Oven-Roasted Artichokes

artichoke roasted with dip      Veggie Delight!

Artichokes have always been my favorite vegetable, since childhood.  They are not something you can really eat raw so they are perfect for a raw fusion cooked compromise.  I’ve never gotten super creative with them, like scooping out the inside and stuffing them.  My way to cook them has always been boiling or steaming and then serving with some garlic butter or ghee.   Over the past few years that I’ve eaten more raw foods I’ve experimented with coconut oil and olive oil but these oven roasted ones are SO yummy and loaded with flavor that you don’t even need a dipping sauce!

Grilling or roasting artichokes take the flavor of these delectable thistles to a whole new level.  I saw a YouTube video on how to roast them in your oven and since we no longer have an outdoor grill I tried this technique out as soon as I could buy a bag of them (Costco has them 4 to a bag)  and was thrilled with how the came out.  Ate two of them for dinner and the remaining two went into the fridge and tasted great cold.

artichoke supplies

Here’s everything you will need:

ArtichokesGrapeseed Oil**
Garlic Cloves
Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil  (must be the heavy duty one!)
Roasting pan

**(you can use olive oil, but because of the smoke factor I have switched to grapeseed and coconut oils for all of my cooking; olive oil degrades at high temperatures, releasing damaging free radicals into the food)

STEP 1  :  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cut off the stem and the top portion of the leaves.  Squeeze some lemon juice on the top and bottom to prevent browning.

STEP 2:  Chop garlic into small (not tiny) pieces and pulling apart the leaves, sprinkle some inside.  I use 2-3 cloves per artichoke.

STEP 3:  Drizzle some of the oil on the top of the artichoke and spread a little on the bottom.  You can use a pastry brush for this if it’s easier.

STEP 4:  Tear equal pieces off of the aluminum foil – you will need 2 sheets per artichoke.  Wrap one from the bottom up and the 2nd from the top down.  Place into roasting pan and roast for about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

artichoke prep

artichokes foil

These come out tender and fragrant.  As I mentioned above, they don’t really need any dipping sauce but for the photo I mixed some Veganaise, which is a gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan mayonnaise (tastes fabulous!) with some curry powder or turmeric.  You can also melt some coconut oil or ghee (clarified butter found in health food stores or in Indian markets) with lemon juice, sea salt and other herbs.   What you eat on the artichoke is the meaty lower portion of the leaves, you kind of pull the “meat” off with your teeth.  Once you remove the fibrous “hairy” portion you then reveal the heart of the artichoke – ambrosia on earth!

I guarantee that your whole family will love these and they make impressive side dishes for company.

On a health note, artichokes are high in fiber (more fiber in one than a cup of prunes!) and have been found to help reduce serum cholesterol; they are reputed to be good for the liver due to their high antioxidant content, including sylmarin.

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