Raw Carrot Salad is light & refreshing with a simple vinaigrette, cranberries, & pecans. Ready in just 10 minutes it is a great side anytime! Carrot fans will love the flavor and taste, and parents will love that this is the perfect way to get the kids to eat more veggies!
I'll be honest...I'm always looking for new ways to up the vegetable intake for myself and the kids. It's not like we don't eat a lot of them, but there's always room to improve.
The really great part about making this shredded carrots salad is that it's the perfect balance between crunchy and sweet and literally pairs with any type of main dish.
When I want a vegetable but not one that I actually have to use my stove or oven for, this is my go-to every single time, I'll even put the kids to work and have them measure out the dressing and do the mixing!
Be sure to check out my Keto Carrot Cake Muffins recipe as well. Since you're already shredded carrots you might as well just go ahead and do a few extra for this special treat!
Carrots - Peel and shred carrots and put them in a bowl. Since you are grating so many carrots I prefer to do this with a food processor instead of a box grater or cheese grater. You can also use a vegetable peeler for longer strips.
Apple - You can use any type of apple that you like. I normally use gala apples but granny smith would add a nice tang.
Olive oil - Using extra virgin olive oil provides a nice and clean texture and taste. Coconut oil and avocado oil work great, too.
Fresh lemon juice - Squeezing a bit of juice adds the perfect acidity. You can also use lime juice or bottled lemon juice if needed.
Salt and black pepper - You can always add these to your taste preference.
Dried cranberries - Perfect for texture and adding in some natural sweetness. I make my own with this Sugar-Free Dried Cranberries Recipe.
Chopped pecans - I love adding nuts because of the crunch factor. They do get soft if you add them ahead of time so I add them right before serving.
How To Make Raw Carrot Salad
Step One: Combine the carrots and apples in a large bowl. Toss to mix.
Step Two: Combine the dressing ingredients. Stir, shake, or blend until smooth.
Step Three: Drizzle the dressing over the raw carrot salad and mix well. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Step Four: Top the raw carrot salad with the cranberries and pecans. Serve.
Add honey - If you want even more sweetness and added health benefits, add some local honey and drizzle on top. I also think that a drizzle of maple syrup would be delicious, too. There are sugar-free versions of both on the market if you want to lower the carbs.
Stir in some mustard - You can add a bit of a unique flavor to raw carrot salad by stirring in a tiny bit of Dijon mustard.
Use bottled vinaigrette - If you find that you don't want to make your own dressing, you can use a store-bought one as well.
Top with fresh parsley - Sprinkling on some fresh parsley is a simple way to add color and a burst of flavor.
Mix in some apple cider vinegar - Some people also add a bit of apple cider vinegar to help with added gut health and metabolism.
Use raisins - The dried cranberries are great, but you can also use raisins as well. Just be sure that whatever dried fruit that you're adding, you read the label and check for added sugars. So many actually add a ton of sugar when it's not necessary.
Change up the nuts - Pecans are great in this raw carrot salad, but crushed walnuts would be another delicious option.
Can you prep grated carrots earlier?
Yes, you can. If you want to shred the carrots earlier, do so. Just add a few drops of lemon juice and stir and then store them covered in the fridge. I do this sometimes to save time.
You can also save time on meal prep and buy carrots at the store that are already shredded. This is a huge perk and time saver! They can be dry though. So you may need to let the raw carrot salad sit longer than 5 minutes for them to absorb some dressing and soften.
What are the health benefits of adding carrots to your daily diet?
Carrots are a good source of fiber and great for eyesight! The more vegetables that you can eat, the better! When I'm craving something sweet and crunchy, I would much rather make and eat this salad than add something else to my body.
How do you store fresh carrot salad leftovers?
Make sure that you cover this salad with an airtight lid and keep it stored in the fridge. This salad recipe needs to be kept chilled for the best flavor.
I do not recommend freezing the leftovers, so make this when you're going to serve and eat fresh.
- Combine the carrots and apples in a large bowl. Toss to mix.
- Combine the dressing ingredients. Stir, shake, or blend until smooth.
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad and mix well. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- Top with the cranberries and pecans. serve.