Sautéed Asparagus is a quick and easy way to prepare a fresh side dish. Simply pan-fry asparagus with butter, garlic, salt, and pepper until tender and flavorful. This is the best method to prepare a healthy side for dinner any night of the week.

Green asparagus is full of flavor and nutrients.

Simple Sautéed Asparagus Recipe

I love asparagus as a quick and nutritious side dish! My favorite ways to prepare it are roasted asparagus and air fryer asparagus, and I have even delved into the research behind why asparagus makes your pee smell. (Yes, I went there! lol)

And even though I had been making this simple sautéed asparagus recipe for years now I, once again, had not thought to share it with you.

But if you’re looking for more ways to switch up your sides game, then this is the dish for you!

It’s so quick and easy to whip up—15 minutes from start to finish. Asparagus is also so packed with nutrition and makes the perfect accompaniment to just about any meal!

You only need a few simple ingredients—fresh minced garlic being the star—to make this savory side dish!

So if you score a bunch of green asparagus at the farmer’s market or they’re on sale at your local grocery store, turn to this quick way to get a delicious side dish on the dinner table.

Asparagus, butter, and seasonings are the ingredients for this dish.

Sautéed Asparagus Ingredients

The simple ingredients you need to make this garlic sautéed asparagus recipe include:

  • Asparagus. You’ll need about one pound of fresh asparagus. You should be able to get a bunch at the grocery store. Be sure to remove the bottom ends to avoid the overly fibrous and somewhat bitter section.
  • Butter. Feel free to sub in a dairy-free version, like vegan buttery sticks or use a neutral oil if needed.
  • Garlic. Fresh minced garlic cloves are essential in this recipe. Don’t use garlic powder if you can help it.
  • Seasoning. Kosher salt or sea salt, black pepper, and lemon zest are the perfect toppings and add a pop of freshness.

How to Sauté Asparagus

These are the steps to follow to make this easy garlic sautéed asparagus recipe:

Prep the Asparagus

The first step is to get the asparagus ready to cook.

When you buy a bunch from the store, the bottom of the asparagus stalks need to be removed. This tough part has an unpalatable flavor and texture.

You can either break it off with your hands or use a sharp knife and cutting board to slice the ends off.

Sauté the Asparagus

Use a large sauté pan or cast-iron skillet over medium or medium-high heat to melt the butter. You want it completely melted, but not burned. So pay attention while it heats.

Add the trimmed asparagus spears to the hot pan in a single layer and sauté for 7 to 8 minutes. Flip the pieces over occasionally.

When the veggies are a bright green color and tender, you’re ready for the next step. The cooking time will vary based on how thick the asparagus spears are.

Add the Garlic

Once the asparagus has cooked, sprinkle the salt, pepper, and minced garlic over the top. Stir well.

Continue cooking the tender asparagus stalks for another 30 seconds, until you smell the garlic.

To really take this dish over the top, serve with fresh lemon zest and lemon juice.

Meal Prep and Storage

  • How to prep ahead of time: You can store washed and trimmed asparagus in the fridge for up to 2 to 3 days.
  • How to store: Keep leftover asparagus in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days.
  • How to freeze: Seal sautéed asparagus in a freezer-safe container or bag and store for up to 3 to 4 months.
  • How to reheat: You can warm this asparagus back up over medium heat in a skillet, in the microwave, or in a 350°F oven until heated through.

How long to sauté asparagus?

Asparagus on the stovetop cooks up in less than 10 minutes. Sautéing it gives you tender yet crispy stalks that are full of flavor. For the best results, flip occasionally and remove when the asparagus is bright green.

Asparagus spears are healthy and tender.

What spice or herbs go with asparagus?

While you can add just about any flavor you want to asparagus, it is absolutely delicious with some salt, pepper, garlic, and lemon zest. You can also add in your favorite herbs or spices like paprika or onion powder.

Expert Tips and Tricks

  • Go for green. Look for the area where the asparagus turns green when removing the ends.
  • Prep ahead. You can wash and trim the asparagus a couple of days before you cook it.
  • Pay attention. You want the butter melted, not burned, so keep an eye on it.
  • Top it off. Lemon zest and juice is the perfect finishing touch for this dish.
  • Add some flavor. You can include your favorite fresh herbs and spices or even grated Parmesan cheese, as well.
Lemon is the perfect pair to sauteed asparagus.

Other Simple Side Dishes

Easy side dish recipes save dinner on busy weeknights. Try one of these delicious sides with your main dish next.

Air Fryer Cauliflower, Air Fryer Carrots, and Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts are so quick and tasty.

Instant Pot Glazed Carrots, Green Beans Almondine, and Simple Sautéed Zucchini and Squash will quickly become your go-tos.

More Asparagus Recipes

Asparagus is super healthy and the perfect side dish. It can be prepared in so many ways.

If you’ve never had Creamy Asparagus Soup, you have to put it on the menu soon.

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus and Bacon Wrapped Asparagus are impressive and always a crowd pleaser.

Oven Baked Parmesan Asparagus Fries are absolutely delicious and kid-friendly, too.

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 3 votes

Sautéed Asparagus Recipe

Sautéed Asparagus is a quick and easy way to prepare a fresh side dish. Simply pan fry asparagus with butter, garlic, salt, and pepper until crispy and flavorful.
Yield 4 servings
Prep 5 minutes
Cook 8 minutes
Total 13 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 lb. asparagus ends trimmed
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1-2 cloves garlic finely minced
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest optional

Instructions 

  • Add butter to a large skillet over medium heat. Wait until it has completely melted, but pay close attention so it does not burn, and add in the trimmed asparagus spears.
  • Saute asparagus for 7-8 minutes, flipping occasionally, or until they are bright green and tender.
  • Add the salt, pepper, and garlic. Saute for 30 additional seconds or until the garlic becomes fragrant.
  • Serve immediately with a bit of fresh lemon zest, if desired, and enjoy!

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 3 votes

Notes

You can either trim asparagus with a knife or by using the snap method:
  • With a knife: Locate the junction where the light white/brown end starts to turn darker green. Cut at this point to remove the woody end.
  • Snap method: Hold one spear in both hands and place your thumb at the junction of the light brown and green part. Press lightly until you can feel where the asparagus is soft versus where it is hard and continue pressing until the spear snaps in two.

Meal Prep and Storage

  • How to prep ahead of time: You can store washed and trimmed in the fridge for up to 2 to 3 days.
  • How to store: Keep leftover asparagus in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days.
  • How to freeze: Seal sautéed asparagus in a freezer-safe container or bag and store for up to 3 to 4 months.
  • How to reheat: You can warm this asparagus back up over medium heat in a skillet, in the microwave, or in a 350°F oven until heated through.

Nutrition

Calories: 78kcal, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 16mg, Sodium: 289mg, Potassium: 240mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 1044IU, Vitamin C: 8mg, Calcium: 34mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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