Did you know you can buy grated carrot from the supermarket?
Neither did I until recently.
This Vietnamese-inspired idea popped into my head when a packet of shredded carrot followed me home one day.
What? Don’t vegetables follow you home too? ?
The last time I tested the recipe it was an unseasonably cold day and I was thinking we weren’t going to enjoy it. But happily the hot deeply savoury beef mixed with the vibrantly coloured carrots was surprisingly comforting and satisfying.
for Vietnamese Carrot Bowls
Vietnamese Carrot Bowls
- 500 g ground (minced beef)
- 500 g carrots grated
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- 6 tablespoons lime juice
- small bunch mint or coriander (cilantro)
- handful fried shallots or roast peanuts
Heat a large frying pan on a medium high heat. Add a splash of oil and cook beef, stirring until it's no longer pink.
Place carrots in a large bowl. Top with the cooked meat, fish sauce and lime juice. Toss well to combine.
Taste and season with more fish sauce for salt or more lime for fresh acid.
Toss in the herbs and scatter over the fried shallots / peanuts.
Variations & Substitutions for Vietnamese Carrot Bowls
plan-B (pantry) – use frozen veggie rice instead of the carrot and herbs.
grate your own carrots – feel free to use a box grater or food processor!
Keto / ultra low carb – use grated cauliflower or broccoli or shredded cabbage.
vegetarian – replace beef with your favourite cooked veggie protein – diced tofu, chickpeas, lentils are all good. Some mushrooms or eggplant wouldn’t go astray.
different protein – any ground (minced) meat will work. Or any leftover cooked protein. I’m also thinking a fish version would be lovely and delicate with the lime. Sliced steak or stir fried beef or pork strips or even lamb.
no fish sauce – use soy sauce or just season with salt. Or you could add a few anchovies to the beef to melt in as it cooks.
no lime juice – lemon will be OK or you could use rice vinegar (reduce the quantity to 3 tablespoons so it doesn’t over power)
more substantial (carb lovers) – serve with noodles or rice or egg fried rice.
more substantial (low carb) – avocado, extra nuts, extra meat, low carb wraps.
hot! – serve with finely sliced fresh chilli peppers, dried chilli flakes or power or your fave hot sauce (hello Mr Sriracha)
different vegetables – any grated or shredded veg will be fab – like cauliflower, broccoli, shredded cabbage, shredded fennel, finely sliced celery (actually I’m going to try a celery version). Green beans or asparagus. Washed salad leaves, steamed asian greens. Shredded raw boy choy. Shredded iceberg lettuce.
different flavour bombs – cashews or macadamias, pickled onion, chilli (I really like pickled Jalapenos – not authentic but super delicious).
Waste Avoidance Strategy
ground (minced) beef – freeze it.
carrots – keep in a plastic bag in the fridge for weeks. Can be frozen if you’re leaving town!
fish sauce / roast peanuts / fried shallots – keep them in the pantry.
lime – will keep in a plastic bag in the fridge for months.
mint – best to use for another meal. Leaves can be frozen but will wilt when defrosted so not ideal. Alternatively make a mint oil by packing washed and dried leaves in a clean dry glass jar and covering with extra virgin olive oil.
coriander – best to use for another meal. Can be frozen but will wilt when defrosted.
Problem Solving Guide
bland – more salt / fish sauce! More shallots / peanuts. Or some hot sauce.
too dry – overcooked omelette. Next time get it out earlier. For now a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil will help.
You can! Just cook beef as per the recipe but everything else separately. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 1-2 weeks. Don’t freeze. To serve, warm beef in a frying pan. Then toss in the remaining ingredients.
More Simple Recipes like this Vietnamese Carrot Bowls
- Sunny Parisian Carrot Bowls
- Quick Tuna Curry Bowls
- Best Ever Beef Stroganoff
- Taco Tuesday Bowls
- Quick Smoky Beef & Aubergine