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Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette

This Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette is quick and easy to make and is absolutely bursting with flavor. It’s the perfect springtime side dish!

Asparagus is one of spring’s best vegetables, and I think roasting is the way to cook it. It stays gorgeously green with a crisp-tender texture. And topping off its unique flavor with a fresh, lemony, mustardy, homemade shallot vinaigrette elevates it to another level of deliciousness!

Asparagus is one of those veggies that people either love or hate, and I totally get it. I love it now, but as a kid, I wouldn’t touch it with a 10-foot pole. And it’s probably because of how it was cooked…or I should probably say overcooked (sorry, Mom!).

In Mom’s defense, the asparagus was canned, so it was already cooked, and then it would be cooked again, and it was just {ugh} mushy and kind of gray-green. Well, at least she tried to expand our vegetable repertoire.

In my opinion, if you’re going to eat asparagus, you’ve got to start with fresh asparagus. And when it’s in season (it’s usually at its peak in April), it’s the best time to enjoy it.

Steam it or stir-fry it just until it’s crisp-tender, and it’s delicious. But there’s just something about roasting it with a little olive oil and some salt and pepper that makes it extra yummy. It mellows out the slightly bitter taste that asparagus can sometimes have. Plus, it stays vibrantly green.

The pièce de résistance of this particular recipe, though, is the shallot vinaigrette. Made fresh with just a few simple ingredients – shallots, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper – it turns plain roasted asparagus into a restaurant-quality dish that’s sure to impress!

roasted asparagus on a plate with a spoon drizzling shallot vinaigrette over the top

A few fun facts about asparagus:

  • It’s a member of the lily family.
  • Although the most common color is green, you can also get purple and white asparagus.
  • It’s full of vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin K and folate, plus antioxidants.
  • It’s a perennial, which means it comes back year after year (although it takes up to 3 years to become harvestable after you plant the seeds).
  • People have been eating asparagus for a long time. It was eaten by the ancient Egyptians, Romans, Greeks, and other Europeans.
  • Yes, it makes your pee smell weird after you eat it. This is due to a compound called asparagusic acid, and it’s completely normal. Some people don’t notice the smell difference, but many of us do.
roasted asparagus on a baking sheet

Ingredients you need:

  • Fresh asparagus
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Shallot
  • Dijon mustard
  • Fresh lemon juice

Here’s a look at how to make Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette:

two images, one a graphic of an oven with text overlay that says preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, the other of a cutting board with asparagus and a knife on it with the bottoms of the asparagus cut off with text that says cut the tough ends off of the asparagus
two images, one of asparagus on a baking sheet with text that says place the asparagus on a baking sheet, the other of a hand holding a spoon of oil over the asparagus on the baking sheet with text that says drizzle with olive oil
two images, one of asparagus on a baking sheet sprinkled with salt and pepper with text that says season with salt and pepper, the other of a hand tossing the asparagus on the baking sheet with text that says toss to coat asparagus evenly with oil, salt and pepper
two images, one of asparagus on a baking sheet with text that says spread the asparagus out on the baking sheet, the other a graphic of an oven with text that says 425 degrees Fahrenheit, roast for 10 to 12 minutes
two images, one of roasted asparagus on a baking sheet with a fork being poked into one spear with text that says  or until just tender when pierced with a fork, the other of a bowl containing a shallot mixture with a spoon in it with text that says combine shallots, Dijon, and lemon juice in a bowl
two images, one of a bowl of shallot mixture with a whisk with oil being poured into it with text that says while whisking, slowly pour in olive oil until well-combined, the other of a plate of asparagus being drizzled with vinaigrette with text that says drizzle vinaigrette over roasted asparagus, enjoy

Tips & Tidbits:

  • When selecting asparagus, make sure it is firm, straight, green, smooth, and the tops are closed, compact, and green (some purple is fine, but no yellow) , and the bottom ends are not dried out.
  • Choose spears that are all similar in size so they cook evenly.
  • Some people say that thinner spears taste better than thicker ones, but I think they all taste delicious!
  • To store fresh asparagus until you use it, trim about ½ inch off the bottoms and place it standing up in about an inch of water in a jar or other container and cover it with plastic. Wait to wash it until just before you are ready to cook it.
    • When properly stored, your asparagus could last up to a week or more in the refrigerator, but I think it’s best when you use it sooner rather than later. I usually use it within a day or two of buying it, if not the same day.
  • The thicker bottoms of asparagus can be tough and woody, so you will want to cut them off. The easiest way to determine where to cut them is to grab one spear and hold it in the middle with one hand and at the bottom in the other hand and bend it until it snaps. Then just cut the other spears to the same size as that spear.
  • You can peel the skin off the very bottom of your spears if you think it is going to be tough, but I honestly don’t usually find it necessary.
  • When roasting asparagus, I think it’s best when you roast it just until it’s crisp tender. It stays more juicy this way. It may get a little golden brown on the bottom, which adds nice flavor, but if it gets too brown, it can get overcooked and a little dry. But if you like it more brown, go for it!
  • Make the shallot vinaigrette while the asparagus is roasting. It tastes best when it is fresh. Instead of whisking it together in a bowl, you can combine all the ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake to combine.
  • This dish can be served warm or at room temperature and is delicious either way.
  • One pound of asparagus usually has about 16 spears and can easily serve 4 people as a side dish, but you can scale-up this recipe if you have more people to serve or if you just want more asparagus per serving. David and I love this dish so much, the two of us will usually eat this whole recipe in one sitting.
roasted asparagus with shallot vinaigrette on a plate with a forkful of cut asparagus above it

This asparagus would be a perfect Easter side dish or a side dish for any holiday menu, and it goes great with glazed ham. The tart vinaigrette pairs deliciously with the smoky sweetness of the ham.

My recipe for Maple Mustard Glazed Spiral Ham is coming up next, so stay tuned!

I hope you try this recipe for Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

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roasted asparagus with shallot vinaigrette on a white plate with a serving fork

Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette

This Roasted Asparagus With Shallot Vinaigrette is quick and easy to make and is absolutely bursting with flavor. It's the perfect springtime side dish!
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Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Servings: 4
Estimated Calories: 108

Ingredients

For the Roasted Asparagus:

  • 1 pound fresh asparagus spears
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

For the Shallot Vinaigrette:

  • 2 tablespoons finely diced shallots
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

Roast the Asparagus:

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • Cut the tough ends off of the asparagus.
    Tip: To determine where to make the cut, hold one of the spears in the middle with one hand and at the bottom with the other hand and bend until the spear snaps. Line up that piece of asparagus with the others and cut them to that same size.
  • Place the asparagus spears on a large baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to evenly coat the asparagus with the oil, salt and pepper.
  • Spread the asparagus out on the baking sheet in one layer, leaving space in between each spear if possible.
  • Roast in the middle of the oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until the asparagus is crisp-tender when pierced with a fork).
    Note: The bottoms of the asparagus may get a little golden brown on the bottom, but the tops likely won't have any brown color, which is how we want them for this recipe. We're looking for that crisp-tender texture rather than color.

Make the Vinaigrette:

  • While the asparagus is roasting, place the shallots, Dijon mustard, and lemon juice in a small bowl and stir to combine. While whisking constantly, slowly pour in the olive oil and whisk until well-combined.
  • Place the roasted asparagus on a serving dish and evenly drizzle the vinaigrette over the spears, Serve hot or at room temperature.

Notes

  • Instead of making the vinaigrette in a bowl with a whisk, you can put all the ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and just shake it until well-combined.
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