, paprika, coriander, or cumin.
  3. You can also add fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley.
  4. I like adding raisins, dried cranberries, and/or toasted walnuts sometimes too!
  5. This is great on a salad, as a cool and crunchy side dish, or mixed in with my Chickpea “Tuna” Salad.
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Nicole Vranjican

Hey! I’m Nicole and I make practical vegan recipes for REAL life. I cook with simple, easy to find ingredients and I’m passionate about creating delicious plant-based meals that everyone will love!

I hope you enjoy my recipes and videos :) Happy Cooking!

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1 Comment

  1. Nicole
    April 16, 2020 / 6:40 pm

    Just made this and it is so simple and so delicious! I love these types of recipes right now to switch up ingredients I already have without having to go to the grocery store.

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