Freezing Garlic

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July 7, 2006
Garlic Bulbs

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.

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.


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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October 8, 2010

I love cooking with garlic, but do not like peeling it. So my answer is to buy it in the bag already peeled. I keep the bag in my freezer and when I need garlic, I remove a clove from the bag.


5 Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

March 19, 2009

Can anyone tell me how to store garlic cloves? Can you freeze them whole or do you cut them up? Do you wrap them up in freezer paper or aluminum foil? I have about 15 whole cloves and I don't want them to go bad. Thank you for any help.

Debra from Nahunta, GA


March 22, 20091 found this helpful
Best Answer

If I have an abundance of garlic cloves I'll chop them up (this goes fast in a food processor) and place in a log shape on a piece of Saran Wrap then I roll it up and put in a freezer bag. Then I can just break off a piece of the log for the amount I need for a recipe and it's wonderfully fresh and so easy!

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December 20, 2016

If a jar of minced garlic, in juice, accidentally gets frozen, is it still good? Anybody know?


Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
December 20, 20161 found this helpful

I freeze my garlic all the time. If it is in juice it may soften when it thaws out but it is still good.

December 21, 20161 found this helpful

The garlic should be fine even though it may have softened a bit due to the freezing.


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December 21, 20161 found this helpful

No reason why it shouldn't be OK. As everyone has said, it will be a little softer, but probably also tangier as freezing exaggerates spicy flavours. So less may need to be used, but try it first to see.


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December 21, 20161 found this helpful

I am glad the jar did not burst!
Garlic is so good for you that it would be a shame to not use it but i do think it will have a stronger flavor so I would use sparingly until you check it out.


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December 27, 20160 found this helpful

I freeze everything of any fresh vegetable including chopped onions, celery and garlic. So my answer would be yes, it would be perfectly fine!


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December 27, 20160 found this helpful

It will be great in soups and casseroles

September 3, 20190 found this helpful

I have been freezing garlic for years. I place it in a mason jar, vacuum seal it and then freeze. When ready to use it, I micro plane it and use in the recipe.


HOWEVER, I find the frozen garlic is significantly less potent. If I normally would use four cloves, I use a dozen to 15 frozen cloves.

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March 19, 2009

I buy garlic in bulk since it is cheaper, but can't always finish using it before it goes bad. So now, I buy in bulk, and I clean the skin off and chop each clove in half. Then I freeze it in a zip lock bag. When I need to use the garlic, I just take a couple of cloves from the freezer.

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