Mexican Pickled Carrots (Zanahorias en Escabeche)

Whip up a batch of these addictive Mexican Pickled Carrots and Jalapeños, also called Zanahorias en Escabeche, to serve alongside your favorite Mexican recipes.

This iconic Mexican condiment, along with pickled red onions, pickled peppers and pickled green tomatoes, are the perfect Mexican vegetables to pickle.

Various herbs, spices and vegetables with black food labels.

Ingredients

Here are the “must have” ingredients to make this pickled carrots recipe. For the full list of ingredients, reference the recipe card below.

  • Fresh Carrots
  • White Vinegar
  • Salt
  • Pickling Spices (such as oregano and peppercorn)

How To Make Pickled Jalapeños and Carrots

The process for pickling Mexican carrots and jalapeños is a breeze. Here’s a brief overview; the full list of instructions are in the recipe card below:

Step 1. Dice and slice the vegetables.

Step 2.  Boil the vegetables. 

Step 3. Add the veggies and vinegar brine to large heat resistant glass jars.

Let marinate a minimum of 3 hours before enjoying!

cream dutch oven with spices inside to make Zanahorias en Escabeche.

How To Pick The Best Mexican Vegetables

High quality produce equals higher quality Mexican pickled vegetables. When shopping, here’s what to look out for:

  • Jalapeños should be firm with smooth skin.
  • Carrots should be uniform thickness (when pickling).
  • Avoid baby carrots as they are less flavorful.

Prepping The Vegetables

There are two ways to trim asparagus, depending on your preference.

  • Carrots – peel and cut into 1/4″ slices on the diagonal 
  • Jalapeños – cut into 1/4″ slices
  • Onions – cut into 1/4″ slices

Variations

Spicy Pickled Vegetables – If you prefer spicy pickled veggies, add extra red pepper flakes, to taste. I’ve been known to add a full tablespoon of red pepper flakes. 

Mild Pickled Vegetables- Prefer a mild version? Just omit the jalapeños!

Sweet – Like sweet pickled vegetables? Increase the sugar by 1 tablespoon to add extra sweetness. We do recommend tasting the initial pickling brine prior to get a good sense of the flavor. 

large clear jar of sliced Mexican vegetables.

Top 10 Serving Ideas

Pickled Mexican carrots and jalapeños can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Here are some ideas for incorporating them into your favorite dishes.

  1. Cocktail Garnish (Michelada or Bloody Mary)
  2. Carne Asada Recipes
  3. Pollo Asado
  4. Salad Topping
  5. Sandwich Filling
  6. Taco/Nacho Topping – Street Tacos and Tacos al Carbon
  7. Charcuterie Board
  8. Snack
  9. Stir-fry Ingredient
  10. Bánh mì Dishes
  11. Rice Bowl Topping
  12. Relish Tray Addition

Mexican Pickled Carrots

Mexican pickled carrots have a rich history; originating from the marriage of Spanish pickling techniques with indigenous Mexican ingredients, this Mexican condiment has been enjoyed since the colonial era.

Over time, Mexican carrots have become a beloved staple served as a colorful and tangy accompaniment at local taquerias and restaurants.

three glass containers containing Mexican pickled vegetables.

Tips

  • Once jarred, marinate for a minimum of 3 hours. The longer they marinate the more tender and flavorful they will be.
  • Store the jars of pickled Mexican carrots in the refrigerator for up to two months.
  • This recipe hasn’t been testing for canning. If canning, follow the proper canning methods as outlined on the NCHFP website.

Storage

  • When stored in an airtight container Mexican pickled carrots can last up to 3 months in the fridge.
  • Inspect the carrots regularly for any discoloration or off-odors, which indicate spoilage and must be discarded immediately.

Pickled Vegetables

If you’re into pickling recipes, check out these favorites: Pickled Asparagus, Pickled Banana PeppersPickled Daikon, and Pickled Cucumbers.

mexican pickled carrots and jalapenos in white bowls.

Mexican Pickled Carrots and Jalapeños

Whip up a batch of these addictive Mexican Pickled Carrots and Jalapeños, also called Zanahorias en Escabeche, to serve alongside your favorite Mexican recipes.
This iconic Mexican condiment, along with pickled red onions and pickled peppers, are the perfect Mexican vegetables to pickle.
5 from 41 votes
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Marinate: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 2 quarts
Calories: 255kcal
Author: Darcey Olson
Cost: $4.00

Equipment

Picture of a mandoline slicer with various cut vegetables.
Mandoline ((optional))

Ingredients

  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • cups distilled white vinegar ((*Note 1))
  • cups water
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 whole dried bay leaves
  • 1 tsp black peppercorn
  • tsp Mexican oregano ((*Note 2))
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 lbs whole carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4" slices
  • 2-3 medium jalapeños, cut into 1/4" slices
  • ½ small white onion, cut into 1/4" slices

Instructions

  • Add the garlic, vinegar, water, olive oil, bay leaves, peppercorns, Mexican oregano and salt to a large stockpot and bring to a boil.
    4 cloves garlic, smashed, 1½ cups distilled white vinegar, 1½ cups water, 2 tbsp vegetable oil, 3 whole dried bay leaves, 1 tsp black peppercorn, 1½ tsp Mexican oregano, 1 tsp salt
  • Add the carrots, jalapeños, and onions to the stockpot and lower heat to medium-low. (*Note 2) Let simmer, uncovered for 15 minutes.
    2 lbs whole carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4" slices, 2-3 medium jalapeños, cut into 1/4" slices, ½ small white onion, cut into 1/4" slices
  • Let the vegetables and brine cool. Once cooled, transfer the vegetables to a sterile glass jar. Use a ladle to top off the glass jar with the brine, leaving 1/2" at the top.
  • Marinate for a minimum of 3 hours to help maximize flavor.

Notes

Note 1 – Use apple cider vinegar, if you prefer.
Note 2 – When the vegetables are in the stockpot, they need to be covered in liquid. If needed, depending on your saucepan, top the pan off with a 50/50 mix with water and vinegar. Proceed with the recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 255kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 1492mg | Potassium: 1596mg | Fiber: 15g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 76059IU | Vitamin C: 47mg | Calcium: 230mg | Iron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @foodieandwine or tag #foodieandwine!

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