Healthy Carrot Salad (Spiralized or Shredded)

This healthy carrot salad is spiralized into crunchy carrot noodles and served atop a bed of mixed greens with juicy raisins, crisp candied walnuts, and a homemade lemon honey dijon dressing! No spiralizer? No problem! It works great with shredded carrots too!

This healthy carrot salad is spiralized into crunchy carrot noodles and served atop a bed of mixed greens with juicy raisins, crisp candied walnuts, and a homemade lemon honey dijon dressing! No spiralizer? No problem! It works great with shredded carrots too!

I spent nearly 20 years of my life thinking raw carrots served only one purpose: a shovel.

More specifically, they were a shovel for scooping up ranch dip, licking it off, then discarding in a napkin when no one was looking.

please don’t tell my mom

I’m not sure anyone caught on to my antics but I certainly wasn’t doing myself any favors in the health department. Luckily this ranch-obsessed carrot avoider decided to pursue a major in Dietetics and, by sheer guilt of my occupation alone, decided to give raw carrots a chance.

I can now say with absolute certainty…

What the eff was I thinking!?

Clearly I was missing out! Raw crinkle-cut carrots have become my shovel of choice for scooping up hummus and devouring that tasty chickpea dip, shovel and all.

I no longer cringe when my salad is flecked with beta-carotene and, in fact, was once so bold as to order CARROT SALAD off a menu! Me! Carrot salad! Helloooo progress! You can imagine my disappointment when my order arrived and I learned what exactly carrot salad is here in the South. Shaved carrots smothered in mayonnaise and sugar with some random raisins thrown in for good measure was not my idea of a good time.

Turns out I really DO like carrot salad, when it’s done my way of course! I started small, whipping up a spiral cucumber and carrot salad with a thai-inspired flair, then worked my way back to a traditional Southern carrot salad, deciding a face-lift was in order.

Now that the cheezapalooza known as Super Bowl Sunday is behind us, let’s get back to those healthy goals we had for ourselves, shall we? I’ll ease you back into it slowly with some yummy candied walnuts to sweeten the deal.

If you get a chance to try this healthy carrot salad, let me know! Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation.

 

Healthy Carrot Salad with Lemon Honey Dijon Dressing

As written recipe yields one giant salad or two side dish-sized salads. Feel free to double, triple, or quadruple to feed your crew.

This healthy carrot salad is spiralized into crunchy carrot noodles and served atop a bed of mixed greens with juicy raisins, crisp candied walnuts, and a homemade lemon honey dijon dressing! No spiralizer? No problem! It works great with shredded carrots too!
5 from 3 votes
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Healthy Carrot Salad with Lemon Honey Dijon Dressing

This healthy carrot salad is spiralized and served atop a bed of mixed greens with juicy raisins, crisp candied walnuts, and a lemony homemade dressing. It's delicious!

Recipe yields one large salad or two side-dish sized salads, ready for facepantage!

Course Salad
Cuisine Moroccan
Keyword Healthy Carrot Salad
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Author Jenn Laughlin - Peas and Crayons

Ingredients

  • 3 jumbo carrots
  • 1 oz raisins
  • 1 cup fresh leafy greens plus extra as desired

CANDIED WALNUTS

  • 1/2 cup walnut halves and pieces
  • 1/2 TBSP unsalted butter
  • 1 TBSP honey (or sugar)
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • a teeny pinch of salt

FOR THE DRESSING:

  • 1.5 TBSP avocado oil or your favorite light oil
  • 1.5 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 TBSP fresh lemon juice
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper

Instructions

  1. FOR THE SALAD: Wash and peel your carrots, then slice via your favorite method. I used my spiral slicer since carrot noodles are so flipping fun! You can use a food processor or box grater to shred the carrots or even use a veggie peeler to make carrot ribbons. All methods work gloriously! Pile atop a bed of mixed greens and sprinkle with raisins.
  2. CANDIED WALNUTS: Heat a skillet or saucepan to medium heat and butter to melt. Next add in your walnuts, honey, salt, and sugar. Saute for 5-6 minutes and pour over parchment paper, using a spatula to separate the nuts. Otherwise you'll have yummy walnut brittle that you'll want to break apart over your salad, which is no big deal either! Yum! Allow to cool for several minutes until the coating hardens and you're walnuts have officially been candied! Woot! Try not to eat them all before they hit the salad.
  3. DREAMY DRESSING: Pour all ingredients into a mason jar and shake to mix! That's it! Alternatively you may whisk the ingredients together in a bowl. Give it a taste, adjust seasoning to taste and pour over your salad.

Recipe Notes

dressing adapted from once upon a chef.

For perfect orange spirals, grab the biggest carrots you can get your hands on. Some stores will sell them a la carte while other times you can score jumbo carrots at the farmer's market! After washing and peeling, cut off the ends on each side, leaving the thickets part of the carrot in tact while it curls through the spiralizer.

