I heart cooking with artichokes

Artichokes are packed with antioxidants, but did you know they hold their disease-fighting punch even after cooking?

Artichokes are packed with antioxidants, but did you know they hold their disease-fighting punch even after cooking?

That’s the finding of a recent study of 20 vegetables, including beets, broad beans, Brussels sprouts, carrots and leeks. Spanish researchers examined the antioxidant capacities in their raw state and after boiling, pressure cooking (akin to steaming), baking, microwaving, using a griddle pan and frying. Artichokes kept most of their high antioxidant levels for all methods, reported the study, published in The Journal of Food Science. Two vegetables that lost a lot of antioxidants were cauliflower and zucchini — so they’re healthiest raw.

“The best cooking methods (for keeping antioxidants) are griddling, microwave cooking and baking,” says Maria Antonia Murcia Tomás, lead researcher of the study and nutrition professor at the University of Murcia in Spain.

Food prep that involves water, such as boiling and pressure cooking, can destroy water-soluble antioxidants, she says.