Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (2024)

by Danielle

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Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (1)

When I was a young, newly-wedded lass, by accident I discovered something quite magical:

If I put baby carrots into a jar of leftover pickle juice, I would end up with crunchy, juicy, mouth-watering carrot pickles.

Yes, my husband did think I was crazy, but it was a feeling he would be growing accustomed to during our nine years of marriage (and counting). 🙂

Years have passed, and due to health challenges in our family, I have stopped buying the neon green jars of pickles from the supermarket. When I started learning about how simple home fermentation is, and the benefits of fermented foods, you better believe I was a happy girl when I realized fermented carrots tasted very similar to my “homemade” carrot pickles (actually, better!) – and were way healthier!

I’m going to be showing you how easy fermentation is in the next few months, sharing the recipes that I use ’round these parts. . . and I wanted to start with these fermented carrot pickles because I think they are the simplest veggie to ferment for beginners.

Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (2)


Benefits of Fermented Carrots

Why on earth would someone want to get started fermenting vegetables? Wow – you could write a whole book talking about fermentation. Thousands of entire websites are devoted to the subject. For starters, I’ll list the more well-known benefits.

  1. Probiotics – pesticide-free vegetables actually contain their own unique combinations of beneficial bacteria. When you add these veggies to a salt brine and keep in an airtight container, the good bacteria are allowed to proliferate at an enormous pace. The result? One bite of fermented food can have more beneficial bacteria than an entire bottle of expensive probtiotics.
  2. With that in mind, I’ll just mention that since one bite of sauerkraut – or what have you – has more bacteria than most bottles of probiotics, which are very pricey, fermented foods end up being extremely frugal. I’d much rather make a batch of sauerkraut for a couple bucks than pay twenty times that for a bottle of probiotics that might not survive the digestive process.
  3. Enzymes – another great side effect of fermenting live food is the enzymes they contain. Taken before a meal or as a condiment/side with a meal, they provide enzymes that aid digestion and relieve your body of the burden of having to make so many enzymes to complete digestion.
  4. Fermenting is a way of preserving foods.
  5. Detoxifying – fermented foods, filled with beneficial bacteria, are “potent detoxifiers”. According to Dr. Mercola, beneficial gut bacteria perform a number of surprising functions, including:
  • Mineral absorption, and producing nutrients such as B vitamins and vitamin K2 (vitamin K2 and vitamin D are necessary for integrating calcium into your bones and keeping it out of your arteries, thereby reducing your risk for coronary artery disease and stroke5)
  • Preventing obesity and diabetes, and regulating dietary fat absorption
  • Lowering your risk for cancer
  • Improving your mood and mental health
  • Preventing acne
  • and so much more.

Want to learn more?

There are also some really great books out there on the art of fermenting which go into much greater depth than I will be able to. 🙂 These are my favorites:

The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from around the WorldSimple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (3) by Sandor Katz

Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foodsby Sandor Katz

Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet DictocratsSimple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (4)by Sally Fallon

The Nourished Kitchen: Farm-to-Table Recipes for the Traditional Foods Lifestyle Featuring Bone Broths, Fermented Vegetables, Grass-Fed Meats, Wholesome Fats, Raw Dairy, and KombuchasSimple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (5)by Jennifer McGruther

So with all that said, let’s get right down to business, shall we?

But wait – A note on fermenting vegetables with whey:

Many, many recipes (including some of the recipes in the aforementioned books) recommend the use of whey (the liquid left over from straining yogurt) as a starter culture to add to each batch of fermented vegetables.

I don’t recommendthe use of whey when fermenting fresh vegetables. The beneficial bacteria found in whey are specifically suited for fermenting dairy. It is just not necessary, and I think you’ll end up with an inferior batch. So – my advice – feel free to skip the whey! As long as you are using fresh, organic vegetables, they will contain all the beneficial bacteria you will need. This is often referred to as “wild fermentation” – using the “wild” bacteria found on the vegetable itself and in the air to ferment rather than with a starter.

Just my two cents – but I have been fermenting without the use of whey for years and it is very, very rare for me to have a batch that doesn’t turn out perfectly. I find it totally unnecessary! Plus, many people who are especially in need of fermented veggies/foods for healing are dealing with dairy allergies, such as my children, and couldn’t use whey anyway.

So let’s get started!

