Eosinophils are granulocytes that play a significant role in the pathogenesis of asthma and other airway diseases. Directing patient treatment based on the level of eosinophilia has been shown to be extremely effective in reducing exacerbations and therefore has tremendous potential as a routine clinical test. Herein, we describe the in vitro selection and optimization of DNA aptamers that bind to eosinophil peroxidase (EPX), a protein biomarker unique to eosinophils. Fifteen rounds of magnetic bead aptamer selection were performed prior to high throughput DNA sequencing. The top 10 aptamer candidates were assessed for EPX binding using a mobility shift assay. This process identified a lead aptamer candidate termed EAP1-05 with low nanomolar affinity and high specificity for EPX over other common sputum proteins. This aptamer sequence was further optimized through truncation and used to develop an easy-to-use colourimetric pull-down assay that can detect EPX over a concentration range from 1 – 100 nM in processed sputum. Forty-six clinical samples were processed using a new sputum dispersal method, appropriate for a rapid assessment assay, that avoids centrifugation and lengthy processing times. The assay showed 89% sensitivity and 96% specificity to detect eosinophilia (compared to gold standard sputum cytometry), with results being produced in under an hour. This assay could allow for an easy assessment of eosinophil activity in the airway to guide anti-inflammatory therapy for several airway diseases.