Hand drawn image of Wild garlic

Wild garlic

Allium ursinum

Wild garlic is glossy, juicy and pungent leaf, with a milder flavour than the dried bulbs – they're one of the joys of spring so enjoy the short season while you can.

Image of Wild garlic being produced

In the kitchen


Keep them in their bag, store in the fridge and use within a few days.

Prep & Cooking tips

Wash the leaves very well in a deep bowl. Lift the leaves out of the water as any grit and mud will drop to the bottom of the bowl. You’ll only need to spin or pat them dry if you are using them in a salad, as the residual water on the leaves can help when wilting in a hot pan.

The leaves can be used cooked or raw. Smaller leaves will work well in salads, offering little pockets of pungency. To cook, they can be wilted with a little butter and oil and used as a simple side of greens or folded into an omelette. Try shredding them and stirring them into a dish at the very end of cooking. They also work well as a punchy pesto, in place of basil leaves.

Easy ideas

  1. Wild garlic butter This goes with nearly everything - try topping your mushrooms on toast with a slice, or melting into wilted spring greens. Mix together 250g of soft butter with a handful of very finely chopped wild garlic and the juice of half a lemon. Arrange in a rough sausage shape in the middle of a piece of cling film. Roll the cling film tightly around the butter, twist the ends securely. Keep in the fridge for a few days or freezer for a bit longer and slice off as needed.

  2. Wild garlic pesto Throw through pasta, swirl into soups and stews or serve as a condiment to baked potatoes. Try using it as a salad dressing or a few dabs in your favourite sandwich. Whizz together 100g of wild garlic, 50g of grated salty hard cheese and 50g of skinned and toasted hazelnuts (any other nuts would work too). Still blending, slowly add olive oil until you've got the consistency you'd like. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper, to taste. If you've got time, you could use a more traditional pestle and mortar.

Goes well with




Fresh herbs


Mediterranean and Asian cuisine

Most meat and fish

Nearly all veg

Wild garlic recipes

View all Wild garlic recipes

In the field



More in the A-Z

View all A-Z