Oven-roasted asparagus with parmesan and lemon

The Science

Spring is almost here, and one of the first vegetables to emerge in the garden is asparagus!  This recipe only works with fresh asparagus. Also, make sure to choose organic if it’s not coming from your backyard. A recent study published in Food Analytical Methods sought to determine if organic cultivation systems resulted in higher quality asparagus than conventional production systems. The study tested organic and conventional asparagus spears for total phenolic compounds, total flavonoids, rutin, vitamin C, chlorophylls, carotenoids, and total antioxidant capacity. With the exception of the chlorophylls and carotenoids, all values were higher in organically grown asparagus although differences were not always statistically significant.

The Recipe



  • 1 bunch of organic asparagus (about 1 lb.)
  • 3 Tbsp. organic olive oil
  • 4 Tbsp. freshly grated organic parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. organic fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. fresh grated pepper


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Wash and dry the asparagus and remove the bottom 2 inches of the spears if they are tough. In a large mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Add in the asparagus and toss until evenly coated. Arrange the asparagus spears in a single layer on a baking sheet, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the asparagus is tender.


Banner Photo Credit: Christina Rumpf; unsplash.com

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