Air Fryer Asparagus is a quick and healthy side dish for any meal. This is your new favorite way to cook asparagus, in just 10 minutes!
Asparagus is one of my favorite veggies, and one of the only vegetables my husband will eat. In fact, he looks forward to it! I’ve cooked it a variety of ways, sauteeing on the stovetop, Roasted Asparagus in the oven, and I also absolutely love it with pasta in my Spicy Lemon, Asparagus & Bacon Pasta.
I make this side dish all the time! It’s one of those super easy, toss it and go kind of recipes. The result is a simple, quick side dish that pairs well with just about anything. Lemon adds a very subtle fresh kick of flavor and you can adjust for your liking, adding more or omitting it altogether. The addition of fresh Parmesan cheese offers a salty, nutty finish.
How to buy asparagus
Asparagus is sold in 1-2 pound bunches, and there are usually two sizes of stalks – thick and meaty or pencil thin stalks. I prefer the thinner ones but you can go with either. The thicker the stalks the longer they will take to cook.
The key is to choose pieces that are roughly the same thickness, otherwise you’ll end up with some softer and some more crisp.
Can you cook asparagus too long?
Asparagus cooks pretty quickly, especially the thinner stalks, so you’ll want to watch closely and remove it right away. The thicker the stalks, the longer they will take to cook, but they will still be done in just a few minutes.
I like my asparagus to still have a bit of a bite to it, so I usually ere on less time.
How can you tell when asparagus is done?
Air Fryer Asparagus only take 5 minutes to cook. It should be bright green in color and tender but still have a crisp bite to it. In other words, you can pierce it with a fork but it’s not floppy.
You can play around with it to fine just the right amount of time for your particular unit since they do vary a bit my manufacturer.
How to cook asparagus in the air fryer
Prep. Wash and trim the woody ends from asparagus. Hold each end of one stalk and bend. It should snap where it needs to and you can just toss the thicker woody ends. Preheat your air fryer to 375 degrees. Check your manual because not all brands require preheating.
Air Fry. Spray a light coating of olive oil cooking spray in the basket. Regular cooking spray will also work, I just prefer the olive oil for cooking. Place the asparagus in the basket, spray it with a little more cooking spray, then season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5-7 minutes, shaking the basket about halfway through to redistribute the asparagus.
Melt cheese on top. Turn off the air fryer and pull out the basket. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of fresh parmesan cheese on top, then close the drawer and just long enough to let the cheese melt.
Garnish and serve. Plate asparagus as desired, either on a large serving platter or on individual plates, and sprinkle with lemon juice, lemon zest and more fresh parmesan.
Air Fryer Asparagus Storage and Reheating
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge and enjoy within 2-3 days. Reheat carefully, as you don’t want it to overcook and become mushy. I suggest reheating in your airfryer instead of the microwave.
Air Fryer Asparagus Recipe Tips
- Do not add all the cheese at once, it will likely slip off the asparagus completely. By adding in two different ways, you will ensure each stalk has a bit of cheese.
- I love using olive oil cooking spray with this recipe so that the vegetable has minimal oil. Alternatively, you can toss the stalks in a bit of extra virgin olive oil before cooking.
- For this particular recipe, it’s ok to pile the asparagus up a bit as long as you toss halfway through cooking.
- Each air fryer unit varies greatly. When in doubt, consult your manufacturer’s guide.
What to serve with asparagus
Truly, this Air Fryer Asparagus recipe will pair well with any protein. Most often I serve it with Oven Baked Chicken Breasts, Lemon Herb Pork Tenderloin, or Spicy Garlic Shrimp. You can also chop it up and toss it with some One Pot Chicken Alfredo.
Air Fryer Asparagus
- Air Fryer
- 1.5 pounds asparagus (1-2 pounds - one bunch)
- olive oil cooking spray
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice
- Wash and dry asparagus and trim off stalky ends.
- Prepare the air fryer by spraying the basket with a light coating of cooking spray.
- Place asparagus in an air fryer basket and spray with a little more olive oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top of the asparagus.
- Cook at 375 degrees for 5-7 minutes, tossing once halfway through cooking.
- When asparagus is finished, top with ¼ cup of the cheese and close the air fryer to allow the cheese to melt.
- Remove the asparagus from the basket and plate it. Top with the remaining ¼ cup cheese and lemon zest and juice.
I love using olive oil cooking spray with this recipe so that the vegetable has minimal oil. Alternatively, you can toss the stalks in a bit of EVO before cooking.
For this particular recipe, it is OK to pile the asparagus up a bit as long as you toss halfway through cooking.
As usual, each air fryer unit varies greatly. When in dough, consult your manufacturer’s guide.