This asparagus frittata is easy to make and the kind of dish that’s as good at breakfast as lunch or dinner. With simple flavors, it’s both fresh and comforting – plus easy to adapt too!
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Omelette, frittata, tortilla… These are only a few of the names for the relatively simple beaten egg dish that is so popular in many cultures. It’s easy to understand why as they are quick and easy to make, can be easily adapted as well as scaled up or down.
This asparagus frittata is an easy and delicious variation you may well come across in Italy. It’s especially common at Easter but really, it’s worth enjoying any time.
What is a frittata?
A frittata is a kind of fried egg dish with different fillings. Fritatta derives from “friggere” meaning fried and according to Wikipedia, has historically meant anything from a fried egg to a deep Spanish-style tortilla as long as it was cooked in a skillet.
Outside of Italy, it used to be seen as just another name for an omelette, but more recently, it has been generally recognized as a particular style with a few distinctions.
What’s the difference between a frittata and an omelet?
- A frittata is an open-faced omelette – a classic French omelette is often folded over while a frittata is not.
- Any fillings for a frittata are incorporated with the eggs while they are still raw rather than being added part way through cooking.
- A frittata is cooked more slowly than an omelette over a low heat.
- The top is cooked either by turning the frittata over or finishing it off under a broiler.
Asparagus is a common vegetable to use in Italian frittatas, since it’s a popular spring crop. You’ll also see frittatas with artichokes, fava beans, spring greens and really use whatever you like.
Here I have added a little onion and pecorino cheese to add additional flavor to the frittata, but you can leave these out if you prefer. While pecorino is a common pairing, you can experiment with other cheeses and leeks also work well instead of onion.
Steps to make an asparagus frittata
- Snap the ends off the asparagus where they naturally break then cut in chunks.
- Peel and finely chop the onion/shallow.
- Whisk the eggs until fluffy then add the cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Mix until combined.
- Warm 1 tablespoon of oil in a small skillet then add the asparagus and onion and cook for a couple minutes until they are tender.
- Tip the asparagus and onions into the eggs and mix through. Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reduce the heat slightly and tip the egg mixture into the skillet.
- Spread the asparagus out evenly then cook for around 5 minutes until the edges are starting to cook but the inside is still runny.
- As it is cooking, warm the broiler. Put the frittata under the broiler to finish cooking the top, keeping a close eye on it so it’s lightly brown but doesn’t cook too much.
- Serve warm or room temperature.
What other frittata-like dishes could you try?
If your family enjoys frittatas, why not try some other similar dishes from other cultures:
- A classic French omelette, cooked over a low heat and folded over, often made with fine herbs.
- A Spanish tortilla which is thicker and classically made with potatoes.
- Japanese tamagoyaki, seasoned with mirin and soy sauce and cooked in a special rectangular pan.
- Persian kuku, such as kuku sabzi densely filled with herbs.
- Arab eggah, often made with herbs and spices.
- Masala omelet, a popular Indian variation with plenty of spices, common for breakfast.
- Taiwanese oyster omelet, a popular street food in Taiwan.
This asparagus frittata is easy to make, and with simple, tasty flavors. It works both as a main or as a side, so find any excuse and enjoy!
Be sure to take a look at the breakfast and brunch recipes archives for other egg-based dishes and more.
Tools for this recipe:
I’d recommend a small skillet, such as a Lodge 8in Cast Iron Skillet for this recipe.
See some of my favorite cooking tools and ingredients in the Caroline’s Cooking Amazon store.
This asparagus frittata is easy to make and perfect for any meal!
Services: 2 or more with sides
- 8 oz asparagus 225g
- 4 eggs
- ¼ onion (small)
- ¼ cup pecorino (or parmesan) 20g, approx
- 1 ½ tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Snap the ends off the asparagus where they naturally break to remove any woody ends. Cut the rest of the asparagus into approximately 1 inch pieces.
Peel and finely chop the onion/shallow.
Crack the eggs into a medium bowl and whisk them until the white is broken up and they are lightly fluffy. Add the cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Mix until combined.
Warm 1 tablespoon of oil in an 8 inch oven safe skillet over a medium heat. Add the asparagus and onion and cook for a couple minutes until the onion becomes translucent and the asparagus is tender to a knife-point.
Tip the asparagus and onions into the eggs and mix through. Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reduce the heat slightly and tip the egg mixture into the skillet. Spread the asparagus out evenly, as needed, so the pieces are evenly distributed across the skillet and not sticking out from the eggs.
Cook for around 5 minutes until the edges are starting to cook but the inside is still running.
As it is cooking, warm the broiler. Put the frittata under the broiler to finish cooking the top, keeping a close eye on it so it doesn’t cook too much. You want it to be set but not get too brown.
Serve warm or room temperature.
calories: 295calories | Carbohydrates: 6g | protein: 17g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 340mg | Sodium: 277mg | Potassium: 370mg | fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1385UI | Vitamin C: 7.3mg | Calcium: 210mg | Iron: 4.1mg
I first shared the recipe for Italian asparagus frittata on Curious Cuisinere where I am a contributor.
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