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Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko

Win over all your family members (even the picky ones) this year with this incredibly flavorful, rich and creamy asparagus gratin. It's hard to not love.


Asparagus Gratin with Gruyere Panko in a skillet

An Asparagus Gratin that No One Can Resist

The first sight of asparagus bunches at the farmers market in springtime is enough to send us into states of elation usually reserved for holidays and special occasions. But maybe that’s only natural, since the arrival of asparagus is a sure sign that we’ve survived winter and longer, warmer days are on their way. And what occasion could be more special than that?! While we’ll spend all summer tossing asparagus on a hot grill, treating it lightly and enjoying it as a healthy veggie side dish, the first asparagus of the year calls for the royal treatment. Creamy and rich with Gruyère cheese and butter, this asparagus gratin recipe is our favorite way to celebrate the arrival of one of spring’s most iconic vegetables. Who could resist tender asparagus baked in a luscious béchamel-style sauce, seasoned with whole grain mustard, thyme, and a pinch of nutmeg, then buried in Gruyère and parmesan? No one we know.

raw asparagus on a striped linen
blanched asparagus in a gratin baking dish next to a plate of grated gruyere cheese

Everything You’ll Need to Make the Best Asparagus Recipe on Earth

Although this stunner of a side dish recipe comes across as very dressed-up, it’s not hard to make and you won’t need any special ingredients. You might need to make a trip to the grocery store, unless you’re the kind of person who keeps Gruyère in the house at all times (and if you are, good for you—let’s be friends!). Here’s all you’ll need to make it:

  • Asparagus
  • Butter
  • Flour
  • Whole milk
  • Whole grain mustard
  • Nutmeg
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Gruyère cheese
  • Panko
a plate with ingredients for Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko flour thyme whole grain mustard nutmeg

How To Make Our Asparagus Gratin Recipe

We’re going to use some culinary words here—stuff like ‘béchamel’ and ‘blanch’—but trust us, this is really basic stuff. Plus, once you’ve got the hang of how to make a gratin, you’ll be gratin-ing any vegetable you get your hands on!

  1. Blanch the asparagus just until it’s slightly tender, with some crispness remaining.
  2. Make the béchamel. All that béchamel is is butter + flour + milk to make a thick cream sauce, then season with mustard, salt, pepper, nutmeg and parmesan cheese. Easy peasy!
  3. Pour the cream sauce over the asparagus, and top with Gruyère.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes.
  5. Toast the panko in a bit of butter, and finish the gratin with a sprinkling of those light, airy breadcrumbs.
smothering asparagus gratin with béchamel sauce
Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko

Tools You’ll Need

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Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko

Did You Win Everyone Over?

It’s hard to imagine that even the most devoted asparagus naysayer could deny the deliciousness of this cheesy asparagus gratin. If you make it, let us know how you—and everyone you share it with—likes it! Share a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so that we can see your stuff! Happy eating!

Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  25 min
  • Cook Time:  20 min
  • Calories: 246


  • 1 1/2 lbs asparagus, woody ends trimmed off
  • 3 tbsp butter, divided
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 tbsp whole grain mustard
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3/4 cup Gruyère, grated
  • 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp flat leaf parsley, minced, optional


  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Bring salted water (1 tbsp salt for every 4 quarts water) to a boil in a large pot. Blanch asparagus in the boiling water for 4 minutes. Asparagus should be tender, but still crisp. Drain asparagus, transfer to a gratin or other baking dish, set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan or skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat until bubbly. When the foam subsides, add the flour and whisk until thickened and fragrant, 1 minute.
  4. Slowly add the milk to the butter mixture and whisk for 2 minutes until slightly thickened.
  5. Season the sauce by adding the mustard, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Whisk until fully incorporated. Add the parmesan cheese, stir until combined.
  6. Pour the sauce over the asparagus in the baking dish. Sprinkle gruyere over the sauce.
  7. Bake in the hot oven until bubbly and beginning to brown. 15-20 minutes.
  8. While the gratin is baking, toast the panko along with the remaining tablespoon of butter, in a small skillet over medium heat. Stir continually until the panko is a nice golden brown. Set aside.
  9. When gratin comes out of the oven, sprinkle with toasted panko and parsley and a little extra parmesan cheese. Serve warm. Enjoy.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories246
  • Protein13 g
  • Carbohydrates15 g
  • Total Fat16 g
  • Dietary Fiber3 g
  • Cholesterol45 mg
  • sodium522 mg
  • Total Sugars5 g

Asparagus Gratin with Gruyère & Panko

Questions & Reviews

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  • Jenn

    So creamy and good. You really can't go wrong covering anything with creamy, cheesy, flavorful saucy goodness.

    Thank you Jenn, we agree!