Sauteed Asparagus with Garlic, Butter & Parmesan

A quick & easy sauteed asparagus recipe with butter, garlic & shredded Parmesan cheese. In about 10 minutes or less, you’ll have a simple side dish made with real food ingredients to accompany any meal. Keep reading to learn more about the health benefits of asparagus and why you should eat it with a healthy fat. 

Raise your hand if you love asparagus so much that you secretly wish you could eat the whole bundle every time you fix it? Sound familiar? Let’s be friends. The kind of friends who bring their own asparagus bunches to gatherings, of course.
I love asparagus every which way: sauteed, roasted, steamed, baked, boiled…you name it. However, my two favorite ways to fix fresh asparagus are roasting it in the oven and sauteeing it on the stove-top.
When I’ve already got the oven heated for other dishes, I’ll roast the asparagus right before the meal. Otherwise, it’s a quick cook on the stove-top after fixing fast dishes like The Best Tuna Patties or Pan-Seared Mahi-Mahi with Pineapple Salsa. (And all in the same pan!!) This is convenient in the spring and summer months when you want to keep your home cool.
Although…if I’m being honest, I use my oven even in the hottest of Texas days (100+ degree weather). I blame it on random cravings for roasted potatoes & root veggies. That, and no charcoal grill.
Today’s recipe is actually from The Rising Spoon archives. I originally posted it back in April 2013 as a part of a monthly seasonal vegetable series with Trisha of Eat Your Beets, but it was long overdue for an update + new photos. You can check out Trisha’s asparagus recipes here (including the roasted asparagus with bacon & goat cheese post that I linked to originally).



  • 1 bunch of fresh asparagus (approximately 1 pound)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter or ghee (I love THIS grass-fed butter & THIS grass-fed ghee – they tastes amazing)
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • Sea salt, to taste (like THIS sea salt or THIS sea salt)
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese


  1. Wash & dry the asparagus, then remove the woody ends. The best way to do this (so you don’t waste asparagus OR end up with a few spears that are really chewy) is to place one hand at the bottom and one hand in the middle of each spear and apply downward pressure. The asparagus will break naturally. Discard the ends.
  2. In a medium or large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Meanwhile, smash, peel & mince the garlic.
  3. For thin asparagus spears: once the butter is melted and starting to shimmer, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the asparagus, toss with tongs or a wooden spoon to coat in butter, and cook for about 2-3 minutes (stirring occasionally) OR until the asparagus is fork tender.
  4. For thick asparagus spears: once the butter is melted and starting to shimmer, add the asparagus, toss with tongs or a wooden spoon to coat in butter, and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic, and continue cooking the asparagus for an additional 3-4 minutes (stirring occasionally to keep the garlic from burning) OR until the asparagus is fork tender.
  5. When the asparagus is cooked to your liking, season to taste with sea salt and black pepper, reduce the heat to low, sprinkle on the parmesan cheese, cover with a lid to melt, then serve the asparagus immediately.
  6. Note: To speed up cooking time, add a tablespoon of water to the skillet, stir, cover with a lid, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until the asparagus is just tender. (I do this sometimes when I’m in a hurry with larger spears.)


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