Looking for a recipe that uses garlic scapes? May I suggest this delicious dish with Orzo with Shiitake and Garlic Scapes!

I picked up some garlic scapes at the Farmer’s Market this past weekend and set out to find a great recipe to use them in. I came across this one and cooked it up for dinner last night. I have just one word for this dish. Wow!

Every part of his dish was delicious. I loved the orzo and cooking it risotto-style infused it with the chicken broth flavour. The added Parmesan and a bit of heavy cream made it beautifully creamy, but not over-the-top rich. A bit of baby arugula is stirred in during the last few minutes of cooking for colour and flavour.

The shiitakes and garlic scapes are sauteed separately in butter, that’s allowed to brown a bit, then spooned on top of the finished dish. I shaved the garlic scapes with a vegetable peeler, so they cooked up beautifully. It’s all topped off with some shaved Parmesan.

This is one of those dishes that is simple, but makes us humble home cooks feel a bit like a gourmet cook for a moment. It’s beautiful to look at and it tasted divine. I’d say it was great for entertaining, but as it is cooked risotto style, it does require standing and stirring for 20-30 minutes. That said though, if your entertaining is casual and your guests are gathered around the kitchen with a glass of wine, it would be a worth considering. It would definitely be enjoyed!

I highly recommend having all your ingredients prepped and at the ready. You’ll need two saute pans and a saucepan to heat the broth. Then pour yourself a big glass of wine (or your drink of choice) to enjoy while you tend to stirring the orzo.
If it isn’t garlic scape season*, I’d still recommend this dish, since the orzo and mushrooms were so nice. To substitute, I’d add some chopped garlic to the mushrooms and then stir in some green onions once the mushrooms were browned and cook until wilted. Garlic chives might be another good option, if you can find some. Again, stir once the mushrooms are cooked. (*I plan on picking up more scapes to freeze, so I can enjoy them in this dish again!)

Photo Outtake:

Since the weather is nice, I am photographing outside these days. Sometimes, things sneak in to my photos, like my little chipmunk friend, who I feed peanuts to all summer long. Guess he came to check out the dish. Um buddy, back off … that’s my dinner!

Adapted from a recipe by chef Dante Boccuzzi of Aureole restaurant, New York, NY

Orzo Risotto-style with Shitake Mushrooms and Garlic Scapes recipe

Orzo Cooked Risotto-Style with Shiitake Mushrooms and Garlic Scapes

This is delicious dish, even if you can’t find garlic scapes. Substitute some chopped garlic with the mushrooms and stir in some green onion near the end of cooking the mushrooms, instead.

  • 1 small onion (diced)
  • 5 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil (DIVIDED)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 12 oz orzo
  • 6 oz shiitake mushrooms
  • 3 garlic scapes (cut end trimmed and flower bulb and end removed, then shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler)
  • 4 Tbsp butter (DIVIDED)
  • 3 Tbsp whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (plus shavings for garnish)
  • 3 oz baby arugula (3-4 handfuls)
  1. Pour stock into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to keep hot.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large saute pan, cook the onion in 3 Tbsp. of olive oil until translucent and tender. Season with salt and pepper. Add the orzo and mix thoroughly. Gradually add the stock to the pasta, one ladle full at a time, stirring each continuously, until the stock is absorbed and then adding another ladle full. Continue this process until the orzo is cooked to al dente.
  3. While the orzo is cooking, in a separate saute pan, heat 2 Tbsp. of olive oil and sear the mushrooms and garlic scapes until golden brown. Add 2 Tbsp. of the butter and a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Let the butter become golden brown, then remove from heat and reserve.
  4. Once the orzo is cooked, stir in the remaining 2 Tbsp. of butter, Parmesan cheese and heavy cream. Stir to combine and then stir in the baby arugula and cook just until the arugula is wilted. Taste and add additional salt and pepper, if necessary. Return the mushrooms to a hot burner briefly to re-warm.
  5. To serve, spoon orzo into a shallow bowl and place the a spoonful of the mushrooms and scapes over the top. Using a vegetable peeler, shave some additional Parmesan cheese on to the top for garnish.

Be sure to read the “Cook’s Notes” in the original post, for more tips, options, substitutions and variations for this recipe!



  • So simple and foodielicious pretty! I’d never heard of garlic scapes before and when I saw it in at my local grocer, I was keen to try it out. You made me look like a gourmet chef last night, this was so yum and gorgeous to look at. I have to confess though, I added grilled chicken to it. Thank you for all your great recipes.

  • Thanks Deb. I’m still thinking about this dish. One of the best meals I’ve had in a while. Loved the flavour combos in this one. And my chipmunk friend is still trying to sneak into my photos on a regular basis :)

  • The scapes were lovely shaved, Sophie. Really worked well. And this dish was delicious! You really should try.
    As for my chipmunk friend, no, he didn’t get a nibble. Think he just wanted a sniff :)

  • Ohhhh this is right up my alley! I love your style, girlfriend! I cooked with scapes ONCE and found them so tough and impossible to chew that I vowed never again. Your idea of shaving them thin is really amazing, and I’m sure made this dish so delicious! I’m ready to try again :) I adore mushrooms, and just had an orzo pasta salad the other night [my husband: “what kind of rice is this?” :)] that reminded me of how rarely I cook with it. Love your little chipmunk friend! Did he get away with a nibble?

  • Love your little friend photo bombing your shoot! I’ve not seen garlic scapes around here, but that still wont’ stop me from making this. Any excuse to pour myself a big glass of white!

    • Hope you get a chance to try. It was delicious! If you know someone who grows garlic, see if you can score their scapes maybe.

    • Thanks so much Kim. That little chipmunk is becoming a regular at my photo sessions lately. I thinks he is convinced there are peanuts hiding somewhere :) Happy Canada Day to you too!

I love hearing from you, so if you have a question or something isn't quite clear, I'm happy to help. If you made this recipe, I'd love to know how you liked it ~ Jennifer

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