How to Store Garlic to Keep it Fresh up to 6 Months


Garlic has long been a staple ingredient in South Asian cuisine and, in the 21st century, it has taken over world cuisine as well. Garlic breath aside, can you imagine pasta without garlic bread or Chinese food without garlic noodles or chicken in hot garlic sauce?

Apart from the great taste, garlic is one of the healthiest foods that you can consume on a regular basis. It helps eliminate intestinal worms from your body, lower your low-density lipoprotein (LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol) level and even heal tooth cavities naturally. In fact, you can also prepare garlic oil and use it to treat conditions like swimmer’s ear and joint pain.

Easy ways to store garlic for long
Easy ways to preserve garlic for long

Since this pungent herb has become such an essential element of our diet, we have come up with some easy ways to help you preserve and store garlic for a longer time. If you feel that peeling and storing garlic calls for too much effort, we also have some incredibly simple hacks for you to peel garlic easily.

Read on to learn the correct way to store garlic and prevent it from spoiling over a long period of time.

Method 1: Store Garlic in Well-Ventilated Bags

Here are two incredibly simple methods to preserve and store raw garlic for long periods of time. The main factor to keep in mind while storing raw garlic is to keep the garlic bulb intact. The whole, unbroken head will stay good for a few months, while a broken head will only last for 3 to 10 days.

It has to be stored at room temperature in a dry and dark place. Light and moisture can cause mold to grow on the garlic.

# Perforated Paper Bag

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Whole garlic heads
  • Brown paper bag
  • Hole punch

Single-Step Method: Punch holes in a brown paper bag

Punch holes in a brown paper bag and keep intact garlic heads in it to store garlic
Punch holes in a brown paper bag and keep intact garlic heads in it
  • Fold a brown paper bag in half and use a hole punch to punch holes all over for ventilation. Make sure that the holes are evenly distributed throughout the bag.
  • Place whole, intact garlic heads inside the bag.
  • Fold down the top and staple it shut.
  • Store it in a cool, dark and dry place to prevent the garlic from going bad.

You can take out 1 head at a time and staple the bag shut again for ongoing storage of up to 6 months.

# Mesh Bag

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Whole garlic heads
  • Mesh bag

Single-Step Method: Store garlic heads inside a mesh bag

Place whole garlic heads inside the mesh bag and close the zipper to store garlic
Place whole garlic heads inside the mesh bag and close the zipper
  • Place whole garlic heads inside the mesh bag.
  • Close the zipper, or if your mesh bag does not have one, tie a knot at the open end.
  • Place the mesh bag in a cool, dry and dark place.

You can open the bag and take out 1 garlic head at a time. Stored this way, these heads will stay good for up to 6 months.

Method 2: Store Raw Garlic in a Ziplock Bag

You can also seal garlic in a ziplock bag and place it in the refrigerator for long-term storage. Here are two easy-to-follow methods for storing fresh garlic.

# Store Chopped Garlic in a Ziplock Bag

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Garlic, peeled and chopped – 2 heads
  • Ziplock bag

Single-Step Method: Store chopped garlic in the fridge in a ziplock bag

Put the chopped garlic into a ziplock bag and keep it in the fridge to store garlic
Put the chopped garlic into a ziplock bag and keep it in the fridge
  • Peel and chop individual cloves from 2 medium-sized garlic heads.
  • Put the chopped garlic into a ziplock bag and seal it shut.
  • Place the sealed bag in your refrigerator to keep the garlic fresh. You can also store ginger this way.

You can open the bag and take out chopped garlic when needed. Just take care to reseal the ziplock bag each time. You can safely store chopped garlic using this method for 1 week. Use it all up if the garlic pieces start turning brown.

# Store Unpeeled Garlic Cloves in a Ziplock Bag

This is another great way to store garlic, while keeping its nutritional and medicinal properties intact.

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Garlic heads
  • Ziplock bag

Single-Step Method: Store the unpeeled cloves in a ziplock bag in the fridge

Store the unpeeled cloves in a ziplock bag to store garlic
Store the unpeeled cloves in a ziplock bag
  • Remove the paper-thin outer layer from garlic heads.
  • Separate the individual garlic cloves and remove any excess skin.
  • Put the unpeeled garlic cloves in a ziplock bag. Make multiple batches if needed.
  • Seal it shut and store it in the refrigerator.

The garlic cloves will stay fine for about 1 month using this method. You can take out cloves as needed. Just remember to close the ziplock bag each time.

Method 3: Preserve by Freezing or Pickling

You can also store garlic for a long time by using natural pickling agents like oil and vinegar.

# Freezing

In this method, we show you how to freeze freshly chopped garlic in olive oil.

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Garlic, peeled and chopped – 2 heads
  • Olive oil – about 2 cups
  • Ice tray

Step 1. Fill an ice tray with the chopped garlic and oil

Fill an ice tray with chopped garlic and olive oil to store garlic
Fill an ice tray with chopped garlic and olive oil
  • Use a spoon and spread the chopped garlic evenly in the sections of the ice tray. Fill each block halfway or up to two-thirds.
  • Fill the rest with olive oil. Take care not to spill the oil over the brim.

