Asparagus Casserole

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Perfect for spring entertaining, this asparagus casserole is a delightfully cheesy dish that everyone will love.

Do you always look forward to springtime and the emerging fresh asparagus?

The asparagus from our farmers market is so tender and delicious, and sells out quickly each weekend! It’s often surprising how much more flavor these locally grown vegetables can be, but I never take it for granted.

A serving of asparagus casserole on a plate with a fork and knife, beside a casserole dish.

A lot of the time I celebrate this vegetable simply by making roasted asparagus or my husband’s favorite, bacon wrapped asparagus.

However, if I am feeding a crowd, one thing I absolutely adore this asparagus casserole. Blanched asparagus is smothered with a creamy, cheesy sauce, and then topped with delicious buttery panko. 

The result is tender asparagus covered in the most delectable flavors. It’s perfect for Easter, Mother’s Day, or any other spring gathering!

Ingredients for asparagus casserole

Full list of ingredients with quantities is located in the recipe card.

You’ll need:

Ingredients for asparagus gratin recipe laid out on a wooden surface.

Unsalted butter – I prefer to use unsalted butter in cooking so I can add the salt to taste. You can use salted butter if you prefer, but consider reducing the added salt, and remember the cheeses will also add a bit of saltiness too.

Panko breadcrumbs – Panko is a Japanese-style flaky breadcrumb. The pieces are bigger and airier, which makes them perfect for a crunchy topping.

If you need this dish to be gluten free, look for gluten-free panko or swap in gluten free traditional breadcrumbs.

Asparagus – Use fresh asparagus for this recipe for the best flavor. If you use frozen asparagus pieces, thaw and drain well, then skip the blanching step.

Garlic – You’ll need 2 cloves of garlic, which is about 2 tablespoons of minced fresh garlic.

Flour – Use all-purpose flour. For gluten free, use an all-purpose gluten free blend.

Milk – Whole milk works best in this recipe to create a creamy sauce. You can also use 2% milk, but note that you might need to let it thicken for a longer amount of time.

Cream cheese – Make sure your cream cheese is softened to room temperature first. This will make it much easier for the cheese to melt into the sauce.

Gruyere cheese – Gruyere is a classic Swiss cheese that is ideal for melting. It is sold in small blocks with the other specialty cheeses or near the deli counter.

Parmesan cheese – You’ll want freshly grated parmesan here, not the dry crumbles or shreds.

Lemon – This recipe uses both lemon zest and lemon juice for a tart boost that enhances the asparagus. You’ll only need about half a medium lemon, but make sure to zest it before you squeeze for juicing!

Salt  and pepper – For seasoning

Seasonal spotlight: Asparagus

Asparagus starts showing up around March depending on where you live. In the colder regions, you might not be able to find it until May. Look for stalks that feel firm and crisp, with tightly closed heads. You can choose thin or thick asparagus, depending on your preferences. Thinner stalks will cook faster.

How to make this recipe

First, preheat oven to 425°. We’re also going to move the oven rack into the upper middle shelf. This will help the asparagus cook fully and not burn the breadcrumbs on top.

Grab a small microwave safe bowl and add 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Melt in the microwave, which will take just about 30 seconds. If it is almost completely melted, just remove and stir until the rest of the butter melts.

Stir in the Panko along with a pinch of salt and pepper and set aside. 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Grab a large bowl and fill it with ice water. When the pot on the stove is boiling, add the asparagus (in batches if needed) and boil for one minute until bright green. Drain and immediately transfer asparagus to the ice bath. 

This will stop the cooking process, and ensure that the asparagus stays perfectly cooked and does not get too mushy on the second cook in the oven. Let the asparagus cool for a few minutes, then drain it from the ice bath. Pat dry with a clean kitchen towel, then pour into a 9×13-inch casserole dish.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to a large pan over medium heat. When the butter is melted, add the garlic and cook for 30 to 60 seconds until fragrant. Immediately add the flour and stir for one minute to soak up the butter, then whisk in the milk.

Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil while whisking constantly. Then, continue to whisk the mixture for about 5 minutes, reducing heat slightly if needed to prevent overboiling. We want the mixture to thicken; be careful as it can go from thin to take very quickly. Don’t walk away! 

Once the mixture is noticeably thicker, removed from heat. Stir in the cream cheese, gruyere, parmesan, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, and pepper. Keep stirring until all the cheeses are completely melted and the mixture is smooth.

Now, pour the cheese sauce over the asparagus in the pan. Sprinkle the buttered Panko evenly over the top of the sauce. Place the casserole in the oven and bake until the asparagus is tender, sauce is bubbly, and the Panko is golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes.

Let the asparagus casserole cool briefly before serving to help thicken the cheesy sauce.

A freshly baked asparagus casserole in a white dish, with a golden breadcrumb topping, accompanied by a wooden spoon and a fork on a wooden table.

Storage and reheating

Store any leftovers tightly covered or in an airtight container in the refrigerator and eat within 3 days.

If you want to reheat the whole casserole, cover loosely with foil, then warm in a 350°F oven for about 15 minutes, or until warmed through.

For individual portions, reheat in the microwave.

I don’t recommend freezing this casserole due to the cheese sauce. In my experience it can split and become oily when you try to thaw and reheat it. In addition, the freezing/thawing/baking process can result in the asparagus becoming overcooked and just not as tasty!

Baked casserole in a white dish with a wooden spoon.

More asparagus recipes to love

If you enjoy asparagus recipes as much as I do, you need to try these other dishes!

For breakfast or brunch, try an asparagus quiche or asparagus frittata with fresh dill.

Make asparagus risotto for a meatless main or delicious side dish.

Looking for something different? Try cream of roasted asparagus soup or baked asparagus fries.

A serving of asparagus casserole topped with breadcrumbs in a ceramic dish with a wooden spoon, alongside a plated portion with a fork.

Whip up this easy, cheesy asparagus casserole for your next spring dinner!

Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-star review below!
It means so much when you enjoy my recipes, so let me know how it goes and leave a comment if you have any questions.

A serving of asparagus casserole on a plate with a fork and knife, beside a casserole dish.

Asparagus Casserole

This cheesy casserole featuring fresh asparagus is perfect for spring entertaining.
Author : Megan Myers
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Recipe Review
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 191 kcal


  • 3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 5 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated gruyere cheese
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • Juice and zest from 1/2 lemon, approximately 1 tablespoon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste


  • Place an oven rack on the upper middle shelf and preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • In a small bowl, melt 1 1/2 tablespoon butter in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir in the panko along with a pinch of salt and pepper, and set aside.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil and place a large bowl of ice water nearby.
  • Boil the asparagus for 1 minute until bright green, then drain and immediately transfer to an ice bath to halt the cooking process. Cool for several minutes, then drain and pat dry.
  • Place the asparagus in a 9×13 inch casserole dish.
  • Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a large pot over medium heat, then add the garlic. Cook for 30-60 seconds, stirring, until fragrant. Add the flour and stir for 1 minute, then whisk in the milk.
  • Turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil while whisking constantly, then continue whisking until the mixture is thick, about 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the cream cheese, gruyere, parmesan, lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper until smooth.
  • Pour the cheese sauce over the asparagus, then sprinkle the panko mixture evenly over the top. Bake until the asparagus is tender and the panko is golden, 12-15 minutes.


Calories: 191 kcalCarbohydrates: 14 gProtein: 8 gFat: 13 gSaturated Fat: 7 gCholesterol: 37 mgSodium: 341 mgPotassium: 396 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 6 gIron: 3 mg

Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate based on online calculators. Any nutritional information found on Stetted should be used as a general guideline only.

Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below!

About Megan

I focus on fresh ingredients and easy methods, with spins that keep meals interesting. Dinnertime shouldn’t be stressful or complicated, and I’m here to help you enjoy the time spent in the kitchen. Read more…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.