Harbingers of Spring

By Chef Greg  |  April 1, 2023

Ramps are wonderful vegetables that are rarely cultivated and can only be foraged for a short window every year. This popular member of the allium family - which includes other vegetables like chives, garlic, leeks, scallions and shallots - are only available from April through early June. Native to the Appalachian mountain range, ramps have a flavor profile similar to onions and garlic and can be used as substitutions for either in most recipes. They are commonly made into purée, infusions, fried, or pickled. This is how to pickle ramps!

First, you need to clean the ramp. When I pickle them I remove the green leaves and keep the white and purple stalks. Rinse thoroughly. In a small sauce pot, add all of the ingredients except the ramps and bring to a boil. Retain the ramps in a heat-proof container. Once the liquid is boiling and all of the sugar has dissolved, pour the liquid over the ramps and cover. Let the mixture cool on your counter for an hour or two and then transfer it to the refrigerator. Pickled ramps will keep in the fridge or 10 days or longer.  

They are delicious by themselves but can also be added to any dish to which you would add pickles. We love pickled ramp tuna salad, for example. You will only find fresh ramps from late April through early June. Due to concerns regarding overharvesting, be sure to buy responsibly from local farmers' markets or specialty grocery stores like Yellow Umbrella! 

Pickled Ramps

  • 1 quart of water
  • 1 quart of white vinegar 
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1 bunch of thyme
  • 2 tbsp peppercorns
  • 2 large bay leaves
  • 2 large bunches of ramps

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