Cheesy baked asparagus with parmesan is absolutely fantastic! Three basic ingredients, 20 minutes and you’ll have a perfect Italian side dish
If you haven’t found your recipe for roasted asparagus yet, you should definitely try this cheesy baked asparagus with parmesan cheese. Do you like Italian food? Then you will love this Italian side dish. You have no idea how delicious and easy it is to prepare. In addition, it’s super healthy! Actually, it’s one of the easiest recipes and, without a doubt, one of the most successful. Try it once and you will immediately fall in love with it! Without any exaggeration…
Just a minimum of ingredients, no special skills, very little time and you will have the perfect Italian asparagus au gratin. It isn’t only a side dish, it can also make a delicious full-fledged meal for a light lunch or dinner, an interesting snack, and a good idea for a spring picnic.
Why is asparagus healthy?
This vegetable is not just green stalks, it’s a great source of nutrients, rich in vitamins A, C, K, E; minerals (calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc…), and antioxidants. This vegetable is low in calories, but due to its carbohydrate content, it will give you a boost of energy, improve kidney function, help digestion (these green stems are very rich in fiber), normalize cholesterol levels, and reduce high blood pressure.
Cheesy baked asparagus, risotto, pasta sauce, or soup with these green stalks… whichever recipe you choose it’s always a guarantee of exquisite taste.
Why I love this cheesy baked asparagus
When it comes to vegetables, I always prefer simple recipes with a minimum amount of ingredients: so that the taste of the main component comes first, and the method and time of preparation don’t destroy the healthy part of this vegetable. In the case of asparagus, these aspects are extremely important. So today’s recipe is from the category “it couldn’t be simpler” and “tastier doesn’t exist” – cheesy baked asparagus.
Only three main ingredients, a little oil, salt, pepper and you are on your way to the most delicious baked asparagus with parmesan cheese in your life!
This Italian asparagus side dish tastes great both hot and cold.
Variations to this recipe
This basic asparagus recipe does not require a lot of ingredients, as the taste of the dish is rich and balanced without them. Minimalism in this case is the golden rule. However, if you want to add unexpected new flavors, feel free to experiment. This Italian side dish is easily customizable:
- top it with garlic. Garlic powder or fresh minced garlic and cheesy baked asparagus with parmesan cheese are a fantastic combination. Mix garlic with breadcrumbs
- add grated lemon zest – the taste will be very fresh and original
- do you like spicy dishes? Sprinkle asparagus au gratin with dry ground paprika or paprika flakes. It’s super delicious!
- chopped toasted nuts are also a great choice
Tips for the best cheesy baked asparagus
This recipe for roasted asparagus is extremely easy and quick. Follow a few simple tips and you will easily get the most delicious cheesy baked asparagus:
- choose fresh, firm, bright green stalks that aren’t wrinkled along their stems. The size of the stems does not matter. Any thickness is fine, as long as they are all the same, in this case, all stalks will bake evenly
- cooking time depends on your personal preferences, if you like crispy vegetables au gratin or “al dente” then 20 minutes of baking is enough, if you want a softer consistency, then cook a little longer
- before baking, rinse the stalks and wipe them well with a paper napkin or kitchen towel. Thanks to this, they will be crispy
- don’t overcook. No one likes loose or too dry asparagus, so don’t miss the moment (check the readiness with a fork, if it is easily pierced through by a fork – the dish is ready)
What to serve with this Italian side dish
- This recipe is so versatile and it goes perfectly with all types of main courses. Serve it with meat steaks, meatballs, meatloaf or baked pork. My family adores this side dish with Italian sausage. Tuna steak and cheesy baked asparagus with parmesan are also a perfect match.
- These vegetables are fabulous with a fluffy omelette, or plain fried eggs.
- Cut thin slices of ham and cheese, add Italian asparagus au gratin, pair it with a piece of bread or toast, and a delicious breakfast is ready.
- You can serve this vegetable side dish without anything, it’s a great appetizer or a healthy snack. If desired, pour some balsamic vinegar over the dish for even more Italian character.
- 1 pound (500g) asparagus. Choose the stalks that are firm to the touch and have a smooth texture
- 2Tbsp grated Parmesan. You can substitute it with another grated cheese of your choice)
- 2Tbsp breadcrumbs
- oil (olive oil is preferred here, but sunflower, corn, or other vegetable oil can be used as well)
- salt, pepper
How to make cheesy baked asparagus au gratin
Place the top tender stems on a baking tray lined with parchment
Sprinkle them with grated Parmesan
Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top
Salt (just a little, because the cheese is already salty), pepper and drizzle some oil on top
Bake for 20-25 minutes at 190°C (375°F) (cooking time depends on your personal preferences, if you like “al dente” asparagus then 20min is enough, if you want softer consistency, then cook a little longer). Bon Appetit!
First, you need to remove the bottom hard ends of the stems. To do this, I always use the bend-and-break method: bend each stem closer to the bottom and it will break itself in the right place (every stalk has a different breaking point). Don’t throw away the hard bottom ends, they can be used to make broth, which is perfect for risotto.
I don’t recommend freezing this cheesy baked asparagus. It will lose its crispy texture and become mushy. However, you can successfully freeze raw stems and then cook them as if they were fresh.
This dish is best served fresh, but you can also make it ahead of time. Store vegetables in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat in the oven before serving.
Enjoy this cheesy baked asparagus with parmesan cheese hot, warm, or room temperature. Buon appetito!
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Cheesy baked asparagus (Italian side dish)
- 1 pound (500g) asparagus
- 2 tbsp grated Parmesan
- 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
- oil, salt, pepper
- First, you need to remove the bottom hard ends of the asparagus stems. To do this, bend each stem closer to the bottom and it will break itself in the right place (don’t throw away the hard bottom ends, they can be used to make broth, which is perfect for risotto). Place the top tender asparagus stems on a baking tray lined with parchment
- Sprinkle the asparagus with grated Parmesan
- Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top
- Salt (just a little, because the cheese is already salty), pepper and drizzle some oil on top
- Bake for 20-25 minutes at 190°C (375F) (cooking time depends on your personal preferences, if you like “al dente” asparagus then 20min is enough, if you want softer consistency, then cook a little longer).
So yummy! Goes well with any meal. I’ll definitely prepare it again. It’s one of the best ways to serve asparagus.
The Saporito says
Hi, Charlotte! Thank you for your comment. I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe and that you’ll be making it again.