Making asparagus in your pressure cooker is incredibly easy. This vitamin-packed vegetable steams for just 0-1 minute under pressure and then can be topped with salt, pepper, and drizzled with lemon. Instant Pot asparagus makes a delicious, simple side dish for any meal.
Instant Pot asparagus is incredibly simple to cook. This quick-cooking vegetable can be pressure cooked for zero minutes for a crunchy bite or 1 minute for a more tender bite.
It doesn't matter how much asparagus you cook at a time- the pressure cooking time remains the same. And you can make it in any size Instant Pot. It's so simple and delicious, and can be seasoned at the end or not- it's up to you and how you like to enjoy this delicious vegetable.
Pressure cooked broccoli is another easy vegetable that the Instant Pot steams perfectly in no time at all. You should give it a try next!
- Fresh asparagus: see tips section if using frozen asparagus.
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper: optionally added once cooked.
- Freshly squeezed lemon: also optional to be added once cooked.
Pressure cooking asparagus is very simple, so I won't complicate it. It's essentially a three-step recipe, with the option to season the asparagus at the very end.
STEP 1: Pour 1 cup of water into the inner pot of the pressure cooker. Wash asparagus and trim ½-1 inch off of the woody ends. Place the trimmed asparagus into a steamer basket (or on a steamer rack/ in a silicone sling) and put into the inner pot.
STEP 2: Close the lid and seal. Set to pressure cook (manual) on high for 1 minute. For crunchier asparagus, set to high for 0 minutes.
STEP 3: When pressure cooking is finished, complete a quick release of the pressure. Open the lid and immediately remove the asparagus to a serving dish using tongs. You always want to remove the asparagus right away. If it sits in the hot inner pot it will continue to steam and may become more tender than you want it to be.
OPTIONAL STEP 4: Sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with freshly squeezed lemon juice and serve warm. You can also sprinkle with parmesan cheese, toss with roasted garlic or roasted tomatoes, or enjoy plain without any seasonings.
Helpful Recipe Tips and Facts
Yes, you can use low pressure when cooking vegetables in the Instant Pot. A good rule of thumb when using low pressure is to add 1 minute to the cook time. Once you make asparagus (or other vegetables) in your Instant Pot a few times, you'll get a good idea of how long and at what pressure level to cook them for you.
It does a little. If you are using pencil thin asparagus, it will pressure cook more quickly so I would recommend using a zero minute cook time. Very thick asparagus will take longer so you may need 1 or 2 minutes. Your best bet is to choose asparagus with a thickness somewhere in the middle and using the recommended cook times in the recipe.
You can, but because you will be pressure cooking the asparagus in the water rather than steaming it, the asparagus will become mushier than when it is steamed above the water.
Since canned asparagus is already cooked, you don't need to pressure cook it unless you're adding it to another recipe like a soup. You are better off air frying it for a few minutes to crisp and warm it up, like I do with air fried green beans.
You can use frozen, raw asparagus in the Instant Pot. Add 1 minute of cook time for frozen. Take note of how thick the asparagus spears are, as if they are very thin you should be fine cooking them for the same time that you would cook thawed, raw asparagus.
In my opinion, steamed vegetables are better when seasoned after cooking. The same goes for Instant pot steamed asparagus. This way you have better control over the final taste. It's also good to wait until serving vegetables to flavor with simple seasonings like salt, pepper, butter and lemon so that individuals can season them to their liking. This is great for families with different tastes.
Technically, you can add seasonings to the asparagus before cooking it. But be careful with something like salt. It can cause the asparagus to shrivel as it steams in the pressure cooker.
Keep in the fridge wrapped in foil for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 2 months. When reheating, asparagus will lose some crispiness. Reheating in an air fryer or toaster will help it regain some crisp.
Instant Pot Asparagus
- 1 lb fresh asparagus medium thickness
- sea salt optional
- freshly ground black pepper optional
- freshly squeezed lemon optional
- Pour 1 cup of water into the inner pot of the pressure cooker. Wash asparagus and trim ½-1 inch off of the woody ends. Place trimmed asparagus into a steamer basket (or on a trivet/silicone sling) and place the basket into the inner pot.
- Close the lid and seal. Set to pressure cook (manual) on high for 1 minute. For crunchier asparagus, set to high for 0 minutes. *see notes if using low pressure.
- When cook time is finished, complete a quick release of the pressure. Open the lid and immediately remove the asparagus to a serving dish using tongs.
- Optional: Sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with freshly squeezed lemon juice if desired and serve warm.