These cheesy little carrot and cheddar bites are the perfect finger food for a vegetarian party buffet – or just a mid-afternoon snack!
Sometimes it’s nice to cook something fancy, to make you feel super grown up and posh. Other times… party food is where it’s at. Eating like a toddler at a birthday party can be so satisfying – a few of these carrot and cheddar bites dipped in ketchup makes the best snack.
Bonus points if you serve them on a cocktail stick with a stripy paper napkin.
Cheesy carrot bites
These carrot and cheddar bites are brilliant. Little bites that are crispy on the outside, and soft and cheesy in the middle – the perfect combination.
The carrot gives them a slight sweetness, and having a veggie in there makes you feel a little better about eating party food – but they still remain a fun, cheesy treat.
They’re easy to make, utterly delicious, and very toddler-friendly!
As always, the recipe for these cheesy bites is incredibly straightforward. Just mix some breadcrumbs, grated carrot, and grated cheese in a large bowl.
You can add whatever additional flavourings you fancy. I added a bit of my beloved smoked paprika (I will post a recipe without it one day, I promise), but you could use whatever ground spices you like – a bit of chilli powder if you’d like some heat, some garam masala to add an Indian vibe, dried herbs… whatever you fancy.
Then, just crack in a couple of eggs to help hold everything together.
Baked carrot bites
Form the cheesy carrot mixture into little balls, and lay them out on a baking tray.
The balls are baked in the oven, so that’s the entirety of the hands-on work done. They really are quick to prepare – grating the cheese and carrot is the job that takes the longest, and even that only takes a couple of minutes!
Just pop the carrot balls in the oven until they’re golden brown and crispy, and you’re all done!
How should I serve these carrot and cheddar bites?
These carrot and cheddar bites would be perfect served up as finger food at a party – either for kids, or grown ups (just like a good outfit, you can dress them up or down!).
Alternatively, if you don’t have any parties coming up, they’re great nibbled on their own as a snack. I think they’re best eaten warm, but they’re totally yummy eaten cold too.
We actually had ours for dinner, served on top of a big salad (and I don’t just mean a pile of lettuce – I’m talking lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, pickled onions, feta cheese, creamy Caesar dressing… the works). I just plonked a few carrot bites right on top of each bowl – they were just the thing to turn a simple salad into a really irresistible dinner.
Other vegetarian party food ideas
One item on a buffet table isn’t much of a party, so here are a few more vegetarian party food ideas to serve alongside your carrot and cheese bites:
- vegetable sticks and some kind of vegetarian dip or hummus
- vegetarian samosas
- beetroot nuggets or any other kind of breaded veggie
- lentil sausage rolls
- bruschetta or crostini
- slices of vegetarian tart or quiche
- veggie-based salads
- pasta salad / potato salad
- bowls of crisps (chips)
- bowls of spicy nuts
- crackers or breadsticks
Stick all of that on a table next to your cheesy carrot bites, and you’ve got yourself an amazing vegetarian buffet!
Carrot and cheddar bites
- 100 g bread (~ 2 medium slices)
- 1 large carrot, grated (~ 185g / ~ 6 1/2 oz)
- 100 g cheddar cheese, grated (~ 1 cup when grated)
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- Black pepper
- 2 eggs
- Oil, for greasing the tray
- Use a food processor to blitz the bread into breadcrumbs (or just crumble it finely if you don’t have a food processor).
- Add the breadcrumbs to a mixing bowl, along with the grated carrot and grated cheese. Mix to combine.
- Add the remaining ingredients (apart from the oil), and mix thoroughly.
- Use clean hands to shape the mixture into balls – I ended up with 15 balls in total. Place them on a well oiled baking tray, and bake at 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F) for around 30 minutes, or until crispy and slightly browned.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose. Information above is for 3 carrot balls.