Savory Asparagus and Cheese Bake

Savory Asparagus and Cheese Bake


2 pounds asparagus, trimmed

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the casserole dish

2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups half-and-half (or a mix of milk and heavy cream)

2 teaspoons garlic salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs


Step 1:

Preheat the oven to 400°F and position the rack in the center.

Grease a 9×13 inch casserole dish with butter.

Lay the trimmed asparagus in the dish, pressing down slightly to create a flat, even layer.

Step 2: Prepare the sauce:

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons of butter.

Add the flour and whisk continuously for 3 minutes, until the mixture begins to turn golden.

Gradually whisk in the half-and-half, garlic salt, and black pepper, and continue to whisk until the sauce begins to thicken.

Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese until melted and smooth.

Step 3: Bake the asparagus:

Pour the sauce over the asparagus, leaving about 1 inch of space along the long edges of the dish.

Bake uncovered for 15-18 minutes, or until the asparagus is tender to your preference.

Step 4: Make the topping:

While the asparagus bakes, in a small bowl, melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter.

Mix in the breadcrumbs until well moistened, then stir in the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese.

Halfway through baking, evenly sprinkle this breadcrumb mixture over the asparagus and return to the oven to finish baking.

Step 5: Broil:

Once the asparagus is tender, switch the oven to broil and broil for 2-3 minutes or until the breadcrumbs are golden brown.

Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

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