Step 2. Place the ice tray in the freezer

Keep the ice tray in the freezer and leave it there for a few hours to store garlic
Keep the ice tray in the freezer and leave it there for a few hours
  • Place the ice tray in the freezer and leave it there for a few hours.
  • After about 5 to 8 hours, take out the tray and check that the oil and garlic are frozen solid. The oil will freeze solid but not hard like an ice cube.

You can keep these cubes frozen for up to 1 year. Whenever required, just pop out a frozen garlic-oil cube and use it for cooking stir-fried meals or stews.

# Pickling

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Garlic, peeled – 1 or 2 heads
  • White vinegar – 1 cup
  • Sea salt – 1 teaspoon

Step 1. Mix all the ingredients in an airtight glass jar

Mix peeled garlic, white vinegar and sea salt in an airtight glass jar to store garlic
Mix peeled garlic, white vinegar and sea salt in an airtight glass jar
  • Pour 1 cup of white vinegar into a glass jar.
  • Peel 1 to 2 heads of garlic, and put the individual cloves into the jar.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of sea salt as well.

Step 2. Place the jar in a cool, dry & dark place for 3 weeks, then refrigerate

Place the jar in a cool, dry & dark place for 3 weeks, then transfer it to a glass bottle to store garlic
Place the jar in a cool, dry & dark place for 3 weeks, then transfer it to a glass bottle
  • Secure the airtight lid and shake the contents to mix everything together.
  • Place the jar in cool, dry and dark place for pickling.
  • Keep shaking the contents occasionally throughout this time.
  • The vinegar may turn bluish-green after 3 to 4 days. Do not worry, it is still safe to consume. The color is the result of a reaction between the sulfur compounds present in the garlic and the trace amounts of copper present in the white vinegar.
  • After 3 weeks, transfer the contents of the jar into a glass bottle with a cork.

You can extract and use both the pickled garlic and garlic-flavored vinegar as needed. Garlic pickled in white vinegar will stay good for 3 to 5 months in the fridge.

Method 4: Freeze Roasted Garlic

You can also freeze roasted garlic for long-term preservation and storage, especially in preparation for the freezing winter.

Things you’ll need:

Things you'll need to store garlic

  • Garlic – 3 heads
  • Olive oil
  • Aluminum foil

Step 1. Prepare the garlic heads

Chop off the root of the garlic bulb to expose the individual cloves to store garlic
Chop off the root of the garlic bulb to expose the individual cloves
  • Remove the outer layers of papery-thin skin from the garlic heads.
  • Chop off the root of the garlic bulb to expose the individual cloves. This allows the head to remain intact for cooking.

Step 2. Pour olive oil on them and wrap the garlic heads in aluminum foil

Pour olive oil on garlic heads and wrap them in aluminum foil to store garlic
Pour olive oil on garlic heads and wrap them in aluminum foil
  • Pour about 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil over the garlic, drizzling it slowly so that the oil covers every individual pod.
  • Place the garlic heads on strips of aluminum foil.
  • Wrap each garlic head individually in aluminum foil.
  • Do this for all 3 garlic heads.

Step 3. Bake them in the oven and extract the roasted garlic

Roast them in the oven for 40 minutes and then extract to store garlic
Roast them in the oven for 40 minutes and then extract
  • Place the aluminum-wrapped garlic heads in a preheated 400°F oven.
  • Roast them in the oven for 40 minutes.
  • Remove them from the oven and open one up to check whether it’s done. The garlic is ready when the central clove becomes completely soft.
  • Unwrap the roasted garlic heads and let them cool down a bit.
  • Using your fingers, squeeze out the roasted garlic into a bowl.

Step 4. Freeze the roasted garlic pulp in ice trays

Freeze the roasted garlic pulp in ice trays to store garlic for upto 3 months
Freeze the roasted garlic pulp in ice trays to store for upto 3 months
  • Let the roasted garlic mash cool down.
  • Use a spoon to transfer the mash into an ice tray.
  • Place in the tray in the freezer for about 5 to 8 hours and let it solidify.

Pop out the frozen cubes and use whenever needed. If kept frozen, this roasted garlic can be safely stored for up to 3 months.

Tips

  • You can also make garlic-infused oil and use it in your regular cooking for a light garlic flavor.
  • Another easy and effective way to store garlic is by drying and grinding it to make garlic powder. Just thinly slice the cloves from 2 to 4 garlic heads and dehydrate them in a food dehydrator or bake them in the oven until they turn crisp. Once the garlic chips are dry, just grind them using a food processor and store the powder in an airtight jar.
  • You can go one step further and prepare garlic salt by mixing garlic powder with sea salt in a grinder. Just take care to mix the garlic powder and sea salt in a ratio of 1:4. Store it in an airtight jar and use it to liven up your meals.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

(You can select and upload upto 5 images in a comment. The total size of all your images should be less than 1 MB. Click on <choose files or browse> button and make sure to select all the images you want to upload.)

log in

reset password

Back to
log in