Crunchy, Asian-Inspired Oven-Roasted Asparagus

oven roasted asparagus
Alanna Waldron, RDN

Nutrition Highlights (per serving)

Calories 132
Fat 8g
Carbs 12g
Protein 4g
View All
Total Time 30 min
Prep 5 min, Cook 25 min
Servings 3

The crunchy topping over this dish gives your typical oven-roasted asparagus recipe a unique twist. The sesame oil and sesame seeds add an Asian-inspired flare. The best part? Asparagus makes such a healthy, anti-inflammatory side dish and is especially flavorful alongside lean proteins—it's low in calories, high in fiber and a variety of micronutrients. And although it may give your urine an unusual odor, it's still quite healthy! 

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces asparagus
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 dash sea salt

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 425F. 
  2. Wash and pat asparagus dry. Trim the ends of the stalks.
  3. Place asparagus on a baking sheet lined with foil. Pour the olive oil and sprinkle salt over the asparagus and toss to evenly coat. Spread asparagus in one even layer on baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, flipping them once halfway through until they are tender.
  4. While the asparagus is in the oven, heat sesame oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add in garlic and cook for one minute. Be careful not to burn the garlic or it will leave a bitter taste. Add in breadcrumbs, sesame seeds, pepper, and salt. Cook for about 5 minutes until mixture becomes lightly browned and crispy. Remove mixture from heat and set aside.
  1. Remove asparagus from oven and top with breadcrumb mixture.

Ingredient Variations and Substitutions

This asparagus has a subtle Asian flavor without being overpowering. Adding in fresh or dried herbs such as thyme or oregano would give the asparagus a bright note, as would scallions and a squeeze of lemon. If you to add in herbs, replace the sesame oil with olive oil.

For a lower-carb version, you can replace about half the breadcrumbs with more sesame seeds or hemp seeds to increase nutritional value, although this will make the dish higher in calories and healthy fats. You can also completely omit the breadcrumbs.

For those following a gluten-free diet, use gluten-free breadcrumbs, Panko or original. Feel free to add Parmesan cheese to the breadcrumb mixture, after the heat is turned off.

For a dairy-free nutty flavor, you can use nutritional yeast instead of cheese. Add a tablespoon of chopped nuts for crunch and healthy fats.

Cooking and Serving Tips

You can pan-fry the asparagus or grill it. Grilling would give a nice smokey flavor without compromising texture.

To make it easier for yourself, toss the asparagus with the olive oil and salt on the lined baking sheet for easier clean-up. Save yourself a bowl in the sink by tossing the breadcrumb mixture's ingredients right in the saucepan.

To easily trim the asparagus ends, hold one stalk and lightly bend until it breaks off. This will ensure a natural separation from the tough, woodsy end and the tender part of the asparagus.

Pair the recipe with any source of lean protein or seafood. Marinated, grilled chicken, turkey, or fish would be especially delicious. You could also enjoy the asparagus with eggs cooked any style. Leftovers would be great in stir-fry, mixed with more vegetables, lean protein, and brown rice. Or, throw leftover chopped asparagus into a salad.

Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3
Amount per serving  
Calories 132
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 10%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 173mg 8%
Total Carbohydrate 12g 4%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 3g  
Includes 1g Added Sugars 2%
Protein 4g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 52mg 4%
Iron 3mg 17%
Potassium 267mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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