I’m Pro-Adult Carrots and I Vote

Kate reminded me of an issue that’s interested me for a while now and deserves more attention. Baby carrots vs adult carrots.

Adult Carrots at Seward Coop
Adult Carrots at Seward Coop

I also didn’t peel my carrots, and I’ve demanded baby carrots never enter my house again. You know they aren’t actually mini carrots right? They are just carrots widdled down into nubs. And guess where those yummy nutrients are? Right underneath the skin. If you’re concerned about it being dirty, I think that thing by the window is called a sink. Carrots unpeeled are no dirtier than a potato with it’s skin on. Please tell me you eat the skin of your potatoes.

So true, Kate.

Few have gone further down the road of adult vs baby carrots (that should really be “carrots vs. shaved down carrots) than Rocco at Jackalope Ranch, who addressed this in multiple posts in 2003, starting with a story at Powderhorn Park:

A couple weeks ago I went to the Powderhorn Park May Day Parade. And what I remember from that day wasn’t the crazy bikes, but that my new friend Gabe was eating a carrot old-school style. And I mean Oooooold school. Forget that Baby Carrot Fad that defined the 90s or the 80s peel-your-carrots-first rage that swept the country. Gabe was eating an old-fashioned whole, unpeeled, but washed carrot. Retro cool.

Rocco, being an adventurous eater, tried eating a carrot “old-school style”:

So today, for the first time in years, I ate a whole, unpeeled carrot at lunch, rather than my usual 12 baby carrots. It ruled! Whole carrots dominate big time over baby carrots. What the hell have I been thinking all these years??? Everyone needs to jump Gabe’s Whole Carrot Bandwagon!!!!

This led to posts about the big carrot revolution.

If you’ve been living in a sheltered baby carrot world, I recommend stopping by your local coop to buy some fresh carrots to try. You may find one subtle difference between them and baby carrots: They have flavor (like carrots).

17 thoughts on “I’m Pro-Adult Carrots and I Vote”

  1. It’s high time someone stood up for the real carrot. We get tons of them in our CSA boxes from Featherstone Farm, and they were a revelation after years of the flavorless carrot nubs we’d been eating.

  2. I don’t bother with organic baby carrots because they taste like shit but I do eat a lot of regular old carrots–I just didn’t know you should eat them with the skin on. Hell I had one this morning and grumbled as I shaved off a portion of my thumbnail as I peeled it.

    From now on no more peeling of the carrots I eat!

  3. Baby carrots- Just when you think only poltical statments and other idealistic rhetoric are the end of the line of dumbing down for Americans we get baby carrots. Even our veggies are dumbed down by the great corporate thinkers. Who says “big brother” has to come from government.

  4. Right on, Ed! Baby carrots creep the hell out of me! Was recently explaining to coworkers the creepiness of baby carrots and none of them had any idea that they were just whittled-down grown-up carrots. They thought they were genetically engineered to be short and stubby…….which is just as creepy, but perhaps a less wasteful idea.

    I’m going to go eat my snack carrot right now, as a matter of fact!

  5. Baby carrots are another part of our convenience-oriented lifestyle – boo-hoo, I’m too spent to wash/peel a real carrot but I’ll gladly pay three times as much for creepy baby carrots – I grow my own carrots and those bastards taste so much better than the crap from stores but it sucks when I run out by the end of January.

  6. I have a general belief about all food stuffs. This rule says that to preserve quality of the food, minimize any processing of that food as much as possible until it time to consume that food. As a general rule, I believe that the processing of a food products, whether this means slicing raw meats, peeling or cutting vegtables, and fruits, will inherently speed the decay of that food. For example, buying fruit which is cut up in California, packaged, shipped to MN by truck, then stocked in the stores doesn’t make any sense if you want something that tastes fresh and still has the most nutritional value.

    I heard somewhere that baby carrots also tend to endure some rather long storage times in that prepeeled state.

    Anyway, faux baby carrots are certainly a relatively healthy option for snacking. However, maybe if people eat really flavorful carrots, they might increase their consumption and also look at other options in the produce aisle.

  7. Proof that it’s a marketing ploy.

    Grind up a full size carrot into a little nub – many times over, place them in a cleverly decorated plastic bag, call them baby carrots. Increase the cost of said bag of baby carrots, and people are more than willing to spend extra for the convenience of opening and throwing away of a plastic bag.

    What becomes of the left-over carrot grindings?

    i tried them before, they are flavorless and I swear I tasted soap. Nothing like a fresh carrot out of the garden. Simply wipe off the soil and munch. The flavor of a nub-free carrot.

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  9. I’ve tasted soap on baby carrots before too, it’s nasty. Between my own garden and my CSA, i probably have 15 lbs of carrots in the fridge, i’ll be set for fresh carrots for another couple of months. Even then, at the last of ’em, they’ll still be fresher than the average supermarket carrot.

  10. Wow, this adult carrot renaissance is giving me hope for the future! Worse than tasting soap on the baby carrots is tasting the bleach solution that is used on them. Whatever those local bulk carrots are at the Wedge, that are big and twisty shaped, they are awesome, perfect sweet/earthy balance of carrotness. I have to say the typical California bagged organic carrots aren’t that exciting, but in the fall when those local ones are at the coop, I can’t get enough of them!

  11. Rob’s got the “baby” carrot deal pretty well sussed. They’re just big old carrots ground down to nublets, for your alleged convenience. The NY Times Magazine had a fascinating article a few weeks back about how Cailfornia food banks are using gleaning techniques to get more fresh produce to food shelf users. Carrots are nearly impossible to get, because there are so many uses for less-than-perfect ones. You can read what happens to the “baby” carrot scrapings here: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/11/magazine/11banks-t.html?pagewanted=all

  12. There were terrific locally grown carrots at the Minneapolis Farmer’s Market last Saturday. I bought both a bunch of adult and a bunch of true baby carrots–both were amazingly fresh, sweet and crunchy, with the skin on!! Vendors are at the market on Saturdays until Christmas.

  13. Baby carrots are like brussel sprouts are to cabbage.Ed where are the juicey lucie related riding the bike in sub zero temps? Thanks a juicy lucie-bike riding fan.

  14. Now that is a blast from the past. Maybe enough of a blast to get out from under my rock and start blogging again. You will be happy to knowour household is still in the trenches of The Big Carrot Revolution. In fact over the past two years it seems the quality of big carrots has really improved. They are huge now. I used to have to pack two in my lunch but now the local, organic carrots are gigantic. Life is good of the big carrot front.

    Baby carrots can suck it. They’re the vegetable version of bottled water.

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