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Steaming Artichokes

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If you didn’t grow up eating artichokes, they can seem like strange and intimidating creatures. If you’ve ever wondered how to cook and eat the crazy-looking things, read on. This article is about steaming artichokes and even has details on how to eat them.

Steaming Artichokes: How to Eat

They used to really intimidate me too, because I had no idea how to prepare and eat them. Now, we love them at my house. This way of eating opens so many new possibilities and options!

How to prepare artichokes

There are little barbs on the tips of each leaf. I trim these off with scissors.

how to cook and eat artichokes. with barbs

With a sharp pair of scissors, these barbs can be removed quickly and easily.

It only takes a couple of minutes for each one, and they look and feel so much better.

how to cook and eat artichokes. after removing barbs

How long to cook artichokes

To steam artichokes, there are a few simple ingredients you will need:

  • fresh artichokes
  • clove of garlic
  • lemon juice
  • bay leaf
  • salt

Place artichokes into a steamer basket and cover. Cook on medium heat for approximately 30 minutes. Cook until outer leaves can easily be pulled off.

How to eat artichokes

After steaming, they are ready to eat. Simply remove each leaf and dip the fleshy end into the sauce. Many people use a mayo-type sauce. You could use my Easy Low-fat Mayo recipe with balsamic vinegar mixture.

vegan mayo in glass jar with tomatoes in background on wooden table
This easy low-fat vegan mayo is great for making a dipping sauce for artichokes. Low-Fat Vegan Mayo in only 5-minutes!

We love to use Asian Sauce as a dip with steamed artichokes, and my Easy Low-Fat Mayo could even be mixed in with it as well.

Simply remove each leaf and dip the fleshy end into the sauce.

how to cook and eat artichokes. dipping sauce

As you eat your way closer to the center, it will look purplish like this. This means you are getting so close to the jackpot–the heart of the artichoke! It’s everyone’s favorite part!

how to cook and eat artichokes. the heart

*Originally published July 23, 2015.

Nutrition in Artichokes

When eaten as part of a well-balanced meal plan, artichokes provide you with some heart-healthy benefits – including healthy weight management. Artichokes are packed with essential nutrients, especially fiber.

Artichokes are carb-rich vegetables and provide about 14.3 grams of total carbs in each medium-sized artichoke, according to the USDA.

The majority of carbs in artichokes are from dietary fiber – there are about 10.3 grams of fiber in each medium-sized portion. Eating a high-fiber diet helps reduce your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, gastrointestinal diseases and obesity, according to a 2009 review in “Nutrition Reviews.” 

Though low-fat foods, artichokes do contain some dietary protein. One medium artichoke provides about 3.5 grams of protein but less than 1 gram of dietary fat. —LiveStrong

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steamed artichoke with sauce and lemon

Steaming Artichokes

Yield: 2 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

If you didn't grow up eating artichokes, they can seem like strange and intimidating creatures. If you've ever wondered how the heck to cook and eat the crazy-looking things, here's how I do it.

Ingredients

Steamed Artichokes

  • 2 large, fresh artichokes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 bay leaf

Asian Sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1-1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp sweetener, I used sucanat. Other sweeteners work well too.
  • 1 tsp minced garlic, I use from a jar
  • 1 tsp corn starch or arrowroot, to thicken, (thickening is optional)

Instructions

  1. Fill a large stockpot with 2" of water. Add salt, lemon juice, garlic, and bay leaf. Insert a steamer basket, and make sure water level is below the basket.
  2. Cover the pan and bring water to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and allow water to simmer while working on artichoke prep.
  3. Meanwhile, trim the artichokes. If the stem is long, trim it to approximately 1/2". Slice the tip end off artichokes. Wash under warm water.
  4. There are little barbs on the tip of each leaf. I trim these off with scissors.
  5. It only takes a couple of minutes for each one, and they look and feel so much better.
  6. Place artichokes into the steamer basket and cover. Cook on medium heat for approximately [timer minutes=0] 30 minutes[/timer]. Cook until outer leaves can easily be pulled off.
  7. To eat, remove each leaf and dip the fleshy end into the sauce. Many people use a mayo-type sauce. You could use my Low-Fat Mayo with balsamic vinegar mixture. We love Asian Sauce-- recipe instructions below.
  8. Tightly grip the other end of the leaf. Place in mouth and pull through teeth to remove soft, fleshy portion. Discard remaining leaf.
  9. Continue until all leaves are removed. As you get close to the center it will look purplish like this.
  10. The center of the artichoke will look like this fuzzy thing. It's called the choke, and if you try to eat it, you will.
  11. Use a knife or spoon to scrape the fuzzy part away. The remaining bottom of the artichoke is the heart. Cut into pieces and dip into sauce to eat.

Asian Sauce

  1. Whisk all sauce ingredients together in a medium bowl. Adjust ingredients to your taste. If using cornstarch, heat to activate thickening.

Notes

Detailed instructions, in-process photos, and my personal helpful tips can be found in the article above.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 138Total Fat: 1gCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 8gProtein: 10g

To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.

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Steaming Artichokes
Easy instructions on how to steam and eat artichokes healthy-style.

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