Recipes,  Salad,  Side Dishes

Grilled Asparagus and Spring Onions with Dijon Vinaigrette

Sometimes the best meals are those which are uncomplicated; those which allow you to share a glass of wine and chat with your guests while cooking at the same time. This dish is one which will enable you to do just that. You can even prepare it before your guests arrive, because it’s just as good at room temperature as it is hot off the grill. In fact, it may even be a little better if the vinaigrette has time to “marinate” the vegetables a bit.

I used Mexican Spring Onions in these photos, but you could also use the ones which are slightly pink and oblong at the base. Spring onions can range in size from a large version of the standard green onion to small round bulbs about 2 inches in diameter. For the larger ones, it’s a good idea to cut them in half so they cook more evenly on the grill.

Every 4th of July we have a big gathering at our house with 20-30 of our nearest and dearest, all of their kids running around, and plenty of food coming off the grill. This is one dish which will probably make it onto this year’s menu. Are you cooking up anything special for the 4th? What are your favorite “uncomplicated” dishes to make for a dinner party?

Grilled Asparagus and Spring Onions

Asparagus and Onions
Fresh Asparagus and Onions

1 lb. asparagus spears
1 lb spring onions (about 12 each)
1 Tbsp olive oil for grilling

Cut the tough ends off the bottom of the asparagus spears, about 2-3 inches. If the onion bulbs are large, you can cut them in half, lengthwise, leaving some of the green part of the onion on each side. This will help them cook more evenly on the grill.

Toss the aparagus and the onions in a large bowl with the olive oil.

Put them on a hot grill and cook until the asparagus is slightly charred and just tender. The green parts of the onions are going to cook faster than the bulb ends so try to keep them on a slightly cooler spot. Cook until tender.

Grilled Asparagus
Grilling the Asparagus


Grilled Onion
Grilling the Onions

Arrange on a plate and drizzle with Dijon Vinaigrette (below).

Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette

1/2 shallot, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
3 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste

To make the the vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl or shake in a glass jar with a secure lid. Go here for more on how to make a basic vinaigrette.

Grilled Asparagus and Onions
Grilled Asparagus and Onions


  • Kent @ NVR

    Looks great! I am especially intrigued by the mustard vinaigrette. Sounds like a fantastic addition. This weekend, we’ll be gearing up for our camping adventure so won’t be doing anything too exciting. This will make the menu at some point though.

    • formerchef

      Thanks Kent. You know, this is a dish you could even make over the campfire. 😉 Just make the vinaigrette before you leave home.

  • Simone

    That looks delicious! And while I love grilling asparagus I’ve never thought of doing that on the BBQ… SIlly really but I will for sure do that this summer.

  • Terri

    This is dangerous! Leaving this dish at room temp almost had me eating the entire thing before my husband got home!
    Because I found the recipe in mid prep, I grilled the thinly sliced onions on a cookie sheet after grilling the asparagus. They looked beautiful piled atop the green with the vinaigrette (minced shallot) drizzled over! Oh my lanta! What a wonderful dish for fresh Walla Walla Wa spring onions and asparagus all grown locally! Keeper!

  • mark

    How do you know your not cutting too much or too little of the asapragus? I break off the woody stem at exactly the bottom of the tender tips.

    • formerchef

      Typically the edible part of the asparagus is at least 6-8″ long. But sometimes it’s sold much longer and the far ends of the stem can be very tough so it’s best to cut them off. Use your best judgement as to what looks edible.

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