Delicious and easy Grilled Artichokes are a great appetizer for any backyard summer party!
With thorn-tipped outer leaves, artichokes can seem intimidating to prepare and eat. But they’re really not hard to make and are one of the most flavorful and nutrition-packed veggies around. When you add some butter and parmesan and throw them on the grill, things get pretty epic.
There are three parts of an artichoke that are edible—the base of each petal has a layer of pulp that can be stripped with your teeth, the stem where it meets the base, and the heart. As far as I’m concerned, the rich, nutty-flavored heart is the best part.
Artichokes can be steamed, baked, boiled, grilled, or cooked in a pressure cooker. For this recipe, I went with pressure cooker first followed by a quick sear on the grill. That extra step on the grill imparts a smoky flavor that can’t be beat.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN CHOOSING ARTICHOKES
When you’re in the produce aisle, look for artichokes with tightly closed leaves. Open leaves signal an aging artichoke. Pass on artichokes that are bruised or have a lot of brown spots. An artichoke should feel heavy for its size, indicating it’s not dried out.
HOW TO PREPARE GRILLED ARTICHOKES
It takes a little time to prepare artichokes, but they’re well worth it. You’ll find it gets easier every time you make a batch.
An artichoke is actually a flower in the same botanical family as the thistle, and the very top part of the artichoke is not edible. Cut off the top inch or so of the artichoke with a serrated kitchen knife.
Cut off the bottom stem. You can leave an inch or less, some people eat this part too.
Trim the little thorns off the petals with kitchen scissors.
Remove the small leaves at the base of the artichoke. Pull off any smaller leaves surrounding the base.
Give your artichokes a good rinse under running water to wash off any excess dirt. Open the leaves as you rinse to wash away anything trapped in between.
COOKING THE ARTICHOKES
To steam: Have a large pot ready. Add a few cups of water and a steamer basket. Steam the artichokes stem side down for about 20 minutes or until you can easily stick a knife into where the stem used to be. It should feel soft like a boiled potato.
To boil: Fill a large pot with salted water and set on high heat. Place artichokes in water and boil for 25 minutes, or until the artichoke can easily be pierced with a knife.
Instant Pot: To cook artichokes in an Instant Pot, set a steam basket inside the Instant Pot and fill with 2 cups of water. Place artichokes stem side down in the steamer basket, close the lid and set to sealing. Cook on manual high for 10 minutes. After cooking, leave on natural pressure release for 2-4 minutes, theN carefully release any remaining steam.
Set the cooked artichokes aside and fire up your grill to high heat.
As the grill is heating, melt the butter in a small pan and add the parmesan cheese, garlic, salt and pepper.
Cut each artichoke in half each lengthwise and drizzle with olive oil. Place the halved artichokes on the grill with the inside of each artichoke on the grates.
Grill for about 2-3 minutes or until the inside starts to get charred. Artichokes will burn fast, so keep a close eye on them.
Once the grilled artichokes are ready, place them on your serving dish and spoon the melted butter mixture over each artichoke.
Serve at once garnished with extra Parmesan if you like.
HOW TO EAT GRILLED ARTICHOKES
Pull off the outer leaves one at a time.
Place the base of the petal in your mouth with the inside of the petal facing down. Holding on to the tip, pull the base of petal through your teeth to strip off the petal pulp. Your teeth will be slightly clenched as the petal is pulled through. Have a discard bowl for the parts of the petal that aren’t eaten. Repeat with each individual petal until you get to the softer petals in the center.
When you get to the softer inner petals with the purple tips, remove them all at once. Eat just the light colored parts of these leaves, discarding the purple tips.
After eating the inner leaves, you’re at the choke. The choke is the fuzzy material covering the artichoke heart. This fuzzy layer is hard to swallow and is best if discarded. Scrape out the choke with a knife or spoon.
Now you’re at the heart. Whether you cut the heart into pieces or grab it with your fingers, you’ll gonna love this part. It’s tender, nutty and incredibly delicious.
This makes a fantastic and easy appetizer for a barbecue or outside dinner!
This post has been updated since it was originally posted in 2014.
Grilled Artichokes with Garlic Parmesan Butter
- 4 small artichokes
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 stick unsalted butter 4oz
- 1 tsp garlic minced
- 1 tbsp Fresh chopped oregano
- 3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- Trim the tops of the artichoke by slicing about an inch from the top. Cut the stems from the bottom.
- If your artichokes still have the little thorns on the petals you can trim the tips with scissors.
- In an Instant Pot place the water and the artichokes stem side down.
- Set the Instant Pot to high pressure and cook for 10 minutes with 2 minutes on natural release.
- Let the artichokes cool while you make the butter dip.
- Melt the butter in a small pan and add the garlic, oregano and cheese.
- Half each artichoke lengthwise and drizzle the olive oil over them. Place on the grill with the inside of the artichoke on the grates.
- Grill for about 2-3 minutes or until the inside starts to get charred. Watch them as they burn fast.
- Turn the artichokes over and repeat on the other side.
- Once the artichokes are ready, place them on your serving dish and spoon the melted butter mixture over each artichoke.
- Serve at once with extra Parmesan and fresh oregano if desired.