10 Best Ways to Cook With Seasonal Asparagus This Spring
Asparagus is at its peak in the early spring, so get the bright green veggie while it’s good. Asparagus is packed with vitamins and minerals, and it works in many recipes. Some people like their asparagus simply sauteed with butter, while others like it in soup, salad, or paired with cheese. No matter how you take your asparagus, you’re guaranteed to get the health and taste benefits. And you’ll feel good about eating green.
We’re highlighting the 10 best asparagus recipes to help you get your fix while the vegetable is in season. Find some at your nearest grocery store or farmers market, and get cooking.
1. Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce
First up is a fan favorite in the form of asparagus with hollandaise sauce from Eating Well. Hollandaise sauce makes everything taste decadent. And when you pair it with steamed asparagus, it makes eating your vegetables feel indulgent. This hollandaise sauce is made in the blender using fresh herbs, butter, an egg yolk, and lemon juice. After steaming your asparagus, you’ll simply transfer it to a platter, prepare your sauce, and then drizzle the good stuff over the green vegetables.
- 2 bunches asparagus (about 2 pounds), trimmed
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1½ teaspoons lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill, tarragon, and/or chives
- Cracked black pepper to taste
See recipe directions from Eating Well.
2. Cream of Asparagus Soup
Here’s another indulgent asparagus recipe from Epicurious. It’s a cream of asparagus soup that is the perfect winter-to-spring transition food. Fresh, in-season asparagus stars in the soup. You’ll first cook it with onions and butter before adding in the broth and letting the soup simmer. Once the asparagus is tender, you can move your soup to a blender to puree. Then, it’s the important step: adding in the crème fraîche. The cream takes the velvety asparagus soup over the top, and it’ll persuade anyone and everyone to eat this green soup.
- 2 pounds green asparagus
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 5 to 6 cups chicken broth
- ½ cup crème fraîche or heavy cream
- ¼ teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
See recipe directions from Epicurious.
3. Asparagus and Fava Beans with Toasted Almonds
Asparagus isn’t the only piece of produce especially flavorful in the spring. Fava beans are in season, too. And they’re not only dense in nutrition but also rich in smooth, sweet flavor. This spring recipe from Martha Stewart has you pairing fresh asparagus and fava beans, with toasted almonds giving the dish an extra crunch. You can make the healthy green side dish in only 35 minutes, and it can complement anything from meat to salads.
- 1½ pounds fresh fava beans, shelled
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 pound asparagus, tough ends removed
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Juice and zest (removed in long strips) of 1 lemon
- ½ cup raw almonds, toasted and chopped
See recipe directions from Martha Stewart.
4. Fontina Asparagus Tart
A creative way to use your asparagus it to enlist it in a tart. Soft fontina and crispy asparagus are a match made in culinary heaven in this fontina asparagus tart from Taste of Home. It’s a sophisticated, savory pie you can serve for lunch or dinner, and it’s not even difficult to make thanks to the employment of frozen puff pastry. Cheese and asparagus top the tart, and you’ll bake it until the cheese is melted. The fontina asparagus tart feeds a crowd, so it’s the perfect sophisticated party food. And it’s an easy way to sneak in your greens with the help of cheese.
- 1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed
- 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
- 2 cups shredded fontina cheese
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
See recipe directions from Taste of Home.
5. Asparagus Risotto
Next is an asparagus risotto recipe from Sunset. Risotto might be indulgent, but you can feel much better about your lunch or dinner when it’s studded with fresh green asparagus. Risotto might seem like an intimidating dish to make, but this recipe has it ready in 30 minutes. If you have the patience to stand and stir, you can perfect this asparagus risotto. Make it by combining broth, onions, rice, butter, asparagus, and Parmesan cheese in a large pot over heat. Once your asparagus is crisp, you’ll remove the large pot from the heat. Then, get ready to serve the good stuff to yourself and three lucky friends.
- 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 green onions, chopped
- 1 cup Arborio or sushi rice
- 2 pounds asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
See recipe directions from Sunset.
6. Lemon-Garlic Asparagus
Flavor your asparagus the natural way via this recipe from Cooking Light for lemon-garlic asparagus. It yields an easy side dish that will lend a pop of color to your dinner table and offer a lighter food option. The lemon-garlic asparagus recipe requires only a handful of ingredients, and everything will simply get added to a skillet. The fresh spring dish proves asparagus is tasty on its own. But when you had a few natural flavors to the dish, it shines even more.
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 pound trimmed asparagus
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
See recipe directions from Cooking Light.
7. Asparagus, Lemon, and Walnut Pasta
This next dinner recipe from Food 52 has you covered in both the taste and texture departments. Enter: creamy asparagus, lemon, and walnut pasta. A spring Sunday supper has never tasted so good. You get your creamy carbs, while also taking advantage of spring produce with asparagus. Add the walnuts to your dinner for extra crunch and healthy fats, and you have yourself a meal that tastes great but is also nutritious. The lemon zest in the dish keeps dinner tasting fresh and flavorful, and it all comes together with a few ingredients and a short cooking time.
- 7 ounces dried spaghetti (or pasta of your choice)
- 1 pound asparagus spears
- ¼ cup walnuts, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Zest of one lemon
- Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
See recipe directions from Food 52.
8. Spring Lettuce Salad with Roasted Asparagus
If you’re in the mood for some greenery, this spring lettuce salad from Food & Wine has you covered. It’s a simple dish that stars spring lettuces along with roasted asparagus, cheese curls, and a homemade dressing made from lemon juice, mustard, and olive oil. The end result is a simple salad that can accompany any main meal, and it takes all of 25 minutes to make. Master this delicate spring lettuce salad, and enjoy the flavors of fresh roasted asparagus complementing sharp Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and a zippy dressing.
- 1 pound medium asparagus
- ⅓ cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 10 ounces mixed spring lettuces
- 1½-ounce piece of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, shaved into curls with a vegetable peeler
See recipe directions from Food & Wine.
9. Chicken, Asparagus, and Wild Mushroom Stir-Fry
A stir-fry is always a good idea, and when asparagus and wild mushrooms are involved, you take the easy dinner up a sophisticated notch. Now, instead of your typical weekday rotation, you have a flavorful dinner that features a creamy sauce and in-season produce. Try the chicken, asparagus, and wild mushroom stir-fry from Bon Appetit for yourself. It’s an easy-to-follow recipe that can feed a family, and it will satisfy everyone. The creamy stir-fry helps you get your chicken fix, while also serving as a nutritious dinner full of vitamins and nutrients.
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
- Kosher salt
- 1 pound assorted wild mushrooms (such as chanterelle, oyster, and shiitake)
- ¼ cup minced shallot (from about ½ large shallot)
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1¼ pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into ½-inch strips
- ¼ teaspoon piment d’Espelette or a pinch of cayenne pepper
- ⅓ cup dry white wine or dry vermouth
- ⅓ cup heavy cream
- Freshly ground black pepper
See recipe directions from Bon Appetit.
10. Tarragon Asparagus with Eggs
Last is one more simple way to showcase your in-season asparagus. Feature it in this simple dish from Southern Living. The recipe yields tarragon asparagus with eggs, a dish made with asparagus spears, a homemade vinaigrette, and a grated hard-boiled egg. It’s a side dish that will steal the show thanks to its bright colors and robust flavors. The tarragon asparagus will wow your crowd and make it that much easier to eat your vegetables.
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1½ tablespoons finely chopped fresh tarragon
- 1½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1 small shallot, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons plus ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 10 cups water
- 3 bunches (about 3 pounds) thick asparagus spears
- 2 boiled and peeled eggs, grated
See recipe directions from Southern Living.