Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (2024)

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Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts is a very simple recipe that delivers a delicious twist in flavors and crunchy textures while the lemon-herb-filled dressing ties them all together! This quick and easy recipe is the perfect side dish for steak, chicken, or pork.

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What do you need to make Asparagus with Pine Nuts?

Here’s the ingredient checklist you’ll need for the grocery store:

  • Pine nuts, 3 tablespoons pine nuts – toasted
  • Unsalted butter, 2 tablespoons – divided
  • Extra virgin olive oil, 3 tablespoons oil
  • Lemon juice, 1 tablespoon from 1 small fresh lemon
  • Garlic, 2 garlic cloves – minced and mashed
  • Oregano, 2 teaspoons fresh oregano – minced (or substitute 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano)
  • Basil, 2 teaspoons fresh basil – finely chopped (or substitute 1/4 teaspoon dried basil)
  • Kosher salt, 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • Black pepper, 1 teaspoon pepper or to taste
  • Asparagus, 1 1/2 pounds asparagus – fresh with the woody ends trimmed

Optional toppings – only use one of the following cheese options

  • Parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup shaved parmesan cheese
  • Feta cheese crumbles, 1/4 cup
  • Dried cranberries, 1/4 cup

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Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (13)

How to cook Asparagus with Pine Nuts …

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large frying pan or skillet (we love to use cast-iron skillets!) and toast the pine nuts over medium-high heat for about 1 to 2 minutes. They can burn quickly so keep an eye on them! Toss constantly with a spatula to cook until the nuts start to turn golden brown. Then transfer to a paper towel and set aside.

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In the same skillet, whisk together the olive oil, fresh lemon juice, garlic, oregano, basil, kosher salt, and black pepper; combine well. Set aside.

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Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (16)

Wash to clean the asparagus and snap off the bottom woody ends. Place the asparagus spears in a vegetable steamer over boiling water to steam. Salt the water well.

Keep the asparagus covered and steam for about 7 minutes or until the spears are tender yet crisp.

Drain the water and arrange the asparagus spears in a single layer on a plate then cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.

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While the asparagus is steaming, add 1 tablespoon butter to the olive oil and herb dressing and cook over medium heat until it reaches a gentle boil. Then immediately drizzle the dressing over the steamed asparagus spears and sprinkle with the toasted pine nuts.

Easy peasy!

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What dish goes well with asparagus?

Asparagus goes well with main dishes like chicken, pork, fish, and beef, or serve it alone as a vegetarian dish. And of course, our favorite, Cheddar Garlic Mashed Potatoes!

You can also use a vegetable peeler to shred the asparagus into ribbons to add to salads, wraps, or served in a combination of other vegetables like peas, onions, green beans, or brussels sprouts. Just be sure to cut off the woody ends of the asparagus first before peeling.

Roasted asparagus is also an excellent side dish, cooked in the oven on a rimmed baking sheet drizzled in a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar … mmmm super tasty!

Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (19)

Grilled Pork Chops, Lemon herb Aparagus with toasted Pine Nuts, and Cheddar Garlic Mashed Potatoes …

What more could you ask for in a fabulous and easy-to-prepare meal!

We love to cook with cast-iron skillets, even on the grill.

  1. The easiest and tastiest way to make these pork chops is to brush with olive oil. Then season well with pepper (or we LOVE to use Traeger Blackened Saskatchewan Rub!!) and very little salt (pork is already salty so goes easy on the salt). Cover and chill in the refrigerator for about 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat your grill to 500 degrees F and place a large cast-iron skillet directly on one side of the grill grates. This will enable your skillet to heat up along with the grill.
  3. Place the pork chops on the hottest section of your grill and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes with the lid closed. When that time has passed, open the lid and add a full stick of butter to the skillet. It should melt very quickly!
  4. Using tongs, flip the pork chops over and into the hot cast-iron skillet with the grill marks facing up. Cook for an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Baste with the butter a few times while the chops are cooking.
  5. Remove the meat from the skillet/grill when the pork chops reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees F when inserting a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat.
  6. Transfer the pork chops to a plate and cover with foil. Allow it to rest for about 10 minutes.
  7. When serving, drizzle some of the skillet butter over the top of each pork chop.

Serve these delicious and juicy grilled pork chops with a heaping side of Lemon Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts and a mountain of Cheddar Garlic Mashed Potatoes! I love scooping up a bit of each food on my fork to taste all the delicious flavors at once … am I a little weird or do you do the same?

