The Brewers took the lead early on through a swooping Jackson Irvine header and never looked like relinquishing their advantage against an abject County side.
In what was the first ever meeting between the two teams, who are separated by just 12 miles, it was Albion who proved to be the more composed and they were left celebrating at full time in front of a record home crowd of 6,747.
Burton's breakthrough arrived just two minutes later when a fine Lucas Akins cross from the right was met perfectly by Irvine for his third headed goal in the same number of league games.
Derby did marginally improve following a slow start to the match, with their first shot arriving 26 minutes in through a long-range Jacob Butterfield drive, which Jon McLaughlin routinely kept out down the middle.
O'Grady did well shortly after the half-hour mark to turn on the edge of the box and get a shot away despite losing his balance, but his effort lacked the power required to truly trouble Carson.
Chris Martin was an isolated figure for the majority of the first half, although the Derby forward did muster a shot shortly before the interval after working a yard of space but failed to beat Akins in front of the opposition goal.
Camara almost made a big difference early into his appearance from the bench, as he cut inside from the right and fired away a shot that McLaughlin again hardly broke a sweat to keep out.
The Guinea international was proving to be County's best bet of finding a leveller, once more going direct and working a yard of space to test McLaughlin with another on-target strike.
Clear-cut chances just did not materialise for the visitors, though, and it was Nigel Clough - shown the exit by Derby after four years at the helm in 2013 - who got one over on his former suitors as the referee blew for full time.