The result will be a pile of smaller curls with a glorious stack of giant spiral carrots on top. Use both for the salad! Hooray carrots!

If you’re in the market for spiral noodles aplenty (cucumber, zucchini, carrot, sweet potato, beet, radish, CURLY FRIES!!!) all you need is a spiralizer and you’re good to go! I’ve been using my Paderno Spiral Slicer for  over 5 years now and adore it! It’s stood up to drops and the top rack of my dishwasher pretty darn well so I’m kind of crazy for suggesting it to everyone I know. Eventually I may just start gifting them for the holidays because… #obsessed #eatyourveggies

Even my toddler can’t resist the lure of freshly curled veggie noodles. If you follow me on Instagram you’ve probably seen her happy dancing around the kitchen with a face full of cucumber noodles on any given day. Now if only I could get this munchkin to eat some dang green beans!

If you get a chance to try this healthy carrot salad, let me know!

Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation.

If you get a chance to try this healthy carrot salad, let me know! Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation.

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Comments

  • This recipe looks so yummy! We featured it as part of our May 2015 meal plan here: http://thepintertestkitchen.com/whats-for-dinner-may-2015-meal-plan/

    • Jenn

      Thanks so much Allison!! Off to check out the yummy month of meals!

  • Another one to pin…I am also like just about baby carrots as shovels or healthy side to a sandwich but I totally totally love this…you’ve inspired me to buy regular carrots at the grocery store, friend.

  • Your carrot salad looks lovely! My mom used to make the mayo-filled carrot salad too – up here in Ontario, Canada. So you’re not alone. 😉 Jo

  • I LOVE carrot salad too. We grow our own carrots and we cannot stand the store bought ones anymore, they just don’t taste of anything. I like to make a slaw with red onions, grated carrot and greek yogurt ~ it goes down a treat at BBQ’s. Great recipe Jenn, thanks! YUM.

  • this looks great! except my spiralizer never works with carrots because they are too thin. It’s depressing.

    • Jenn

      You’ve got to find super-thick ones – Farmers Markets are notorious for having huge carrots [at least mine is!] and the grocery store by me carries carrots a la carte that are pretty big too! Good luck! <3

  • This certainly is a pretty salad and a healthy one too. Looks delicious.

  • That looks gooooorgeous! I’m not even a huge carrot fan but that certainly looks awesome!

  • Oooooh! This is one carrot salad I will deft eat. I despise mayo so obvi the standard kind is a no go for me. I must get myself a spiralizer soon! What brand do you use?

    • Jenn

      Paderno – I love it!

  • I just got a spiralizer for Christmas and having fun experimenting with it. Can’t wait to try the salad!

  • this looks so yummy! I love the carrots and raisins combo – a match made in heaven!

  • Hahaha me and Niki used to to the ‘hide in napkin’ thing too (I did broccoli, she did beef. Any guesses what we were eating :p)

    I love carrots these days and this looks puuuurty. Spiralise a cupcake please.

  • I brought a super cheesy meat taco dip to the super bowl party yesterday, alongside a pile of veggies and a veggie packed veggie dip. I got rave reviews on the veggie dip (they had no idea it was filled with veggies) and major compliments on the carrots. I think they’re dehydrated drunk asses were just craving any H2O, even the kind from food. Whatever the case may be, I’ll take it!!

    This salad is gorgeous!

  • This looks amazing! I am obsessed with carrots and have been known to eat one for brekkie on the odd occasion that I run out of fruit! 🙂

  • Love the sound of this combo! Im such a carrot lover, and I have the orange skin to prove it lol!

  • What a smart idea to spiralize the carrot instead of grating it. I have been thinking of investing in one. Totally with you on the veggie thing. I love raw veggies and snack on them daily 🙂

    • Jenn

      It was the best 30-something bucks I could have spent for the kitchen. I use that thing weekly and the chickpea loves running around with cucumber noodles like they’re a flipping slinky. haha

  • I used to work at Chick-fil-A, and it killed me when people thought the carrot & raisin salad was a really healthy, low-calorie choice! Your version looks delicious 🙂

    • Jenn

      People hear carrot and go “Oh that’s a vegetable! I’ll have a whole bowl!” but don’t realize the dressing is nuts! I’m with ya! This dressing has fats in the form of healthy oils and a little sweetness from honey so I feel like it’s not only less calories but worth them too! <3 Thanks Liv!

  • I am with you on the veggies and vehicles. I wouldn’t eat ANY healthy food item that wasn’t drowning in ranch dressing. Now days I think plain raw carrots and delicious and sweet. Kids. *eye roll*

    • Jenn

      We’re kind of the same person. I eat them straight up while my husband jokes that I’m going to turn orange! Hey whatever man, it’s a tan from food? I’ll take it!

  • This looks devine! I too love carrot salad but can’t hack the southern interpretation of it.
    You know salad in the south means = shit loads of mayo OR marshmallows 😉

    • Jenn

      OR BOTH!!!!! Oh the humanity!

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