Fried Cardoons / Cardi Fritti

Cardoons have always been a favorite in Italy; now they are more readily available here, too! Try some soon!



  • 3 pounds cardoons, peeled and cut into two inch lengths
  • Salt
  • Flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • Olive or Canola oil to fry
  • 2 Juice oflemons
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • Ingredients


  1. Place the cardoons in a large pot and add 2 tablespoons of salt, bring to boil and cook for 5 minutes.
  2. Drain, dry, dip in eggs, then dredge in flour.
  3. Heat olive or canola oil in a sauté pan and fry them until golden brown.
  4. Drain on absorbent paper.
  5. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with lemon juice and grated cheese.

This recipe was featured on Season 20 - Episode 2018.

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I saw your show last night on “Create”, and I became interested, only problem was how was I going to fine cardoon? Well I went to the store for a few items, and there it was! So I’m going to fry some up and try it, can’t wait! Thanks!…..(I’ll let you know how I do!)

Paul Lally

Lucky you, Juli!

Cardoons aren’t that easy to find. But their flavor is distinct and memorable. Buon appetito!
Paul Lally
Executive Producer

Lois Raimondi Munchel

I ate these as a child and loved them. Your right you just can’t find them. My mother use to say they were found in fields. I don’t remember what they look like in their initial state. Mary Ann’s video doesn’t show them before they were cut up. Wish I knew what they look like.

annmarie receniello

I did not expect to find cardoons that easily and was quite surprised to find them in two different supermarkets just this past week. I live in Huntington NY – Walbaums & Stop & Shop had ample amounts. It is many years since I first had them & look forward to trying Marie’s recipes this weekend. They resemble celery – just larger & the texture appears more fibrous.

natalie b

these look good however the show recipe used 3 eggs for the dip before frying. also there was no mention of the cheese afterwords, or lemons I believe.
hope to get my hands on some cardoons this summer (actually will try growing them and appreciated seeing them wrapped in the field.)


We eat these in South Louisiana raw with apple cidar vinager. We live in a rural area and find them in cow and horse pastures. I thought they were just local to our S LA area.
What a suprise to see you cooking them. My husband is an air boat captin. After I saw your program I called him and he will be bringing some home today. I can’t wait to try them cooked!
Thanks for the recipies.


what exactly are cardoons??? was watching the show and it looks like celery to us, please explain what it is.

Joseph A. Daniels

Saw your show on cardoons where you said your grandmother would go to the roadside to get cardoons. My mother, father, aunts and uncles also would pick them, usually in the spring when they were young and tender. Even though they called them cardoons, what they were actually picking were burdocks. They are both in the same family as artichokes.

Jean N. Sozio

We love all kinds of fritters – cardoon being one of the best! My mother (Abruzzi) was an avid forager and loved all kinds of wild greens. These are a real treat.

Jean N. Sozio

Cardoon is awesome cooked in chicken or turkey soup. Discard the leaves – peel the stems as you would celery and cut into bite-size pieces. Cook in boiling broth until fork tender. We also like them added to scrambled eggs – prepare as you would for soup.

Jean N. Sozio

Larger grocery stores will have cardoon in the fresh vegetable section. They look like a giant broad stalk celery.

Rosemarie cassesa

My brother and I were just talking about our grandmother cooking cardoons and how much he loved them as a child. He pulled up Giao’s recipe. Thank you so much for sharing and bring back good memories.

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