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Carrot plants


Daucus carote
Wild carrot
Scientific classification
Binomial name
Daucus carota

The carrot is a root vegetable, typically orange or white in color with a woody texture. The edible part of a carrot is a taproot.


Carrots are often eaten raw, whole or shaved into salads for color, and are often cooked in soups and stews. One can also make carrot cake and carrot pudding. The greens are edible as a leaf vegetable, but are rarely eaten.

Together with onion and celery, carrots are one of the primary vegetables used in a mirepoix to make various broths. Beta-carotene, a dimer of Vitamin A, which gives this vegetable its characteristic orange colour, is thought to enhance the performance of receptors on the retina and thus improve eyesight. Carrots are also rich in dietary fiber, antioxidants, and minerals and are an alkaline food.


The wild ancestors of the carrot are likely to have come from Afghanistan, which remains the center of diversity of varieties of D. carota. The familiar wildflower, wild carrot, better known as "Queen Anne's lace", is a relative of the garden carrot; garden carrots that run to seed soon revert to their wild prototype, with a forking carroty-smelling, edible root that quickly becomes too woody and bitter to eat. The Parsnip is a close relatives of the carrot.

Carrot plants

Carrots or "skirrets" originally came in purple, white and yellow colours. The now synonymous orange carrot was developed in Holland as a tribute to William I of Orange during the Dutch fight for independence from Spain in the 16th century. The orange carrot, not only had a better taste but also had beta carotene making it healthier, and so all other carrots stopped being planted.

The Vegetable Improvement Center at Texas A&M University has developed a purple and orange carrot, the BetaSweet, with substances to prevent cancer, which has recently entered commercial distribution.


The world's largest carrot (a statue) is located in Ohakune, New Zealand.

Nutrition information

Raw carrots

Cooked carrots



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