Carrots are an excellent source of vitamin A, in the form of beta-carotene, an antioxidant important for the health of your eyesight and skin. Beta-carotene may also provide protection against heart disease and some cancers, according to the University of Illinois Extension. Cooking carrots enhances their sweetness and can enhance their nutritional value, making nutrients easier for your body to digest. A microwave quickly steams raw carrots, leaving them crisp, tender and flavorful.
Wash and scrub the carrots. Remove tops and ends. Peel if desired. Slice into 1/4-in. thick discs or julienne.
Place the carrots in a microwave-safe dish. Add 3 tbsp. water for every 1 lb. of carrots. Cover the dish with plastic wrap. Cut a slit in the plastic wrap to allow steam to escape.
Microwave on high for five minutes. Remove the dish from the microwave, lift the plastic wrap and stir the carrots.
Return the dish to the microwave and cook another five minutes, or until carrots are tender.
Remove the carrots from the microwave. Drain off any remaining liquid. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add butter or olive oil if desired.