Pickled Garlic Scapes: A Home Canning Recipe

It’s summer! Really, truly, officially summer. How do I know? Because all throughout the valley, hardneck garlic plants are sending up their scapes in attempt to blossom out and propagate life. When this happens, I know spring is behind us. It’s time to pull out my canning jars and get ready for the harvesting that will continue from now until the end of November.


Just yesterday, I was harvesting scapes at the farmshare. After tackling our 2/3 of a row, I returned home and dove right into canning pickled garlic scapes. Ten quarts might be lots for some people, but when you have 3 little nieces who will polish off an entire jar in one sitting…well! I have to ration them out!

Here’s the recipe, if you’re looking for something unique and delicious to add to your canning repertoire this year!

pickled garlic scapes: a home canning recipe


The Ingredients You’ll Need

I have to confess I didn’t weigh my scapes before I began canning. I believe about a 3 gallon container (3 grocery bags) full is what I had.

To make my favorite recipe, you’ll need:

  • 7 quart/litre jars
  • about 3 grocery bags of scapes
  • 10 C water
  • 12 C white or AC vinegar
  • 1/3 C canning or sea salt
  • 14 teaspoons of mustard seed

pickled garlic scapes recipe


Prep Work on the Stovetop

Before you do anything else, measure salt, water and vinegar into a 21 quart/litre stockpot. This is your brine for making pickled garlic scapes!

Set the burner to high. Bring the liquid to a boil and then boil for 10 minutes. Also fill and heat your watebath canner at this time.

Warm your tin canning lids in a small pot of water and lay your canning rings by.

Once you’re all set up, it’s time to start stuffing jars!


Stuff Your Canning Jars

Because they’re so kinky and curly, garlic scapes can be difficult to fit into jars. I usually take a handful, trim off their tough bases, stretch the pliable stalks out straight, then cut them to length. They should be about an inch shorter than your jar.


Stuff, poke, twist and fill each jar until it becomes difficult to add any more scapes. You should have enough to do 7 quarts/litres.

Once you’re done stuffing them, add 2 teaspoons of mustard seed to each jar.



Add the Pickling Brine

And then, it’s time to fill the jars with your boiled brine! Do so cautiously. The hot liquid can crack glass.

I usually add about ½ inch of brine to every jar, just to acclimatize the glass. It usually does the trick, and by the time I’ve given each one that ½ inch, the jar I started with can be filled up without cracking the glass.

Note: if you’re worried about breaking jars, set them in the kitchen sink for 1-2 minutes in a few inches of hot water. You should be able toadd the brine all at once, without any issues.


Processing Times

After adding the pickling brine, wipe the rims of your jars to remove all salt residue. Plop a clean lid in place and add a metal band, tightening to fingertip tightness. Submerge in the waterbath canner’s hot water.

Once all the jars are in the canner, put the lid in place. Bring the canner to a boil, then set the timer for 20 minutes. After your timer goes, remove the quart jars from the hot water. Set on a rack to cool for 12-24 hours.

Once the jars have reached room temperature, remove bands, check for a seal and then stash sealed jars away. If one failed to seal? Pop it in the back of your refrigerator and let it sit for 4-6 weeks before consuming!

This is my all time favorite pickled garlic scape recipe!

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