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This French-inspired carrot salad is refreshing and healthy, and comes with a bright and tangy lemon dressing! It’s a French classic that requires just 10 wholesome ingredients and 15 minutes to prepare!

Grated carrots in a bowl with garlic and parsley.

Carottes rapées is a salad my mom used to make us regularly during the Summer months. It’s simplicity at its best: grated carrots are tossed with a tangy, herby, and garlicky dressing.

This type of carrot salad is usually served as part of a “crudités” platter, which is a dish with cold veggies such as radishes, cucumbers, asparagus, or beets served as an appetizer.

I hope you will love this simple, yet bright and flavorful salad!

⭐️ Why You Should Try It

  • Crisp and juicy. Finely grated raw carrots bring a ton of crispiness and soak up the dressing beautifully! The result is a salad that is loaded with texture and super fresh thanks to the bright and herby dressing. It’s no wonder “carottes râpées” is considered one of the most renowned French salads!
  • Fresh and healthy. This carrot salad is one of our favorite last-minute summer salads thanks to its simplicity and fresh flavor. On top of that, it’s a healthy salad as it uses vibrant and nutritious ingredients.
  • Simple yet customizable. You will need less than 15 minutes of prep time to whip up this salad. Plus, you can customize to your liking by incorporating dried fruits, chopped nuts, extra veggies, and more!

📘 What is Carottes Rapées

“Salade de carottes râpées” (grated carrots) is a French salad that consists of raw grated carrots tossed with a dressing made of olive oil, lemon juice or vinegar, garlic, and parsley. It’s a simple salad that is incredibly popular during the summer months in France. It is so popular that it can be found sold in every supermarket or convenience store.

Ingredients like carrots, lemon, shallots, garlic, and parsley.

🥕 Ingredient Notes

Here is what you will need to prepare this salad:

  • Carrots – Use fresh and firm orange carrots. We do not recommend buying pre-grated carrots or whole carrots sold in a plastic bag, as these are typically of lower quality.
  • Shallot and garlic – For a pungent aroma.
  • Olive oil – Use high-quality virgin olive oil for a fruity and nutty flavor.
  • Lemon juice – For tanginess and freshness. We highly recommend using freshly squeezed lemon juice for optimal flavor. Bottled lemon juice never tastes as fresh.
  • Orange juice – Optional but recommended. It brings a natural sweetness and a hint of orange flavor that goes very well with the carrots. A quick tip: add a sprinkle of orange zest as well for extra flavor!
  • Maple syrup – We like to add a teaspoon of maple syrup to the dressing to balance the tanginess of the lemon juice. Instead of maple syrup, feel free to use agave syrup or granulated sugar.
  • Dijon mustard – Optional. Adding mustard will help emulsify the dressing and add a hint of spiciness. If you don’t like mustard, simply omit it.
  • Salt and pepper – To season.
  • Fresh herbs – We use parsley but feel free to use cilantro or basil.

🥣 How to Make It

  1. Grate the carrots. Wash and peel the carrots. Grate them using a box grater or a food processor fitted with the grating disk. Transfer the grated carrots to a large mixing bowl.
  2. Mince the shallot and garlic. Peel and thinly minced the garlic and shallot. Add them to the bowl containing the grated carrots.

Grated vs Julienned

When making French carrot salad in France, we generally tend to grate them using either a food processor fitted with the grating disk or a box grater. Grated carrots typically absorb the dressing a little bit better than julienned, especially if you plan to serve the salad immediately. However, julienned carrots look fancier, hence that’s why we used them here in the photos!

If you want to make this salad using julienned carrots, we have a couple of recommendations. First, use a very thin julienne slicer to get thin strips. Second, let the salad rest for a few hours. This will allow the carrots to absorb the dressing and soften a bit. Now your julienned carrots taste just as good as the grated ones!

  1. Add the dressing and seasonings. Pour in the olive oil, orange juice, lime juice, and maple syrup. Sprinkle the salt and ground black pepper. Note: If you are using Dijon mustard, whisk together the dressing ingredients in a small bowl first to emulsify them.
  1. Toss to coat. Using two large spoons, toss the grated carrots to coat them with the dressing. Add the chopped parsley and toss again to combine.
  2. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Taste the salad and adjust the saltiness, tanginess, and sweetness to your liking.
  3. Serve. You can serve this salad immediately or chill it in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.

📔 Tips

  • Taste and adjust the seasonings. Depending on the size and type of carrots used, you might have to adjust the seasonings. We recommend starting with 1/8 teaspoon of salt and adding more as needed. If you like tangier salads, feel free to increase the amount of lime or orange juice as well.
  • Let the salad chill. Unless you are in a hurry, we highly advise letting the carrot chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. This will allow the carrots to absorb the dressing. Plus, the salad tastes even better served fresh!

