Using asparagus in your appetizers at your next party but don’t know what will work best? Skip the oven: Here are 13 cold asparagus appetizers to make for that next get-together.
If you want to make cold asparagus appetizers for your next special event, you should take a look at this list of options.
Before I share these suggestions with you, let’s first find out more about the vegetable asparagus.
Asparagus is a spear-like veggie that grows out of the ground from rootstocks.
While asparagus spears grow pretty fast, with some growing as much as seven inches in a day, it actually takes 3 years before you can see these spears coming out of the ground.
Once the rootstock is established, though, you can continuously harvest asparagus growing from it for up to 20 years!
Now, the asparagus that people are familiar with is the green variant.
But there are actually a couple of other colors that these thin, fibrous vegetables come in.
One of the lesser-known variants is the purple asparagus, which was developed in Italy.
This is an entirely different variety from the green one you’re familiar with.
Aside from the different colors, this purple asparagus is nuttier and slightly sweeter than the more common green variation.
The white asparagus, on the other hand, is simply the green asparagus grown without sunlight.
The difference in flavor between the green and white variants is subtle.
The more common green ones taste grassier, and the white ones are slightly bitter and less grassy in flavor.
Other distinct differences between the white and green versions of this vegetable are in the thickness of their stalks and their fibrousness.
White asparagus is more fibrous and thicker than their green sisters, making them better for grilling and roasting.
These differences also mean that you can’t cook both types at the same time.
You can mix them in a single dish, but you must prepare them separately.
This is to ensure that you don’t end up with mushy vegetables.
You should also note that green asparagus can be easily found in its fresh form in the US, but white ones are more difficult to find.
If you’re lucky, you may find fresh, white asparagus at a farmer’s market near you, but in the US, most of these can only be bought in canned form.
So, now that you know a few basic facts about this long, thin vegetable, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and explore some cold appetizer recipes that use this veggie in them.
The easiest ones to make would probably be the Lemony Marinated Asparagus and the Chilled Asparagus With Curry Dip.
If you’re looking to impress your guests, however, #9 is your best bet.
Ready to get cracking? Let’s get started!
Here’s the first recipe on this list of cold asparagus appetizers.
This dish uses cut-up spears of asparagus that have been blanched and shocked in ice water.
Combined with a variety of baby greens, shaved parmesan, and a honey mustard dressing, this salad can serve as an appetizer and as a side dish.
If you love how this dish tastes, you can even have this as a meal by topping it with grilled chicken breasts!
When you talk about crostini, it’s natural to think that this appetizer has to be warm, right?
Well, this particular crostini is a cold one that features asparagus spears on top of white bean puree and toasted slices of crusty bread.
These bite-sized pieces get some herby goodness from tarragon and chives.
A light sprinkling of flaky sea salt plus a drizzle of good quality extra virgin olive oil will give you a sophisticated yet simple bite of goodness that your guests will love.
This appetizer features whole spears of green asparagus wrapped in prosciutto.
When buying prosciutto, make sure to look for nitrate- and nitrite-free options.
Some choices you have include prosciutto crudo and prosciutto di Parma.
The asparagus in this recipe is steamed and not blanched but is cooled down in an ice bath to retain its crispness.
The lemony and herby dressing is sprinkled on top before serving.
Another way to serve asparagus is to shave it into curly strips in a salad!
The asparagus in this salad is served raw, helping to keep it crisp even in its thin, noodle-like form.
Topped with pine nuts for some crunch and dressed in a lemony mustard vinaigrette, this may be presented as a starter or as a side salad.
Crusted baked goat cheese on top gives this dish a creamy and crispy contrast.
If you don’t want to eat raw asparagus, you can always blanch your spears before shaving them into noodles.
One of the most effortless dishes on this list is this recipe!
All you have to do is to blanch your whole asparagus spears, chill them in an ice bath, and soak them in a lemon vinaigrette for 8 hours in your fridge.
Before serving, remove from the marinade and place on a serving dish.
You can garnish this with additional lemon slices or sprinkle it with flaky sea salt.
This asparagus appetizer features a unique dip!
It has the tang of sour cream but the savory/sweet flavor of curry.
If you want to add some bite to the dip, you can always sprinkle some cayenne powder into the mix.
Great as an appetizer and as a side dish, this can be made in advance and left to cool in the fridge until it’s time to serve.
Carpaccio is defined as a dish of thinly sliced raw meat or seafood in a sauce.
This carpaccio, however, is made with thin slices of white asparagus.
While not technically a carpaccio, the term is used loosely with this appetizer since it copies the thin slices of its meat and seafood counterparts.
Oh, and the asparagus here is served raw as well.
Here’s another cold asparagus salad that you can serve as a starter.
This dish also has potatoes, peas, and avocado in it.
To ensure that all the vegetables in this salad are at the same temperature when put together, boil the potatoes ahead of time, then let them cool in the fridge before adding to the dish.
Add dressing and toss right before serving.
Gazpacho is a traditional cold soup made with tomatoes and other raw vegetables such as cucumbers and peppers.
This version, however, uses white asparagus, making it a cold, white soup, as opposed to the usual red people expect when they hear the word gazpacho.
Served in shot glasses, you can decorate each one with blanched spears of white asparagus or, for contrast, green asparagus.
Here’s an appetizer that you can make with leftover roast beef and asparagus spears.
It also has horseradish cream cheese in it, giving each piece a creamy and slightly spicy kick!
If you don’t have leftover roast beef, you can buy thinly cut pieces of this meat from your favorite deli.
Assemble and chill for a few hours before serving.
If you want a Japanese-style appetizer that uses asparagus, this is a dish you must try!
You get a delicious umami taste in each bite by combining crab, asparagus, and special ponzu sauce.
It’s easy and takes only less than 30 minutes to put together.
Here’s a thick, creamy, and cold soup that you can also serve in shot glasses as an appetizer.
This soup has to be prepared ahead of time since you need to chill it for a few hours before serving.
You can garnish each serving with asparagus slivers or a dollop of sour cream.
You can also serve this in bowls as a first course.
The combination of zesty lemon, tender asparagus, and savory prosciutto is incredibly top-notch.
And the simplicity of this asparagus delight is sure to draw you in.
To make your asparagus super tender, it’s recommended to use a vegetable peeler and peel the veggie; this is only, of course, when you have enough time and some patience.
The bottom line
A few of these cold asparagus appetizers can just be part of the selection of appetizers you make for your next dinner party.
To ensure that you have a little something for each of your guests (some of them may not like asparagus), try to come up with various appetizers for your spread.
Some bruschetta, a crudite platter, some chips with dips, and some cold seafood can be considered here.
Cooking Chew has even more asparagus appetizers here.
- Parmesan Asparagus Salad
- Asparagus Crostini
- Cold Asparagus With Lemon & Prosciutto
- Shaved Raw Asparagus Salad
- Lemony Marinated Asparagus
- Chilled Asparagus With Curry Dip
- White Asparagus Carpaccio
- Cold Asparagus Salad With Avocado & Potatoes
- White Asparagus Gazpacho
- Roast Beef & Asparagus Roll-Ups
- Crab & Asparagus Sushi With Ponzu Sauce
- Chilled Avocado & Asparagus Soup
- Cold Asparagus With Prosciutto & Lemon
- Skim through our Cold Asparagus Appetizers list.
- Select the recipe you’re looking for.
- Prep the ingredients as instructed.
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