There are so many different ways that you could use grated carrots in the kitchen. They are a must-have in carrot cake, in salads, slaws, and many other meals, both sweet and savory!
Grating carrots isn’t always so easy though if you don’t know the correct methods to use. However, there are a few ways you can grate carrots at home, and knowing how to do so will save you quite a bit of time in the kitchen!
What is the absolute best way to grate carrots? The best way to grate carrots would either be by using a cheese grater, using a food processor, using a Magic Bullet, or if all else fails, julienning the carrots with a knife.
The best method for you will depend on the recipe you are using, the tools you have in your kitchen, and the consistency you want the carrots to be once grated, however.
Here is a complete guide on how to grate carrots, and which method we think is the best!
How To Grate Carrots With A Grater
The most common way to grate carrots is by using a grater (of course)! Using a grater gives you good consistency, and you are more in control of the grating process.
However, it can take quite long, and your arms might feel a little dead at the end of it all, especially if you have quite a few carrots to grate!
Here is how to grate carrots with a grater:
- Determine how many carrots you will need to get the grated quantity needed for the recipe. A rough guide is that 1 large carrot equals 1 cup of grated carrots.
- Wash the carrots under cold water to remove any dirt and residue chemicals.
- Use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin of the carrot, peeling downwards slowly.
- Chop both ends of the carrot off, removing around ¼ inch on either side.
- Place the grater over a cutting board, large bowl, or plate to catch the grated carrot.
- Grab hold of a carrot and place the bottom edge of the carrot against the top of the grater. Applying some pressure, move the carrot up and down the grater. Remember to move your hand away from the grater as the carrot becomes smaller.
- Repeat this until you get to the end of the carrot. You can carry on grating until the carrot is all gone, but just be careful not to shred your fingers.
Pros of using a grater:
- Can choose how small or big you want the carrot to be grated
- Graters are easy to use and most homes have one
- Perfect for grating small amounts
Cons of using a grater:
- Grating can become tiresome and your arm might become sore
- Not ideal for large quantities of carrots
- Can only grate one carrot at a time
So, using a grater to grate carrots is convenient and easy, but only if you need to grate a few carrots. For larger quantities, using a grater just isn’t feasible!
How To Grate Carrots With a Knife
If you find yourself needing to grate carrots at home, but don’t have a grater, you don’t have to change recipes!
You can grate carrots using just a knife, and while it might take a little longer, you will still be able to produce grated and shredded carrots to whip up a meal.
Here is how to grate carrots with a knife:
- See how many carrots you’ll need to grate. It is always safer to grate a little more, as you can always save this for another meal.
- Scrub the carrots under cold running water.
- Peel the carrots, moving the vegetable peeler slowly downwards.
- Cut off the ends of the carrot.
- Using a very sharp knife, cut the carrots into two-inch pieces. This gives you good size carrots to julienne to a very small size.
- Cut the rounded edge off of one side of the carrot, which lets you lay the carrot flat, so it doesn’t roll away, and it is safer for you to chop.
- Do not throw these rounded pieces away –they can also be chopped into small pieces.
- Take each carrot piece and cut lengthwise, cutting around 1/8-inch pieces or smaller.
- Stack these slices on top of each other and then use the knife to cut them into tiny matchstick pieces. Remember to move your finger back as you slice, to avoid any accidents.
- Try to get the carrot slices to be the same size so that they cook evenly and offer a good consistency to the meal they are being added to. The smaller you slice them, the more like grated carrots it will be.
Pros of using a knife:
- Ideal when you do not have any other method of grating
- You can achieve consistent size slices
Cons of using a knife:
- You will not be able to grate the carrots as fine as some other methods
- Quite a laborious method of grating carrots, especially if you have to grate a few
- The carrot slices might come out a bit too thick to be used in a recipe
How To Grate Carrots In A Food Processor
One of the easiest ways to grate carrots is to use a food processor! You can grate quite a large amount of carrots in one go, depending on the size of your food processor, and you don’t have to manually grate the carrots yourself!
Some preparation needs to be done to grate carrots in a food processor, but otherwise, it is fairly simple. If you’re looking for a food processor, here’s one of our favorites.
Here is how to grate carrots by using a food processor:
- Cut each carrot into 3-inch long pieces. This size will make it easy for the food processor to process the carrots.
- Get out the food processor shredding blade and attach it to the food processor in the correct place. The shredder should sit at the top of the food processor container so that the shredded carrots fall into the container.
- Place the lid onto the food processor, lining up the tube with the shredding blade.
- Place the chopped carrots into the tube, and then place the cylinder on top of them.
- Once everything is ready, and the safety lid is properly attached, switch on the food processor.
