Fresh and light, this raw carrot salad is deliciously sweet with a flavorful acidic kick from the maple apple cider vinegar dressing. Quick and easy to make in just 10 minutes, serve this shaved carrot salad as a fun side dish or take to potlucks and picnics!
Have a peek at my cucumber fennel salad for another quick side salad recipe!
Easy side dishes are always good to have in your back pocket don't you think? Just like my quick and simple apple cucumber salad and my mango cucumber salad, this raw carrot salad uses minimal basic ingredients you may already have to hand, yet is so full of flavor.
With the sweetness of the carrots, touch of zing from the dressing and a little crunch from crushed pistachios and sesame seeds, you'll want to serve this shaved carrot salad with both summer recipes and holiday meals!
⭐ Why this recipe is so good
Light, refreshing and crunchy! Carrots have a natural sweetness, which we enhance with a touch of maple syrup, and the best crunch.
Basic ingredients. All these ingredients are easy to find in stores and many are pantry staples (or shopping list staples!).
Quick and easy. This is a super simple crunchy cold carrot salad that can be whipped up so quickly to enjoy with friends and family.
All the ingredients and their quantities are set out in the recipe card below.
Some notes on a few of them:
- Carrots - I suggest to use a Y peeler, potato peeler or mandolin to make your shaved carrots, as they give fun and tasty thin carrot ribbons. I suggest to discard the outside 'peel' of the carrots unless they are organic.
- Olive oil - using extra virgin olive oil will give you a better depth of flavor.
- Apple cider vinegar - this gives the tangy flavors of the dressing.
- Pistachios - to get a crunchy carrot salad we use crushed pistachios, just make sure to use unsalted ones!
- Sesame seeds - we dry toast the seeds for a little extra crunch and they look so pretty too!
📖 Swaps and variations
Swap apple cider vinegar. If you're looking for low histamine recipes, you may wish to use white distilled vinegar as a swap (it scores 0 on the SIGHI list), or if vinegar doesn't work for you, then a touch of apple juice or pomegranate juice gives a little tartness.
Swap parsley for dill or cilantro (coriander). Both give a lovely fresh herb flavor to the salad.
🔪 Step by step instructions
Making this raw carrot salad recipe is super quick, super easy and requires basic ingredients you may already have to hand!
All the instructions are set out in the recipe card below, but these photos should help guide you.
Step 1: Wash and peel the carrots
Use a Y peeler, potato peeler or mandolin to 'shave' your carrots. It's best to keep the carrot ribbons as thin as you can so they soak up the dressing (image 1).
Step 2: Toast the nuts and seeds
Add sesame seeds and (optional) crushed unsalted pistachios to a dry skillet. Heat on low for 2-3 minutes to toast the seeds, stirring a couple of times (image 2).
Step 3: Make the dressing
Whisk together extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, salt and (optional) black pepper in a small bowl (or shake in a jar) (image 3).
Step 4: Make the shaved carrot salad
Toss the shaved carrot ribbons in the dressing in a bowl. Sprinkle over the toasted sesame seeds, pistachios and fresh parsley (image 4).
💭 Recipe tips and notes
- Make sure to use raw carrots rather than cooked carrots!
- Use a Y peeler or food processor to make your shaved carrot ribbons.
- If you prefer, you can easily grate or shred the carrots using a box grater rather than shaving them.
- Taste test, and adjust the dressing to your preference with more vinegar or maple syrup.
📋 Frequently asked questions
Definitely! It's very easy to make this as a shredded carrot salad or grated carrot salad using the same ingredients. Just shred your carrots on the large holes on a box grater instead of shaving them (or use a food processor).
This is a fairly 'mild' salad in terms of flavor and lets the sweet crunchy carrots shine through, but for extra zing you can add more vinegar (if it works for you), fresh herbs or add a little minced garlic or grated fresh root ginger to the dressing.
Leaving the shaved carrots to marinate in the maple apple cider vinegar dressing for 30 minutes (covered, in the fridge) will give you so much extra flavor. However, my low histamine readers will likely wish to skip this step due to histamine formation, and prepare and serve the salad immediately.
🍽 How to serve carrot salads
As it's so fresh and simple, this raw carrot salad works so well as a side dish with meats or plant-based dishes.
- Serve as a light refreshing side for chicken recipes such as my air fryer boneless chicken thighs, my pan fried panko chicken or my pan fried rosemary chicken.
- Use this shaved carrot salad as a fresh and flavorful topping for my cottage cheese bowls or my cottage cheese toasts.
- Add to bowl recipes such as my low histamine salad or my roasted butternut squash quinoa bowl for a tangy fresh flavor addition!
🥗 More salad recipes
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Raw Carrot Salad
- Use a peeler to shave your washed carrots so you have thin carrot ribbons. If you are using organic carrots you can use all the carrot shavings, if not I suggest to discard the outside peelings of the carrots.
- In a dry skillet, add the crushed pistachios (if using) and sesame seeds. Heat on low for 2-3 minutes so they very lightly toast, stirring a few times. Set aside to cool.
- Whisk together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, salt and black pepper (if using).
- Add the carrots to a large bowl and drizzle on the dressing. Toss to coat the carrots. Sprinkle over the pistachios, sesame seeds and parsley to serve.
- I suggest to use a Y peeler or similar to create the shaved carrots.
- If using non-organic carrots you may wish to leave out the peelings from the outside of the carrots.
- For a more crunchy carrot salad, you can shave the carrots so they are thicker in size.
- Nutritional information is auto-generated and should be understood to be an estimate.
- apple vinegar scores 1. You can swap for white distilled vinegar (scores 0) or if vinegar doesn't work for you, then for a little fresh apple juice or pomegranate juice for that tart flavor.
- sesame seeds, which score 1. Please note that they are a top ten allergen and should only be consumed if you know you tolerate well.
- black pepper, which scores 2. This is optional.