How to Make Grilled Asparagus

Two Methods:Basic Grilled AsparagusPlaying with Recipe Ideas

Asparagus has always been one of the vegetables that seem to be hidden or saved for special dinners or occasions. Then they are served simply, either boiled, cold with salads, or as means of adorning the particular meal. One way of serving and making sure that these vegetables are enjoyed is by grilling them and giving them a hot and zingy taste, and serving them along with a blander but delicious Salmon dinner.


  • 1lb asparagus
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method 1
Basic Grilled Asparagus

  1. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 1
    Choose high-quality, fat stalks for grilling. You want bigger stalks with deep-green or slightly purple tips for the grill. While you can use the extra thin spears, they tend to either overcook in order to get crispy or undercook to avoid drying out. A firm stalk is essential.
    • Check the bottoms of the spears. The should be even and slightly green. If they are all white and cracked or dried out then you should get a fresher pack.[1]
  2. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 2
    Heat the grill on high heat. Never throw food on a cold grill. You want the grates to be piping hot, which will get the outsides of the veggies well browned and delicious. Be sure the scrape the grill clean with a wire brush as it heats so the food cooks cleanly.
    • You only need the burners that the asparagus will be directly over to be on.
  3. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 3
    Trim the asparagus to remove the tough ends. Clean the asparagus with vegetable cleaner, or wash them under water. You should cut away any of the white at the bottom, leaving even, green spears.
    • If using your hands, bend the stalk near the bottom. It should naturally break right about where you would cut it off.
    • Optionally, use a peeler to remove about half the skin for less-tough spears. Note, however, that this only works for thicker asparagus.
  4. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 4
    Place the asparagus into a shallow dish to coat with olive oil. You don't want them to be dripping wet, but they should have a nice sheen of oil. Oil holds heat much more evenly than plan asparagus, leading to better cooking and grill marks.
    • One pound of asparagus needs about four tablespoons of olive oil.[2]
  5. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 5
    Add a dash of salt and pepper right before putting the spears on the grill. Salt enhances and brings out flavor, but it also removes moisture. By waiting until you're just about ready to grill the asparagus you get all the taste benefits of salt without the tough, rubbery, or dry side-effects.
  6. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 6
    Grill about 5-10 minutes, turning them once or twice. Make sure you place them perpendicular to the grill grates to avoid losing any of them to the flames. The cooking time will depend on the thickness of the spears, but you should roll them around every minute or so to ensure they cook easily.
    • Very thin asparagus may only take 3-5 minutes, so move quickly. If you have a grill pan, it may be easiest to cook in this so you don't loose any spears.
  7. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 7
    Remove when the thickest spears are easily pierced with a fork. This is the easiest test to make sure they are tender. If your fork easily slides into the stalk, then they are ready to eat.

Method 2
Playing with Recipe Ideas

  1. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 8
    Top with a squeeze of lemon juice or balsamic vinegar for a fresh burst of flavor. The best cooks understand how to use acids to their advantage, as a spritz of common cooking acids give foods depth and punch. For asparagus, the two most common acids are lemon and balsamic vinegar, which match the meaty, sweet, and somewhat savory flavor of a well-grilled asparagus.
    • Don't add the lemon juice until you're just about ready to serve. If serving cold or room temperature, add the acid at the very end.[3]
  2. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 9
    Add a light "marinade" to your olive oil before grilling to expand the flavors. You can play with whatever you'd like, but the following recipe will great a well-balanced, spicy, and slightly Asian-inspired asparagus. Simply add this with the olive oil and then cook like normal. As soon as they come off the grill, toss with sesame seeds:
  • 1 Tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
    • Both garlic and red peppers have oil-soluble flavors, so they longer they sit in the oil, the richer the flavor.[4]
  1. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 10
    Toss with a hard, salty cheese right off they come of the grill, like a Parmesan. You could use Asiago, Romano, or any other strongly-flavored cheese. If you do, plan to go a little lighter on the salt in the preparation stage -- only using a pinch along with some black pepper to even the flavors out.[5]
  2. Image titled Make Grilled Asparagus Step 11
    Toss in some fresh herbs, like thyme, for a new flavor after they leave the grill. European herbs, like rosemary and thyme, go well, especially with lemon. You only need about a half teaspoon, tossed in with the stalks right after the asparagus comes off the heat. Serve immediately.[6]

Article Info

Categories: Fruits and Vegetables