First Time Visiting? Start Here!

How to Roast Asparagus – Three Ways

Learn how easy it is to make perfectly roasted asparagus each and every time. How to Roast Asparagus – Three Ways will teach you all the tips for perfect spears. From cast iron in the oven to sheet pans and toaster ovens, there is a method here
that will work for you!

A plate of roasted asparagus on a tray with a fork and seasoning

Asparagus season is so short, and I try to enjoy every second of it. Asparagus pasta, asparagus on kebabs, pickled asparagus and roasted asparagus are on constant rotation throughout May and June in the Cook household. My favorite of all is the humble roasted asparagus.

Did you know Washington State is the largest producer of asparagus in the United States? So proud of my home state; our motto should be “We’re the Best at Making Your Pee Stink”. I’m not in marketing, so maybe that needs to be tweaked a bit before it is released to the public?

There is no wrong way to make roasted asparagus, and today I’m going to focus on my favorite three methods. Each one guarantees a tasty dish, and better yet, they all take less than 15 minutes to put together.

Why Roast Instead of Steam Asparagus?

No offense to steamed asparagus lovers out there, but I am a roasted veggies girl through and through. There were so many vegetables I hated as a kid that I found out in my 20’s were actually delicious. The trick was eating them roasted.

Roasting concentrates the sugars in vegetables and caramelizes them into crispy goodness. Hate Brussels sprouts? You may just find you love them when they’re roasted in a cast iron pan!

Steamed asparagus is great if that is your jam, but for my money, nothing beats perfectly roasted asparagus with crispy tips and a light seasoning.

How to Trim Asparagus

Hold one stalk of asparagus, and try to snap the end off.  Where it snaps is the natural breaking point.  I then cut all the ends off at about the same point with a sharp knife to save time.

How to Roast Asparagus – Methods and Ingredients

Ingredients

In as many ways there are to love asparagus, there are that many ways cook them! At the very basic level, I prefer mine with olive oil and a light sprinkling of Montreal Steak Seasoning.

When I used to roast my asparagus, the results were constantly changing. Sometimes they would be perfectly crispy, and other times – mushy AF. I finally pinpointed it to the amount of olive oil I was using, and I switched to using a Misto.

A Misto is a handy little kitchen tool that you fill with your favorite oil and use as a cooking spray. It coats the asparagus more evenly and unlike storebought cooking spray, it is reusable and environmentally friendly.grey tray with fresh asparagus, a bowl of olive oil, and a bowl of seasoning

Roasting Methods

The three methods I use for roasting my asparagus are cast iron in the oven, sheet pan in the oven, and cast iron in the toaster oven. Each of these methods produces fabulous results, but some are better for you depending on the situation.
Cast Iron Skillet in the Oven 
Pros
  • I find this method to be the most consistent. It always gives me wonderfully crispy asparagus.
  • Cast iron rules for so many reasons. Helps add iron to your diet, is a long-lasting product unlike Teflon-coated pans, even heating and roasting, and you don’t have to wash the pans (<—top reason for this mom).
  • Once you properly season your pans, the upkeep is so simple. Did I already mention you don’t have to wash the pans?

Cons

  • Cast iron can be heavy depending on the size of your pan.
  • Size of the skillet can limit how much you can roast at one time.
  • Nobody wants to heat up their kitchen/house on a hot day.

Sheet Pan in the Oven
Pros

  • You can roast a bunch of asparagus at once! Feeding a crowd? No problem.
  • Sheet pans (aka rimmed baking sheets or bakers sheets) are affordable, long-lasting, and light-weight.

Cons

  • You have to wash it when the roasting process is done. I don’t like roasting my veg on parchment or foil because I feel it interferes with the “sear” of the asparagus. Pro Tip: got stuck on oil or food on your sheet pan? Put it in a still warm oven and add some water. Let it sit for 20 minutes.
  • Nobody wants to heat up their kitchen/house on a hot day.

