Have a vegetable hater in the house? Then you need to try roasted carrot coulis. Seriously.
If there ever was a recipe that shows off all the glory of healthy veggies (besides a salad), it’s this one. A quick rough chop of sweet carrots, savory red bell peppers, and spicy sweet sliced onion — roasted until caramelized in the oven — and then whipped with fresh basil? Yes please!
And just wait until you see how beautiful it is …
What the Heck is Coulis?
I think I cook some tasty dishes but I’m no Julia Child so I did have to look up how to pronounce “coulis” (the s is silent). I knew enough from watching cooking shows that a fruit coulis is a sauce served over ice cream or some other dessert, but I’d never heard of this savory application.
A little further research into French cooking informed me that a coulis is simply a thick sauce made from pureed fruit or pureed vegetables, rather than being thickened with a roux. Coulis can be made with anything from blackberries to tomatoes.
Getting extra veggies in the kids? I’m sold!
The smooth texture and that fact that it’s roasted to bring out the natural sugars in the veggies made me think this would be a hit with the kids. (I’ve yet to meet a 2 year old who will power through a salad.) This is also a healthy comfort food option to serve on the side of a hearty meatloaf or a roast.
How to Make Creamy (But Dairy Free) Roasted Carrot Coulis
So what is it? A sauce? A side dish? A dip?
Well, it can be all of those. Let me explain.
First, give the veggies a rough quick chop. (We’re going for rustic here.) I’m always bulk cooking for a crowd, so I make this a ton when these ingredients are in season or on sale (or score a bunch from the farmer’s market) and roast several pans all at once.
TIP: The leftovers freeze beautifully for a quick side dish another night!
Next, roast them! Roasting is really important to take the flavor to the next level as it brings out the natural sugars in the veggies (and wins over the kids). Don’t skip this step!
I just have to show you how this looks when it comes out. Isn’t it beautiful?
When they’ve cooled a little, I throw the roasted veggies into my Vitamix or food processor with fresh basil and some olive oil. The texture and all of the seasonings are easily adjusted for personal preference.
To go with the French theme … voilà!
How to Serve
As I said, this recipe is very versatile and can be served multiple ways:
- As a sauce – Thin it and serve as a sauce on top of fish, chicken, or pork.
- As a dip – Make it thick and mix in some feta in the final step. Serve as a dip with grain-free crackers.
- As a side dish – Serve just as you would mashed cauliflower or potatoes (only so much prettier!).
Here’s how to make roasted carrot coulis the next time you want to impress guests … or just your family!
Roasted Carrot Coulis Recipe
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Lay first four ingredients out in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Drizzle with 2 Tablespoons olive or avocado oil and season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Mix well to coat.
- Roast for 15 minutes and turn veggies over halfway through cooking time.
- Cool slightly.
- Place roasted vegetables, red peppers, basil, and remaining extra-virgin olive oil into a food processor or blender and puree until smooth.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Thin with a little extra EVOO if a thinner sauce is desired.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
- Double or triple the recipe (increase cooking time slightly) and portion coulis into freezer bags or silicone molds.
- Squeeze out extra air and freeze flat if using freezer bags.
- Thaw and serve when needed.