🍊 Variations

This carrot salad is versatile so you can easily customize it to your liking. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Dried fruits: Add extra sweetness by incorporating raisins, chopped dates, or figs into the salad.
  • Nuts: For nuttiness and crunchiness, stir in toasted pine nuts, walnuts, or slivered almonds.
  • Seeds: Incorporate sesame seeds or sunflower seeds for extra nutrients and texture.
  • Zest: We love to add orange or lemon zest to this carrot salad for a citrusy flavor! Use 1-2 teaspoons of finely chopped zest.
  • Cheese: For extra freshness, add scrambled vegan ricotta or finely chopped vegan mozzarella.
  • Spices: A pinch of cumin and/or coriander pairs very well with these carrots!

🧆 What to Serve It With

You can serve this salad as an appetizer, a light lunch, or a side dish with falafels, sautéed tofu, corn fritters, or high-protein vegan burgers!

❄️ Storing

  • To store: You can store the salad in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To freeze: We do not recommend freezing this salad.

💬 FAQ

Should I refrigerate the salad before serving?

It is not mandatory. You can serve this salad right away, and it’s still delicious. However, we found that the salad tasted much better after a few hours in the refrigerator.

How finely should I grate the carrots?

The thinner, the better. Your grated carrots should not be thicker than 1/16-inch (2mm) thick. If you are using a food processor, use the grating disk with the thinnest holes.

Close-up of grated carrot salad with garlic and parsley.

This French carrot salad is a classic that you will love during the hotter season. It’s crispy, refreshing, and healthy! We typically double or even triple the recipe to make sure we have enough to enjoy throughout the week!

⭐️ Did you like this recipe? Let us know in the comments below, and tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest!

French carrot salad with basil and raisins on a plate.
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Recipe

French Carrot Salad

5 from 1 vote
Author: Thomas Pagot
This French-inspired carrot salad is refreshing and healthy, and comes with a bright and tangy lemon dressing! It's a French classic that requires just 10 wholesome ingredients and 15 minutes to prepare!
Prep Time : 15 minutes
Total Time : 15 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Calories 222 kcal

Ingredients
 

  • 6 medium carrots
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp orange juice optional
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley

Instructions
 

  • Grate the carrots. Wash and peel the carrots. Grate them using a box grater or a food processor fitted with the grating disk. Transfer the grated carrots to a large mixing bowl.
  • Mince the shallot and garlic. Peel and thinly minced the garlic and shallot. Add them to the bowl containing the grated carrots.
  • Add the dressing and seasonings. Pour in the olive oil, orange juice, lemon juice, and maple syrup. Sprinkle the salt and ground black pepper. Note: If you are using Dijon mustard, whisk together the dressing ingredients in a small bowl first to emulsify them.
  • Toss to coat. Using two large spoons, toss the grated carrots to coat them with the dressing. Add the chopped parsley and toss again to combine.
  • Taste and adjust the seasonings. Taste the salad and adjust the saltiness, tanginess, and sweetness to your liking.
  • Serve. You can serve this salad immediately or chill it in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours. You can store the salad in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Notes

  • Taste and adjust the seasonings. Depending on the size and type of carrots used, you might have to adjust the seasonings. We recommend starting with 1/8 teaspoon of salt and adding more as needed. If you like tangier salads, feel free to increase the amount of lime or orange juice as well.
  • Let the salad chill. Unless you are in a hurry, we highly advise letting the carrot chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. This will allow the carrots to absorb the dressing. Plus, the salad tastes even better served fresh!

Nutrition

Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 222 kcal | Carbohydrates: 24.4 g | Protein: 2.1 g | Fat: 14.1 g | Saturated Fat: 2 g | Sodium: 431 mg | Potassium: 704 mg | Fiber: 5.1 g | Sugar: 12.5 g | Calcium: 78 mg | Iron: 1 mg
Course : Appetizer, Salad
Cuisine : French
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About the Author

Thomas Pagot is the founder, photographer, and recipe developer behind Full of Plants. He created the blog in 2016 as a personal cookbook for vegan recipes. Through years of recipe development, Thomas has successfully grown Full of Plants into a trusted resource for plant-based recipes.

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5 stars
A healthy and delicious carrot recipe that satisfied even the carrot hater. I mean my daughter lol. Simple and effortless to prepare. We kept the leftovers in the fridge and finished it the following day as a side with burgers.