Garlic Mustard Pesto

I’m becoming more and more of an urban forager these days, and with so many edibles growing abundantly it seems that everywhere I look there’s something to eat. I carry a plastic bag around with me just in case I’m passing by the spot where I get my dandelions and garlic mustard. Yes, I’m that person, and though I haven’t noticed anyone staring (yet), I suspect that they do.

Garlic mustard, considered to be a pesky invasive, is a wonderful and easy green to cook with. So far I’ve eaten it in a salad, stir-fried, and as a pesto. It has a mild garlicky flavor that lends well to a pesto. Before I get into the recipe, I have to say that I think there’s something a little funny about the way we treat ‘weeds’ and ‘invasives.’ Weeds like dandelion and chicory are great to eat and extremely nutritious and healthy, especially for the liver, and garlic mustard is an easy and versatile green. As a country we use so many lawn treatments, pesticides, and other harmful products to control the growth of these foods and at the same time we have such poor diets. I say we control these “weeds” by putting them in our bellies.

Garlic Mustard in Whitefish Bay, WI

Garlic Mustard Pesto


  • A whole mess of garlic mustard leaves (optional: add other greens like basil, dill, parsley, etc.)
  • Quality organic olive oil
  • Pine nuts or walnuts
  • Salt and pepper

Blend and serve on bread, pasta, or as a topping on just about anything else.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s