Sous Vide Asparagus

Say so long to the days of soggy asparagus. With the sous vide method, fresh asparagus simmers in temped water until vibrant and tender with some snap! Serve Sous Vide Asparagus as is, or dress the spears up with parmesan, garlic butter, hollandaise, and more.

cooked asparagus with hollandaise sauce

Asparagus thrives in cooler weather, making the harvest window brief. Its seasonality can make it more expensive than other veggies, and there’s nothing worse than when it turns out soggy.

Fortunately, these step-by-step instructions will show you how to utilize an immersion circulator, the sous vide machine, to make perfect asparagus. Sous-vide cooked asparagus spears are packed with natural fresh, green flavor and have the ideal crisp-tender bite.

If this is your first time using an immersion circulator, let me catch you up on “sous vide.” This culinary term refers to cooking vacuum-sealed food in a temperature-controlled water bath. In French, it literally means “under vacuum.” The food is cooked with precision, guaranteeing success no matter what!

💗 Why Sous Vide Is The Best Way To Cook Asparagus

  • The perfection. Never face the misfortune of wasting money making mushy asparagus again!
  • The fresh, green flavor. The spears retain more natural flavor and nutrients than other cooking methods.
  • The enhancement options. Serve simply seasoned, or get creative with flavorsome spices, seasonings, and sauces.
  • The ease. Cooking asparagus has never been easier, thanks to the sous vide method.

🧂What You’ll Need

  • Asparagus – Opt for fresh spears rich in green color with firm and compacted tips. Avoid wilted spears with blemishes. This method also works for purple and white asparagus (if you can find them).
  • Avocado Oil – Or olive oil; a light coating gives the seasonings something to cling to.
  • Salt & Pepper – Simple seasonings improve the naturally sweet, pleasantly earthy, and bitter taste. See below for optional flavoring ideas.
  • Immersion Circulator – The best immersion circulator is by Anova. It has a great app that connects with your phone. You can also use a budget-friendly brand such as the SAKI or InkBird.
  • Vacuum Sealer – Use any basic vacuum sealer. You can also use these sous vide bags with a hand pump for about $15.
  • Vacuum Sealer Bags – Purchase a set of different sizes for ease and variety.
  • Large Pot or Sous Vide Container – If you’re cooking a lot with the sous vide, use a container fitted to hold the immersion circulator and the food. Otherwise, you can use a large pot or heat-safe container.
  • Sous Vide Clips or Sous Vide Weights – These accessories are made to keep the food submerged in the water while it cooks. You can purchase these or use a heavy kitchen utensil and binder clips.

Check out the best sous vide accessories to optimize the sous-vide cooking experience!

💦 Water Displacement Method

Don’t have a vacuum sealer? The water displacement method works by using the principle of Archimedes, which states that a body submerged in water is buoyed up by force equal to the weight of the water displaced by the body.

In simpler terms, this means that the heat of the surrounding water cooks the food in the sealed bag without coming in direct contact. This method is often used for delicate foods like fish, eggs, and veggies. To use the water displacement method to seal your asparagus correctly, follow these steps.

  1. Place your food in a Ziploc freezer bag, and press out as much air as possible.
  2. Seal the bag, leaving a small opening at the corner for air to escape.
  3. Slowly submerge the bag into the water, allowing the air to come up to the top using the pressure of the water.
  4. Once the bag is submerged to the seal, close the opening before fully submerging it into the water.

🥣 How To Make Sous Vide Asparagus

1️⃣ Trim asparagus. First, wash the asparagus and drain well. Then, trim or snap off the ends. Place the trimmed spears in a mixing bowl and toss with oil, salt, and pepper.

2️⃣ Heat water with an immersion circulator. Fill a large pot with water, and place the immersion circulator inside. Set the temperature to 135F.

3️⃣ Seal in a vacuum sealer bag. While the water preheats, place the seasoned spears in a vacuum sealer bag in a single flat layer and seal the bag shut.

4️⃣ Cook. Once the water reaches temperature, immerse the vacuum-sealed asparagus into the water bath. Use a sous-vide weight or heavy kitchen tool to keep the bag from floating to the top. Let cook for 8-12 minutes, depending on the size of the asparagus. Remove from the water bath, open the bag, season, and serve.

