Quick and tasty Fried Asparagus Sticks are made with a cornmeal batter and are pan fried until crispy brown. Serve plain or with a dipping sauce. Great as a side dish with your favorite chicken, fish, or steak. They make a great snack for munching on throughout the day or a finger food for parties.
Fried asparagus sticks are a healthy-ish, delicious side dish. They are made in about 15 minutes, with easy preparation and quick cooking.
Serve as a side dish or a finger food for a party. Make a big batch as a healthier snack to munch on throughout the week.
If You Love Asparagus, Try These Recipes Too:
- Garlic Butter Pasta with Bacon and Asparagus
- Maple Glazed Salmon with Couscous and Parmesan Crusted Asparagus
- Double Vegetable Pasta with Butter Parmesan Sauce
- Air Fryer Asparagus Parmesan
- Air Fryer Bacon Wrapped Asparagus
This fried asparagus recipe is made with basic ingredients that you likely have in your kitchen already. You'll need:
- salt + pepper
- oil for frying
Just 5 simple ingredients!
Vegetable or Canola oil are the best oils to use to for pan frying vegetables. They have higher smoke points and are neutral oils, which means they won't add much additional flavor to your foods. If you're looking for a healthier option for pan frying, olive oil can be used.
Cornmeal creates a nice even and thick breading. It is a durable breading that will not only stick to your food, but hold up throughout the frying process.
Breading Variations for this Recipe
If you do not have cornmeal, you can replace it with all purpose flour. Another option is half cornmeal and half flour, like in these crispy pan-fried pickles.
You can also make parmesan fried asparagus spears by adding parmesan cheese to the cornmeal breading. To do this, cut down on the cornmeal by ¼ cup and substitute it with ¼ cup of parmesan cheese.
Another variation is to make a spicy version. Add ½ to 1 teaspoon of chili powder, cayenne, Cajun, or Creole seasoning for every 1 cup of breading.
Extra salt and pepper or red pepper flakes can also be added. You can really season your breading (or the final breaded spears) with your favorite seasoned to tailor this recipe to you!
How to Choose and Prepare Asparagus
For the perfect pan fried asparagus spears, you want to choose asparagus that is not too thin nor too thick.
Very thick asparagus will take longer to cook and very thin asparagus will likely get mushy before the breading fully cooks.
To prepare fresh asparagus spears for cooking, rinse them under cool running water. Then snap about ½ to 1 inch of the woody ends off, where the asparagus begins to fade to white or gray. There is no need to use a knife– asparagus spears easily break when bent.
Making fried asparagus spears takes about 10-15 minutes. You want to make them in batches, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.
Also take note of how thick your asparagus is. If it is on the thicker side, you may need to extend the frying time. If you've chosen very thin spears, only fry for 2-3 minutes.
STEP 1: In a large deep pan heat oil over high heat until it reaches 350°F (about 5 minutes). The oil should be about 1 inch deep, deep enough for the asparagus to be fully submerged. This prevents needing to flip the asparagus halfway through, as this can be tricky.
STEP 2: Combine the cornmeal, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the egg until whites and yolk are mixed.
STEP 3: Working in batches, dip the asparagus in the beaten egg to thoroughly coat it. Place into the bowl of cornmeal breading and coat completely.
STEP 4: Turn the heat to medium. Fry the asparagus in batches in the hot oil for 5 minutes. They will be a deep golden brown when down.
STEP 5: Transfer fried asparagus to a paper-towel lined plate to soak off any extra oil. Serve warm or room temperature.
Fried Asparagus Sticks Recipe
- 1-2 cups vegetable oil, for frying
- ½ lb asparagus spears, washed and ends trimmed
- 1 cup cornmeal
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- 1 egg
- In a large deep pan heat oil over high heat until it reaches 350°F (about 5 minutes). The oil should be about 1 inch deep, deep enough for the asparagus to be fully submerged.
- Combine the cornmeal, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the egg until whites and yolk are mixed.
- Working in batches, dip the asparagus in the beaten egg to thoroughly coat it. Place into the bowl of cornmeal breading and coat completely.
- Turn the heat to medium and add the breaded asparagus to the hot oil in a single layer. Fry for 5 minutes, until a deep golden brown.
- Transfer fried asparagus to a paper-towel lined plate to soak off any extra oil. Serve warm or room temperature.
Serving and Reheating Tips
Fried asparagus is best served warm or at room temperature. This makes it great for a quick side dish or finger food for parties or snacking.
They make a delicious snack on football Sundays or as an appetizer for the holidays.
Eat them plain or served with your favorite dip. These are delicious sprinkled with a little extra salt and pepper right before serving.
- Ranch dressing
- Sour cream
- Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing
- Pizza or marinara sauce
- For something different, dip them into spicy mango habanero salsa
Store in the fridge for up to 5 days. Fried vegetables will become less crispy when stored for later use, so know that when reheating you will not get the exact same crispy asparagus as you had fresh off the stove.
To reheat, put in the toaster or air fryer for a 2-3 minutes. Alternatively, put on a baking sheet and warm in the oven. A microwave is not recommended, as the breading will become even less crispy.
And that's all it takes to make and serve these crispy breaded asparagus spears.
If you made them and loved them, let me know in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you.
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