Among all-time favorite side dishes, you’ll find roasted asparagus. That’s because asparagus is quick to cook, available year-round, and can easily adapt to nearly any other food on the plate. Baked beans? Asparagus absolutely belongs. Fancy rice pilaf? Asparagus fits there, too.

But to make a side of roasted asparagus even easier, cook it in the air fryer, not the oven. An air fryer is essentially a tiny convection oven. Because it’s so small, it can heat quickly and cook far more efficiently than larger ovens. The small space is perfect for circulating high-temp air so that all sides of a food cook evenly, and because the heat is so concentrated, foods tend to cook much faster in an air fryer, too.

If you’ve got one, consider cooking asparagus in your air fryer the next time you’re planning to make this side dish. You can leave it plain, seasoned with just salt and pepper, or dress it up a bit as we did in this air fryer asparagus recipe. We’ve added crumbled goat cheese and everything bagel seasoning for a creamy-crunchy kick.

Ingredients for asparagus in Toshiba air fryer

For the most classic air fryer roasted asparagus, you need only asparagus, olive oil, salt, and pepper. You can toss the trimmed asparagus in a bit of oil, then sprinkle with the seasoning just before serving.

Here, however, we’re dressing it up a bit. We’re finishing the air fryer asparagus with crumbled goat cheese and everything bagel seasoning. This seasoning mix, popularized by the grocery store Trader Joe’s, contains black sesame seeds, poppy seeds, white sesame seeds, dried onion, dried garlic, and salt.

If you can’t find a jar of everything bagel seasoning in the spice aisle of your grocery store, you can make your own quickly: Use equal parts of the first five ingredients but a bit less salt. Keep a shaker of it in your cabinet, and add it to scrambled eggs, grits, green beans, and more.

You don’t need to shave asparagus before you cook it. These little knobs along the stalk are perfectly edible and will soften as the spears cook. But you will need to trim asparagus before it goes into the air fryer. The easiest way to trim asparagus is to line up the entire bundle of asparagus by the ends, then use a large chef’s knife to trim about one inch off the end of the spears. These woody ends are edible, but they tend to be rough and difficult to chew.

How to cook asparagus in Toshiba air fryer

Asparagus cooks quickly in the air fryer, and most of the work is done in a matter of minutes, making it the perfect side to round out any meal.

Step 1. Preheat the air fryer

To start, preheat a Toshiba air fryer to 400°F. Getting it nice and hot will speed up the cooking process.

You don’t have to preheat the air fryer, but it will take longer for the asparagus to cook if you start with a cold basket.

Step 2. Oil and season the spears

The beauty of the air fryer is food doesn’t require a great deal of oil for cooking. But, for the best results, it does require some. Asparagus cooked in an air fryer without oil may end up being dry and a bit difficult to chew. Tossing the asparagus in oil can help it roast quickly and stay moist while it cooks.

Once you’ve tossed the asparagus spears in a bit of oil, top them with salt (we prefer kosher, but you can use table salt) and freshly ground black pepper.

Step 3. Cook

If you’ve not overcrowded the air fryer basket, the asparagus should cook in 6 to 8 minutes. If you like a more roasted finish, cook 8 to 10.

For this recipe, we call for topping the air fryer asparagus with a sprinkle of goat cheese and everything bagel seasoning, then returning the asparagus to the air fryer for another 2 minutes. This extra time helps to gently melt the cheese and finish roasting the spears.