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Preserving Garlic

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Garlic Bulbs

There are several ways fresh garlic can be preserved and stored for later use. This is a guide about preserving garlic.


Solutions: Preserving Garlic

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Tip: Warning About Storing Garlic Cloves In Oil

There is a common kitchen tip that says to store peeled garlic cloves in oil, unfortunately, botulism can develop when garlic is stored in this manner, especially if it is stored at room temperature. The garlic and oil should be used immediately or stored in the refrigerator for no more than a week. It's a handy tip but not worth the health risk.

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Here are questions related to Preserving Garlic.

Question: Dehydrating Garlic

How do you prepare the garlic for the dehydrator? Are the skins left on? Do you slice the cloves? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

By Elayne


Most Recent Answer

By Free2B [216]02/21/2012

Hi, Elayne. You have to take the skins off since they will hold the moisture in. You can dehydrate whole cloves, but it will take longer. You don't want to slice it too thin since it shrinks when dehydrated. I would cut large cloves in half. There are many web sites about dehydrating foods.

Question: Preserving Your Garlic Crop

I grow garlic but it does not keep long enough to be all used up. Does anyone know how to preserve garlic so it will last for a long time?

Suzq from NE


Most Recent Answer

By Tracey A. (Guest Post)11/27/2008

I planted garlic for the first time last Fall. Wow, what a difference from store-bought. I pulled mine up last Spring, brushed the loose dirt off and hung it by the long shoots in my basement. They are still quite good. I'm going to try "kidsNclutter's" idea next year and see if it will work better.

"Just harvest the garlic cloves, brush off dirt, hang in a mesh bag (like onions come in) in a dry warm place w/ good air circulation. The cloves will dry & remain usable for over a year (at least mine are still good...)"
Thanks for the hints. :-)


Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the feedback that was provided then.

Archive: Storing Garlic

Does anyone have any advice on prolonging the shelf life of whole garlic. My mother-in-law just gave us an entire bag. We usually only buy bulbs as needed and thus store them in a bowl in the pantry. However, we have discovered in the past that if they are not used they seem to dehydrate and become bad after a few weeks.

David from Birmingham, AL

RE: Storing Garlic Cloves

I found this page and thought it might help you store the garlic. (07/18/2005)

By Joan415

RE: Storing Garlic Cloves

Toss them in a ziploc freezer bag & put in the freezer. Bring out how many you need when cooking. (07/18/2005)

By badwater

RE: Storing Garlic

According to a cooking show I saw quite a while ago, you can keep fresh garlic in the freezer. First, take the outer skin off the garlic and separate the cloves. I leave the thin skin on the individual cloves at this point. Stick the cloves in a zipoc bag, where I believe the show stated they can be stored for up to three months. When I need some garlic, I take whatever quantity I need out of the freezer and let it defrost for about 20 to 30 minutes. Then, I peel off the thin skin and cut it up however I wish for my recipe. Garlic this way tastes almost as good as fresh garlic. Just a note, though, the garlic turns a bit golden-yellow from the freezing and thawing, but its taste is still good. (12/06/2005)

By truerblue

RE: Storing Garlic

After I pick my garlic from the garden. I cut the tops off & then i string them & hang them too dry. When they are dry hang them in a cool place. You are going too have too leave the skins on the garlic. My garlic lasts all winter long & i eat a lot of garlic. If the garlic is dry i would just sting them & hang them up. (12/07/2005)

By Joyce wis

Archive: Storing and Using Garlic

I recently read where it is dangerous to cut up garlic and keep in oil because it can cause Botulism. I buy diced garlic already in oil in a jar, and cut up fresh garlic sometimes and add to the same jar. It has concerned me, because I love to use garlic a lot in my cooking. Any advice or ideas on a safer method?

Lisa from SC

RE: Storing and Using Garlic

Botulism? Doubtful. It is caused by an organism known as clostridium botulinum and associated with inadequately processed, home-canned foods. Sausages, meat products, canned vegetables, and seafood products have been the most frequent vehicles for human botulism.

I have been cutting up garlic into olive oil for quite a while with no problems, although after about 2 weeks the flavor goes off. (12/05/2006)

By Claudia-MD

RE: Storing and Using Garlic

It seems important to add some kind of acid (example vinegar) to garlic/oil preparations that are going to be kept for a while: (12/05/2006)

By ThriftyFun

RE: Storing and Using Garlic

I wouldn't use the garlic or oil "raw", so to speak. I keep mine chopped in a baby food jar, filled with whatever oil I have handy, in the refrigerator, use and replenish as needed. I just use it for cooking, though. (01/13/2007)

By arsonhorse

RE: Storing and Using Garlic

I cut up cloves of garlic and make an elixir of chopped garlic, vodka, and water (30% vodka to the rest water). I put chopped garlic with vodka and water into brown or green bottles and cork, shake bottles each morning and set in a sunny window each morning, then set in a dark cabinet at night for 30 days. After 30 days, strain the chopped garlic and pour the liquid back into the bottles and cork.

This elixir will keep 1 year and even though it doesn't taste good (take a teaspoon of honey behind it), it works great to kill a virus of cold or flu. Now, the left over chopped garlic can be stored in the refrigerator until used. I use the chopped garlic to cook with. (10/05/2007)