What are Garlic Scapes? A Springtime Treat

“Scapes” are the flower stalks found on certain members of the allium family. Garlic scapes, which appear on the finest hard neck garlic varieties, curl upward as they grow, ultimately straighten, and then grow little seed-like bulbs. A young scape makes one or two loops before straightening out, and then develops seeds. By snipping off the scapes before the seeds develop, more energy goes into making a bigger garlic bulb. When the garlic scapes are still in full curl, they are tender and delicious. They have a taste that is milder than the garlic cloves, and have a broad spectrum of uses from soup to salads to garnishes. The garlic scape is an allium delicacy that is highly prized and traditionally used in Southern, Eastern European, and Korean cuisine because of its subtle garlic flavor and tender-crisp texture.

To harvest your garlic scapes, snap off the top of the garlic scape where it emerges from the leaves of the garlic plant. Eat from the part you snaped to the bulb is where the flower is forming. Some farmers harvest the scape by pulling the stem straight up for the more delicate flavor of the scape. We don't harvest this way, since we have a nice rain fall until July and removing the scape that way could lead to bulb damage. Every farm is different, so try what works best for you and your farm.

Here are different ways to use the pesto:

Toss with Pasta Mix 2T-4T with cream cheese for a cracker spread Mix 3T with cream cheese and mix with pasta for an alfredo sauce Wisk in Olive oil with 1t of mustard for vinaigrette. Mix 1t in Olive oil and dip fresh bread into Mix 1t in Olive Oil and spread on French bread to make garlic bread Mix 1T into spaghetti sauce for more flavoring Put pesto into large cooked pasta shells, pour spaghetti sauce over shells, add Mozzarella cheese, and bake. Spread on pizza crust and add cheese Use as a sandwich spread on Chicken and grill or bake Use as a layer in lasagna Wisk into eggs for Quiche

It has become our everything seasoning and we use it everywhere!

As you can see a little goes a long way. It's a great way to bring wonderful flavor to so make dishes.

Email us on how you have been using your pesto.

Make pesto cream cheese:
After making pesto, leave about ½ cup in the food processor and add 1 package of soften cream cheese and 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese. Mix and serve with crackers or a baguette. Brother Ray's favorite!

Garlic Scape Uses:
Cut into 2-inch lengths and sauté in olive oil or butter over medium heat, adding salt and pepper to taste.

  • Add scapes to your favorite stir-fry dishes.
  • Chop and add raw to salads.
  • Preserve them by using the Dilly Bean canning recipe found in many canning cookbooks.
  • Chop in a food processor into small bits and put in ice cube trays to use as a seasoning.
  • Toss with olive oil and salt and pepper and put on the grill.
  • Add to pickled beets or cucumbers.
  • Steam and dress with a bit of lemon juice.
  • Make garlic scape pesto (see recipe).
  • Slice and sprinkle over any pasta.
  • Slice and add to most any sauce.
  • Chop and add to guacamole or fresh salsa.
  • Chop and mix with softened cream cheese or butter for a unique spread for sandwiches or bagels.
  • Use chopped fresh scapes as a garnish for tomato or potato soup.
  • Add chopped scapes to vegetable soups and stews toward the end of cooking time.
  • Use in recipes as a substitute for green onions.
  • Add to toppings for bruschetta or pizza.
  • Place in lightly oiled pan and add salt to taste. Cover and roast for 30 to 45 minutes until beginning to turn brown. Serve as a side dish.
  • Add to egg dishes or mashed potatoes.

Garlic Scape Hummus

  • 2 cans of chick peas (garbanzos) drained
  • 1 cup sesame seeds or Tahiti
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped garlic scapes


Place the ingredients in a blender on high until a thick paste forms. Salt to taste.

Optional: add your favorite curry, to taste.


Garlic Scape Recipes


Our Garlic Scape Pesto is made from organic garlic scapes (which are only available in June of every year) from the tops of garlic, local award winning Wisconsin Parmesan cheese, 1st pressed extra virgin olive oil, lime juice, pepper and salt.


Garlic Scape Pesto Recipe

  • 1/2 cup garlic scapes, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 cups grated Parmesan cheese (use real cheese - not Kraft in a can)
  • Salt to taste (optional)
  • Fresh cracked pepper


Put garlic scapes and lemon juice in a food processor with the steel blade, and process until scapes are finely chopped. With food processor running, add oil through the feed tube and process less than 30 seconds. Remove lid, add half of parmesan cheese and process until well mixed less than 10-20 seconds or use the pulse to mix the pesto, then add the rest of cheese and cracked pepper. Process until all the pesto is mixed well.


Garlic Scape Dressing or Dip

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4—5 garlic scapes finely chopped
  • 1½ Tbs. dried dill
  • 2 Tbs. cider or red wine vinegar
  • Milk to thin


Mix all ingredients, thin to desired consistency. Use on salad or vegetable dip.


Fried Garlic Scapes

Cut scapes into green bean size pieces. Sauté them in butter and a little salt for six to eight minutes, or until tender but still bright green. During the last minute of cooking add a splash of balsamic vinegar OR lemon juice to taste. Serve hot.