Monday, April 10, 2017

Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan (VIDEO)

A quick & easy sauteed asparagus recipe with butter, garlic & shredded Parmesan cheese. In about 10 minutes or less, you'll have a simple side dish made with real food ingredients to accompany any meal. Keep reading to learn more about the health benefits of asparagus and why you should eat it with a healthy fat. 
Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan
Raise your hand if you love asparagus so much that you secretly wish you could eat the whole bundle every time you fix it? Sound familiar? Let's be friends. The kind of friends who bring their own asparagus bunches to gatherings, of course.

I love asparagus every which way: sauteed, roasted, steamed, baked, name it. However, my two favorite ways to fix fresh asparagus are roasting it in the oven and sauteeing it on the stove-top. 

When I've already got the oven heated for other dishes, I'll roast the asparagus right before the meal. Otherwise, it's a quick cook on the stove-top after fixing fast dishes like The Best Tuna Patties or Pan-Seared Mahi-Mahi with Pineapple Salsa. (And all in the same pan!!) This is convenient in the spring and summer months when you want to keep your home cool.

Although...if I'm being honest, I use my oven even in the hottest of Texas days (100+ degree weather). I blame it on random cravings for roasted potatoes & root veggies. That, and no charcoal grill.

TIP: If you're feeling fancy and craving seafood, this asparagus would also pair perfectly with quick & easy seared scallops, shrimp scampi, or crab cakes! Or seared & baked steak (so many delicious options). 

Today's recipe is actually from The Rising Spoon archives. I originally posted it back in April 2013 as a part of a monthly seasonal vegetable series with Trisha of Eat Your Beets, but it was long overdue for an update + new photos.

Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan + Health Benefits of Asparagus & Why You Should Eat it With a Healthy Fat

Health Benefits of Asparagus

If you're looking for more reasons to eat asparagus (other than the fantastic taste), here are some tidbits to win you over:
  • low calories and carbohydrates
  • high in vitamin A, K, and folate
  • moderate amounts of vitamin C, E, thiamin, fiber, and protein

There are many more vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants than what I listed. Read more here

I could easily eat asparagus plain—no seasoning, no sauce, no nothing. That's how much I love it. However, for the purposes of converting all you lovelies to the green side, I'm sharing a more popular way to eat this vegetable—sauteed with garlic, covered in butter, and topped with melty Parmesan cheese

Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan

Why Butter? And More Specifically, Grassfed Butter?

Now back to the part where we serve the asparagus with delicious butter. Regular ol' butter works fine; however, I prefer grass-fed butter. That's the good stuff!

What's the difference between grass-fed butter and regular butter? Excuse me while I quote myself (from my bulletproof coffee post):

Grass-fed butter is "butter that's made from milk produced by cows that have grazed exclusively (or primarily) on grass. This type of butter also goes by the name 'pastured' (not to be confused with pasteurized, which is a form of heating) because the cows are allowed to roam and eat freely on pastures.

This distinction is super important because grass-fed butter has something that regular butter doesn't have (even organic)--lots of vitamins!

Grazing on fresh grass allows the cows to absorb nutrients that imbue their milk, and thus butterfat, with vitamin A, D, E & K & K2. The characteristically deep yellow and sometimes orange color found only in grass-fed butter comes from high amounts of carotene (well known in carrots & sweet potatoes).

In addition, grass-fed butter contains a naturally occurring fatty acid known as conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) which have been shown in studies to reduce body fat mass in humans and animals (source). 

Most importantly, grass-fed butter has high levels of a newly discovered vitamin called K2...this fat-soluble vitamin is created through fermentation. When a cow eats lots of fresh grass, their stomach ferments it and transforms the Vitamin K (also known as K1 and commonly found in leafy greens) into K2. Studies have shown that high amounts of K2 may help counteract the calcification of arteries, amongst other benefits (source)." 

Long story short, when you make butter that comes from healthy, happy cows that eat quality ingredients, it produces ahhhhmazing tasting butter (or ghee) that's healthy for you to eat. 

Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan + Health Benefits of Asparagus & Why You Should Eat it With a Healthy Fat

Why It's Important to Eat Asparagus With a Healthy Fat

Oh, and one more thing. 

Asparagus has several fat-soluble vitamins in it. Specifically, vitamins A, K, and E. In order for your body to absorb these vitamins, you need to consume the food with a bit of healthy fat. So think twice before leaving out the cooking oil, folks!

Even if you don't like butter, make sure to include another a healthy fat like extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, ghee, avocado oil, or regular avocado when you eat it.

Check out this article from The Nourished Kitchen for more info on fat-soluble vitamins. 

Watch The Recipe Video

Before you jump into the instructions, make sure to watch my short recipe video by clicking below. It illustrates the super easy process of cooking asparagus on the stovetop! 

Note: The video will appear to your right if you're seeing this on a desktop computer. :)

yield: 2-3 servingsprint recipe

Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan

prep time: 2 MINScook time: 8 MINStotal time: 10 mins


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  1. Wash & dry the asparagus, then remove the woody ends. The best way to do this (so you don't waste asparagus OR end up with a few spears that are really chewy) is to place one hand at the bottom and one hand in the middle of each spear and apply downward pressure. The asparagus will break naturally. Discard the ends.
  2. In a medium or large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Meanwhile, smash, peel & mince the garlic.
  3. For thin asparagus spears: once the butter is melted and starting to shimmer, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the asparagus, toss with tongs or a wooden spoon to coat in butter, and cook for about 2-3 minutes (stirring occasionally) OR until the asparagus is fork tender.
  4. For thick asparagus spears: once the butter is melted and starting to shimmer, add the asparagus, toss with tongs or a wooden spoon to coat in butter, and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic, and continue cooking the asparagus for an additional 3-4 minutes (stirring occasionally to keep the garlic from burning) OR until the asparagus is fork tender.
  5. When the asparagus is cooked to your liking, season to taste with sea salt and black pepper, reduce the heat to low, sprinkle on the parmesan cheese, cover with a lid to melt, then serve the asparagus immediately.
  6. Note: To speed up cooking time, add a tablespoon of water to the skillet, stir, cover with a lid, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until the asparagus is just tender. (I do this sometimes when I'm in a hurry with larger spears.)
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The Best Quick & Easy Stovetop Asparagus! Learn how to properly prep & make a simple sauteed asparagus on the stove in 10 minutes or less. This recipe is flavored with drool-worthy butter, garlic & parmesan cheese so it'll please even the pickiest of eaters! Serve it as a side dish with any meal any night of the week!

PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. However, I ONLY recommend helpful products that I myself would

MEDICAL DISCLOSURE: The information included on this website is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions expressed here are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for your own situation or if you have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.

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