A quick and easy shaved artichoke salad made with fresh artichokes, Parmigiano cheese, and a tangy lemon dressing. A perfect appetizer or side dish for a holiday meal, dinner with friends, or also great as a healthy lunch. It takes less than 20 minutes to make and has only 5 ingredients!
In Italy is very common practice to dip the raw artichoke leaves in good quality olive oil and salt, and then eat them, biting out the tougher part. This is called Pinzimonio, and you can eat it with all kinds of raw vegetables.
But last year, on our Christmas lunch table, there was a large platter of this shaved artichoke salad with Parmigiano and lemon. It was a new way for me to serve raw artichokes and I loved them so much I ate half of the platter!
So if you need a quick and easy appetizer for your Easter or Christmas lunch, this shaved artichoke salad with Parmigiano would be perfect! Simple but elegant and delicious.
To make this Italian Artichoke Salad you'll only need 5 ingredients. Having just a few ingredients, you'll need to make sure they're the best quality to get the best result!
- Artichokes. I usually prefer to use the small artichoke variety because they're tastier and less bitter. If you can only find the large globe artichokes in your area, you can of course still use them to make this artichoke salad!
- Parmigiano. This cheese is essential to balance the bitterness of the artichoke and the sourness of the lemons. Together they make a perfect trio! Get a good quality slice of Parmigiano or Grana Padano, and make sure they're the real thing.
- Olive Oil. Good quality extra-virgin olive oil also totally makes the difference here. I use, of course, Tuscan olive oil. But any EVO Oil from Italy, Greece, or Spain is usually the best on the market.
See the recipe card for quantities and instructions.
How to clean the Artichokes
Cleaning the artichokes is definitely what takes the most time in this artichoke salad. If you've never cleaned fresh artichokes before, it may take you a bit more the first time. But soon you'll get the hang of it and do it much more quickly. You can also find the video instructions in the recipe card below.
Start by taking off the outer leaves. Usually, you should take off 2-3 layers of leaves, until you feel that the internal leaves are much softer at the base. (1)
Keeping the knife on an angle, cut off what remains of the ripped leaves at the base until the stem also comes off. (2)
Cut off the top parts of the leaves, keeping only about 1 inch of the leaves. (3)
Cut the artichoke heart in half, then with a spoon scrape off completely all the fuzzy core, until you're left only with the flesh and the leaves. (4)
TIP: Remember to wear gloves and rub lemon juice on the cutting board and knife to avoid staining. Keep the cut artichokes in a bowl of water with lemon juice to avoid oxidation.
Now that you're artichokes are cleaned and floating in their lemon water, you can start preparing the easy part of the recipe for this Italian shaved artichoke salad.
In a bowl, mix the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Then set the dressing aside. (1)
Take the artichoke hearts out of the water one by one and slice them finely. Add the slices immediately back to the lemon water to avoid oxidation. (2)
Drain the artichoke slices, then pour the dressing and mix well with a spoon. (3)
Transfer to a serving platter and cover with freshly shaved Parmigiano cheese. (4)
You can customize this salad to your liking with a few tweaks and additions:
- Olives - add Italian black olives to the salad for a more intense flavor.
- Greens - add a bed of lettuce or, even better, arugula, to make the salad more filling and scenographic.
- Prosciutto - add a few slices of good quality Prosciutto, like San Daniele, to make the appetizer more complete.
- More Vegetables - you can add shaved raw fennel, celery, or Brussel sprouts to the salad to give it a twist.
- Fruits - if you're a fan of sweet and savory combos, try adding some slices of pears or apples to your salad!
You can store this salad covered with saran wrap or inside an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days.
I do not recommend freezing it.
FAQ & Tips
It's very important to drop the cleaned artichoke hearts immediately in a bowl of water and lemon juice to avoid oxidation.
No, for this recipe you must use fresh artichokes to have a nice and crispy bite. Canned artichokes are soft and watery, so not ideal for this recipe.
Fresh artichokes are very delicate and tend to oxidate quickly. So for the best result and presentation, I recommend assembling only at the last minute before serving. You can clean the artichokes in advance and leave them in a bowl with water and lemon juice for a few hours. Cut them into thin slices only just before assembly.
Related Recipes you might like:
Italian Shaved Artichoke Salad
- 4 Artichokes, the smaller variety
- 2 Lemons
- ¼ cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- Parmigiano cheese, 1 solid slice
- Black Pepper
- Start by cleaning the artichokes (see the post for detailed instructions on how to clean the artichokes) and keep the artichoke hearts in a bowl of water with the juice of half a lemon, to avoid oxidation.
- When all the artichokes are cleaned, thinly slice them with a knife or using a mandoline. Keep the slices as well in the bowl with lemon water.
- Drain the artichoke slices and add them to an empty bowl. Mix the olive oil with the juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons), salt, and black pepper.
- Pour the dressing over the shaved artichokes and mix well with a spoon.
- Shave the Parmigiano slice with a potato peeler or a mandoline, then mix again and transfer to a serving platter.
- Serve with lemon slices and top with more shaved Parmigiano cheese.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.