A drizzle of rich, nutty, brown butter blended with a splash of balsamic vinegar is a simple way to enhance the flavor of tender, freshly steamed asparagus.
How To Make Asparagus with Brown Butter
Brown butter, or beurre noisette in French, is simply butter that’s been heated until the milk solids it contains start to caramelize.
The process creates a nutty flavor and toasty brown color that can serve as a simple sauce for vegetables, meats and fish.
Making brown butter only takes a few minutes and it’s easy to do as long as you don’t leave it unattended.
For this recipe, fresh asparagus is steamed separately while we make the brown butter in a skillet. We recommend using a stainless steel pan because it makes it easy to monitor the butter as it changes color.
To prepare the brown butter, simply melt the butter over medium-high heat until it begins to foam. Stir or swirl the pan from time to time and continue cooking until it changes from yellow, to gold, to toasty brown, then immediately remove the pan from the heat.
That’s all you need to do to make plain brown butter, but for this dish we whisk in a little balsamic vinegar for extra flavor.
Once the asparagus is done, arrange it on a serving platter and drizzle the brown butter over top.Print
Asparagus with Balsamic Brown Butter
This is a deliciously easy side dish of tender, steamed asparagus drizzled with a combination of brown butter and balsamic vinegar.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings
- Category: Vegetables
- Cuisine: American
- 2 lbs asparagus, ends trimmed
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Bring 1/2-inch of water to a boil in the bottom of a large pan outfitted with a steaming rack.
- Place the asparagus on the rack, cover and cook until bright green and tender when pierced with a sharp knife in the thickest part of the stalk, about 7 minutes.
- While the asparagus cooks, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Swirling the pan occasionally, cook until the butter begins to foam. As soon as the color starts to darken, remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the balsamic vinegar.
- To serve, plate the asparagus and sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with brown butter.