⌛Best Time And Temperature For SV Asparagus

The size asparagus you use is a matter of preference (and what’s available). For thin, medium, and large asparagus, 135 degrees is a suitable temperature. Adust the sous vide time as specified below.

  • Thin asparagus spears: 135F for 8 minutes
  • Medium asparagus spears: 135F for 10 minutes
  • Large asparagus spears: 135f for 12 minutes

💭 Recipe Tips

  • To trim the asparagus properly, grip both ends of one spear and bend until it snaps at its natural breaking point. Then, use that spear as your guide, and trim the remaining with a sharp chef’s knife.
  • Feel free to make a few batches of sous vide asparagus. The leftovers are great cut into bite-sized pieces and added to salads, pasta, frittatas, omelets, and more.
  • You can serve this asparagus with chicken breasts or thighs, steak, or salmon (which you can also cook sous-vide style).

🔥 Finishing

Elevate sous vide asparagus with a quick sear at the end using one of the techniques listed below. This creates crispy, charred edges without overcooking.

  • Broiler: Arrange asparagus in a single layer on a sheet pan, and broil for 2-3 minutes.
  • Air Fryer: Preheat the air fryer to 400F. Then, place the asparagus in the basket without overlapping. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until crispy.
  • Skillet: Add a mall amount of oil to a hot skillet and sear until the spears begin to brown and get crispy.

🌶 Seasoning Ideas

  • Garlic butter & lemon. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder or a tablespoon of fresh garlic, a tablespoon of butter, lemon wheels, and some lemon zest to the sous vide bag with the asparagus before cooking.
  • Once cooked, drizzle asparagus with balsamic vinegar or melted butter. Then, finish in a hot pan to create delicious caramelized edges.
  • Serve with sous vide hollandaise sauce because they belong together!
  • Season with your choice of spice blends. Everything bagel, lemon pepper, Italian seasoning, and herbs de Provence are good options. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes for heat.
  • Top with grated parmesan cheese after sous-vide cooking, then broil until the parm beings to melt.

🧊 Storing & Freezing

Storing: If you aren’t using the asparagus immediately, move the vacuum sealer bag from the hot water bath to an ice bath, and let chill for at least 10 minutes. Then, store in the fridge for up to 4 days.

If you’ve already opened the bag, let the leftovers cool and refrigerate in a glass, air-tight container for 3-4 days.

Freezing: I’d rather you didn’t freeze this asparagus. The veggies lose their crisp as they thaw and get mushy.

FAQ

How do you cook asparagus, so it doesn’t get soggy?

The trick to cooking asparagus that isn’t soggy is cooking it for a short time over high heat, and the sous vide method does just that!

How long should asparagus be cooked in boiling water?

The precise time ranges from 8-12 minutes and depends on the size of the asparagus.

Why do you plunge asparagus in ice water?

Plunging cooked asparagus in ice water directly from the heat source halts the cooking process. Otherwise, the residual heat will continue cooking the spears resulting in overcooked, soggy asparagus.

🥕More Easy Sous Vide Vegetable Recipes

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cooked asparagus with hollandaise sauce

Sous Vide Asparagus

Fresh asparagus cooks perfectly every time with the sous-vide technique. They come out of the temped water bath bright green and crisp-tender, so they still have some snap! Season the spears however you like, and serve on weeknights, special occasions, and the holidays!
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 54kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 pound asparagus trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  • Fill a large pot with water, and attach the immersion circulator. Set the temperature to 135F.
  • While the water bath heats, wash and trim the asparagus. Dry well and toss with oil, salt, and pepper until the spears are evenly coated.
  • Seal in a flat single layer in a vacuum sealer bag, or use the water displacement method.
  • Once it reaches temperature, submerge the asparagus into the water bath and cook for 8-12 minutes depending on the size of the asparagus (see the chart below). Use a sous-vide weight or heavy kitchen tool to keep the bag from floating to the top.
  • Once the time is up, remove the bag with tongs and carefully cut it open. Season and serve hot.

Notes

Thin asparagus spears: 135F for 8 minutes
Medium asparagus spears: 135F for 10 minutes
Large asparagus spears: 135f for 12 minutes

Nutrition

Calories: 54kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 0.5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 584mg | Potassium: 231mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 858IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 2mg

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