Freezing your asparagus gives you a way to make fresh asparagus last for much longer. It can store for months in your freezer. Did you also know that asparagus can be cooked from frozen, without the need to defrost it? I will show you how to cook frozen asparagus in the oven and with other methods so you can turn frozen asparagus into a tasty, tender dish.
Asparagus can be served as a side dish on its own or mixed with veggies and other foods to make a more complex dish. It is quite versatile and makes for a great side dish with many different kinds of meals. It can be roasted, grilled, microwaved, and steamed, so no matter how you like to cook it, there is a great way to prepare it.
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What I like about using frozen veggies like this is that they are still a good source of nutrition, retaining their nutrients just as well as fresh veggies do. You don’t lose out on any vitamins and minerals just because you froze the vegetable and then cooked it up. The methods I’m going to give you for cooking up asparagus are all good ways to ensure that the nutrients are still there for you to benefit from when you bite into them as well.
How to Cook Frozen Asparagus in the Oven
One of my favorite ways to have asparagus is roasted. I love the way that roasting brings out the delicate flavors and makes them so tender and juicy while giving the asparagus an appealing exterior texture.
My top tip for roasting asparagus is to not thaw it out first. It can be put directly into the oven while it is frozen. That means that there is practically no prep work to do, which is definitely a plus.
How to cook frozen asparagus in oven? You need to preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and then prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper. You lay the asparagus down on the sheet in a single layer. Don’t stack them and don’t try to cut or otherwise shorten the asparagus.
Then, add some oil and a little seasoning to the asparagus. I like to use salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, but you can use your own mixture of seasonings, if you like. Roast the asparagus in the oven until they come out nice and crispy and tender. That should take about 15 minutes of cooking time. When the asparagus is done cooking, it should be a little browned and heated all the way through.
This is the simplest and most direct method for how to cook frozen asparagus spears in the oven.
How to Cook Frozen Asparagus in Microwave
Now, I want to tell you about the simplest way to cook frozen asparagus, and that is in the microwave. You can take your frozen asparagus and put it directly into the microwave and expect it to cook fully and come out tender, if you know the method.
How to cook frozen asparagus spears in the microwave? You need to ensure that they stay tender during the entire microwaving process, and that means wrapping them in a damp paper towel. You may need a few paper towels depending on how many pieces of asparagus you are microwaving at once. Wrap them up like a burrito in your damp paper towels and place them into a microwave safe dish or straight onto the microwave turntable. You don’t actually need to use any dishes for this.
Cook for about four minutes on high, and your asparagus should be done. You need to limit how many pieces you are microwaving at once so that they can cook and warm fully. Be careful when you take them out of the microwave, as they will be hot. You may want to use a kitchen mitt or tongs to pull them out of the microwave.
How to Cook Frozen Asparagus in a Skillet
You can cut your frozen asparagus before you put it into the frying pan. It can be cut to the desired length, and you can shorten the stalks as much as necessary. Cooking frozen asparagus in the skillet means that you are sautéing or lightly frying the asparagus.
In order to cook up asparagus in a skillet, you need to drizzle a little oil in the skillet or a little butter. I wouldn’t suggest dry frying your asparagus. You can season the asparagus as it cooks or before you turn on the heat. I suggest using simple spices and seasonings, like garlic, rosemary, onions, ground chili, and simple salt and pepper.
To cook your frozen asparagus in a skillet, you can cook it in the pan for about 15 to 20 minutes on medium heat. How long it needs to cook for will depend on how thick the asparagus is and how tender and cooked you want it to be. It’s a good idea to stir your asparagus every so often to keep it from sticking to the pan or burning.
How to Cook Frozen Asparagus on the Grill
Another way to prepare frozen asparagus is to cook it on the grill. Once again, it does not need to thaw out, and you can simply cook it frozen on the grill. Grilled asparagus is a great addition to your other grilled foods, like lamb, beef ribs, grilled chicken, and kebabs.
When you grill asparagus, it gives you flavors you don’t get by other means of preparation. I definitely suggest trying the asparagus grilled at least once to see how different it tastes from roasting, microwaving, or frying it up.
You should apply some oil to the asparagus, tossing it in vegetable oil, coconut oil, canola oil or something similar. Feel free to season as well before it starts grilling, using salt and pepper, minced garlic, or whatever seasoning you prefer.
You can heat up the grill to very hot, but make sure you create a safe spot on the grill where it’s not very hot. That way you can control how quickly your asparagus cooks. You can heat them on the very hot part of the grill, and they cook pretty quickly, so keep an eye on them as they cook.
You can either lay the asparagus across the grill grates so they don’t fall through or heat them on a baking sheet on the grill. When you cook them, you can grill them with the cover closed for about 5 minutes on one side, then open the cover and flip them over. On the second side, they will only need to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes. You should have beautifully grilled asparagus that is tender and juicy with some nice grill marks on them.
Be aware of how quickly your asparagus will cook, as the skinnier, thinner asparagus spears will cook faster. Keep an eye on them and be prepared to take them off the grill sooner than the thicker, fatter asparagus spears.
There you have it- a number of different ways you can cook your asparagus from frozen to fully cooked without the need to let the asparagus thaw out.
Do I need to thaw frozen asparagus before cooking it?
No, you do not need to thaw frozen asparagus before cooking it. In fact, it’s better to cook it straight from the freezer to prevent it from becoming mushy. This also preserves the asparagus’s vibrant green color and crisp texture.
What are the different methods to cook frozen asparagus?
There are several ways you can cook frozen asparagus. You can roast it in the oven, sauté it on the stove, or steam it in the microwave or a steamer. The method you choose depends on your personal preference and the dish you’re planning to make.
Does cooking frozen asparagus affect its nutritional value?
Frozen asparagus is a great source of nutrients as it’s often frozen shortly after being harvested, which helps to lock in its nutritional content. While all cooking methods will result in some loss of nutrients, quick-cooking methods like steaming and sautéing can help to minimize this. However, the changes are usually small and asparagus remains a healthy choice.