Roasted asparagus sings with simple oil, salt and pepper but add some fresh orange and a bit of ginger and the flavor is beyond delicious. The perfect side dish with prime rib, potatoes and anything in between–this is the green your plate (and your mouth) has been missing.Jump to Recipe
Have you ever had boiled asparagus? Good grief. It can be better than floppy, soft, saggy green that’s been cooked to death.
I’ve made about 2,000,000 pans of roasted asparagus (only a slight exaggeration) and while everything is pretty doggone good with just olive oil, salt and pepper, this is a whole new ballgame.
How to prepare asparagus for roasting
Asparagus is easy to prepare. Rinse it, pat it dry and trim off the ends in one of two ways:
- Hold up each piece and bend it. Where it breaks is where the asparagus is tough. Throw the short end away. I find this method more reliable if you have home grown asparagus of various sizes.
- Take a knife and just cut off the bottom couple of inches. Pile up all the asparagus and whack ’em off. You may still get some tough parts, but it’s faster.
Why does asparagus get mushy?
There can be a few reasons. Mostly because it’s been overcooked or steamed instead of roasts. To prevent mushy asparagus, follow these tips:
- Use a baking sheet large enough for your asparagus to have a little space around it. Make sure the sides of your pan aren’t super high (no more than an inch). If the sides are too high it will hold in steam and make the asparagus soggy.
- Make sure the asparagus is as dry as possible before cooking. Water=steam=soft.
- Use high heat to roast, give it a toss one time and take it out. High heat will help make those ends of the asparagus crispy. Toss it once while cooking and then remove them from the oven before they are shriveled like your hands after a bath.
Tip: If your asparagus is pencil thin keep an eye on it and cook it less.
Tips for the best orange and ginger flavor:
- As always, use fresh ginger. It’s a root and you’ll find it in the produce department. Use a spoon or vegetable peeler to shave off the brown thin skin and grate the yellow flesh on a box grater or Microplane.
- Use a fresh orange. Just buy one if you won’t eat a bag full. You can grate a little of the zest over the asparagus if you want to.
- Set aside a bit of the OJ, Dijon and avocado oil for guests to drizzle over at the table. It feels fancy!
Other easy roasted vegetable side dishes to try
Orange and Ginger Roasted Asparagus
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- Prep the asparagus: hold each piece by the ends and bend–the asparagus will snap naturally where the stalk starts to get tough. Discard the tough end and place your asparagus on a lightly greased rimmed baking sheet.
- In a measuring cup, mix the orange juice, olive oil, ginger, and mustard until combined. Pour over the asparagus and toss to coat. Sprinkle the salt and pepper evenly over everything and toss again.
- Roast for a total of 15 minutes or until your asparagus is tender (this will depend on how thick it is) and give them a stir halfway through the baking time. Serve warm.