What Do Artichokes Taste Like?


Quick Answer: What Does Artichokes Taste Like?

Artichokes have an earthy, nutty flavor with herbaceous notes. The petals have a crispy texture, while the heart of the artichoke is softer and has a more intense flavor. When eaten raw, artichokes have a mild and nutty taste. To some, artichokes have a taste similar to asparagus and celery. While to some, it’s identical to turnips and Brussel sprouts. Overall, the taste is not overpowering. 

This is a complete guide on what artichokes taste like.

Let us get started!  

What Is Artichoke?

Artichoke is among the most common vegetables in the Mediterranean basin.

It is green and shaped more or less like a pine cone. A fully grown artichoke is about the size of an adult’s fist and has overlapping leaves. Some varieties of artichoke have purple petals.

Artichoke can be used in many recipes like pasta, salads, dips, and soups.

What Do Artichokes Taste Like?

Raw artichoke tastes mild and somewhat nutty. Steamed or boiled artichoke has a slight hint of sweetness. Grilled artichoke has a sweet flavor and the typical smoky flavor of grilled food. Fried artichoke tastes similar to fried asparagus but a little nuttier.

Artichokes are well-known for their unique taste and their hard exterior shell.

However, artichoke may not look edible. People have different opinions on the taste of artichokes. Their opinion varies between the taste of celery & asparagus and Brussel sprouts & turnips.

The reason for these varying opinions on the flavor of artichokes is that they’re available in many different variations. Like most food items, the taste of artichokes depends on how you prepare them and how fresh they are.

The artichoke texture and taste start to change with time, so you should cook them right after buying them from the grocery store; if not, freeze them to maintain their flavor.

Artichokes add a fresh and delicious twist of flavors to any recipe.

Can You Eat Artichokes Raw?

Yes, you can. Although the most common way to eat artichokes is by cooking vegetables, like steaming, grilling, roasting, or frying, they are tasty served raw. For raw artichokes to taste delicious, they should be fresh. 

Artichokes have some nutrients that are sensitive to heat, like vitamin C. So when you eat them raw, you get the maximum nutrition possible.

Ways To Eat Artichokes

You can boil, steam, grill, braise, or stuff and bake artichokes. They are eaten in a lot of ways, like:

Creamy and tasty spinach artichoke dip

Watch the recipe here

Steamed artichoke

Steamed artichokes might be the simplest way to cook them. When eating, you can pick out each leaf individually and dip it into the sauce. 

Watch the recipe here 

  • Grilled artichokes. The taste of grilled artichokes is sweeter and smoky.
  • Spinach & artichoke filo pie.  
  • Baked artichoke dip. Hollow out a bun/loaf and fill it with a creamy mixture of artichoke hearts, parmesan cheese, and mayonnaise.

What Is Artichoke Heart?

The delicious, chunky, edible heart is hidden deep inside. After eating/removing the leaves, you’ll find a stack of hair, which is the ‘choke.’ It hides the heart below. The choke is inedible so take it out using a spoon. You will be left with the heart.

Now you can enjoy the subtle flavor of the fleshiest part of artichoke – the artichoke heart.

The heart of the artichoke is wholly edible and tastes delicious. 

What Do Artichoke Hearts Taste Like?

Artichoke hearts tend to have a light taste like celery or fresh asparagus. The hearts are very tender and tend to be quite soft, so they are often compared to eggplant, which has a similar texture. But the hearts are much sweeter and juicy in comparison to eggplant. 

Some artichoke hearts will have a slight lemon aftertaste.

Fresh artichoke hearts are not bitter, which means that whatever recipe you want to use them in, you won’t have to worry about a bitter aftertaste.

What Do Canned Artichoke Hearts Taste Like?

Canned artichoke hearts taste delicious. They add a lively flavor and a hit of fiber to the diet. They usually have water, salt, and citric acid to preserve their green color. Before use, rinse and drain them. They have a  mild, slightly sweet taste and creamy texture, making them perfect for salads, dips, and casseroles.

How To Pick Best Artichokes

Following are some ways to help you pick the best fresh artichokes.

  1. When picking out an artichoke, look for artichokes with vibrant green outer leaves.
  2. Avoid getting an artichoke that has blemishes on the leaves.
  3. Try to look for leaves that are packed closely together.  
  4. Pick artichokes that feel heavy in your hand, which shows they are not dried out.
  5. Pinch the artichoke leaves; the leaves should “squeak.” This is another way to see if they are fresh.

Remember, don’t cut the stem of the artichoke until you’re about to cook. It keeps it fresh for a little longer.

Why Are Artichokes So Expensive?

There are multiple reasons why artichokes are so expensive:

  1. These vegetables are hand-picked. Workers use sharp gardening tools to separate the vegetable from the plant, and each artichoke is cut separately. So many work hours have to be put into organizing artichokes.
  2. Another reason is that farmers have to use huge land for several years to get fully-sized artichokes, unlike other kinds of vegetables. So, growing artichokes can be financially challenging. 
  3. The artichoke supply is too small to match the market demand. The imbalance in supply and demand causes an increase in prices.

Here are some great substitutes for artichoke>

In The End 

I hope this guide helped you understand the taste of artichokes.

If you have any queries, please let us know. Also, we’d love to hear if you have any tips on making our guide better!

Do share this with your friends and family and help them know about this too. 

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About Karen Wilson

Karen is a foodie to the core. She loves any variety of food - spicy or junk! Her slender body and height are deceiving, as she enjoys eating hearty meals that would leave most people gasping for air. She has an appetite for life, and wants everyone around her to share in it too.