Freezing Garlic

Selecting High-Quality Garlic:

Garlic can be frozen either as cloves or as a whole head, but it will lose some of it's texture and its potent flavor during freezing. Check to see if your garlic is ready for harvest when half the leaves turn brown and the other half remains green (usually the stems have fallen over). Fresh garlic will feel firm and should not contain wet spots, mold or have green shoots around the head.

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Preparing for Freezing:

Trim the stems and peel and separate cloves. Leave cloves unpeeled if freezing the entire head.

Best Freezing Method(s):

Garlic can be frozen in a number of ways.

  • Dry Pack: Peel and chop cloves or leave them whole. Pack them into suitable containers, seal, label and freeze. Grate or break off pieces to use as needed.

  • Tray Pack: Peel and chop cloves or leave them whole. Lay them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and freeze. Transfer frozen garlic to suitable container, seal, label and freeze.

  • Garlic Oil: This method preserves the flavor of the garlic the best. However, it needs to be used immediately when removed from freezer. It should not be stored in the refrigerator or at room temperature where it can support the growth of Clostridium botulinum. To prepare, peel cloves. Make a puree with oil in a food processor (1 part garlic to 2 parts oil). Pack in suitable containers, seal, label and store in freezer. Puree will stay soft enough to scoop out as needed for sautéing. You can also leave cloves whole and pour oil over them instead of creating a puree.

  • Freeze Whole Heads: Leave head unpeeled. Pack in suitable containers, seal, label and freeze. Peel off cloves as needed.

Suitable Packaging:

Freezer containers should be moisture and vapor resistant and should not be prone to cracking or breaking at low temperatures. Containers should provide protection against absorbing flavors or odors and should be easy to label. Suitable packaging for freezing garlic includes freezer-grade plastic bags, rigid plastic containers or glass containers and heavy-duty aluminum foil.

Maximum Storage Time:

10 to 12 months at 0ºF.

Thawing:

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Garlic can be transferred from freezer to dishes without being thawed.

Refrigerating Garlic:

Refrigerating garlic tends to lessen the flavor and dry out the cloves.

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May 7, 20080 found this helpful

What a useful little site. Having just won a big bag of garlic and only using maybe one clove a month I could see them shriveling up before I got to use them. Now I know how to freeze them I shan't have to buy garlic for at least a year.

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May 23, 20080 found this helpful

I grow lots of garlic so storing it has been an issue. I use to store it whole unpeeled in gallon bags and take out what I needed. Needless to say that took up a lot of room. Now I peel, clean and puree with olive oil at a ratio of 1/3 cup oil to 1 cup garlic. I store this mixture in strait sided mason jars in the freezer. It is fairly easy to just take out a jar and scrape out the amount of garlic you need for your recipe. I put up 5 quart jars last year.

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September 8, 20110 found this helpful

How do you thaw it out before use?

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