Nothing says spring quite like this roasted asparagus recipe. Filled with chickpeas and spinach, it’s lovely over polenta, brown rice, or farro. Vegan & gluten-free.
Once the days are lighter longer and the temperatures warmer, I begin counting the minutes until the first farmers market of the year. It’s when I see some old familiar faces that I haven’t seen since the market closed up shop at the end of October.
Seeing the stalls line up and locals loading their canvas bags with freshly picked produce means that we’ve survived another winter.
At the first farmers market of the year, there’s often not a lot of produce available. Summer tomatoes, ripe red bell peppers, and berries are still far off.
For the first few weeks, it’s a hodgepodge of herbs to plant, homemade goods, and fresh asparagus.
In our house, asparagus is a hot commodity. No one loves it more than Jezebel, and as soon as her keen nose sniffs some roasting in the oven, she’s standing at the ready. So I always make sure to roast more than enough for all of us.
Except maybe David. Poor guy. With two asparagus loving girls in his house, it’s slim pickings for him.
Roasted asparagus recipe
Today’s roasted asparagus recipe is a celebration of all that is in season and taking center stage at my farmers market – the aforementioned asparagus, garlic, spring onions, and spinach.
I roast chickpeas and asparagus (my favorite way to cook it), and then add it to a pan of spinach sautéed with garlic and onions, and dotted with a tart twist of lemon.
I like to serve this roasted asparagus recipe over my easy breakfast polenta or alongside vegan pesto rice. However, it would be a mouthwatering spring meal over any grain, like farro, brown rice, or barley.
See how to make roasted chickpeas in this video:
Roasted asparagus & chickpeas with sautéed spinach
- 1 heaping cup asparagus chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- Pinch salt
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas drained, rinsed, and dried
- 1 Tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes optional
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ cup spring onions chopped (Any variety onions or shallots will work here)
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice plus more to taste, if needed
- Salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Put asparagus on one baking sheet and toss with ½ teaspoon extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt.
- Toss chickpeas, nutritional yeast (if using), a pinch of salt, and ½ teaspoon extra virgin olive oil on second baking sheet. Put both baking sheets in the oven and roast chickpeas and asparagus for 20 minutes, stopping once to shake the pans so that they roast evenly.
- During the last 10 minutes of the asparagus/chickpea cooking time, heat a non-stick skillet to a medium heat. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil to pan and sauté the onions and garlic 5-8 minutes, until fragrant and translucent.
- Add baby spinach to skillet and sauté for one to two minutes more, until the spinach has wilted but before it becomes gummy and overcooked.
- Add lemon juice to deglaze the pan and combine. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Once the asparagus and chickpeas have finished roasting, add them to the pan with the spinach mixture. Fully combine. If necessary, add salt and additional lemon juice to taste. Serve over brown rice, farro, or creamy polenta.