Smoked “Traeger Asparagus” is easily made in one pan and is loaded with fresh chopped bacon, garlic(of course), parmesan, and chopped shiitake mushrooms. Push your smoked entree aside and make room in the final minutes of smoking for this delicious smoked side dish.
The best way to make this Traeger grill asparagus recipe is on a smoker or pellet grill but it can be made in a regular oven if desired!
The fresh flavors of this simple side dish go well with any smoked entree including Smoked Spatchcock Chicken, Smoked Pork Loin Roast, Smoked Beer Can Chicken, Traeger Smoked Ham, and even Smoked Turkey.
Naturally low carb, Loaded Traeger Asparagus is a keto friendly side dish that can be regularly incorporated into many different diet/lifestyles including gluten-free. Skip the bacon to make this smoked asparagus dish vegetarian.
Tips + Tricks
Use your favorite ready made seasoning to save a few minutes. I love this Traeger Veggie Rub when I am in a hurry. Have time? Check out my Homemade Smoked Chicken Rub recipe… it is versatile and can be used on a variety of meats and vegetables.
Get your timing right! Figure out the best time to put your asparagus on your Traeger pellet grill to make sure that it is done right around when your main course is cooked and has rested. I prefer the asparagus fresh and hot.
Best Pellets. Choose a neutral flavored wood for this asparagus side dish. Maple and pecan are both great options. Stay away from hickory.
- Asparagus- Choose fresh asparagus that is crisp and fairly uniform. Thick asparagus spears will take longer to smoke than thinner stalks. Purple, green, and white asparagus are all great choices for this healthy vegetable side dish.
- Bacon- choose your favourite bacon for this recipe and chop it to suit preferences. A slice or two of bacon gives the asparagus great flavor- dont skimp! I have also used chopped ham and it is delicious.
- Parmesan Cheese- I use large parmesan petals but any size of parmesan will work
- Mushrooms- shiitake mushrooms work great in this recipe with their rich flavour and buttery texture, but feel free to experiment with whatever you have on hand!
- Garlic- fresh minced garlic is preferred but the recipe card has options for powdered garlic as well.
- Sea Salt + Black Pepper
- Olive Oil– Drizzle a little olive oil over your asparagus or use your favorite vegetable oil.
Grilling Basket- Grilling baskets are awesome for smoking all kinds of vegetables and fruits that easily fall through the grill grate. I use a stainless steel Vermont Castings grill basket from Canadian Tire. Another set of grilling baskets that have great reviews are these Outset Grilling Baskets. I like that they are rectangular in shape so they can easily handle asparagus spears.
Smoker– I use and abuse my Traeger Ironwood 885 and it has been a real workhorse for me! Electric pellet grills are easy to regulate and the indirect heat is easy to navigate. If you have a charcoal smoker, other type of smoker, or gas grill, try your best to cook the asparagus over indirect heat to avoid burning or uneven cooking.
Exactly How to Make Loaded Traeger Asparagus
Step 1. Preheat your Traeger pellet smoker or other smoker to 375°F.
Step 2. Break off or slice off the white ends of your asparagus spears. Drizzle with1 tablespoon of olive oil , sprinkle on 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper, and toss until evenly coated. Place into a grilling basket in a single layer.
Step 3. Chop 2/3 cup of raw bacon and 1/2 cup of shiitake mushrooms into small pieces and sprinkle them evenly over the asparagus. Mince two cloves of garlic spread over the asparagus. Lastly, sprinkle 1/4 cup (32g) parmesan on top. If you are using fine parmesan you may want to weigh it or eyeball it so that there isn’t too much.
Step 4. Place asparagus on your hot grill or in your oven and bake for around 30 minutes. Check it after 20 minutes to make sure that it isn’t cooking too fast. Thin spears will take less time to cook. I like my asparagus slightly firm since it tends to soften a bit as it sits. If you prefer more tender asparagus, cook a bit longer, testing a spear if needed. Serve hot!
Batch + Storage
1 pound of asparagus yields 4 large servings.
This easy side dish is best served fresh! Place any leftovers in an airtight container and stow in the fridge for 3-4 days.
Reheat in the oven at 350°F for around 5 minutes or use an air fryer. You can also use up leftover asparagus in your favorite potato salad recipe.
- Cheese swap- experiment with different kinds of cheese for this grilled asparagus! Feta and mozzarella both taste delicious paired with asparagus.
- Spice it up- consider adding 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper to add some extra heat to this asparagus recipe.
- Vegetarian- Swap out the bacon for extra mushrooms or cheese.
- Vegan- Omit bacon and swap out any cheeses for dairy free, vegan cheese. Consider adding extra veggies such as finely diced bell peppers or chopped sundried tomatoes.
- Lemon- If you are a lemon lover, consider sprinkling 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon of lemon zest and add a squeeze of lemon juice on the asparagus after it has been smoked. 1/4 teaspoon of lemon pepper sprinkled overtop is also delicious.
- Mixed Loaded Vegetables- chop up baby potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, and your other favorite vegetables and roast them together with the asparagus and suggested toppings for a delicious smoked vegetable side to your main course.
Loaded Traeger Asparagus-Printable Recipe Card
- 1 lb asparagus spears
- 2 garlic cloves, minced or 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms
- 2/3 cup bacon
- 1/4 cup parmesan
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 fine sea salt
- Preheat your Traeger pellet smoker or other smoker to 375°F.
- Break off or slice off any white ends off of your asparagus spears. Drizzle with1 tablespoon of olive oil , sprinkle on 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (or two minced cloves) and toss until evenly coated. Place into a grilling basket in a single layer.
- Chop 2/3 cup of raw bacon and 1/2 cup of shiitake mushrooms into small pieces and sprinkle them evenly over the asparagus. Lastly, sprinkle 1/4 cup (32g) parmesan on top. If you are using fine parmesan you may want to weigh it or eyeball it so that there isn’t too much.
- Place the prepared parmesan on your smoker or in your oven and bake for around 30 minutes. Check it after 20 minutes to make sure that it isn’t cooking too fast. Thin spears will take less time to cook. I like my asparagus slightly firm since it tends to soften a bit as it sits. Serve hot!
*If you need to cook this asparagus on the side of the grill while cooking a main at a lower temperature, add extra time. Test a stock at the 30 minute mark if lowering the temperature to judge how much longer it will need before it is done. Visually, your cheese should be crispy looking and the bacon should become darker and it will be obvious that it is cooked.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 150Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 428mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 9g
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