An ionic liquid-based microwave-assisted extraction (ILMAE) approach has been successfully applied to the effective extraction of the phenolic alkaloids present in samples of the medicinal plant Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn. The ionic liquids investigated comprised a range of four anions, four 1-alkyl-3-methylimidazolium derivatives differing in hydrophobic chain length. The results indicate that varying the anion has apparent effects on the overall extraction efficiency. In addition, the influence of some microwave parameters, such as irradiation power, extraction time and solid-liquid ratio, are also investigated. Under the optimized conditions, the proposed approach has been evaluated in comparison with the conventional heat-reflux extraction (HRE) and regular MAE. The reduction of the extraction times (from 2h to 90s) and remarkable higher efficiency (20-50% improved) supports the suitability of the proposed approach. In addition, the proposed method is validated by the recovery, correlation coefficient (R(2)), and reproducibility (RSD, n=5), which are in the range of 98-105%, 0.9994-0.9998, and 1.2-5.4%, respectively.