Cast Iron in the Toaster Oven
Pros:

  • Toaster ovens are super efficient little kitchen workhorses. I can cook almost anything in them.
  • You still get the amazing sear of cast iron without heating up your house!
  • Making asparagus for only 1-2 people? The toaster oven holds the perfect amount.
  • The toaster oven takes less time to preheat than the oven.

Cons:

  • You can only cook smaller amounts – 1-3 servings.
  • The cook time is longer than in the oven (by about 5 minutes).

Note: most toaster ovens come with a little tray that is perfectly fine for to use to roast your asparagus. But um, you have to clean it afterward, so hence my love of a cast iron skillet.

How to Roast Asparagus – Three Ways

Cast Iron Skillet in the Oven 

  1. Place your oven rack on the lowest setting and put your skillet into preheat.
  2. When the oven comes to temp, use an oven mitt to remove the skillet and lightly mist with olive oil.
  3. Place your asparagus in the skillet, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.
  4. Roast for 5 minutes, flip, and cook for another 3-5 minutes.Process shots - how to roast asparagus in a cast iron pan

Sheet Pan in the Oven

  1. Place your oven rack on the lowest setting and preheat your oven.
  2. Lightly mist the sheet pan with olive oil.
  3. Place your asparagus on the pan, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.
  4. Roast for 6 minutes, flip, and cook for another 4-7 minutes.4 process shots how to roast asparagus on a sheet pan

Cast Iron in the Toaster Oven

  1. If your toaster oven has settings for the rack placement (mine has two), put yours on the lowest setting and put your skillet into preheat.
  2. When the oven comes to temp, use an oven mitt to remove the skillet and lightly mist with olive oil.
  3. Place your asparagus in the skillet, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.
  4. Roast for 10 minutes, flip, and cook for another 3-5 minutes.

Pro Tips/Recipe Notes For How to Roast Asparagus

  • If using cast iron, make sure it is in the oven/toaster oven while it preheats. Never put food on a cold cast iron skillet.
  • If using cast iron, you need to add a “fat” to the pan once it is hot and before the food is added. For this recipe, that just means a quick spritz of olive oil from the Misto.
  • If roasting in the oven, set your rack to the lowest setting possible.
  • Roasting at 450 degrees means perfectly crispy asparagus without the mush factor. I have roasted veg from 350-450 degrees, and I prefer the results with 450 degrees.
  • No Misto? No problem. Use 1/2-1 tsp of olive oil and gently toss the stalks to coat.
  • No Montreal Steak Seasoning? No problem, but it is a pity. We use this stuff on everything! Replace with a pinch of kosher salt and black pepper.roasted asparagus on a white plate with a fork

Variations on Seasonings

  • Use a pinch of kosher salt, and then top your finished asparagus with lemon zest and parmesan cheese.
  • I adore my roasted asparagus with a nice big dollop of homemade chimichurri. Top with the herby-packed goodness after the roasting process.
  • Call me old-fashioned (you wouldn’t be the first), but I adore Hollandaise Sauce. Try this easy blender version from Tori Avey or this Whole30/Paleo version from My Heart Beets.
  • Add 2 tsp soy sauce (or coconut aminos if Whole30/Paleo), and 1/2 tsp of toasted sesame oil to the (finished) roasted asparagus for an awesome Asian-inspired taste.

Making this recipe or others?

Post a photo on my Facebook page, share it on Instagram, or save it to Pinterest with the tag #sustainablecooks. I can't wait to see your take on it!

A plate of roasted asparagus on a tray with a fork and seasoning
Print
5 from 2 votes
How to Roast Asparagus - Three Ways
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
15 mins
 

Learn how easy it is to make perfect roasted asparagus every time. How to Roast Asparagus - Three Ways will teach you all the tips for perfect spears.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: asparagus side dish, crispy asparagus, roasted asparagus
Servings: 4
Calories: 33 kcal
Author: Sarah Cook - Sustainable Cooks
Ingredients
Instructions
Cast Iron Skillet in the Oven
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place your oven rack on the lowest setting and put your skillet while it preheats.

