How to Make Freeze Dried Garlic Scape Powder

Harvesting garlic scapes and not sure what to do with them? Try freeze dried garlic scape powder! This homemade spice has a mild garlicky flavor that thanks to the process of freeze drying maintains a fresh flavor. We love to use it on garlic bread but it’s also perfect to add to soups, eggs, Italian, stir fry, marinades, and about a hundred other ways! Use it anywhere you would use garlic powder.

Mason jar filled with freeze dried garlic scape powder.

I never had a garlic scape until about 8 years ago when I planted hardneck garlic! I was clueless that they even existed. I still to this day have never seen them at our local grocery store. However, they can be found at a farmers market near us.

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This post contains affiliate links. Full disclosure can be found here.

Tips for Making Freeze Dried Garlic Scape Powder

  1. Use fresh garlic scapes for the best flavor.
  2. Remove the flowering part, it is tough and can be bitter.
  3. It’s very important to powder the garlic scapes and store them into airtight containers immediately. This recipe has one ingredient and no anti-caking additives. If it absorbs moisture from the air, it will clump up.  
Kitchen scissors are used to cut off the flowering tip of a garlic scape.

Freeze Dried Garlic Scapes: FAQ’s

Help, not all my garlic scapes freeze dried! They are limp and moist. What should I do?

At the end of the drying cycle, you can add more dry time. Another option is to take out all the dried scapes and only leave the ones that are still moist then add more dry time.

Freeze dryer screen shows process complete with options to select more dry time.

A third option, if you have only a few that haven’t dried all the way is to take them out and make them into a garlic scape pesto, throw them in the compost, or feed to a farm animal who likes them! 

I’m not sure why, but every single time I freeze dry garlic scapes, I always end up with a few that just don’t want to dry even when I add more dry time. So don’t worry if this happens to you!

How to Harvest Garlic Scapes

When you see the middle shoot appear with the flower bud on it, wait a day or two until it is about 8 inches long. Then either snap it off or pull it out. 

If you choose to pull it out of the plant, use caution because you can uproot the entire garlic plant if you aren’t careful.

Garlic plant with a garlic scape growing out of it.

What’s the Best Storage Container for Freeze Dried Spices?

The best container for powdered natural spices is a small one. The more you use it, the more there is a chance for the powder to rehydrate and start caking up. I started by using pint size mason jars but have moved down to the half pint size in order to maintain more freshness.

So option #1 is a vacuumed sealed in a mason jar with a lid and ring. I use a special vacuum sealing attachment set that works with my vacuum sealer. It’s not the best but works. Sometimes I have to stack two lids in order to get the vacuum sealer to work.

Option #2 is mylar bags. If you wanted to store the freeze dried garlic scape powder long term a mylar bag is a way to keep out light and when you add an oxygen absorber it removes oxygen and helps it last longer.

Option #3 is vacuum sealed bags. I love putting my spices in vacuum seal bags when I have a bulk amount. This is a great option for short term storage if you don’t have a way to vacuum seal a mason jar.

How to Make Freeze Dried Garlic Scape Powder

Wash garlic scapes with cold water and snip off flowering heads.

The tips of a garlic scape are cut off in preparation for preserving.

Place garlic scapes on freeze dryer trays.

Frozen garlic scapes placed on freeze dryer trays.
Garlic scapes ready for the freeze dryer. I froze mine first.

Turn on the freeze dryer, wait 15 minutes for the chamber to cool, then put trays directly into the freeze dryer. Alternatively you can freeze the garlic scapes in a freezer first then put in the freeze drier.

Becky puts the garlic scapes into the freeze dryer.

Freeze drier will automatically determine the time of dryness. Double check that they are dry before turning off the machine.

Place in a blender and blend until it becomes a powder.

Move to storage containers immediately.

Freeze Dried Garlic Scape Powder

Freeze dried garlic scapes make a mild garlic seasoning with a little color! This garlicky light green spice is perfect to use in any recipe where you would use garlic powder.
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Servings1 half pint jar
Prep Time40 minutes

Equipment

  • 1 Freeze Dryer
  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Vacuum Sealer optional

Ingredients

  • 100 Garlic Scapes

Instructions

  • Wash garlic scapes and snip off flowering heads.
  • Place garlic scapes on freeze dryer trays
  • Turn on the freeze dryer, wait 15 minutes for the chamber to cool, then put trays directly into the freeze dryer. Alternatively you can freeze the garlic scapes in a freezer first then put in the freeze drier.
  • Freeze drier will automatically determine the time of dryness. Double check that they are dry before turning off the machine.
  • Place in a blender and blend until it becomes a powder.
  • Move into storage containers immediately.

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4 Comments

    1. Hi Debbie. You can try your oven if it has a warm setting. You don’t want the temperature to go above 170ºF. Place them spread out on a tray. I’m not sure how long this would take since I haven’t tried it. I’ve dried other things in the oven before I had a dehydrator and it worked out ok. Check on the scapes every hour and rotate the tray each time.