Asparagus and Carrots With Lemon Sauce

Philip Nealey/Photographer's Choice RF/Getty Images
Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 40 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
115 Calories
4g Fat
18g Carbs
3g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 115
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 6%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 107mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 18g 7%
Dietary Fiber 6g 22%
Protein 3g
Calcium 72mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This recipe of asparagus and carrots with lemon sauce makes an attractive and tasty side dish for just about any entree, including chicken, beef, and lamb. The combination of crisp-tender asparagus spears and carrot sticks dressed with a lemon-butter sauce is perfect in springtime and will make a nice addition to the Easter or Passover table. The vegetables are simmered separately, a simple sauce of butter, lemon juice and zest, and salt and pepper is quickly cooked, and then the carrots and asparagus are added to coat and heat through. What results is a colorful dish with bright and fresh flavors.

It is important to cook the vegetables separately from each other since the asparagus takes less time to cook than the carrots; overcooked asparagus turns an unattractive dark green color and will be mushy, so it's important to watch carefully and remove the asparagus from the water just when it can be pierced with a fork. It will also continue to cook off of the heat, as well as when it is added to the pan with the sauce and carrots; carrots have a harder, firmer texture and are a bit more forgiving.

Feel free to finish the dish with some chopped fresh herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, chives, or thyme.


  • 2 pounds carrots (trimmed and cut in half lengthwise)
  • 1 pound​ asparagus (woody stems broken off)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh​ lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a deep, large skillet, bring 1 inch of water to a boil. Add the carrots and reduce the heat to medium. Cover and simmer for 4 to 6 minutes, or until crisp-tender.

  3. Remove the carrots with a slotted spoon to a colander and set aside.

  4. Add the asparagus to the water in the skillet. Cover and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, or until crisp-tender.

  5. Place the asparagus in a colander and discard the cooking water. Wipe the skillet dry.

  6. In the same skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the lemon zest, ​lemon juice, salt, and pepper and stir to combine.

  7. Return the carrots and asparagus to the skillet and cook, stirring gently, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the vegetables are well coated and heated through.

  8. Serve right away and enjoy.