Citrus Honey Glazed Vegetables

There are certain dishes that make an appearance on our Rosh Hashanah table every year. I’m sure your family has their own favorite traditional foods– you know, the dishes that really make it a holiday (no matter which holiday you celebrate!). For my family, it wouldn’t be Rosh Hashanah without Brisket, Perfect Chicken Soup with Floater Matzo Balls, Saffron Rice, and Apple Honey Cake. These recipes have been a part of our family celebrations for many years. They’re expected.

That said, I’m happiest in the kitchen when I have the freedom to get creative. I like playing with our holiday menu each year, adding some new flavors to change things up. This year, I’m introducing a new fish recipe, as well as a different type of tzimmes– Citrus Honey Glazed Vegetables.

Tzimmes is a traditional Ashkenazi Jewish dish made with sweet root vegetables– carrots, sweet potatoes, yams. Sometimes dried fruits are added, like raisins or dried plums. The word tzimmes is a Yiddish expression for “making a fuss” over something, probably because making tzimmes is a bit of a fussy dish… with all of those root veggies, there is lots of peeling and chopping involved. Tzimmes is often served as a side dish for Rosh Hashanah, where sweet foods are served to signify our hope for a sweet new year. Sometimes tzimmes are served with meat, like chunks of flanken or short ribs, in a luscious sort of savory/sweet stew.

Usually, tzimmes are stewed together with sugar and/or dried fruit till soft. This year, I thought I’d make our tzimmes by roasting the vegetables. Roasting brings out their natural sweetness and a depth of flavor you just can’t get from simmering. I peeled and chopped up some root vegetables, using golden, orange, yellow and white colored veggies. In Sephardic holiday tradition, golden colored foods signify abundance, so I stuck with a golden color palette for this dish.

I used my basic recipe for making Roasted Root Vegetables, but sweetened it with honey, orange zest, and the exotic scent of orange blossom water. You can find orange blossom water at any Middle Eastern market. If you don’t have a market in your neighborhood, click here to buy orange blossom water. You won’t need much of it– a little goes a long way. If orange blossom water is too difficult to obtain, feel free to substitute a tablespoon of freshly squeezed orange juice instead.

I covered the vegetables with foil for most of the cooking process, knowing that honey tends to blacken when exposed to extreme heat. At the end of cooking, I uncovered them, allowing them to caramelize and the glaze to thicken. The result? Tender, warm root vegetables with a citrus caramel-like glaze that will melt in your mouth. This is a tzimmes worth celebrating!

If you’re making a lot of dishes for the holiday and you want to plan ahead, make these vegetables early in the day, then reheat in the oven just before serving.

Recommended Products:

Chef’s Knife

Mixing Bowl

Baking Sheet

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!


Citrus Honey Glazed Vegetables


  • 2 large yams (orange sweet potatoes) - about 2 lbs total
  • 3 large yellow beets (about 1 1/2 lbs total)
  • 1 lb carrots
  • 1 lb parsnips
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp orange blossom water or 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 2 tsp grated orange zest
  • Salt and pepper
Total Time: 1 Hour 10 Minutes
Servings: 8
Kosher Key: Pareve
  • Place racks in the upper third and lower third of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with foil. Cut the vegetables into 1 1/2-inch chunks.
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the honey, olive oil, orange blossom water or orange juice, and grated orange zest.
  • Place the cut vegetables into a large mixing bowl and toss them with the honey mixture till evenly coated.
  • Spread the vegetables out evenly across the two cookie sheets, making sure to leave space between the vegetables. Don't overcrowd the pans. Sprinkle the vegetables lightly with salt and black pepper.
  • Cover both sheets with another layer of foil. Place the sheets into the oven. Let the vegetables cook for 35 minutes. Halfway through cooking, uncover and stir the vegetables, recover, then switch the baking sheets on their racks.
  • After 35 minutes, uncover the baking sheets and stir the vegetables again gently. Allow the vegetables to roast another 10-15 minutes till they are glazed and caramelized.
  • Season with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Serve warm. These vegetables can be made ahead early in the day, then reheated in the oven or microwave just before serving.

Comments (19)Post a Comment

  1. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    This recipe looks delicious. Trustworthy studies show aluminum is absorbed by food during the heating process. So will the dish be just as delish sans the foil?

    1. Hi Sheila, you can use parchment or a silicone baking mat to line the sheet, and you can cover the sheet with parchment. Make sure you cover it, the honey has a tendency to burn otherwise.

  2. In your Roasted Root Vegetables recipe you had 8 or so garlic cloves, yet you omitted them from this recipe. Was that intentional?

  3. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    This dish looks great & I can’t wait to try your recipe, but the picture looks like it has at least 1 (or maybe 2?) additional vegetables not listed in your recipe. Is this true, & if so what are they?

    1. Hi Ruthie– no, all the vegetables in the picture are listed– yams, yellow beets, parsnips, and carrots. They may look slightly different than you’re used to because they are roasted, which adds a caramelization to the exterior.

    1. Hi Pam– prunes wouldn’t hurt, but they will change the flavor quite a bit. You will lose some of that wonderful subtle orange blossom water flavor. Have you seen my Stovetop Tzimmes recipe? It includes prunes and might be more what you’re looking for:

      link to

    1. Hi Elina– yes. I would make them early in the morning, keep in the fridge, then reheat in the evening before dinner. You can also make them a few days ahead and freeze them. Don’t keep them in the fridge for longer than a day, or they will start to turn mushy. Enjoy!

  4. Thanks so for the clarity of your Blog! I’m having 29 people for Rosh Hashanah Dinner… How many Pans at a time in the oven? Will I really be able to freeze them several weeks ahead? If yes would I have to keep them in separate layers in the Freezer in their original Baking Pan, or can they be transferred to Pyrex Containers frozen defrosted and then placed again on the Foil Sheets to reheat? Or should they be placed directly in the Oven from the Freezer: Thanks so much!!!

    1. Hi Ruth– I haven’t frozen this particular recipe, and I’m not 100% sure what the result will be, though I have frozen similar roasted veggies with a good result. Here is a list of general freezing guidelines to help you along: link to The number of pans at a time in your oven will depend on the size of your oven. You can roast however many standard sized cookie sheet you can fit, just be aware that the more you roast at once, the longer it may take to completely cook everything– also pans closer to the heat source will roast fastest, so it might be best to switch the pans in their positions halfway through cooking to ensure even heating.

  5. Very good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 stars
    Hi Tori – I am going to try this recipe for Rosh Hashanah this year, but I am concerned that I may not be able to find yellow beets. Do you think it will change the taste if I use red beets instead? thanks! Wishing you and your family a happy, healthy and sweet New Year.

    1. Hi Vivian! It won’t change the taste, but it will change the color… your veggies might turn a bit pinkish. Otherwise it will be yummy! Shana tova to you!

    1. Just remove tops and tails, scrub them clean, and proceed with recipe. :) Most other recipes would require a different prep/peeling, but here a good scrub will do the trick. :)

Leave a Comment

Please rate recipe if you had a chance to try it: 5 4 3 2 1

Please read through the entire post and comments section before asking a question, as it may have already been answered. First time commenting? Read the comment policy.