How to Julienne Carrots

If you are looking to add a little color and crunch to your next meal, consider learning how to julienne carrots. This cooking technique originated as a traditional part of French cuisine but has been growing in popularity around the globe as chefs look to incorporate something a little different into their meals. Also referred to as matchstick carrots, these bite-sized morsels can be added in everything from salads to desserts, and can give whatever you are serving a little pop that your diners will rave about.


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    Purchase fresh carrots from your local grocery or produce supplier. As a general rule, carrots are sold in 1 or 2 lb. (.453 to .907 kg) bunches, and this should be enough for most recipes that include julienne carrots.
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    Wash the carrots thoroughly in cool water. This will remove dirt or germs and ensure your carrots are clean before eating.
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    Skin the carrots with a potato peeler. Make sure to remove any lines, roots, or imperfections. The end result is a smooth carrot.
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    Use a sharp kitchen knife to chop off the top of the carrot. Remove the leafy greens and the smaller bottom end from each of the carrots.
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    Place the first carrot on a cutting board, and slice into the carrot slightly on 1 side, only deep enough to create a flat surface. Turn the carrot clockwise, laying it on the flat side, and slice the next curved slice into another flat surface. Repeat this process twice more until the carrot has 4 flat sides and is shaped rectangular, like a box.
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    Cut into the boxed carrot lengthwise, about .75 inch (1.9 cm) from 1 of the sides. This creates a long strip. The sliced piece should resemble a miniature wood plank. Slice the carrot in the same manner, and create identical carrot planks until you reach the other end of the carrot.
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    Place 1 of the planks flat on the cutting board, and slice the planks lengthwise into small, thin strips. The end result should be pieces that resemble matchsticks. Repeat this process for the remaining carrot planks.
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    Julienne the rest of your carrots, and repeat the steps until you have enough matchsticks to suit your tastes. Add them to your favourite meal.


  • When you julienne carrots, make sure you tuck your fingertips under to avoid potential cuts or injury from the knife. The proper position consists of your fingertips bent at the top knuckle, so that your fingernails are vertical to the carrot. You can also apply slight pressure with your fingernails as a means of holding the carrot steady from this position.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 or 2 lb. (.453 to .907 kg) carrots
  • Water source
  • Potato peeler
  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife

Article Info

Categories: Food Cutting Techniques