How to Roast Garlic for Cooking & Storage
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Roasting garlic is a great way to make your harvest last longer and to have garlic on hand any time you need it to spice up your meals. The process of roasting garlic is simple, and there are multiple options for storage. Learning how to roast garlic will help you to capture the beautiful flavor of fresh garlic for whenever you need it.
This article shared two methods for roasting garlic – either in the skin or after peeling. Either one works well for preserving the harvest but the pungency of the garlic can change depending on which method you use.
If you are a garlic-lover, don’t forget to check out our other articles on growing garlic, harvesting garlic, and making garlic powder. Garlic is an incredibly easy crop to grow, and once you start growing your own you’ll never have to buy it again! If I haven’t convinced you, check out my article on Five Reasons you Should be Growing Garlic!
What kind of garlic is best to roast?
Any type of garlic will work for roasting, but the best flavor comes from roasting whole cloves of high-quality garlic bulbs. We prefer to roast and preserve garlic that we have grown ourselves because the flavor tends to be more robust than supermarket garlic. Try to roast your garlic before the garlic starts to get soft or to sprout green shoots from the center. The green sprouts can cause the garlic to taste more acidic and will not preserve as well; these should be removed if they have started to form.
What kind of oil should be used to roast garlic?
Olive oil or canola oil both work well for roasting garlic. We prefer to use extra virgin olive oil because that is what we use in most of our cooking. It will not overpower the garlic flavor but complement it. It is also a healthier choice than canola oil. However, if you plan to use your garlic for a lot of high heat purposes (stir fry, sautee, etc.) you can use an oil with a higher smoke point like canola oil, grapeseed oil, or avocado oil.
How to Roast Garlic: Two Methods
There are two basic roasting methods. The first is to roast the garlic in its skin, which will yield a mellower flavor after roasting than if you peeled it before roasting. The second method is to roast peeled garlic in olive oil. This will result in more of a roasted flavor but can lead to the possibility of burned garlic after roasting.
Method One: Roasting Unpeeled Garlic
To roast unpeeled garlic, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 C). Break off the tough pointy end of each clove then place them in a small baking dish or on a sheet pan lined with aluminum foil. Drizzle olive oil over the garlic, covering each clove completely. Cover with foil and roast for about an hour at 350 F (175 C).
Method Two: Roasing Peeled Garlic
To roast peeled garlic, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Separate and peel your cloves, place them in a bowl and toss with olive oil. Scoop out the cloves and most of the oil and put them on a large sheet of aluminum foil. Close the foil up into a packet and place the packet on a baking sheet. Roast for 45-50 minutes, or until easily mashed. Remove the packet from the oven and cool slightly. Pour the garlic and oil into a bowl and use a fork to mash the garlic into small pieces.
How to store roasted garlic
After roasting, your garlic is ready to use! Store it in the refrigerator in oil, in an airtight container, for up to a week or two. To keep roasted garlic longer than a few weeks, you can freeze it instead of refrigerating – just pour the oil and garlic into ice cube trays to freeze (we love to use silicone ice cube trays for this purpose). Once frozen, remove the cubes from the tray and place them into a plastic ziplock bag for long-term freezer storage.
How to use roasted garlic
There are lots of options for using roasted garlic – stir-fries, sautees, and more! You can also add roasted garlic to black beans, chili, or soups and stews. And, of course, you can just spread a knife-full of your home-roasted garlic onto a slice of bread and enjoy the fresh flavor of whole roasted garlic.
When using roasted garlic, remember that the flavor will be more mellow than raw, fresh garlic. Use a bit more than you would use of fresh garlic to ensure your dish is adequately seasoned.
So there you have it – everything you need to know about roasting garlic for storing and cooking. We hope you will give it a try soon! Roasted garlic is a great way to add flavor and nutrition to your meals. Roasting garlic you’ve grown yourself can help you have garlic on hand year-round!