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You can feel good about snacking on this healthy appetizer!

Air fryer asparagus is the perfect combination of tender and crisp. Serve with homemade lemon aioli as an incredible starter or side dish.

air fryer asparagus veggie fries on a plate with a bowl of lemon garlic aioli for dipping.

Fresh asparagus spears coated with a mixture of Panko and Italian-seasoned bread crumbs are air fried with a very light spritz of cooking spray.

The result is a batch of deliciously crispy veggie fries that are sure to be devoured in minutes. Add a homemade lemon and garlic aioli dipping sauce and you have the perfect pairing!

Just like this fried asparagus recipe, it’s easy to make homemade jalapeño poppers or onion rings in the air fryer! And if you’re in the mood for a full meal, you will love these incredible, savory stuffed peppers.

Key ingredients & substitutions for Air Fryer Asparagus

  • Fresh asparagus — Look for vibrant stalks that are plump and firm, not limp. The tips should be tightly closed and the stalks should be smooth in texture. Be sure to trim off the tough end before preparing this recipe.
  • Flour — Regular all-purpose flour will do just fine.
  • Egg — This helps the breading adhere to the surface of each stalk. Be sure to whisk it well so you don’t end up with tiny bits of scrambled yolk.
  • Bread crumbs — I like to use a combination — Panko for crunch and Italian-seasoned for flavor. You could also add Italian seasoning (and maybe a little fresh Parmesan!) to plain crumbs if you’d like.
  • Homemade lemon aioli — It’s simple to make than you might think! All you need are mayonnaise, lemon juice and zest, minced garlic (fresh or jarred), and a little bit of kosher salt.

tips

  • For a casual party, bread the veggie fries ahead of time! Cook when your guests arrive so everyone can enjoy them hot and fresh from the air fryer.
  • Speaking of fryers, I love my Chefman 6.8 Quart model for the extra-large basket and easy clean-up. Add a microplane zester, and you have everything you need to make this fried asparagus recipe!

How to make veggie fries?

a bowl of mayonnaise with lemon zest on a table with a salt bowl and lemon zester.

STEP 1 | Make the sauce

To make lemon aioli from scratch, simply whisk together the ingredients in a small bowl until smooth and emulsified. Season with kosher salt to taste, then cover and place in the refrigerator.

It’s important to do this first — the flavors need time to meld while you work on the air fryer asparagus.

process for prepping asparagus for veggie fries: rinse and dry asparagus on paper towel; set up breading station with shallow dishes.

STEP 2 | Bread the asparagus

Set up a breading station with three shallow bowls. Add flour to one, whisk an egg in the second, and mix Panko and Italian bread crumbs in the third.
Dredge each spear and gently shake off the excess breading. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, then repeat until all are ready for frying.

breaded asparagus spears on a baking sheet being sprayed with cooking spray and breaded asparagus in an air fryer basket.

STEP 3 | Cook the spears

Lightly spray each side of the asparagus with cooking spray (or an oil mister) to help it crisp. Lay them in a single layer in the basket and cook for 7 minutes at 400 degrees. No need to flip!

tip

  • Always cook in a single layer with a little bit of space between each spear! Depending on the size of your basket, it may take several batches to get all of the air fried asparagus cooked.

close up shot of air fryer asparagus veggie fries on a plate with a bowl of lemon garlic aioli for dipping.

Frequently asked questions

What else goes with lemon aioli?

All kinds of dishes, from appetizers to mains! Spread some on crab cakes and salmon croquettes or use it as a dipping sauce for grilled chicken and salmon. It’s also delicious with my Crispy Oven Fried Fish in place of the dijon tartar sauce.

Can I double this fried asparagus recipe?

You can make as much or as little as you would like, depending on how many servings you need. Larger amounts will need to be cooked in several batches.

How long to reheat asparagus in the air fryer?

Because of the breading, these really are best served fresh. If you do manage to have leftovers, reheat them for 3-4 minutes at 400 degrees. They will keep for about 2 days in the refrigerator when stored in an airtight container.

dipping an asparagus fry in a bowl of aioli.

Serving suggestions

Enjoy air fryer asparagus as a tasty appetizer or easy side dish! It pairs well with grilled salmon and pork chops, your favorite chicken recipe, or even a hearty Rachel sandwich.

Air fried asparagus: behind the recipe

I guess I’m a little slow to join some of the cooking fads out there, but I’m seriously kicking myself that I didn’t try air frying sooner!

We love fried foods but try not to indulge in them too often. My all-time favorite summer vegetable is okra, but I’ve been preparing okra in the oven in recent years to save on some of the fat and cholesterol.

Then, I realized I could accomplish the same goals with an air fryer! A spritz of oil is all that’s needed for perfectly crisp results. After the success of this fried asparagus recipe, I can’t wait to come up with a new okra appetizer.

Please share!

Your shares are how this site grows and I appreciate each one. Do you know someone who would enjoy this recipe? I’d love it if you would share it on Facebook or on your favorite Pinterest board!

air fryer asparagus veggie fries on a plate with a bowl of lemon garlic aioli for dipping.

Air Fryer Asparagus Veggie Fries

Air fryer asparagus is the perfect combination of tender and crisp.Serve with homemade lemon aioli as an incredible starter or side dish.
4 from 15 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 21 mins
Total Time 36 mins
Course Appetizers
Cuisine American
Servings 6 servings
Calories 225 kcal

Ingredients
  

Lemon Aioli

  • 2/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Asparagus Fries

  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
  • cooking spray

Instructions
 

Lemon Aioli

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise with freshly grated lemon zest, lemon juice, and minced garlic (fresh or jarred). Season with salt and refrigerate until ready to use.

Air Fryer Asparagus Fries

  • Rinse and dry asparagus spears, cutting off the tough ends.
  •  Set up the breading station in 3 shallow dishes — one with 1/2 cup flour, one with the beaten egg, and one with a combination of Panko and Italian-seasoned bread crumbs.
  • Roll each asparagus spear in the flour, then dip in the beaten egg, and then dredge in the bread crumbs gently shaking off the excess.
  • Lay on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Very lightly spray the breaded asparagus with cooking spray. 
  • Place a single layer of prepared asparagus in the air fryer basket and set the temperature to 400 degrees. Cook for 7 minutes. Remove carefully with tongs and continue cooking in batches.

Notes

  •  For a casual party, bread the veggie fries ahead of time! Cook when your guests arrive so everyone can enjoy them hot and fresh from the air fryer.
  • Always cook in a single layer with a little bit of space between each spear! Depending on the size of your basket, it may take several batches to get all of the air fried asparagus cooked.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 225kcalCarbohydrates: 31gProtein: 6gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 35mgSodium: 588mgFiber: 2gSugar: 3g
Keyword air fryer, breaded, dipping sauce, vegetable
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
sheila thigpen in her kitchen

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Sheila, these asparagus look so delicious I wish I had some here at home to try and cook right now! Plus, I never realized how easy making aioli is… Definitely going to refer back to your recipe! Pinned, of course. <3

    Thanks for a wonderful idea for our future open house,
    Hugs,
    Barb 🙂

    1. Thanks so much, Barbara! These really are tasty and one appetizer I know i’ll Be making often myself!

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