The traditional way to cook artichokes is to simmer them in water for 25 to 40 minutes, or until the hearts soften. This process is similar to the way rice is cooked on the stovetop, so it makes sense that a rice cooker can be used to steam artichokes. Using a rice cooker doesn’t speed up the cooking time, but it does free up a burner on your stove and allows you to focus your attention on other parts of the meal.
Prepare the artichokes just as you would if you were cooking them on the stovetop. Cut off the stem and top one-third of each artichoke. Trim the sharp tips and peel off the tough outer leaves.
Brush the cut surfaces of the artichoke with lemon juice to prevent browning.
Pour 1/2 cup of water per artichoke into the rice cooker. Place one or two artichokes, stem side down, in the bowl of the rice cooker.
Cover and turn on the rice cooker. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes.
The artichokes are done when they are soft in the center. There are two ways to test this:
- Pull a leaf from the center. If it comes out easily, the artichoke is fully cooked.
- Slide a sharp knife into the stem end. If you don’t feel any resistance, the center is soft.
Remove the artichokes from the rice cooker and serve immediately. Use tongs to remove them as they will likely be extremely hot.