  2. When the oven comes to temp, use an oven mitt to remove the skillet and lightly mist with olive oil.

  3. Place your asparagus in the skillet, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.

  4. Roast for 5 minutes, flip, and cook for another 3-5 minutes.

Sheet Pan in the Oven
  1. Place your oven rack on the lowest setting and preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

  2. Lightly mist the sheet pan with olive oil.

  3. Place your asparagus on the pan, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.

  4. Roast for 6 minutes, flip, and cook for another 4-7 minutes.

Cast Iron in the Toaster Oven
  1. If your toaster oven has settings for the rack (mine has two), put yours on the lowest setting and put your skillet into preheat to 450 degrees.

  2. When the oven comes to temp, use an oven mitt to remove the skillet and lightly mist with olive oil.

  3. Place your asparagus in the skillet, mist with olive oil, and sprinkle with the steak seasoning.

  4. Roast for 10 minutes, flip, and cook for another 3-5 minutes.

Recipe Notes

If using cast iron, make sure it is in the oven/toaster oven while it preheats. Never put food on a cold cast iron skillet.

 

If using cast iron, you need to add a "fat" to the pan once it is hot and before the food is added. For this recipe, that just means a quick spritz of olive oil from the Misto.

 

If roasting in the oven set your rack to the lowest setting possible.

 

Bend your asparagus in half and apply pressure. Where it breaks is the natural point of the stalk where you should remove the woody ends. You can snap a few stalks at a time, but I prefer to just use a knife and cut a bunch at once.

Nutrition Facts
How to Roast Asparagus - Three Ways
Amount Per Serving (4 oz)
Calories 33 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 2mg 0%
Potassium 229mg 7%
Total Carbohydrates 4g 1%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 2g
Protein 2g 4%
Vitamin A 17.1%
Vitamin C 7.7%
Calcium 2.7%
Iron 13.5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

This post contains affiliate links and we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you if you click through and make a purchase. This allows me to continue to provide free content, and I only share products that I use and love myself.

This recipe was originally published in March 2013. It has been retested and updated with reader feedback. New photos have been added and the recipe has been made printable.

Learn how easy it is to make perfectly roasted asparagus each and every time. From oven to cast iron, this is your guide to easy roasted asparagus recipes to help you create healthy and delicious side dishes. #sustainablecooks #asparagus #sidedish #vegetarian #vegetables #easyrecipe #vegan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

13 comments on “How to Roast Asparagus – Three Ways”

  1. This is my favorite way to fix asparagus, too. And I may or may not have eaten an entire pan, snatching at steaming hot spears with bare fingers as they were right out of the oven. May. But I’m not admitting to anything.

  2. That’s my favorite way to make asparagus. Have you ever tried Morton’s Natures Seasoning? It is the best seasoning ever. Really. We go through a canister every two weeks. I put it on absolutely every savory dish I make.

    • Miranda, that sounds a lot like Jane’s Krazy Mixed-Up Salt. Have you tried that? That stuff is the bomb-diggety. I use it in almost everything.

  3. First time I ever tried asparagus was about 5 or 6 years ago at my part time job and I’ve been hooked. It’s so delicious. I have not bought it fresh to cook it (actually, I’ve only cooked with it once, from a can), but this way sounds like a great way to make it.

  4. No, not hypothetically …

  5. A drizzle of balsamic and oil is pretty great too.

  6. Mmmmmm this is my favorite, favorite way to do asparagus!! I use sea salt and garlic powder though, and looove to throw it on the grill in the summer!! Totally worth hearing my husband and children say, “my pee smells funny” afterword!!

  7. I make this exact recipe, except with McCormick’s Montreal Chicken Seasoning – haha.

  8. S&P with Garlic and a sprinkle of Parm at the very last minute is how we do it at our house, and I am totally guilty of eating over the pan too!

  9. This came out perfectly!  I love your assparagus!

  10. Thanks!  I’ll use my cast iron and the spicy version of Montreal steak seasoning!

  11. My favorite ways to have asparagus is roasted or grilled. I spritz mine with olive oil and generously sprinkle with lemon pepper seasoning. Yum!