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Garlic Scape Pesto

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This garlic scape pesto recipe is going to be the best addition to your recipe arsenal. Packed full of garlic scapes, basil, and crunchy pine nuts, this easy homemade pesto recipe is one of my favorites! 

I love whipping up this garlic scape pesto recipe to spread on crostini, put in pasta, or dollop on homemade pizza. It’s great on steak, burgers, chicken, or in salad dressing. Pesto can be used for basically anything, and tastes SO much better homemade! 

A bowl of garlic sc ape pesto with additional pesto in front of it.

So What Exactly Are Garlic Scapes?

Well, I recently learned about these flavorful greens (my mom had some left over and I was blown away).

As garlic matures, the stem sprouts, which is known as the garlic scape. Garlic scapes resemble a green onion, and will sometimes have a small white bulb about halfway through the stalk. 

Many organics companies, local farmers markets, and produce stores will cary them, and they’re not expensive. They are jam packed with flavor – tasting like the perfect mixture of green onions and garlic. 

Garlic scapes can be pickled, grilled, fried, roasted, sauteed, or turned into delicious pesto. They also freeze well if you can’t use them in time. Just put them in a freezer bag, and pull them out of the freezer to defrost when you’re ready to use them. 

A working surface with ingredients for garlic scape pesto like basil and garlic scapes.

Let’s Make Some Pesto! 

To make pesto, you’ll need either a blender or a food processor. 

  1. Chop the garlic scapes into 1″ pieces to make it easier to process them.
  2. Add the basil, garlic scapes, and salt to a food processor. Blend until a paste forms. It won’t be completely smooth, but aim to get it as smooth as possible. The pine nuts will add the texture! 
  3. With the food processor running, begin slowly pouring in the olive oil. I had to stop a couple times to scrape the sides of the processor. 
  4. Continue adding olive oil until the pesto is the consistency you’re after. I used about 2/3 of a cup, but you may need less or more depending on your garlic scapes and basil. 
  5. Switch over to the pulse setting. Add the pine nuts and parmesan cheese, then pulse until they are broken down a bit. I left mine a little chunkier to give the pesto a nice texture. If you’re using the pesto for pasta, I would go a little smoother. 

Note: garlic scape pesto has a bite. If you find it overpowering, add a few more pine nuts. They help neutralize the garlic. Once it sits for a couple hours, garlic scape pesto will have less of a bite as the flavors have incorporated. 

How To Store Garlic Scape Pesto

Garlic scape pesto needs to be stored in a refrigerator or freezer. A jar, or air tight container is all you need.

If freezing, try an ice cube tray! Brush it with olive oil, and fill each ice cube with pesto. If you need to add a pop of flavor to a pasta sauce, steamed veggies, or meat, you have a perfect portion.

A flatlay of garlic scape pesto on a slate serving board

How Long Does It Last? 

Garlic scape pesto is made fresh, and will last 5-7 days in the fridge. In the freezer, it will last 3-4 months. 

Pesto usually tastes the best the second day, once all of the flavors have have had a chance to incorporate. 

Other Delicious Sides and Dips

Rate this Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Garlic Scape Pesto

Prep Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 10 mins
Servings: 1 cup
Author: Bailey
This easy pesto recipe is the perfect way to use your leftover garlic scapes.
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Tried this recipe?I'd love to hear what you think. Leave a comment and rating below!


  • 6-8 garlic scapes cut into 1" pieces
  • 1/2 cup basil chopped
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts or cashews
  • 2/3 cup olive oil depending on consistency
  • 2/3 cup fresh parmesan cheese grated


  • Add garlic scapes, basil, and salt to a blender or food processor.
  • Begin slowly adding olive oil while the food processor runs, stopping to scrape the sides of the processor if buildup begins. You may need more olive oil depending on the consistency of the pesto.
  • Once smooth, add parmesan cheese and process.
  • Add the pine nuts and chop until desired consistency is reached.


Garlic scape pesto will last 5-7 days in the refrigerator.
If you find the garlic overpowering, add a few more pine nuts. 
Nutrition information is based on 1 tablespoon of pesto.
Calories: 132kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 68mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 72IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 1mg

Tried this recipe? Let me know how you liked it below! 

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Garlic scape pesto in a bowl with text overlay that reads "garlic scape pesto"

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