How to Parboil Artichokes

by Zora Hughes

Artichokes are easier to prepare and cook than they look. Once you get past their tough and inedible outer leaves, the meaty inner leaves and choke are edible and melt in your mouth when cooked properly. Although artichokes can be cooked in a variety of ways, if you are grilling or roasting them, parboiling is an important first step to avoid an undercooked center and prevent the leaves from drying out in the heat of the grill or oven. You can parboil both large globe artichokes and small baby artichokes in the same manner.

Fill a large pot or Dutch oven with water and add lemon juice and sea salt. Use 1/4 cup of lemon juice for every 6 cups of water and about a 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil.

Place the artichokes on a clean cutting bard and snap off the tough outer leaves, until you reach the half yellow, half green inner leaves.

Cut 1/2 inch off of the tops of the artichokes and cut off half the stems. Slice the artichokes in half lengthwise.

Scoop out the hairy choke with a spoon if you are using large globe artichokes. Baby artichokes have underdeveloped chokes that are completely edible.

Place the artichokes in the boiling water and allow them to cook for about 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of your artichokes. They should be slightly tender when poked with a fork.

Drain the artichokes on paper towels. They are now ready to be grilled or roasted.

Items you will need

  • Artichokes
  • Cutting board
  • Large pot
  • Lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Paper towels


  • Slice large globe artichokes into quarters instead of halves to ensure they are parboiled fully.

About the Author

Based in Los Angeles, Zora Hughes has been writing travel, parenting, cooking and relationship articles since 2010. Her work includes writing city profiles for Groupon. She also writes screenplays and won the S. Randolph Playwriting Award in 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in television writing/producing and a Master of Arts Management in entertainment media management, both from Columbia College.