Freshly boiled and cooked artichokes including hearts served on a white plate with a mayo dipping sauce

How To Cook Artichokes Perfectly Every Time

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Cooling 45 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 180kcal


  • 2 fresh globe artichokes (large round green artichokes weighing about 1 lb each, not elongated type artichokes)

Dipping Sauce:

Optional Toppings, To Taste:


Preparing Artichokes:

  • Rinse the artichoke under cold water. Snap off and discard any errant outer leaves on the stem. If desired, use kitchen shears to snip off any large thorns on the leaves to protect your fingers while handling them.
  • Using a serrated knife, saw off and discard the top-third of the leaves (the leaves furthest from the stem), which are inedible.
  • Cut off and discard the lower part of the stem, leaving at least 1 inch attached to the artichoke. You should cut off only the brown woody part and try to leave intact as much of the stem as possible because it can be very delicious.
  • Repeat the above steps for the second artichoke.

Cooking Artichokes:

  • Prepare a wide pot, large enough to hold the artichokes side-by-side and tall enough to close a lid over them, equipped with a glass lid (glass makes it easier to monitor the boiling). I use a pot that's 10 inches wide and 6 inches tall.
  • Add the artichokes to the pot, and then add water until they start to float. Cover with a lid, and bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once it starts to lightly boil, set a timer for 30 minutes. Keep the lid on. Decrease the heat as needed to maintain a light boil during the 30 minutes.
  • When the timer goes off, use tongs to transfer the artichokes to a colander to drain, stem side up. Check for doneness: the artichokes are done when you can easily insert a knife into the stem (parallel to fibers) with little or no resistance.
  • Let the artichokes sit at room temperature to cool and steam out, about 45 minutes. While waiting, make the dipping sauce in the next step.

Making Dipping Sauce:

  • In a medium mixing bowl, add all dipping sauce ingredients.
  • Whisk or vigorously stir until the sauce is very smooth, with no mayonnaise clumps remaining.
  • Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.


  • When the artichokes have cooled, slice each artichoke in half, down the stem. Carefully handle the artichokes to avoid breaking off any leaves, since they're very tender after cooking.
  • Use a small spoon to scoop out and discard the fuzzy needle-like white centers and purple leaves from each artichoke half.
  • Arrange the artichokes on serving plates. Add toppings: lightly brush the cut surfaces with olive oil, and season with freshly ground black pepper, sea salt, and dried thyme leaves.
  • Serve them with the prepared dipping sauce and an empty discard plate for leaves.
  • To eat, peel off a leaf at a time (starting with the outermost leaves), dip into the sauce, and use your teeth to scrape off the meat of the leaf. Repeat until all of the leaves are gone. Only the heart and stem should remain (the best parts); the heart is completely edible, and the stem is edible if it's tender and not too woody.
  • Cover and refrigerate any leftovers. Reheat using the microwave.


Makes 4 Servings
Amount Per Serving (1 artichoke half):
Calories 180  
Total Fat 16g 25%
   Saturated Fat 1g 7%
Cholesterol 13mg 4%
Sodium 170mg 7%
Net Carb 3.5g  
Total Carb 7g 2%
   Dietary Fiber 3.5g 14%
   Sugars 1g  
Protein 2g  
Vitamin A 0% · Vitamin C 13% · Calcium 3% · Iron 4%