This asparagus salad is tender asparagus, tomatoes, olives, red onion and radishes, all tossed in a homemade dressing and topped with feta cheese. A unique and delicious springtime salad that is sure to get rave reviews!
My family happens to love asparagus, and we eat it in so many different ways. Crispy air fryer asparagus is always a great side dish, chicken and asparagus stir fry is a quick and healthy dinner, and this asparagus salad is full of flavor.
I serve a salad almost every night with dinner, but sometimes lettuce based salads can get a little boring. Asparagus salad is a great way to liven things up, and also happens to be quite easy to prepare. I also serve carrot salad and green bean salad when I’m looking for a break from the lettuce. You can never have too many salad recipes!
Asparagus Salad Ingredients
The primary components of this salad include asparagus spears, tomato, red onion, radish, olives, feta cheese and parsley. The dressing is made with a blend of extra-virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, fresh lemon juice, Dijon mustard, honey, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, salt and black pepper.
How do you make asparagus salad?
Start by blanching asparagus stalks in a large pot until they’re crisp tender, then cut them into bite sized pieces. Place the asparagus in a large bowl along with cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion, radishes, kalamata olives and parsley. To make the dressing, whisk together olive oil, Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, lemon juice and seasonings. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with feta cheese, then serve and enjoy.
How to blanch asparagus
You will want to blanch your asparagus for this recipe, which basically means that it is lightly cooked in boiling water until just tender. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, then add the asparagus stalks. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until asparagus is just tender and bright green. Transfer the asparagus from the water into a bowl of ice water. This will stop the cooking process. After the asparagus is cool, drain off the water. Pat the veggies dry, then add them to your salad.
Tips for the perfect salad
- Asparagus salad can be made up to 4 hours before you plan to serve it. Store it covered in the refrigerator and add the feta cheese at the last minute.
- I prefer to use a block of feta cheese that I crumble myself versus the tubs of store bought crumbled cheese. I find that the flavor is better and there aren’t any preservatives or anti-caking agents involved.
- Use a mandoline to get perfectly thin slices of red onion and radish.
This recipe works best with fresh asparagus. Frozen asparagus will not retain its texture for the salad.
You can eat asparagus raw in a salad, but I think it tastes best when it’s lightly cooked first as it’s more tender. Most raw preparations of asparagus call for thinly shaving the asparagus into slices to negate any toughness. The toughness is eliminated when the asparagus is cooked.
Asparagus pairs well with a variety of other vegetables including green beans, tomatoes, mushrooms and onions. It also makes a great side dish for proteins such as steak, pork, chicken and salmon.
I typically do not peel my asparagus, as I don’t think it’s necessary the majority of the time. As long as you get rid of the tough and woody end of each stalk, the other parts of the asparagus are pleasant to eat.
Asparagus salad flavor variations
While this salad is great as-is, you can add other ingredients you have on hand to make your own creation.
- Protein: Make it a main course by adding grilled chicken, tuna, canned white beans or shrimp.
- Pasta: Double the dressing and add 8 ounces of cooked short pasta to make a pasta salad.
- Grains: Stir in some cooked quinoa, brown rice or farro for extra flavor and texture.
- Vegetables: Feel free to add more veggies such as bell peppers, cucumber, baby spinach or avocado.
- Flavorings: Amp up the flavor with additions such as toasted pine nuts, croutons or sun dried tomatoes. Try swapping out the feta cheese with shaved parmesan or goat cheese. No parsley on hand? Try other fresh herbs like dill, basil or chives instead.
Once you try this asparagus salad, you’ll find yourself making it on a regular basis. It’s just that good!
More great asparagus recipes
- Lemon Asparagus Pasta
- Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
- Grilled Asparagus in Foil
- Sauteed Asparagus
- Roasted Asparagus
For the salad
- 1 pound asparagus stalks woody ends removed
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/4 cup red onion thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup radishes thinly sliced
- 1/3 cup kalamata olives pitted and halved
- 1/3 cup feta cheese crumbled
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped, plus more for garnish
For the dressing
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
For the salad
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook for 2-3 minutes until just tender and bright green.
- Remove the asparagus from the pot and place it in a bowl of ice water to cool. Drain the stalks, place on a paper towel and pat dry.
- Cut the asparagus stalks into 1 1/2 inch pieces.
- Add the asparagus, tomatoes, onion, radishes, olives and parsley to a large bowl.
For the dressing
- Place all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine.
- Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with feta cheese then serve, garnished with additional parsley if desired.
- This salad can be prepared up to 4 hours before you plan to serve it. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator and add the feta cheese just before serving.