Once you try this easy to make lemon garlic oven roasted asparagus you’ll never want to eat asparagus any other way! The lemon, fresh garlic, & vegan parmesan gives it so much flavor and it turns out perfectly cooked every time! Vegan & gluten-free.
I was super excited when I found overflowing bunches of organic purple-tipped asparagus at my local market for only $3.99 yesterday! That’s a fantastic price!
I had been so happy to find organic honeybells, blueberries, and papaya that I had forgotten that spring is also asparagus season! Technically, April is prime time for asparagus so I’ll definitely be making this lemon garlic oven roasted asparagus a lot over the next few weeks. I hope you will be too!
I can promise you that you’re not going to find a more flavorful roasted asparagus recipe than this one. I used all of my favorite flavors: fresh garlic, lemon, thyme, and vegan parmesan cheese to just blow this recipe out of the water.
It’s ridiculously delicious and easy to make. In addition to being super tasty, this easy asparagus recipe is also low-carb and vegan keto friendly. Here are more low-carb vegan recipes and vegan keto recipes if you need more inspiration!
A big punch of the flavor comes from using fresh garlic cloves and not just dried garlic powder. I use garlic powder a lot when I cook but some recipes are just better with fresh garlic.
There’s definitely a trick to roasting asparagus with fresh garlic though. If you add the garlic too early or if it’s cooked at too high a temperature it will burn and the flavor of the dish will be ruined.
Soooo how do you get around that problem but still get to enjoy the flavors of fresh roasted garlic with your lemon parmesan asparagus? Keep reading to find out!
Do You Have To Wash Asparagus Before Cooking?
Yes, you absolutely need to wash your asparagus first before cooking it. I prefer to let the asparagus soak in a bowl of cold water with a mixture of vinegar and baking soda for 10-20 minutes (this is how I clean all of my fruits and vegetables) and then rinse it really well. However, if you don’t have time for that, rinsing the asparagus under cold water to remove the dirt should be sufficient.
How to Trim Asparagus
You have two options to trim asparagus:
- You can bend the spears of asparagus and let it break naturally where it wants to.
- You can use a sharp knife and cut 1 – 1 1/2 inches off (depending on how big and thick the stalks are).
What To Do With Asparagus Woody Ends?
After you trim the asparagus woody ends off you don’t have to throw them away, they’re 100% edible. You can slice them very thinly and then add them to garden veggie barley soup, a casserole, or to vegetable lasagna soup.
How To Roast Asparagus in the Oven
- Step #1 – Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prep the asparagus by either slicing the woody ends off or snapping them where they naturally break. Make sure the asparagus is very dry before laying it on a parchment-lined tray. If it’s wet, the asparagus will steam and not roast.
- Step #2 – Drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil over the asparagus and toss to coat each piece. Sprinkle onion granules, thyme, lemon zest, sea salt, and pepper over the asparagus and toss to coat each piece.
- Step #3 – Top the asparagus with lemon slices and then put the tray into the oven to roast for 8 minutes. Carefully, remove the tray from the oven.
- Step #4 – Mince two cloves of garlic and mix it with 1 tsp of olive oil in a small bowl.
- Step #5 – Evenly distribute the minced garlic over the asparagus and put the tray back into the oven for 3-4 minutes. The olive oil will help the garlic to roast instead of burn when you add it to the tray of asparagus. I’ve found that you can only roast the garlic for 3-4 minutes (at 425 degrees) before it starts to burn. So depending on how thick your asparagus is, make sure you time it accordingly. (My asparagus was close to 1/2 inch thick so I roasted it for 12 minutes total and added the minced garlic 4 minutes before it was done and it came out perfectly.)
- Step #6 – Remove the asparagus from the oven and squeeze 1/2 a lemon (about 1 tbsp) over the hot asparagus. Garnish with vegan parmesan cheese, black pepper, and roasted lemon wheels.
How Long to Bake Asparagus
Asparagus should be cooked quickly and at a high temperature (425 degrees) to get tender stalks with crispy tips. How long to bake asparagus depends on how thick the asparagus stalk is:
- 1/4 inch – Cook for 8-10 minutes.
- 1/2 inch – Cook for 10-12 minutes.
- 3/4 inch – Cook for 12-14 minutes.
How To Cook Asparagus On The Stove
If you don’t want to make oven roasted asparagus you can also cook it on the stove top using the following instructions.
Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil or vegan butter in a large saute pan (medium heat) and let it melt/heat up. Add dried thyme, onion granules, and lemon zest and let it cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Then add the asparagus and saute for 10 minutes. Halfway through, add the minced garlic. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, sea salt, pepper, and vegan parmesan cheese.
How Do You Know When Asparagus Goes Bad?
You’ll easily be able to tell if your asparagus has gone bad by looking at and feeling the tips of the asparagus, they usually go bad first. The tips turn a dark green, almost black color and when you touch it it will be very soft and mushy. Fresh asparagus will be bright green, crisp, and firm to the touch.
Can You East Asparagus Cold?
Sure, you can definitely eat baked asparagus cold but I think it’s better hot. The only exception that I would make is if you wanted to add the asparagus to a big salad, pasta salad, or to this wheat berry salad.
Can You Freeze Oven Roasted Asparagus?
Technically, yes, you can freeze oven roasted asparagus but I wouldn’t recommend it. I’ve tried freezing asparagus after it’s been cooked and it always turns out (after being reheated) way too soft for my taste.
However, if you must freeze it, lay the leftovers on a tray with space between each stalk and freeze it for 1-2 hours (so you don’t have one big clump of frozen asparagus). Then put the frozen stalks into a freezer safe container or a reusable silicone bag.
Notes & Substitutions
- Don’t add the fresh garlic too early, if you do it will burn and taste very bitter.
- If you don’t want to use fresh garlic, you can substitute 1/2 tsp dried garlic powder instead.
- Make sure you either cut off or snap off the woody ends of the asparagus before roasting it.
- Wait to add the fresh lemon juice until the asparagus is done cooking. If you add the lemon juice before cooking it then the asparagus will steam in the liquid instead of roasting. It will still taste good but you won’t get those delicious little crispy edges.
- Be careful not to overcook the asparagus, err on the side of caution and keep checking it. If it’s not bright green or if it’s soft and bendy when you pick it up then it’s probably overcooked.
More Vegan Roasted Vegetable Recipes You’ll Love
Lemon Garlic Oven Roasted Asparagus
- Large Baking Tray
- 1 lb asparagus (about 25-30 stalks that are 1/2 inch thick)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- 1/4 tsp onion granules
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- Himalayan sea salt and pepper to taste
- 4-5 lemon slices*
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (juice from half a lemon)
- 1-2 tbsp vegan parmesan cheese (I use Violife parmesan)
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Prep the Asparagus: Wash the asparagus and dry it very well. You can either bend the asparagus in half and let it snap naturally or you can cut 1 - 1 1/2 inches off the base of the stalk. Check the notes for what you can do with the end pieces.
- Season & Bake: Lay the asparagus spears on a parchment-lined tray. Drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil over the asparagus and toss to coat each piece. Sprinkle thyme, onion granules, lemon zest, sea salt, and pepper evenly over the asparagus and toss one more time. Top with lemon slices and bake for 8 minutes.
- Add the Fresh Garlic: Mince the garlic cloves and put it into a small bowl. Add 1 tsp of olive oil and mix it together. After the asparagus has cooked for 8 minutes, remove the tray from the oven and sprinkle the minced garlic evenly over the tray. Put the tray back into the oven and bake for 3-4 more minutes.
- Toppings: Remove the tray from the oven once the asparagus is tender but not mushy and it should still be bright green. Squeeze the juice from half a lemon over the asparagus (about 1 tbsp) and top with grated vegan parmesan cheese.
- You don't have to use the vegan parmesan that I used, any store-bought or homemade version will work too. Or you could omit it completely.
- If your asparagus is thicker or thinner then 1/2 inch, check the "How Long Do You Cook Asparagus" section for cooking time variations.
- If you don't want to do the additional step of adding the fresh minced garlic you can substitute 1/2 tsp of garlic powder.
- Don't add the fresh garlic too early, if you do it will burn and taste very bitter.
- Make sure you either cut off or snap off the woody ends of the asparagus before roasting it.
- Wait to add the fresh lemon juice until the asparagus is done cooking. If you add the lemon juice before cooking it then the asparagus will steam in the liquid instead of roasting. It will still taste good but you won't get those delicious little crispy edges.
- Be careful not to overcook the asparagus, err on the side of caution and keep checking it. If it's not bright green or if it's soft and bendy when you pick it up then it's probably overcooked.