Garlicky, lemony air fryer asparagus is tender with crispy tops and only takes around 10-15 minutes to make.
This air fryer asparagus recipe was a special request over on my YouTube channel, and I'm so thrilled with how it turned out!
The most important thing to remember when you're making asparagus in the air fryer is that the size of your spears are directly related to your cooking time.
Asparagus spears can vary greatly in size. Some are skinnier than a pencil. I've also seen asparagus spears as fat as a cigar. The skinnier the spear, the faster your asparagus will cook.
For that reason, the cooking time below is an estimate and quite broad. Five to 10 minutes will work in most cases, but if you have a particularly skinny or fat asparagus, you may need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
The other key to success with this recipe is to shake that basket! You want the asparagus to move around, so they cook up evenly. If you don't shake, you'll end up with overcooked spears on the outside and undercooked ones on the inside of the pile. Not ideal.
Remove the woody stems from your asparagus, either by slicing them off or snapping them off by hand.
Then, toss the spears in a little bit of lemon juice and olive oil. Air fry your asparagus spears until they're looking pretty much perfect, then toss them with fresh garlic and a little bit more lemon juice.
Now, air fry for just one more minute, and it's time to serve!
How to serve and store
I like to serve air fryer asparagus topped with a sprinkling of black pepper. It's a lovely side dish! Here are some ideas for entrees to pair with it:
- Air Fryer Taquitos - You'd need to air fry these separately so this you need two air fryers or some patience for this pairing.
- Crispy Tofu and a side of mashed potatoes or whole grains
- BBQ Tofu, also with mashed potatoes or a whole grain side
- Vegan Tater Tot Casserole
If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can reheat them either in the microwave or by throwing them back into the air fryer for five to seven minutes at 350° F.
Air fryer asparagus
- 1 bunch asparagus spears - about 25 spears
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice - plus more, for serving
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- black pepper - to taste
- Snap the woody stems off of the ends of the asparagus spears and discard the woody part. Toss the rest of the asparagus with the lemon juice and olive oil in a large bowl.
- Transfer to your air fryer basket, and cook at 400° F for 5-10 minutes, shaking every 2-3 minutes. The asparagus is ready when the stems are tender and the tops are looking crispy.
- Transfer the asparagus back to the large bowl, and add the garlic. Put it back into the air fryer basket and cook at 400° F for just 1 more minute.
- Arrange your asparagus on a serving plate and add an extra squeeze of lemon and a sprinkling of black pepper before serving.