Sesame & Almond Asparagus Salad

Spring greens & asparagus make a delicious salad with nuttiness from toasted seeds & almonds, salty cheese & tangy dressing. A must-make weeknight dish.

I made this last week for my sister and her husband while they were in town. I don’t know if we were trying to impress them with some kind of kitchen wonders, but last Sunday night we (I) decided we would attempt to make our own cheese, roll out our own pasta, and whip up some lemon tarts… all after a long afternoon of walking around in the hot sun and a quick stop at our favorite wine bar. We all arrived home sweaty and exhausted, ready for the cooking fun to begin.

The cheese was an epic failure, the pasta was delicious but not on the table until 11:30pm. This salad, however, I whipped up and served right away, and everyone loved it.

Bright, crunchy asparagus pieces are tossed with handfuls of leafy greens in a tangy dijon vinaigrette. But the real special part here is the salty, crunchy, nuttiness from the toasted sesame seeds and almonds. Plus, you can have it on the table in less than 15 minutes.

I’ll be making this one again and again…. with store bought cheese.

adapted from Farmhouse Table

Sesame & Almond Asparagus Salad

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2-4 as a side
For the salad:
  • 2 cups asparagus, tender parts only, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 3 tablespoons sliced almonds
  • A few handfuls arugula or other salad greens (about 2 cups)
  • Feta or other cheese (optional)
For the dressing: (use only as much as needed, there will be extra)
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons white wine or champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Sea salt and fresh black pepper
  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. While the water is boiling, get a medium bowl of ice water ready. Drop the chopped asparagus into the boiling water for 30 seconds, or until it’s bright green but still crunchy. Remove from boiling water and transfer to the bowl of ice water to quickly stop the cooking process. Once the asparagus is cooled, lay it to dry on a towel.
  2. Toast the sesame seeds and almond slices in a small skillet over medium-low heat with a few pinches of salt. Set aside.
  3. Make the dressing: Whisk together the shallot, lemon juice, vinegar, Dijon, olive oil, honey, and a few pinches of salt and pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  4. Toss the arugula and asparagus in the dressing (taste and decide how much or little you want to use).
  5. Arrange the salad on a platter and top with the toasted almonds, sesame seeds & a bit of cheese, if using.



Leave a comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Madeline

    This is an absolutely delicious salad. I made it tonight for dinner. I was tempted to look the bowl!

  2. Kym Lee

    I made a variation where I grilled the asparagus, substituted parsley for arugula, omitted nuts, same dressing, and used Parmesan instead of feta. Delicious!
    Love your recipes!!!

    • jeanine

      mmm grilled asparagus, sounds so good! Glad you could find some inspiration to adapt from!

  3. This post made me smile – it’s exactly the kind of thing I’d have done! Salad looks gorgeous though, and I bet your pasta was delicious too 🙂

  4. Sorry to hear about your cheese, but kudos on a lovely salad. I enjoyed some fresh asparagus (fresh=picked that morning) from the farmer’s market last season and was AMAZED at how wonderful it was. I felt like I had never had aspargus before in my life. My goal is to plant some myself as soon as I have a plot for it–

  5. What a beautiful, simple salad. 🙂 I may have to run to the store right now and get some asparagus! Cannot wait to try this one out.

  6. The Cuisinerd

    I know this scenario all too well- but this salad?! Nice to meet you delicious thing! Adding to my list…yum!

  7. Shannalee from

    Haha! I love stories like that, if only because they remind me that kitchen disasters happen to all of us. This salad looks so good!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.