Steaming Asparagus

Steaming asparagus is simplicity itself and is one of the healthiest and tastiest ways to eat asparagus.

You do not need a fancy asparagus steamer, although an open fan steamer is really useful (but again not essential). Fan steamers are fantastic little gadgets for a whole range of vegetables such as carrots, brocoli etc. They do not immerse the vegetables in the water so more of the goodness is retained in the vegetable, they don't cost the earth and are a really useful.

Method for Steaming Asparagus

Rinse and prepare the asparagus as usual, depending on how hungry you and your guests are determines how many spears you need to cook. – I like to work on the basis of about six to eight spears per person.

We have already mentioned fan steamers whilst a traditional steamer that sits on top of a saucepan will also do the job. The wider the shape of the steaming vessel the easier it will be to hold the long thin shape of the asparagus so that it sits comfortably without having to cut it into shorter lengths. A fan steamer sitting fairly flat in a large frying pan with a lid works well.

Place approximately ¾ inch of water (2.0 cm) in the saucepan, place the traditional steamer above the pan or the fan steamer in the bottom of the frying pan / saucepan and and place the stalks as falt as you can in the steamer. Season with a little salt to taste and put the lid on the saucepan or frying plan and bring the water to the boil.

Turn the heat down to simmer and steam for approximately 5 minutes, do remember to to turn the heat down, because it is surprising how little energy you need to steam vegetables when the lid of the saucepan is on. Turn the heat down a little, reduce your fuel bills and save the planet!

After approximately 5 minutes check that the spears have been cooked to taste, probably the best way is to use a fork to test that they are tender. Test the thicker stalk end as this will take the longest to cook.

Lift the spears out of the pan and serve up adding butter to taste. I find tongs are useful for lifting the asparagus out and onto the plate.

Asparagus Steaming Equipment

You absolutely do not need specialist equipmnt as a normal saucepan or frying pan will work perfectly well, however, if you are really keen on steaming asparagus then you can invest in a special asparagus steamer the idea with these steamers is that they are tall and narrow and hold the asparagus upright so that steam can work its way up through the thicker ends of the stalks – it could be a great Christmas or birthday present that friends and family could put on their present list.

You can also buy electric steamers which can be used to steam all sorts of food. These give great results with asparagus and if you take a look at our page on how to microwave asparagus you will find another means of producing beautifully steamed asparagus.

Classic Accompaniments for Steamed Asparagus

Butter is all that you need for a mouthwatering taste but now you know how to steam asparagus on the hob you could try a real treat of steamed asparagus with Hollandaise sauce.... beware the calorie count, its not low, but once in a while its well worth it.

 Try these ways to Cook or Store Asparagus

Asparagus ready to cook in Microwave


Grilled Asparagus


Asparagus in Roasting Dish


Preparing Asparagus to Steam


Sauteed Asparagus


Blanching Asparagus


Asparagus Ready for the Freezer


Preparing to Dry Asparagus for Storage


Pickling Jars


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Buy / Prepare

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The easiest way to cook Asparagus!

All you need is a microwave a plastic Fish / Veg. Steamer and and our instructions.

Asparagus ready to cook in the microwave

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If you want the

Basics of how to cook fresh asparagus

start by looking at How to Cook Asparagus first for some background information on a range of cooking methods.

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