Roasted Carrots With Harissa and Crème Fraîche

The Food Lab

Unraveling the mysteries of home cooking through science.

Roasted Carrots With Harissa and Cr\u00e8me Fra\u00eeche

[Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt]

Note: Harissa is a North African chili paste that can found in specialty markets or ordered online.

About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Chief Creative Officer of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.

Every recipe we publish is tested, tasted, and Serious Eats-approved by our staff. Never miss a recipe again by following @SeriousRecipes on Twitter!

  • Yield:Serves 4 to 6
  • Active time: 20 minutes
  • Total time:1 hour
  • Rated:


  • 2 pounds medium carrots, ends trimmed, quartered lengthwise and cut into 3-inch segments
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup crème fraîche
  • 2 tablespoons harissa paste (see note above)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves


  1. 1.

    Adjust oven rack to center position and preheat oven to 375°F. Place carrots in a large pot, cover with water, and season heavily with salt. Heat over high heat until boiling. Reduce to a simmer and cook until barely tender, about 5 minutes. Drain and allow to dry for 5 minutes. Set aside. Season crème fraîche with salt to taste and refrigerate until ready to use.

  2. 2.

    Combine harissa, cumin, black pepper, and olive oil in a large bowl. Season to taste with salt. Transfer half of mixture to small bowl and set aside. Add carrots to remaining mixture and toss to coat. Transfer to foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and spread out in an even layer. Roast until caramelized, about 40 minutes, turning once or twice during roasting. Transfer carrots to a large bowl and toss with cilantro.

  3. 3.

    Spread crème fraîche on serving platter. Top with carrots and drizzle with remaining harissa mixture. Serve immediately.