Instant Pot Steamed Carrots

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Learn how to make fork-tender Instant Pot steamed carrots with this simple side dish recipe. Ready in 15 minutes, with just 2 ingredients, these steamed carrots can also easily be made without the steamer basket in the instant pot.

An instant pot steamer basket with baby carrots after steaming.
Instant Pot Carrots

Do you ever get into a rut when it comes to including vegetables with your dinners?

Maybe you toss together a salad or pull out some raw veggies like carrots or celery, then serve them with a little ranch dressing and call it a day. While these sides are both easy and healthy you might be looking to change it up a bit and have I got the dish for you.

After discovering how quickly the Instant Pot cooks vegetables like corn, sweet potatoes, and green beans I decided to try carrots, and the results are just as amazing.

This Instant Pot steamed carrots yield fork-tender carrots in less than 20 minutes with almost no hands-on work. This simple recipe is sure to be a family favorite!

Reasons to love this recipe

  • Cooks in no time – Depending on your preference for the softness of the carrots, they can cook as quickly as 2 minutes.
  • Hands-free recipe – Simply pour the water, add the carrots to a steamer basket, cook, and vent. You can easily be working on other parts of your meal while these steam to perfection.
  • Yields perfectly cooked, fork-tender carrots every time!
  • An easy side dish to complete your weeknight or holiday meal.
  • Healthy, vegan side – Made with no added sugar and just two ingredients, you can feel good serving this side up with any main dish!

Health Benefits

If you had a childhood similar to mine, you probably grew up being told to eat your carrots because they are good for your eyes. While this simple fact is true, there are numerous health benefits associated with carrots making them a highly nutritious vegetable to add to your diet immediately.

Here are just a few of the nutrients in this bright root vegetable:

  • Low-calorie food.
  • Good source of fiber with about 3 grams in about 2 small carrots.
  • High in Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Potassium.
  • Great source of beta carotene (which your body converts into Vitamin A).

To learn more about the nutritional benefits of carrots, you can read Carrots 101 from Healthline.

Here’s what you need to make the recipe

Ingredient notes/swaps

  • Carrots – you can use any type of carrots. I prefer baby carrots since no prep is involved. You can use whole carrots as well, chop them into 2-inch pieces just like baby carrots.
A white bowl with steamed carrots and a fork on the right side of the bowl with an instant pot in the back right.
Honey Glazed Carrots

Tools

Here are two things you need to make this recipe


TIPS

  • Baby carrots are best for the job – no need to peel or chop.
  • If using, regular carrots, chop the carrots the same size (1-1/2 to 2 inches) for even cooking. Cooking time will vary based on the thickness of the carrots.
  • You can make this recipe without a trivet as well. You’ll just need to transfer the carrots to a colander to strain the water out.
  • Release pressure immediately after the cooking cycle is complete to prevent overcooking.

Ways to season steamed carrots

While you can easily serve these cooked carrots as is, there are a number of ways to flavor up these tender carrots. Some of my favorite ways to season steamed carrots include:

  • Honey Glazed– Toss the steamed carrots in a simple glaze of honey and garlic.
  • Cilantro + Lime– Top with fresh chopped cilantro and a squeeze or two of lime juice.
  • Cinnamon + Sugar– Add a little cinnamon, sugar, and maybe some raisins for a sweet carrot finish.
  • Unsalted butter – Serve the cooked carrots with melted butter, freshly ground pepper, and herbs such as fresh parsley or thyme.

How to steam carrots without a steaming basket

Don’t have a steaming basket? No problem! To steam carrots without a steaming basket:

  • Put the carrots on the trivet.
  • Steam for 0 minutes in the Instant Pot.
  • Make sure to release pressure immediately.
  • Transfer the carrots to a serving plate carefully.
  • Season or serve as is.
An instant pot with a steamer basket topped with steamed carrots.
Instant Pot Steamed Carrots

How to prep ahead

There are two ways to prep ahead for this dish.

  • Prep the carrots in advance. Clean, chop and store the carrots until you are ready to steam.
  • Make the full recipe for steamed carrots and reheat up to 5 days later. If you like to take a day at the beginning of the week to meal prep dishes, these steamed carrots are a prime candidate to be made on your meal prep day.

Storage tips

You can save the leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days – making it perfect for meal prep. To reheat, microwave for a minute or two.

Serve it with

These Instant Pot carrots pair perfectly with a number of dishes. Some of my favorites include:

Pink circle with light bulb

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take carrots to get soft in the Instant Pot?

The cook time for instant pot carrots varies based on your desired level of softness.
For a slightly crunchier carrot, cook the carrots for 2 minutes.
If you prefer a softer steamed carrot, steam for 3 minutes in the instant pot.

Do you need a steamer basket to cook carrots in the Instant Pot?

No. You can easily steam carrots by using the trivet. Simply place carrots on the trivet in the instant pot. Steam for 0 minutes then pressure release immediately. 

Can you cook carrots with other vegetables?

I would not recommend steaming carrots with other vegetables as they tend to need a slightly longer time to cook than other vegetables. To prevent over-cooking or under-cooking the other vegetables cook them separately and toss them together when you are ready to serve.

Other Instant Pot recipes to try

Instant Pot Steamed Carrots Recipe

An instant pot steamer basket with baby carrots after steaming.

Instant Pot Steamed Carrots

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Steam your carrots to fork-tender perfection with this quick and easy Instant Pot steamed carrots recipe made with two ingredients in under 15 minutes.
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Pressure building time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 13 minutes
Servings: 4
Diet : Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Vegetarian
Course : Accompaniment
Method: Instant Pot
Cuisine : American

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb baby carrots
  • 1 cup water

Instructions
 

Steaming carrots in Instant Pot

  • Add a cup of water in the steel inner pot of the Instant Pot.
  • Place a trivet in the inner pot followed by a steamer basket or steel bowl over it.
  • Add the carrots in the steamer basket/steel bowl.
  • For carrots with a bit of crunch, pressure cook on high for 2 minutes. Increase the total time to 3 minutes, if you prefer soft carrots.
  • Release the pressure immediately by moving the steam valve to 'venting' as soon as the cooking cycle is complete. 

Notes

Tips
Baby carrots are best for this job – they require no prep work since they are already peeled. 

Pantry EssentialsGetting the right tools for your kitchen makes cooking more enjoyable and less frustrating. Here’s a list of kitchen essentials I own and recommend.

Disclosure: This recipe contains affiliate links to products we love and recommend. As an affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition

Calories: 40kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 91mgPotassium: 269mgFiber: 3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 15638IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 38mgIron: 1mg

Disclaimer: Approximate Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and can vary depending on the exact ingredients/brands used. If you have health issues, please work with a registered dietician or nutritionist.

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Keyword : easy, steamed

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