- Using the cylinder, slowly push down on the carrot pieces, pushing them into the blade.
- Continue to do this until all of the carrots are shredded. If you need to add more carrots in, make sure to stop the machine before doing so.
- Once all the carrots are grated, unplug the machine and empty out the container of grated carrots.
What if there is no shredder attachment?
If you have a smaller food processor that does not have a shredder attachment, you can still use it to grate carrots.
To do this, place the blade into the food processor and ensure the blade is locked into the processor. Add your chopped and peeled carrots into the bowl, and secure the lid properly.
Turn on the food processor and allow it to pulse until the carrots are chopped up small enough to be used in the recipe.
Do not leave it on pulse for too long, as it could turn the carrots into a puree.
Pros of using a food processor:
- An efficient way to grate a large number of carrots
- You do not have to grate the carrots manually
- Quickly grates carrots to an even size
Cons of using a food processor:
- More to clean up afterward
- You still have to prepare the carrots before grating
A food processor does offer an incredibly convenient way to grate a large number of carrots in a short amount of time, and is definitely an option to look into for food prep!
How To Grate Carrots In A Magic Bullet
You can even grate carrots using your trusted Magic Bullet! The Magic Bullet comes with a Cross Blade that can be used to shred different ingredients such as cheese and carrots.
Here is how to grate carrots by using a Magic Bullet:
- Figure out how many carrots you will need to grate for the recipe.
- Wash the carrots under cold running water, removing any dirt and grime.
- Use a peeler to peel the outer layer of the carrot.
- Chop ¼-inch off of either side of the carrot.
- Slice the carrot into 3-inch thick pieces.
- Attach the short cup onto the Magic Bullet if you are only shredding a small number of carrots, or the tall cup for more.
- Twist on the Cross Blade and add the chopped carrots to the cup.
- Pulse the Magic Bullet until the carrots have been shredded to a fine consistency, not leaving it on for so long that they turn to a puree.
Pros of using a Magic Bullet:
- Quick and easy way to grate carrots
- Can do either a small portion or large portion at one time using the different size cups
Cons of using a Magic Bullet:
- The carrots might be grated too fine, and be more like a wet puree
Can I Freeze Leftover Grated Carrots?
If you got a bit carried away and grated more carrots than you needed for the meal you were making, you can freeze them to use later on.
You might also enjoy meal prepping and prepping certain ingredients to make cooking during the week easier, and shredded carrots are definitely good to keep in the freezer.
Here is how you can prepare and freeze grated carrots:
- Fill up a large pot with water, around 2/3 of the way full, and allow it to come to a boil on the stovetop.
- Add your grated carrots to the boiling water, and allow these to come to a boil.
- Keep a very careful watch on the time, and once the carrots have been boiling for 2 minutes, remove them from the boiling water. Do this by scooping them out using a slotted spoon, and placing them directly into an ice water bath.
- The ice water bath helps to stop the carrots from cooking further.
- After the ice bath, drain the carrots and start portioning them out.
- Think about the number of grated carrots you will need when cooking, and try to portion them from that. It is better to have smaller portions that you can use, rather than one large frozen portion that you have to defrost all in one go.
- Place the grated carrots into sealable plastic freezer bags.
- Remove as much air as possible from the bags before sealing.
- Label with the date of freezing and lay the bags flat in the freezer to save space.
The carrots will keep in the freezer for up to 1 year if they are stored properly. The reason for blanching the carrots before freezing is to destroy the enzymes that might destroy the color, texture, and flavor of the carrots while they are frozen.
It really is a great idea to have portions of grated carrots in the freezer, as they can be used in so many meals, both sweet and savory. Just grate a little bit extra next time to pop into the freezer!
Now that we’ve gone over some of our favorite ways to grate carrots, here are a few related questions that we thought you might have had while reading this article.
What is the best way to grate carrots for carrot cake?
The best way to grate carrots for carrot cake would be to use an actual grater. This gives you good consistency and is the perfect size grate to use in carrot cake.
Alternatively, if you do not feel like manually grating the carrots yourself, you could use a food processor, which will grate the carrots much faster.
What is the difference between shredded and grated carrots?
Shredding and grating are both similar processes used to cut ingredients such as cheese or vegetables.
The difference between the two is that shredding creates thin, uneven strips, whereas grating results in small pieces of the food being cut up, to a size determined by the grater used.
Can I use pre-shredded carrots for carrot cake?
It is definitely better to use freshly grated carrots for carrot cake, rather than using packaged and pre-shredded carrots.
The carrots add in moisture to a carrot cake, and pre-shredded packaged carrots tend to be hard and dry, and using these will result in a dry carrot cake.