Fermented Carrots


  • about 1 1/2 pounds of organic carrots. They can be from the garden, from the farmer’s market, from the grocery store, with tops or without. It doesn’t matter how they come. 🙂 And you won’t use a whole pound if your jar is a quart-sized jar.
  • 19 grams of high-quality sea salt (this is the kind I use) per quart of non-chlorinated water to make a 2% brine – I got this digital scale for my birthday and it is *perfect* for measuring salt. (Thanks, Mom and Dad!!)
  • 3 peeled cloves of garlic (optional)
  • a few sprigs of fresh dill (flowering is good) – this is also optional


  • 1 quart glass fermenting jar. I’ve tried all sorts of fermenting jars, and the ones that give me consistent results every time are Fido, hermetically sealed jars. I love fermenting with our 1/2 gallon jars like these, because we have a larger family, but you can use any size. These jars are high-quality, worth every penny. They will gently release CO2 buildup over the fermentation period, preventing explosions, and yet they will not allow any air to enter, decreasing the chance of mold getting into your ferment. I can’t recommend them enough.(See notes for all your jar options.)
  • sharp knife & cutting board


  1. Make sure your hands are washed, carrots are rinsed, and equipment is clean.
  2. Cut the tops off the carrots, and slice the carrots into carrot sticks, like you see in the photos. Make sure they are the right length for your jar – not too long, not too short. You want to leave about an inch of space below the “shoulder” of the jar – where the jar curves inward.
  3. Into the empty jar, put your garlic and dill, if using. Fresh is best – I have read that dried can cause problems with mold. These are not necessary but add nice flavor.
  4. Pack the carrots upright into your jar, as tight as you can possibly pack them. As I mentioned, try to leave an inch of room between the top of the packed carrots and the shoulder of the jar.
  5. Make your brine by dissolving 19 grams of sea salt into a quart of purified water. (I just stir with a spoon until dissolved.) Pour the brine over your carrots, and try to pour up to the shoulder of the jar and no higher. You might need to make more than 1 quart of brine, depending on the size of your fermenting jar. Just remember to keep the same ratios.
  6. Wipe the opening of the jar with a clean towel or paper towel, and seal shut.
  7. Store your carrots in a cool, dark place for 7 days. (I keep mine in my pantry.) When done, will keep in the refrigerator for many months.


Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (6)

Fermented Carrots Recipe

★★★★★5 from 1 reviews
  • Author: Lovelovething
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These delicious, tangy fermented carrots are an easy first fermenting recipe for beginners.



  • 1.5lbs organic carrots
  • 19 grams of high-quality sea salt
  • 3 peeled cloves of garlic
  • a few sprigs of fresh dill


  1. Wash your hands and rinse your carrots, making sure everything is clean.
  2. Slice carrots to fit your car, removing tops and any brown bits.
  3. Fill the empty jar: Put your garlic and dil in first, if using.
  4. Pack the carrots upright into your jar, as tight as you can possibly pack them .Leave an inch gap at the top of the jar for the brine.
  5. Make your brine by dissolving 19 grams of sea salt into a quart of purified water.
  6. Pour the brine over your carrots, and try to pour up to the shoulder of the jar and no higher.
  7. Wipe the opening of the jar with a clean towel or paper towel, and seal shut.
  8. Store your carrots in a cool, dark place for 7 days.
  9. When done, your fermented carrots will keep in the refrigerator for many months.


Try not to open your jar while fermenting. The fermentation process will build up pressure, and if you are using a Fido jar, it will escape on its own, preventing contamination. However, if you are not using a Fido, then you may need to slightly twist open the lid and “burp” the jar, quickly closing again.

Feel free to add other flavorings, such as peppercorns to spice it up!

Even though I pack my carrots as tight as I can, during the 10 days they shift around and some end up above the water line. This is not ideal, but if you’re using a truly airtight system, you shouldn’t have to worry about mold.

I have used many different kinds of setups for fermenting. I really speak highly of theFido jarsbecause I have had so much success with them. ÂYou can definitely usemason jars, or evenairlock lidswith mason jars. I have used those as well, although my results varied quite a bit. But I do realize not everyone has Fido jars on hand. I bought a 6 pack of 1/2 gallon Fidos from by using some rewards points I had accumulated and a discount code. I also have lots of luck finding Fido jars from discount stores such as Ross, Marshall’s, etc. They are worth hunting around for or adding to your wish list!

  • Method: Fermented

Keywords: fermented carrot sticks recipe

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Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (7)

There you have it! It’s as easy as stuffing a jar with carrots and salt water (and spices, if you wish). Do your body a favor, and try this very, very soon!

Much love,


P.S. Love fermented foods like I do? Oh Lardy’s Guide to Fermenting Fruits and Vegetables has just been released! For a limited time, you can use coupon code FERMENT30 to receive 30% off the price.

