Simply steamed artichokes made quick and easy in the Instant Pot. Yielding perfectly tender results. Ideal as a healthy appetizer, side dish or snack, paired with a healthy and delicious parmesan basil dip!
I was wrong.
You were right.
The Instant Pot is awesome.
Perfectly tender artichokes, hands-off, no muss no fuss. Paired with a creamy basil parmesan dip. Let's make some!
HOW TO CHOOSE THE PERFECT ARTICHOKE
When purchasing artichokes you want to look for artichokes that have tightly packed leaves with a bulb that is firm to the touch. If the leaves are flimsy the artichoke is most likely not fresh.
HOW TO PREPARE ARTICHOKES FOR COOKING
I know artichokes are intimidating to many, but honestly, they only require a little bit of easy prep work.
- Trim the stem off of the artichoke so it is flush with the bulb
- Using a sharp knife trim the top 3/4 inch off of the artichoke
- (optional) Using scissors snip the pointy edges, thorns, off of the leaves of the artichoke. This makes for an easier eating experience, but I skip this step when I'm in a hurry.
- Wash the artichoke well, there tends to be a bitter film on the outside of the artichoke which needs to be washed off. I also rub the artichoke all over with lemon
HOW TO STEAM ARTICHOKES IN THE INSTANT POT
It couldn't be easier honestly.
- Place the steamer trivet in the bottom of the Instant Pot
- Add about 2 cups of water or enough water to just reach the very bottom of the trivet
- Place the artichokes in the Instant Pot stem side down. Depending on the size of the artichokes you should be able to fit anywhere from 2-4
- (optional) add aromatics to the water. I added a big handful of basil and sliced lemon to the water
- Put the top on the Instant Pot and make sure the valve is in the sealing position. Cook on manual for 8-15 minutes (see chart below for cook times)
HOW DOES THE SIZE OF THE ARTICHOKE IMPACT COOKING TIME
Size of the artichoke impacts cooking time quite a bit. On average I have found the following formula to work well:
- 8-10 minutes for a small artichoke
- 10-12 minutes for a medium artichoke
- 12-15 minutes for a large artichoke
The good news is that you can't really screw this up. If you take the artichokes out and they are not quite done enough, simply put them back in the Instant Pot for 2 more minutes. If they become a bit “overcooked” (which I have done), it's really not a big deal! The artichokes will just be ultra tender.
HOW TO EAT AN ARTICHOKE
If you are totally new to the artichoke world, let's talk logistics.
This thorny critter can seem quite confusing, but it's quite simple.
- Pull out outer petals one at a time.
- Dip the lower portion of petal in dipping sauce of your choice (obviously this basil parmesan dip is my favorite! Lemon juice, lemon + melted butter, or a roasted garlic aioli would also be delicious).
- Pull the lower portion of the petal through your teeth to remove the soft pulpy “meat” of the artichoke. Discard remaining petal.
- Once you remove all petals you will be left with the heart of the artichoke. Scoop out the fuzzy center at the base of the heart and discard. The rest of the heart is edible, and is truly your reward!
(See the furry bit right below the red leaves shaped like a half moon? That's the bit that is not edible)
More Instant Pot Recipes You Will Love!
HEALTH BENEFITS OF ARTICHOKES
Artichokes may not be what you think of when you imagine a healthy snack, but in fact, they have some fairly extraordinary health properties that are sure to make artichokes a “must have” on your grocery list.
Here are a few standout health benefits of eating artichokes:
- High antioxidant content – Artichokes are high in phytonutrients like quercetin, rutin, gallic acid, and cynarin. They are high on the ORAC scale (oxygen radical absorption capacity) which measures the ability or power of a plant to eliminate free radical damage.
- Supportive in the fight against cardiovascular disease – Several studies have demonstrated a lipidic and glycemic-reducing action of artichokes. The powerful compound cynarin in artichokes is to thank for their cholesterol-lowering and glycemic regulating properties.
- Artichokes are a powerful liver tonic – Artichokes contain the flavanoid silymarin which is a powerful liver protectant. Silymarin is the active compound in the well known and studied liver tonic, milk thistle.
- Artichokes trick your sugar demon brain – This is my favorite part. Artichokes contain a chemical called cynarin which alters your perception of sweet. Foods and drinks you consume after you eat an artichoke will be perceived as sweeter than they actually are. This can help to curb sugar cravings and balance blood glucose levels. Give it a try, eat an artichoke, then drink a glass of water, the water will taste sweet!
WAYS TO ENJOY A STEAMED ARTICHOKE
There are many ways to enjoy artichokes. You can try a variety of dipping sauces like:
- Lemon butter
- Garlic aioli
- Horseradish sour cream
- Simply lemon juice
- This creamy basil parmesan dip!
MY FAVORITE INSTANT POT
I've had the 6 quart Duo 7-in-one Instant Pot for 2 years and it has served me very well. If you cook larger quantities you can purchase the 8-quart, but I've never cooked a dish where I needed more room, I'm also only a family of 2.
I can't wait for you to try this recipe! When you make it be sure to tag me on Instagram @abrapappa or use the hashtag #abraskitchen. Can't wait to see your healthy deliciousness!
Instant Pot Artichokes with Creamy Basil Parmesan Dip
- Pressure cooker, or Instant Pot
- 2 large artichokes
- Prepare artichokes by first scrubbing them well. Then using a sharp knife cut off 3/4 to 1" of leaves from the top.
- Cut the stem of the artichoke nearly completely off so it is flush with the artichoke bulb.
- (Optional) using kitchen sheers trim the ends of the leaves to remove the spiky thorns. I've found that some artichokes don't require this step, but if the tops of the leaves are super pokey you may want to trim them.
- Add 2 cups of water, basil leaves, and sliced lemon to the bottom of the instant pot. Place the steaming rack on top.
- Place the artichokes on top of the steaming rack.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot and lock in place. Be sure the valve is in the "sealing" position.
- Press "manual" button and set timer for 12 minutes.
- Once cycle is complete release, carefully quick release the pressure.
- The artichoke will be ready when the leaves are easily removed and a knife can be easily inserted into the center of the artichoke.
- If the leaves are still tough, replace the lid, lock in place, place valve in sealing position, and pressure cook for another 2 minutes.
Creamy Basil Parmesan Dip
- In a small bowl combine yogurt, mayonnaise, grated parmigiana cheese, basil, salt, and pepper. Stir well, serve with artichokes.
- Small artichokes = 8-10 minutes
- Medium artichokes = 10-12 minutes
- Large artichokes = 12-15 minutes
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