Roasted asparagus is easy to make, and the asparagus comes out wonderfully tender-crisp. It's ready fast - I bake it in a 400°F oven for just 15 minutes.
Overcooking will make it stringy, so you definitely want to avoid that. As for the leftovers, try them cold, antipasti-style! They are delicious.
Roasting vegetables enhances their flavor and texture, and asparagus is a good example. When done just right, roasted asparagus is tender-crisp and flavorful.
You'll only need a few ingredients to make this roasted asparagus recipe. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:
- Fresh asparagus: Try to find medium-thick stalks. Not ultra-thin and not super-thick.
- Olive oil: I use extra-virgin olive oil. I love its flavor!
- To season: Kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. I use garlic powder in this recipe because the fine granules coat the spears uniformly. If you prefer fresh minced garlic, that's fine.
- Parmesan: Finely grated parmesan works best.
- Sometimes, I use melted butter instead of olive oil. It's delicious!
- Add more spices. I like to add a pinch of dried thyme.
- Grated Pecorino Romano is a good substitute for parmesan.
- Sometimes, I sprinkle the finished dish with red pepper flakes, as shown in the photos on this page. They add a hint of spice and some color.
- Sprinkle the finished dish with bacon bits.
Roasted Asparagus Instructions
The detailed instructions for making this recipe are listed in the recipe card below. Here are the basic steps:
Arrange the asparagus spears on a parchment-lined baking sheet. The parchment is used to prevent sticking and for easy cleanup. After trimming the asparagus ends, you should be able to fit two rows of them on the baking sheet:
Drizzle the asparagus spears with olive oil. Use your hands to ensure they are well coated.
Sprinkle the asparagus with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and grated parmesan cheese.
Bake the asparagus in a 400°F oven for about 15 minutes until it's tender-crisp. Sprinkle it with more parmesan and serve.
Use Medium Asparagus
Medium-sized asparagus spears are best. If all you can get is thin or thick spears, like the ones in the image below, you can use them in this recipe, adjusting the roasting time.
Very thin spears will need no more than 10 minutes in the oven. If using thick ones, check them after the first 15 minutes and see if their thickest parts are fork-tender. If not, keep roasting them for 2-3 more minutes.
Trimming The Ends
You should always trim asparagus ends, but if using thick spears, it's especially important to trim them; they tend to be woody and fibrous.
Dry Them Thoroughly
Wet asparagus spears will steam instead of roasting. After rinsing them, place them on paper towels and dry them thoroughly.
I roast asparagus in a 400°F oven for 15 minutes. This is the optimal time and temperature when using medium-thickness stalks. Overcooking will ruin its texture and make it stringy.
This happens when asparagus is overcooked. It cooks fast! So, although you want it cooked and not raw, it's better to slightly undercook it and let it finish cooking on your plate.
The stems will be tender-crisp and flavorful if you don't overcook them. When overcooked, asparagus becomes mushy and stringy.
Yes, you should wash it. Dry it well with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel so it bakes rather than steams in the oven.
In the photo below, you can see that I'm baking the asparagus and chicken drumsticks simultaneously. The drumsticks need 40 minutes in the oven and the asparagus 15, so I bake the chicken for 25 minutes and then place the asparagus in the oven.
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to four days. I keep them in a glass food storage container like this:
How to enjoy them? I have a tip for you. Roasted asparagus, served cold, is delicious! Think antipasti... that's the idea. I often have it for lunch, with poached eggs.
Sometimes, I wrap the leftover asparagus in prosciutto slices for an improvised version of prosciutto-wrapped asparagus.
If you'd like to reheat the leftovers, you can do so in the microwave at 50% power.
More Asparagus Recipes
Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with high-heat-resistant parchment paper.
- Place the asparagus on the baking sheet in a single layer. After it's trimmed, you should be able to fit two rows of it into the pan.
- Drizzle the asparagus with the olive oil, then toss with your hands to coat. Sprinkle with kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and half the parmesan.
- Bake until the asparagus is tender-crisp, for about 15 minutes.
- Sprinkle the asparagus with the remaining parmesan and serve.
- I use garlic powder in this recipe because its fine granules coat the spears uniformly. If you prefer fresh minced garlic, that works too.
- Medium-sized asparagus spears like the ones shown in the video above are best. If all you can get is thin or thick spears, you can use them in this recipe, adjusting the roasting time. Very thin spears will need no more than 10 minutes in the oven. If using thick ones, check them after the first 15 minutes and see if their thickest parts are fork-tender. If not, keep roasting them for 2-3 more minutes.
- You should always trim asparagus ends, but if using thick spears, it's especially important to trim them; they tend to be woody and fibrous.
- Dry the asparagus well with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel after washing so it bakes rather than steams in the oven.
- You can keep the leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-4 days. You can chop them and add them cold to a salad or gently reheat them in the microwave at 50% power.
Add Your Own Notes
Nutrition per Serving
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