I absolutely love asparagus. Honestly, I would eat it with every meal if it wasn’t so darn expensive. In season it’s not that bad. But asparagus season is, basically, a minute long and then the price doubles again. It’s not too bad, though, if you combine it with cheaper ingredients to make Budget-Friendly Asparagus Recipes.
This list is just the beginning out of asparagus recipes. We have more that we make on a regular basis (like grilled asparagus in foil) but just haven’t gotten those up on the blog yet.
So, be sure to bookmark this page and come back to it later for more recipes using asparagus.
Budget-Friendly Asparagus Recipes
Following these frugal asparagus recipes, you’ll find some asparagus frequently asked questions. And finally, there are a few recommendations of what to serve with asparagus).
If you’ve never made asparagus before, Oven-Roasted Asparagus is a simple recipe to start with.
This recipes uses a two-part method. You steam the asparagus, then oven-roast it. Cooking asparagus this way really preserves the color, which helps because you eat with your eyes. It also helps to soften the asparagus, making sure it has a really great texture when you serve it. Plus, with the sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, this asparagus recipe tastes great.
It’s bound to convert you into an asparagus chef and your family into asparagus eaters.
A traditional carbonara recipe has egg, cheese, and panchetta (although bacon is often substituted).
Peas are often added, which is great, but the asparagus really makes this a decadent recipe. The other ingredients are budget-friendly, so this recipe isn’t actually that expensive. But it tastes expensive.
Grilled Asparagus Recipe
If you’re already grilling your proteins, like burgers or chicken, it makes so much sense to grill your sides as well. Which is why this Grilled Asparagus recipe is the perfect barbecue side dish.
If you don’t know how to grill asparagus on a charcoal grill or a propane grill, don’t worry. This recipe will walk you through it.
This asparagus recipe is also unintentionally vegan, so it’s perfect if you’re vegan or just trying to make a few plant-based recipes during the week.
Kale pesto is my favorite pesto (it blows basil pesto out of the water). But don’t sleep on Asparagus Pesto. It’s really delicious.
We generally use this in a recipe that includes orecchiette pasta, sausage, and gorgonzola cheese. It’s incredible and definitely one of those recipes you want to serve when you’re having company (and one of those recipes that I should add to the blog in the future, so look out for that one coming … well, not soon but one day).
You could use this Asparagus Pesto as a dip for bread, a spread on a grilled vegetable sandwich, or a sauce for pasta. However you use it, you’re sure to really enjoy it.
Asparagus: Frequently Asked Questions
There are a few things to pay attention to when you’re buying asparagus in the store: texture, color, buds, and size.
Texture: You want to choose asparagus that is firm to the touch. It will be a little flexible, but when you grip it, it shouldn’t wilt in your hands. If the asparagus feels squishy or flimsy, it’s past its prime.
Color: Asparagus comes in different colors. When choosing asparagus, make sure the color is bright and vibrant. That assures it is ripe. If the color looks dull or lackluster, don’t purchase it.
Buds: The buds are the tiny cones on the top of the asparagus. Each stalk should have one. If they don’t, or if they look like they’re about to fall off when you pick up the asparagus bunch, then don’t buy it.
Size: Size doesn’t really matter as for ripeness, but it is something to keep in mind when you’re buying asparagus at the store. You want the asparagus stalks to be similar in size when you’re buying them. That way, they’ll cook evenly. If you see a bunch with some thin stalks and some thick ones, don’t choose it.
The basic gist of it is that with asparagus, digestion turns asparagusic acid into sulfur, which smells.
If you want more details about that, this post is filled with them.
Rinse asparagus under water, making sure to clean under the tips and leaves in case there’s any dirt, sand, or grit there. Dry the asparagus completely. Any excess water will cause it to steam rather than sauté.
Then, snap off the bottom of the asparagus at its natural break.
There are sites that will tell you to peel the asparagus, but that’s time consuming and unnecessary.
If you have leftover asparagus that you haven’t cooked, fill a tall glass with water and store the asparagus upright. It will last two to three days that way. If you try to store uncooked asparagus without water, it will only last overnight.
If you have leftover cooked asparagus, store it in an air-tight container in the fridge for two to three days.
Asparagus is best eaten as soon as possible and leftovers don’t reheat that well, so try to only buy what you’ll be able to consume in the day or two after purchase.
What does asparagus pair well with?
Asparagus is a great side dish. One of the entrees at our wedding was Chicken Oscar, which is grilled chicken breast topped with lump crab meat, served with asparagus and Hollandaise sauce. Oh my gosh. So good.
Asparagus is great as a side for chicken, fish, steak … or even pork chops. Honestly, it’s great with any protein. Some of our favorite dinners to serve with asparagus are:
- Grilled Beer Can Chicken
- Linguine with Clam Sauce
- Pork Rind-Crusted Chicken Fingers
- Grilled Shrimp Kabobs
- Tuna Cakes
Have you tried any of these Budget-Friendly Asparagus Recipes? Let us know what you thought in the comments.