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How to pick the best asparagus from the supermarket or farmer’s market …

When selecting the perfect asparagus to take home from your local grocery store or farmer’s market, look for the following:

  • Smooth texture
  • Plump stalks which are firm to touch
  • Tips of the asparagus should be closed
  • Aparagus should be chilled in a refrigerator case or standing upright in cold water
  • Color should be vibrant and not faded (there are green, white, and purple varieties)
  • Aparagus can be thick or thin in size
  • Avoid limp, wilted, or damaged stalks
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How to properly store asparagus …

There are two ways to store asparagus in your refrigerator:

  1. Snip the bottom of each stalk (the bottom of each stalk of asparagus is tough, bitter, and fiberous). Bunch together and then wrap the ends with a wet paper towel. Place upright in a plastic bag and store in the refrigerator for no longer than 4 days.
  2. Cut the woody ends off of each stalk, bunch together and place the bottoms in a vase or bowl of water. Cover the tips of the asparagus loosly with plastic wrap or with a plastic ziplock bag and store in the refrigerator for no longer than 4 days.

If the top of the asparagus begins to turn a dark green (or black) color or feel mushy to the touch, then it is best not to eat them.

Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (22)

What are pine nuts?

Pine nuts are actually pine seeds, from the pine cones of … pine trees! These tasty nuts/seeds take well over a year to reach a ripened state … just to harvest. And then the actual harvesting and shelling of the nut/seed is done completely by hand! It’s a labor and time-intensive process that makes these tiny yums a little pricey in the grocery stores … but well worth the cost!

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Pine nuts add a wonderful nutty flavor to any recipe that calls for nuts, especially when toasted in a skillet first. You can also add them to breads, salads, pasta recipes, dips, and sauce recipes. Pine nuts are one of the main ingredients in basil pesto … YUM!

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two months or if you buy in bulk, you can freeze pine nuts in a freezer bag for up to five months.

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Looking for more tasty and easy recipes? Try a few here:

  • Italian Chicken and Acorn Squash Couscous
  • Creamy Beef and Potatoes
  • Wild Rice Chicken Casserole – (Easy Recipe)
  • Meat and Potato Timballo Pie

Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (25)

Lemon Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts

Coogan’s Kitchen

Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts is a very simple recipe that delivers a delicious twist in flavors and crunchy textures while the lemon-herb-filled dressing ties them all together! This quick and easy recipe is the perfect side dish for steak, chicken, or pork.

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Prep Time 10 minutes mins

Cook Time 7 minutes mins

Course Side Dish

Servings 4 servings

Equipment

  • Large Skillet

  • Spatula

  • Cast iron skillet

  • Vegetable steamer

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp toasted pine nuts
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter , divided
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic , minced and mashed
  • 2 tsp minced fresh oregano , or ¼ tsp dried
  • 2 tsp finely chopped fresh basil , or ¼ tsp dried
  • 1 tsp kosher salt , or to taste
  • 1 tsp black pepper , or to taste
  • lbs fresh asparagus

Optional Toppings – only use one of the following cheese options

  • ¼ cup shaved parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup feta cheese crumbles
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries

Instructions

  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet and toast the pine nuts over medium-high heat for about 1 to 2 minutes. * They can burn quickly so keep an eye on them! Toss constantly with a spatula to cook until the nuts turn golden brown.

    Transfer to a paper towel; set aside.

  • In the same skillet, whisk together the olive oil, fresh lemon juice, garlic, oregano, basil, kosher salt, and black pepper; combine well. Set aside.

  • Wash to clean the asparagus and snap off the woody ends. Place the asparagus spears in a vegetable steamer over boiling water to steam. Salt the water well.

    Keep covered and steam for about 7 minutes or until the spears are tender yet crisp.

    Drain the water and arrange the asparagus spears on a plate; cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.

  • While the asparagus is steaming, add 1 tablespoon butter to the olive oil and herb dressing and cook over medium heat until it reaches a gentle boil.

    Then immediately drizzle the dressing over the steamed asparagus spears and sprinkle with toasted pine nuts.

Notes

Nutrition Disclaimer

Did you make this recipe?Snap a few pics and mention @cooganskitchen or tag us by using #cooganskitchen – We’d love to see what your making & baking!

© Coogan’s KitchenAll content and images are copyright protected. Sharing the link for this recipe is encouraged and greatly appreciated, however copying and/or posting full recipes to any social media/blog/website without full credit and the appropriate link is prohibited. Thank you so much for understanding!

Keyword Asapargus Sauce, Asparagus, Asparagus Dressing, Asparagus Recipes, Fresh Herbs, Pine Nuts, Steamed Vegetables

Did you try this recipe?Let us know how it was in the comments below!

© Coogan’s Kitchen. All content and images are copyright protected. Sharing the link for this recipe is encouraged and greatly appreciated, however copying and/or posting full recipes to any social media/blog/website without full credit and the appropriate link is prohibited. Thank you so much for understanding!

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Lemon-Herb Asparagus with Toasted Pine Nuts - (Quick Recipe) (2024)

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