Learn how to julienne carrots 2 ways! These easy methods yield crisp, slender matchsticks that are perfect for soups, stir fries, salads, and more.
Learning how to julienne carrots might seem fussy, but if you like cooking with vegetables, this simple French technique will serve you well. It’s a fantastic example of how the way you cut a vegetable can totally transform its character. While whole carrots are hard and stocky, julienned ones are crisp and delicate. They’re a great way to add crunch and sweet, earthy flavor to all sorts of dishes. Toss them into stir fries, tuck them into a wrap, or sprinkle them on a salad!
How to Julienne Carrots with a Peeler
Most often, I julienne carrots in one of two ways: with a julienne peeler or with a knife. If you plan to julienne carrots (or other vegetables – zucchini, cucumber, etc.), often, I highly recommend investing in a peeler. They’re cheap and efficient. Using one, you can julienne a whole bunch of carrots in just minutes! I like this one from OXO. It works perfectly, and it’s just $8.
To julienne carrots with a peeler, place a large carrot, long-side-down, on a flat surface. Hold the carrot by its thick end, and drag the peeler down the carrot, moving from the thick end to the thin one. This motion will produce slender carrot matchsticks. Repeat it until the carrot becomes too thin to julienne. That’s it!
Tip: if your carrots happen to have tops, I recommend leaving them on. They’re handy for anchoring down the carrots as you work.
How to Julienne Carrots with a Knife
No julienne peeler? No problem. You can also julienne carrots with a knife. It’s a bit more time consuming, but you’ll get to impress with your fancy knife skills, and you’ll still end up with perfect carrot matchsticks. Here’s how to do it:
- First, peel the carrots. Use a regular vegetable peeler to slice off the carrot skins.
- Next, lay the carrots on a cutting board, long side down. Trim off the tops, and use a sharp chef’s knife to cut the carrots crosswise into 2 or 3 chunks. Each one should be 2-3 inches long. The exact size and number will depend on the size of your carrots. Slice each chunk lengthwise into thin planks.
- Lay a plank on its wide, flat side, and cut it lengthwise into thin matchsticks. Repeat with the remaining planks. If you like, you can stack the planks, cutting a few at a time to work more quickly.
How to Use Julienned Carrots
Whether you julienne carrots with a peeler or with a knife, there are so many ways to use them! If you really want to show them off, make this Carrot Salad. Julienned carrots mingle with fresh herbs, pistachios, and sweet Medjool dates, and an aromatic dressing ties the whole thing together. If you like carrots, you’ll adore this salad.
Otherwise, toss the carrots into soups, stir fries, bowls, and more! Try using them in any of these recipes:
- Oyster Mushroom Soup – Carrot matchsticks add brilliant color to this savory, brothy soup.
- Steamed Bao Buns – Tuck in a few carrots for color and crunch!
- Avocado Toast or Banh Mi Sandwich – Pickled carrot and daikon matchsticks add sweet, tangy flavor to these hearty recipes.
- Vegetarian Bibimbap – I love their crisp texture in this Korean-inspired rice bowl.
- Bok Choy Stir Fry, Best Buddha Bowl, or Adzuki Bean Bowl – Replace the carrot ribbons with julienned carrots.
How do you like to use julienned carrots? Let me know in the comments!
More Vegetable Cooking Guides
If you loved learning how to julienne carrots, check out one of these tutorials on cooking or cutting vegetables next:
- How to Make Veggie Noodles
- How to Make Zucchini Noodles
- Roasted Vegetables
- What are Leeks? (And How to Cook Them)
- How to Cook Asparagus
- What is Fennel? (And How to Cook It)
- How to Cook Spaghetti Squash
- How to Cook Fresh Green Beans
How to Julienne Carrots
- 1 pound medium or large carrots
- To julienne carrots with a julienne peeler: Wash the carrots well and pat them dry. Place one, long-side-down, on a flat surface. Hold the thick end of the carrot and drag the julienne peeler from the thick to the thin end. Repeat until the carrot is too thin to julienne. Repeat with the remaining carrots.
- To julienne carrots with a knife: Wash the carrots well and peel them with a vegetable peeler. Place them on a cutting board, long-side-down, and trim off the tops. Cut the carrots crosswise into 2 or 3 (2-3-inch) chunks. The exact number and size will depend on the size of your carrots. Slice each chunk lengthwise into thin planks and then cut the planks lengthwise into thin matchsticks. To work more quickly, you can stack the planks as you cut them into matchsticks.
- Use in carrot salads, stir fries, or any recipe that calls for julienned carrots.