Most of us who are home cooks are looking for tools that make cooking faster, easier or tastier. So it makes sense that certain cooking appliances claiming to do just that (like electric pressure cookers, Instant Pots and air fryers) have become so popular over the past few years.
To be honest, I didn’t really buy into the air fryer hype at first. I understood why people were into them, but for me, air fryers didn’t seem to fit into my kitchen routine. My husband bought me a pressure cooker and I really never got into it. Then, my kids insisted that I get an air fryer and when I wouldn’t succumb, they bought it for me (way to hold out, mom!). I’ve been cooking with it at home for the past two years now — everything from family dinners to snacks like beef jerky and spicy nut mix. And I just love it!
So, what is an air fryer? An air fryer is a kitchen appliance that sits on your countertop that uses convection to circulate hot air around food in order to cook it. One of the claims about the air fryer is that it can fry things with a fraction of the oil of traditional deep fryers, while still delivering similar taste and texture. For that reason, it’s often touted as a “healthier” alternative to deep frying.
I’m going to share one of my family favorite air fryer vegetables. See what you think!
Air Fryer (or Roasted) Asparagus
- Oven or Air Fryer
- 1 lb fresh asparagus spears ends trimmed (thick spears work best for air fryer or roasting)
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- Nutritional yeast optional
- Preheat air fryer to 390°F.
- Toss trimmed asparagus with olive oil and garlic and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Combine to coat.
- Place asparagus in a single layer in air fryer basket and cook for 8 minutes, tossing once through cook time. Serve hot.
- At my house everyone likes mushrooms and onions with their asparagus. If you like these veggies (or any other), add 1/2 cup chopped fresh mushrooms and 1/4 cup chopped red onion plus 1 additional Tbsp olive oil to instruction 2 above. When ready to serve, top with 1/2 Tbsp chopped rosemary.
- This dish can be made the same way in the oven. To roast the asparagus prepare the same way but cook on a sheet pan at 400°F. The cooking time should be increased to 10 minutes or until spears are tender, turning at least once through cooking.
- If you are not using oil, an olive oil cooking spray works as well as the olive oil itself. Simply spritz the asparagus before cooking and again when you toss the spears half way through cooking. This is a good tip for the air fryer and the oven.
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