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Add a healthy boost of nutrients to dinner with this easy recipe for Sautéed Asparagus. Flavored with lemon and parmesan, this is a tender and quick side dish that pairs well with almost anything.
Change up your greens with this tender and bright Sautéed Asparagus flavored with lemon and Parmesan cheese. Fresh asparagus is a wonderful addition to any healthy diet as it’s a great source of fiber, folate, and vitamins A, C, and K. It tastes great, too!
Asparagus comes into season between April and July, making it a fresh and flavorful side dish to pair with all of your summer favorites, such as Garlic Salmon, Lamb Burgers, or grilled Cauliflower Steaks. With only 5 ingredients and 10 minutes of cook time, you’ll want to make this easy veggie side dish again and again!
- Asparagus cooks in record time, making it a quick option on busy nights.
- Customize the flavors any way you like by adding your favorite seasonings or aromatics.
- Asparagus is a budget-friendly vegetable, especially when it’s in season.
Asparagus: The best asparagus has a bright green color and feels firm to the touch. Try to choose younger, thinner asparagus stalks as they’re less fibrous and woody than the thicker, older stalks.
Olive oil: This helps the asparagus stay tender and crunchy on the inside with a slight char on the outside.
Lemon juice: For some zest and a pop of fresh acidity in each bite. Feel free to use fresh juice or bottled.
Parmesan cheese: Garnishing the cooked asparagus with freshly grated Parmesan adds a cheesy, salty bite.
Step 1: Prepare the asparagus. Snap the bottom 1-2 inches off of the asparagus and discard them. Drizzle the trimmed asparagus with some oil and season with some salt and pepper.
Step 2: Cook in the skillet. Heat a skillet over medium heat with the remaining oil. Place the asparagus spears in a single layer in the skillet and add the lid on top to steam. Add the lemon juice after a couple minutes, place the lid back on, and cook until fork tender.
Step 3: Remove and serve. Remove the asparagus from the heat and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve while hot with your favorite main dishes and sides.
Tips and tricks
-Feel free to double or triple the batch to feed more people.
-Mix in more flavor, like garlic, shallots, lemon zest, mushrooms, and more.
-To make it oil free, sauté the asparagus with a splash of vegetable stock or water instead of using oil.
-To make it vegan friendly, swap the Parmesan cheese for a plant-based alternative or replace the cheese with slivered almonds or sautéed mushrooms and garlic.
-Keep the asparagus in a single layer in the pan to make sure they cook evenly.
-Choose asparagus stalks that are the same size and width. This way, each stalk will be done cooking at the same time.
When is asparagus done cooking?
Cook time varies depending on the thickness of the asparagus. In general, asparagus is done cooking as soon as it turns bright green and is slightly firm. If you can stick a fork in it without too much resistance, it’s done!
What pairs well with sautéed asparagus?
Sautéed asparagus goes great next to grilled proteins like chicken, beef, or fish. My favorites are Seared Salmon or Steak Bites with asparagus, Grilled Corn Kale Salad, and cauliflower mash on the side. It’s also great as an addition to salads, like my Sundried Tomato Salad or Garlic Bacon Pasta.
How do you know if asparagus has gone bad?
Asparagus will let you know if it’s gone bad by having a rotten odor. It will also begin to become slimy and mushy, especially at the tips.
What’s the best way to trim asparagus ends?
The bottom 1 to 2 inches of an asparagus spear is woody and tough, meaning it’s not great to eat. Remove this part either by snapping it off with your hands or using a sharp knife.
More veggie side dishes:
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- Snap the ends off of the asparagus and discard them, then place the asparagus onto a plate. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper and use your hands to make sure they're completely coated.
- Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over medium heat, then add the asparagus in a single layer and place a lid on the skillet. Cook asparagus for 2 minutes, then remove the lid, add the lemon juice, place the lid back on and continue cooking for 1-5 minutes, tossing with kitchen tongs every minute or so or until they can easily be pierced with a fork.
- Transfer asparagus to a plate and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and enjoy!