Cook on a Whim: Roasted Carrots and Parsnips With Tahini Dressing

Here’s an easy side dish perfect any time of year. I adore the contrasting colors of this salad, and if you’re looking for a budget-friendly veggie side, these roasted carrots and parsnips are just the thing. Root vegetables are cheaper than cheap, and keep in the fridge practically forever. I always have a few varieties of root veggies tumbling around in my crisper drawer, usually purchased on a whim with no idea what I’ll make out of them.

This is how my carrots and parsnips met their fate.

I am not and never have been a trend follower, but I guess I just couldn’t resist the tahini craze any longer. Tahini is everywhere. It’s not just in your dressings and hummus anymore — it’s in your brownies, chocolate chip cookies and ice cream, people!

Once I get an idea in my head, I can’t stop. I doodle recipe ideas down in my notebook or make a note on my phone. I scour Pinterest for inspiration. I literally dream up ideas. I started imagining all of the sweet and savory things I could do with tahini, and these roasted carrots and parsnips was just one of many ideas I came up with.

This recipe can easily be scaled up. Just make sure the vegetables lay in a single layer so they all roast evenly.

Pair these roasted carrots and parsnips with a ham, a roast leg of lamb (mint would be a great garnish if you go the lamb route) or whatever your protein of choice is. It would be great alongside my perfect simple pot roast.

This dish is easy on the budget, healthy and a cinch to prepare. I hope you’ll give this one a try!

Here’s how I made it:

Roasted Carrots and Parsnips with Tahini Dressing

Serves 4 to 6


For the dressing:

1/2 cup tahini

Juice of one lemon

1 garlic clove, finely minced or grated

Salt and pepper to taste

1 teaspoon poppy seeds


Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine, using a bit of water if needed to thin dressing.

Tahini dressing. Photo by Anita Parris Soule. Courtesy Cook on a Whim.

For the roasted carrots and parsnips:

3 to 4 large carrots, peeled and quartered lengthwise

3 to 4 large parsnips, peeled and quartered lengthwise

¼ cup olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Handful of fresh parsley and/or dill, finely chopped for garnish


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place all ingredients except parsley and dill on a large, rimmed baking sheet and toss to coat evenly with oil, salt and pepper. Spread into a single layer and roast in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes until soft and beginning to brown at the edges.

Remove from oven, transfer to serving dish, drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with fresh herbs of your choice. Enjoy!


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