If you want to learn how to cook asparagus perfectly every time, you've gotta start with the right ingredients and cooking method. I prefer cast iron skillets, for many reasons… but mostly because the food just tastes better to me when I cook it that way!
How to cook asparagus
I also cook with butter. I know you're probably gasping, especially if you're following a program where you track your points, but a tablespoon or two of butter is the perfect amount for an entire pound of asparagus. It's worth the bites/points, I promise. 😉
We get asparagus from a local farm, so it's always fresh and always organic. This also means we can only get it when it's in-season, but that's okay. We eat tons of it when it's in-season and fill our plates with other veggies the rest of the year. 😉
What to serve with asparagus
My wife loves chicken, so that is usually what's served with asparagus in our house. I cook up 5-10 pounds of chicken breast each week, and she will reheat it throughout the week for our meals. This mustard glazed chicken breast or chicken piccata would both pair beautifully with this asparagus.
My top secret spicy asparagus recipe
Flat Iron Pepper Co is my go-to for my spices. I am not affiliated with them, nor do I get any money for recommending them, but I've replaced nearly all of the spices in my cabinet with spices from Flat Iron because they're truly the best!
My top secret asparagus recipe uses Asian Reds. If you want to kick the spice up a notch (or ten), use I Can't Feel My Face. Use both sparingly. They provide flavor and heat, which is what I love. I don't like dishes to be hot just to be hot, I want them to have a nice flavor profile, too. A flavor profile that can stand on its own without the added heat is key.
Pro tip: Sign up for the email list at Flat Iron Pepper Co. They send out BOGO deals quite often! We've gotten several free spices (including Asian Reds) to try out for free while ordering our other favorites (like Smoke Show).
If spicy isn't your thing, no worries! There are so many other options. You can add some minced or sliced garlic. This tool will do both! When you mince garlic, it releases more essential oils. The more oil that is released, the stronger the flavor. So for the most intense garlic flavor, mincing is the way to go. For a lighter flavor, slicing is the way to go. Generally, you want to slice the garlic when you are serving it with other ingredients, more so than adding it to a recipe.
Asparagus, as with most vegetables, will blend well with many flavor profiles. I've used everything but the bagel seasoning, lemon and garlic seasoning, an Italian seasoning blend and good old garlic salt, which tends to be my go-to for most vegetables.
To keep yourself from getting bored with vegetables, peruse the spice aisle and experiment! Most bottles of spices are inexpensive and you might find a real gem! You can also get a few spices and blend them.
I make sure to get in all my fruits and vegetables every day. To help me with this, I use iTrackBites. It helps keep me on track and moving towards my goals.
- cost: iTrackBites costs $36 for the year (using this link for 40% off makes it $36 – use COACH_SMILEY to save!!), WW is $20+ for the month, and it's the same formula and less options
- choices: I can choose PointsPlus, Freestyle, or any other plan I want with iTrackBites. Even with the new WW changes, they only offer 3 plan options (not PointsPlus).
- logs: You can export your tracker data by the week, month, or quarter with iTrackBites. WW does not give you access to quarterly data.
- accuracy: I've found inaccurate info in the WW app due to members submitting and not paying attention to the right numbers. With iTrackBites, I know if I see the green check, it's been verified as accurate. This puts my mind at ease!