I am so confused by these two sentences.

'Carrot is my favorite food'

"Carrots are my favorite food"

Are they both correct?


English is so confusing. Help me, please...


Carrot, like most vegetables and food products generally, can be employed both as countable or as mass nouns.

Carrot is my favourite food (mass noun), referring to the 'flesh' of the carrot as a substance.

Carrots are my favourite food (countable noun) referring to individual roots.

  • 3
    In other words, one refers to carrot as a substance and the other to individual roots. – Kate Bunting Mar 26 '20 at 12:46
  • @KateBunting Yes. Please feel free to edit by answer. – WS2 Mar 26 '20 at 13:40
  • Can it also mean that carrot (here) refers to one's preferred vegetable, and carrots (not more carrot-roots) different varieties of carrot? There are different varieties - the violet coloured, red and yellow, etc. – Ram Pillai Mar 26 '20 at 15:55
  • 1
    @RamPillai Carrot varieties other than the standard orange are little known, at least here in the UK. We normally speak of vegetables in the plural (peas. Brussels sprouts, potatoes etc.) because a portion usually includes many, or at least several. – Kate Bunting Mar 26 '20 at 17:02
  • I'm going to stick my neck out here and say that I consider 'carrots' here a plural-form non-count usage. '3 / a dozen / umpteen' can't be inserted here. – Edwin Ashworth Mar 26 '20 at 17:59

Both forms are correct; in the first case you consider carrot as an uncountable noun and and as all such nouns are in the singular (they have no plural), the verb is in the singular; it is the word you use for instance when you say "mashed carrot" or "carrot juice"; in the second sentence the noun "carrot" is used as a countable noun and this is unmistakable here because there is an s at the end of "carrot"; countable nouns can be used in both the singular and the plural form; this is the form you use when you want to talk about one whole carrot or several of them.
This principle is true for other types things.

  • What they'll take to the picknick is beer.
  • What they'll take to the picknick are/is beers.

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