Garlic Scape Pesto

At home, the scape is great fun; try dicing it into scrambled eggs, adding to a veggie saute or using as garnish for rice. However, the mac-Daddy way to understand the beauty of the scape is to pulverize a bunch into pesto. Instead of pine nuts, I use heart-healthy walnuts and far less cheese than I do with a basil-based pesto. The garlic flavor is fresh and light rather than redolent and pervasive, which means you can spread the pesto on toast and still kiss your kitchen mate. I love it with short pasta and few cherry or grape tomatoes thrown in for color and acidity. The scapes last through June, a small window to understand what the fuss is all about. If you’re like me, you’ll stockpile a bunch and whip up pesto to enjoy into the rest of the summer.

Garlic Scape Pesto

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  • Prep Time


  • Total Time


  • Servings



  • 1

    cup garlic scapes (about 8 or 9 scapes), top flowery part removed, cut into ¼-inch slices

  • cup walnuts

  • ¾

    cup olive oil

  • ¼-½

    cup grated parmigiano

  • ½

    teaspoon salt

  • black pepper to taste


Place scapes and walnuts in the bowl of a food processor and whiz until well combined and somewhat smooth. Slowly drizzle in oil and process until integrated. With a rubber spatula, scoop pesto out of bowl and into a mixing bowl. Add parmigiano to taste; add salt and pepper. Makes about 6 ounces of pesto. Keeps for up to one week in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. For ½ pound short pasta such as penne, add about 2 tablespoons of pesto to cooked pasta and stir until pasta is well coated.


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