Skip to Content

7 Tasty Asparagus Substitutes: Elevate the Recipes

Ever tried swapping out asparagus and felt your dish lost its charm? We got you.

Finding the right substitute can feel like a wild ride in a grocery cart. We’ve rolled into every possible substitute aisle to save you the trip. From the crisp snap of green beans to the earthy tones of leeks, we’ve tasted it all.

Our dinner tables have seen it all, too. That one time the broccoli was a bit too brocc-y? Yep. Or when the peas brought unexpected sweetness? Been there.

Here’s to making your plates a site of victory, no asparagus needed. Join the substitute parade, and let’s get cooking!

7 Easy Substitutes for Asparagus

When you’re working with asparagus, you’ll want to keep three key qualities in mind:

VegetableTasteTextureSuitable Dishes
Green BeansMild, slightly sweetCrisp, crunchyStir-fries, casseroles, roasted dishes
BroccoliniSlightly bitter, earthyTender, crunchy stemsStir-fries, roasted dishes, pasta
ZucchiniMild, slightly sweetTender, soft when cookedGrilled, sautéed, baked dishes, soups
Green PeasSweet, freshSoft, tenderSoups, stews, rice dishes, salads
Brussels SproutsSlightly bitter, nuttyFirm, crunchyRoasted, sautéed, braised dishes
SpinachEarthy, slightly bitterTender, leafySalads, sautéed dishes, soups, pasta
Green Bell PeppersSlightly sweet, mildCrisp, crunchyStuffed, sautéed, roasted dishes, salads

1 – Green Beans

Green beans stand in well for asparagus. They bring a similar crunch and color to your plate. We’ve thrown them into salads and stir-fries where asparagus once ruled. They fit right in. They also cook pretty fast, making dinner prep less of a hassle.

Remember, green beans can mirror the vibe of asparagus in many dishes. Our little experiment with a green bean casserole instead of asparagus was a hit at our last potluck. Everyone asked for the recipe.

For substitution, use green beans in a 1:1 ratio for asparagus. Works like a charm in most recipes. If you’re curious about more ways to swap in green beans, check out this article on finding substitutes for green beans.

2 – Broccolini

Broccolini steps up as a stellar sub. It’s almost like asparagus’ cousin. You want those long, lean greens? Broccolini’s your go-to. It’s got a slightly sweeter flavor, which we absolutely dig.

We toss it in the same spots we might have used asparagus. It never feels out of place. Cooking times are similar, too. Perfect for those weeknight rushes. Broccolini slides into any asparagus slot with ease.

In dishes, we go for a straight swap. One bunch of broccolini per bunch of asparagus. Have a peek at this page for broccolini substitutes if that’s up your alley.

3 – Zucchini

Zucchini slides into the scene as our number three. It’s the undercover hero your dish deserves. On the lookout for a veggie that keeps things light? Zucchini does that.

It’s got this way of absorbing flavors. Makes every bite worth it. We’ve used zucchini ribbons in place of asparagus spears. They twirl around your fork just right. The texture? Spot on.

For every stalk of asparagus, slice up a zucchini. Trust this swap. We stirred zucchini into a pasta dish last Thursday. Real talk: no one missed the asparagus.

Eager for more zucchini ideas? This guide on substituting zucchini could be your next read.

4 – Green Peas

Green peas hop into the mix as number four. They add a burst of color and sweetness. You will find them perfect for a subtle change. We did it — swapped peas for asparagus in risottos. It turned out great.

Peas cook in a flash, seriously. A quick blanch is all they need. This suits us busy folks. We once threw peas into a pasta, swapping asparagus. No complaints were heard.

For substitution, think one cup peas for each asparagus bunch. This swap keeps dinnertime fresh without fuss. Looking for ways to swap peas in other dishes? Here’s a helpful hint on finding substitutes for green peas.

5 – Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts join our list, stepping in for asparagus. They’re small but mighty in flavor. We often roast them till they’re just crispy enough. They hit the spot in stir-fries and sides where you’d normally see asparagus.

Brussels sprouts bring a nutty touch to the table. We love that part. Each one packs a heap of taste. We’ve thrown them into dishes, trading them out one-for-one with asparagus pieces.

In swapping, a handful of Brussels sprouts equals one bunch of asparagus. This trick keeps meals lively. If you’re on the hunt for more ideas, this guide on alternatives for Brussels sprouts might catch your eye.

6 – Spinach

Spinach barges in as our number six pick. It’s leafy and versatile. We’ve used it everywhere. Seriously, everywhere. Salads? Check. Smoothies? You bet.

This green handles heat well. It wilts down, making it great for stuffing. We replaced asparagus with spinach in a stuffed chicken recipe. It worked wonders.

For every handful of asparagus, grab a bunch of spinach. This swap jazzes up meals. For those curious about flipping other greens for spinach, find your guide here.

7 – Green Bell Peppers

Green Bell Peppers make the list at lucky number seven. They’re crunch and color light up any dish. We find them a fantastic stand-in. They slice nicely, fitting into spots once held by asparagus.

Each bell pepper brings a sweet, slightly tangy edge. We often dice or strip them for variety. They cook up in a snap, keeping dinner on schedule. We’ve found them to be a solid choice, especially in stir-fries or as a roasted side.

In our swaps, one bell pepper equals a bunch of asparagus. This makes meal prep easy. We’ve tossed them into pastas, and guess what? Total hit. Ready to mix it up even more with bell peppers? Here’s the scoop on substitutes for green bell peppers.