Combine the best of spring and summer in this recipe for barely-steamed Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette, and don’t miss my trick for using more of the asparagus stems!  

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Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette close-up photo

Fresh asparagus has been on sale in my favorite grocery stores, and when asparagus starts to get less expensive I find myself wanting to eat it over and over. I’ve already shared my picks for Low-Carb and Keto Asparagus Recipes, but while it’s asparagus season I’m going to remind you of a few more asparagus favorites back in the archives that you may have missed. And this Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette has been one of my favorites for years! A few weeks ago I got my first basil plants of the season to go in the kitchen window, so it’s a perfect time to make this.

Basil Vinaigrette is a spring and summer treat I look forward to every year for drizzling on tomatoes, vegetables, and grilled chicken or fish, and asparagus with basil vinaigrette tastes just as amazing! If you don’t have fresh basil you can use purchased basil pesto to make the dressing, although I love the intense basil flavor of the dressing made with basil puree.

And you may want to make extra basil vinaigrette because it’s good on so many things! Check out Basil Vinaigrette for lots more ideas using my absolute favorite summer condiment. And get to the grocery store and get a few basil plants if you don’t have any yet!

Barely Steamed Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette found on

How to Make Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. Start water boiling or turn on steamer while you peel the bottom part of the asparagus and then cut asparagus into 2 inch pieces.
  2. Steam until the asparagus is barely cooked, probably about 5 minutes from the time the steam starts. I used a stovetop steamer (affiliate link) I got from my stepmother Norma, but an electric steamer (affiliate link) would also work. 
  3. Drain asparagus well.
  4. Puree the fresh basil and mix with your favorite no-sugar vinaigrette dressing to make the basil vinaigrette.
  5. Arrange asparagus on a plate, season with salt and fresh-ground black pepper, and drizzle over desired amount of basil vinaigrette.
  6. That’s it! Serve hot or room temperature, with a little more basil vinaigrette on the side to spoon over at the table. Enjoy!

Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette square photo of finished dish

More Asparagus Recipes You Might Like:

Breakfast Casserole with Asparagus, Mushrooms, and Goat Cheese ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Cheesy Asparagus Tart ~ Ezra Pound Cake
Baked Eggs and Asparagus with Parmesan ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Asparagus Salad with Sesame Chile and Lime Dressing ~ The First Mess
Asparagus and Tomato Salad with Hearts of Palm ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette close-up photo
Yield: 4 servings

Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Combine the best of spring and summer in this barely steamed Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette!


  • 1 pound asparagus
  • salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup Basil Vinaigrette


  1. Start water boiling in your stovetop steamer or electric steamer (affiliate links).
  2. Trim off the woody ends of the asparagus, and then lightly peel the lower part of each stalk with a vegetable peeler. This allows you to use more of the asparagus than if you just break off the pieces, and it helps the stems cook as quickly as the asparagus tips. (You may still have to trim off a few inches if the ends are very woody.)
  3. After peeling, cut each spear into pieces about 2 inches long, cutting on the diagonal.
  4. Steam asparagus until barely tender, being careful not to overcook. (I would start checking about 5 minutes after the steam starts; you may prefer a minute or two longer, depending on how crisp you like it.)
  5. While asparagus steams, make Basil Vinaigrette.
  6. To serve, drain asparagus well and arrange on plate.
  7. Season with salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste, and drizzle Basil Vinaigrette over. Enjoy!


I recommend making the full recipe of Basil Vinaigrette because it's good on so many things. I used Newman’s Own Classic Oil and Vinegar Dressing (affiliate link) for this recipe; be sure to use a dressing that’s Gluten-Free or Vegan if you’re following one of those diets.

You can make the basil vinaigrette with purchased basil pesto if you don’t have any fresh basil, but that version will not be Paleo or Vegan.

This recipe created by Kalyn.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 45Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 234mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

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Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This is a perfect side dish for low-carb and low-glycemic eating plans and any phase of the South Beach Diet and with the right ingredient choices this Barely Steamed Asparagus with Basil Vinaigrette can easily be vegan and Paleo.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Side Dishes to find more ideas like this one. Use the Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Blogger Info:
This recipe was first posted as part of a month-long asparagus event hosted by blogger Kevin Weeks, whose blog is no longer online. Kevin passed away in 2012, and is greatly missed in the food blogging community.

If you’re a fan of fresh asparagus let us know in the comments about your favorite way to cook it!

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