Garlic Scape Pesto

garlic scape pesto

Folks, I may have a pesto addiction. I just love the ability to blend so many different flavors and ingredients together and create a creamy, delicious and healthy sauce. I also love the possibilities of invention with pesto -- some of my best recipes have come from not having any of the ingredients I'm "supposed to" and tinkering with something until it comes out (sometimes accidentally) really darn tasty! 

This is one such recipe. I didn't have pine nuts or cashews or even pumpkin seeds. So I used raw sunflower seeds. I didn't have regular garlic, instead I had a ton of garlic scapes from my CSA. I wanted to pesto to be super rich tasting so to add even more creaminess without using alllll the olive oil in my tiny kitchen, I used an avocado. 

I highly recommend getting creative with the ingredients you have. When cooking becomes an experiment it's much more fun and rewarding. Just have a good take-out Indian food place on call for experiments gone wrong. :)

garlic scape pesto ingredients

The help of the food processor enabled me to get lazy with my scapes chopping and tinker with adding lemon, salt, and olive oil slowly to get the right consistency and taste. 

Once it was time to use this rich and tasty green sauce, I cooked up some quinoa pasta (my favorite these days - you can easily find at a health foods store, even Trader Joe's or on amazon), and adorned it with quite a bit of red pepper flakes as I love me some spicey.

vegan pesto pasta

Get creative here, taste your work and feel free to tinker as you'd like. But I hope you enjoy this garlicy, nutritious, and easy pesto recipe.  

Vegan Garlic Scape Pesto


  • 8-10 Garlic Scapes, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup raw sunflower seeds (or use whatever raw nuts you have - cashews, almonds, or even pumpkin seeds would be great here too)
  • 1 small avocado
  • 1/2 cup of Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp of sea salt (plus a pinch more if you like things saltier)
  • dash of pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • red pepper flakes (optional)


  1. Add the garlic scapes, nuts or seeds, and olive oil to your food processor and pulse until all ingredients are well chopped.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and pulse until you have a pureed pest-like consistency. 
  3. Taste and adjust as necessary (you may need a bit more salt or pepper)
  4. Adorn atop pasta, use as a spread in a sandwich, or eat with a spoon out of the jar. 

This pesto recipe makes about 4-6 servings and will last in the fridge for up to 3 days