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Tzimmes: a delicious recipe for the traditional Ashkenazi Jewish side dish

Total time: 70 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 10 people
By Cookist

Bright, colorful, and satisfyingly sweet, tzimmes is a much-loved traditional Ashkenazi Jewish dish. Also known as tsimmes, it is often served on holidays like Rosh Hashanah (to symbolize a sweet new year) and Passover. However, it's so delicious, many households make it year-round.

Pronounced “tsi-mess,” this tasty side dish is made from carrots, a mixture of dried fruits such as raisins and prunes, and sweet root veggies like sweet potatoes and yams. The name comes from the Yiddish expression for “a big fuss” – a reference to all the peeling and chopping needed to make the dish.

Actually cooking tzimmes is a cinch. Tzimmes is cooked low and slow over a gentle heat and often served slightly warm with meat. No matter what you pair it with, tzimmes is a delicious side that everyone is sure to love.

What to Serve with Tzimmes

Tzimmes is a side dish that's typically served with brisket, stews, roast chicken, or dumplings. It's paired with savory meats as a sweet counterpoint for a combination that goes together beautifully.

Tips for Making Traditional Tzimmes

You can use vegetable broth if you're making vegetarian tzimmes. For vegans, be sure to swap out the honey for agave nectar or maple syrup.

You can add other spices to your tzimmes like nutmeg, allspice, or ground cloves.

No dried cranberries? Use raisins instead.

You can make tzimmes a few days in advance. It'll be even tastier as the flavors will have time to merge.


How to Store Tzimmes

Let your tzimmes cool, then transfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Can You Freeze Tzimmes?

Absolutely! Frozen tzimmes will last up to 4 months when frozen.


orange sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-2 inch pieces
1 1/2 lbs
white sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-2 inch pieces
1 1/2 lbs
carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch rounds
1 lb
dried apples
6 ounces
Dried cranberries
6 ounces
Orange juice
2 cups
1/2 cup
Brown sugar
1/2 cup
2 tsp
Chicken broth
1 1/2 cups
prunes, pitted
12 ounces
salt and pepper to taste

How to Make Tzimmes

Put the carrots and both types of sweet potatoes into a large pot.

Layer the apples and cranberries over the vegetables.

In a bowl, combine the orange juice, honey, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Add the mixture to the pot.

Pour the chicken broth into the pot. It should cover the vegetables about halfway.

Bring to a simmer, then stir once. Cover with a lid, lower the heat, and continue simmering for 45 minutes.

Stir, add the prunes and cook for 15 minutes more. Serve.


For the best flavor, use freshly squeezed orange juice. If you're looking for convenience, juice from the carton works just fine.

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