Read This Next: Cell Salts: The Easy Homeopathy

Simple Fermented Carrots Recipe - It's A Love/love Thing (2024)


How long does it take for carrots to ferment? ›

Check the carrots every few days. Scrape off any scum that has formed on the surface and taste the pickles. I usually let vegetables ferment for 5-10 days or so. They will develop a pleasant, sour-pickle flavor, but should also maintain some crispness.

Is it safe to eat fermented carrots? ›

Whether you are generally healthy or have a few health issues, fermented vegetables such as these fermented carrots can populate your gut with the bacteria it needs to sustain a robust immune system, healthy digestive system, and sound mind.

Do you have to peel carrots before fermenting? ›

If you like, you may peel them, but often, just a nice scrubbing will do, assuming the carrots are organic. (Always peel produce that is not organic before fermenting.) Slender carrots my be fermented whole; thick carrots are best sliced into lengthwise quarters.

What is the best salt for fermenting vegetables? ›

The type of salt recommended to ferment with is an unrefined salt that is full of natural vitamins and minerals. One of the best types of salt to ferment with is sea salt. Sea salt contains several nutrients, including trace amounts of magnesium, potassium and calcium. Picking salt and Kosher salt are also good to use.

How do I know when my fermented carrots are ready? ›

As the carrots ferment, the brine will get cloudy; this is when you can start to test your pickles. They're ready when they're pleasingly sour and pickle-y tasting, without the strong acidity of vinegar. If they're not sour enough for your palate, continue to ferment longer.

Why are my fermented carrots slimy? ›

Lacto-fermentation brines can become slimy, but this phenomenon is harmless. It is caused by harmless bacteria. Possible causes: Fermentation temperature too low or too high.

Why are my fermented carrots cloudy? ›

It's normal for a fermentation to get cloudy, especially near the bottom of the jar- that's your bacteria so don't worry about that at all! If there really is a thin layer of yeast on top of your brine, we recommend pulling it off and tasting the veggies underneath.

Can you eat too much fermented vegetables? ›

Fermented foods are considered safe for most people. However, some individuals may experience side effects. Due to the high probiotic content of fermented foods, the most common side effect is an initial and temporary increase in gas and bloating ( 32 ).

How do you ferment carrots without salt? ›

Ferments with less salt may be more prone to surface molds. You can leave out the salt or use various mineral-rich substitutes such as celery juice (my favorite salt-free variation) or seaweed. Just be sure the vegetables are submerged in the liquid.

How do you store fermented carrots? ›

The optimum temperature for storage is below 12°C. However, even if you keep your jars at 27°C, fermented vegetables will still be good and safe. They will simply be more acidic and softer.

What are the health benefits of fermented carrots? ›

By fermenting vegetables, the bacteria naturally present in the veggies multiply and produce lactic acid. This lactic acid not only preserves the veggies, but it also promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut. These good bacteria help support a healthy digestive system and a strong immune system.

Can iodized salt be used for fermentation? ›

Iodine tends to inhibit the beneficial bacteria in a cultured vegetable, so we do not recommend using iodized salt for vegetable fermentation. Any container of salt should be clearly labeled if it is iodized (contains iodine). Check for and avoid anti-caking agents, as well.

Can I use pink himalayan salt for fermenting? ›

Pink Himalayan salt, sea salt, fleur de sel, and grey salt are ideal for vegetable fermentation. Kosher salt and calcium chloride may be appropriate in some cases. Table salt is not recommended.

Can you use too much salt when fermenting? ›

Too much salt can slow the fermentation process down to the point of halting it altogether. Stay within the range of 1-3 tablespoons salt per quart, and with minor adjustments, you will produce delicious, nutritious fermented vegetables every time!

How long does it take for carrots to soften? ›

Here's how long to cook carrots on the stove top depending on how they're cut: 7 to 9 minutes for ¼-inch slices. 4 to 6 minutes for strips. 8 to 10 minutes for baby carrots.

How do I know if vegetable fermentation is complete? ›

3) Taste your ferment on day 7 with a clean fork. Within 1 week it should start to taste sour. If you like it, it is done. If not let it continue to ferment.

Can fermentation be done in 3 days? ›

For most beer the major part of the fermentation is done within 3 days of the first signs of vigorous fermentation. The rest is just conditioning. For a big beer it'll take longer.

How much time is required for fermentation of carrot juice? ›

Carrot is rich in carbohydrate and you require enzymes to first convert carbohydrate into simple sugars and then it can be fermented by using yeast. In laboratory preparation it takes an half hour when you give temperature sufficiently but in natural it takes 3 months.


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