Wild Garlic Pesto

Jan 7, 2021 | 6 comments


Wild Garlic Pesto


What does wild garlic look like?

Since writing this post way back in 2013, I’ve discovered that what I have growing in my garden are Allium triquetrum and not wild garlic as I thought! It tastes the same!

Wild garlic which you are likely to find in local woods. It starts to show in the early Spring, in late March and early April. It grows and flowers until the end of May, after which its leaves and stem decay and become part of the soil. The plants in my garden have beautiful white flowers that have masses of flavour.

Wild garlic has much broader, flat leaves

what does wild garlic look like?

what does wild garlic look like?

While I am building the plan for Week One, I thought I would post this wild garlic pesto recipe while it is still about.

Wild garlic pesto ingredients, a great budget recipe

A couple of weeks ago I tried something new. I am lucky enough to have a bit of garden, and in part of it, I have allowed a patch of ramsons, or wild garlic, (edit: I now know these to be Allium triquetrum) to spread (it would take over if you let it). They are still in season at the moment and in many woods, free for the picking.
I looked up wild garlic recipes using them and found one on the River Cottage website for Wild Garlic Pesto. And OMG it is GORGEOUS! AND it only cost 29p for a huge bowl of Pesto Pasta.

wild garlic flowers, for a great budget recipe

This is Allium triquetrum, growing in my garden. They have fleshy, triangular leaves and smell strongly of garlic. Wild garlic is easier to spot in the woods when they have the pretty white flowers too

And here is one of the many, positively frantic, bees, collecting pollen in the flowers

wild garlic flower for a cheap family recipe

And here is one of the many, positively frantic, bees, collecting pollen in the flowers

Anyway, using the ingredients specified in the recipe (Asda cheapest) worked out at £1.86 for 370g, which is a huge jam jar packed very full, right to the brim. Half a jar would dress enough pasta for 4 generously, so if you used Asda Smartprice pasta (6p/100g) that would be an eighth of the pesto at 23p and 6p worth of pasta each, so 29p per person, not bad for a very tasty meal 🙂

Wild Garlic Pesto, a delicious budget family recipe

Be prepared for the whole house, and everyone in it, to smell strongly of garlic. For a small plant it packs an awfully big punch! I have given pots of this to my daughters and a couple of friends, they have all loved it, and mentioned the strong smell – you have been warned!


You could use any nuts, or I suppose none at all to keep the cost down, and if push came to shove, I bet it would still taste good using just cheap cooking oil and the garlic, and nothing else.

Faggots & Gravy
wild garlic and bee

Wild Garlic Pesto

Pesto made from wild garlic. Pungent, delicious and made from foraged garlic
4 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 25 mins
budget meals
cheap family recipes
Gluten Free by Eucalyp from the Noun Project
Gluten Free
Vegetarian by Philipp Petzka from the Noun Project
freeze by Hare Krishna from the Noun Project
Freezes Well
Servings: 8
Cost per portion 23p
Calories: 594kcal
Author: Thrifty Lesley
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  • 100 g wild garlic flowers and all
  • 50 g onion chopped shallot or leek
  • 50 g walnuts
  • 200 ml olive oil
  • 50 g parmesan finely grated
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 600 g penne


  • Wash the garlic and whizz everything together in a food processor. If you don’t have one, chop everything finely, then bash it all together in a pestle and mortar, or a big bowl and use the end of a rolling pin


Using these ingredients worked out at £1.86 for 370g, which is a huge jam jar packed very full, right to the brim. Half a jar would dress enough pasta for 4 generously
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Nutrition Facts
Wild Garlic Pesto
Amount Per Serving
Calories 594 Calories from Fat 288
% Daily Value*
Fat 32g49%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 4mg1%
Sodium 254mg11%
Potassium 210mg6%
Carbohydrates 64g21%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 14g28%
Vitamin A 50IU1%
Vitamin C 5.8mg7%
Calcium 129mg13%
Iron 1.6mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @ThriftyLesley or tag #ThriftyLesley !



  1. Thrifty Lesley

    no, everything just goes in the blender

  2. healthbeautyproduct24.com

    Hello. Trying to make this for dinner tonight. Do the nuts have to be boiled first or can they go in the blender raw with the rest of the ingredients? Thank you!

  3. Lesley

    Pauline – when I made the first batch it was quite a lot and it was in the fridge for several weeks before I finished it. Other than that it would freeze

  4. Pauline

    How long does the pesto keep for?

  5. Katherine

    I can confirm the pesto is delicious. I have also tried making wild garlic butter and wild garlic soup. Both are very good. The soup is just an onion and potato sweated in butter, then you add a mixture of chicken stock and milk, then the wild garlic (about 150g) for a couple of minutes and liquidise. It’s good rather thin and even better with cream.
    Well done on the living below the line, especially on making it so healthy with no processed meats.

  6. Tracey

    Could I please request some more of this as it’s sooooo lovely! Even Lesley loved it! And she’s only 5, but she does love her garlic! Thankyou! xx


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