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Can You Freeze Garlic?

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By Ross Young

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There is no flavour quite as powerful or distinguishable as garlic. It’s an essential kitchen ingredient. But the question is, can you freeze garlic? And does garlic freeze well or should it be avoided?

Can You Freeze Garlic?

Yes, you can freeze garlic for up to 6 months. To freeze garlic, you can either freeze whole cloves or you can mince the garlic and freeze it into ice cubes.

Does Garlic Freeze Well? Yes

Can You Refreeze Garlic? Yes

How To Freeze Garlic

Freezing garlic is super easy – the most difficult bit is the prep work. It is well worth setting aside an hour or two of your time every month or two to get all your garlic prepped and frozen ready to use.

You can freeze garlic in a variety of ways and your preferred method will be dependent on how you like to cook with your garlic.

Let’s start with the basics of how you would go about freezing whole garlic bulbs:

  1. Peel: Peel your garlic and ensure that any stems and brown parts are cut away. If there is any green running through the centre of a clove then remove this too as it can be incredibly bitter. 
  2. Prepare Garlic: Once you have your peeled garlic the next step is to choose how you want to prep your garlic. At this point, you can make a garlic paste, minced or chopped garlic but for now, let’s go with whole garlic bulbs or chopped bulbs.
  3. Bag Up: Pop your peeled garlic bulbs or chopped garlic into a freezer-safe bag, label it and pop it into the freezer.

It’s that simple! Just remember that if you are freezing garlic whole you will need to make sure you defrost it before use so you can chop and prep it for your recipe.

How to Freeze Minced Garlic

One of the easier ways to use garlic is already prepped and frozen garlic that you can just grab what you need out of the freezer and put straight into your recipe. So mincing your garlic first is a great way to freeze it.

The process for this is super easy and you will be glad you made the effort. Just follow these easy steps.

  1. Prep Garlic: Peel your garlic and cut off any stems.
  2. Blitz or Mince: If you have a food processor, pop the garlic into this and blend. If you don’t have access to a processor then don’t worry you can still do this the old-fashioned way with a knife or a garlic press.
  3. Portion Garlic Into Ice Cubes: You will need some ice cube trays. The handy thing with this method is that it gives you portioned garlic to grab whenever you need it. You will need a teaspoon, and then you just spoon a teaspoonful of garlic into each section of the ice cube tray.
Garlic in an Ice Cube Tray
  1. Freeze: Put this in the freezer making sure you keep it flat and freeze for a few hours.
  2. Bag Up: Once the garlic has frozen then you need to take them out of the tray and put them into a labelled freezer bag.
  3. Return to the Freeze: Pop this back into the freezer and you can grab a cube of garlic whenever you need it.

How to Freeze Garlic Dishes

Garlic is often used on its own as the base of a range of sauces, dishes and meals which is why freezing it on its own is a great idea. But you may also have garlic-based dishes that you want to freeze. We’ve covered a few here:

Can You Freeze Ginger and Garlic Paste?

Garlic and ginger paste is the base for a variety of Indian and Asian-inspired dishes. The good news is that you can freeze it so you don’t have to make it freeze every time. Simply decant into an ice cube tray, wrap it and then freeze it into cubes.

Can You Freeze Garlic Bread?

Yes, you can freeze garlic bread. Once you have prepared the garlic bread, wrap it in cling film and then aluminium foil before placing it into the freezer for up to 6 months.Can You Freeze Garlic Bread

Can You Freeze Aioli?

Unfortunately, aioli does not freeze well at all. This is the case for both traditionally made aioli and those made with mayonnaise. You’ll find it splits if you try to freeze aioli leaving you with a horrible, unappetising texture. 

Can You Freeze Garlic Butter?

Yes, garlic butter can be frozen. Blitz butter with garlic (and maybe some parsley) then roll it into a sausage shape inside a sheet of cling film. Tie the ends together and then freeze. You can then use a serrated knife to cut a ring of butter off when you need it.

Can You Freeze Garlic Sauce?

Garlic sauce is tricky to freeze, unfortunately – especially if it has been made with dairy products. Dairy is likely to split when defrosted which can leave you with grainy garlic sauce.Freeze Garlic Sauce

3 Tips for Freezing Garlic

Now you know how to freeze it, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing garlic to have the best results:

Consider Your Use of Garlic
If you use garlic cloves whole usually when cooking then freeze them like this. If you tend to mince them then freeze them in an ice cube. It’s a good idea to freeze garlic in the way you use it so think about that. 

Combine With Other Spices and Herbs
You don’t have to limit yourself to freezing garlic on its own in an ice cube. Try combining it with other spices you might use at the same time as the garlic. Ginger, coriander, parsley, ginger and lemon zest would all work well. 

Use Good-Quality Bags
Garlic is stinky stuff. You know that! The last thing you want is for your entire freezer to stick of garlic. If you’re going to freeze it then make sure you use good-quality freezer bags or a Tupperware container. 

How Long Can You Freeze Garlic?

Garlic is one ingredient that is almost made for the freezer and you can keep your garlic in whatever method you have chosen to have it prepped in the freezer for up to six months without it losing any of its texture or flavour.

After six months, garlic will be perfectly safe to consume, but it will begin to lose its potency. After all, the sole reason for using garlic in your cooking is for its flavour.

How Long Does Garlic Last in the Fridge?

Whole garlic cloves will keep for around a week in the fridge. The moment you cut it up, however, the time it lasts drops drastically. Minced garlic will last barely 24 hours in the fridge.

How Do You Defrost Garlic?

If you have chosen to freeze minced, chopped or paste garlic then you don’t need to worry about defrosting it at all. Just grab what you need and put it straight into your recipe. Easy and hassle-free!

If you have whole garlic bulbs frozen then you might need to take them out of the freezer a couple of hours before you need them so that you can prep them before using them. This shouldn’t take too long though.

Just take your garlic out of the freezer and put it in a bowl on the kitchen side for a couple of hours.

Can You Refreeze Garlic?

It isn’t generally recommended to refreeze any food item once it has been frozen and thawed but if you need to then as long as your garlic has been thawed correctly and fully you should be able to get away with freezing it.

Just be careful. It is in the thawing process that bacteria generally start to grow and you don’t want to get sick.

Does Garlic Freeze Well?

Garlic is one of those ingredients that freezes brilliantly on the whole and for most recipes, you won’t be able to tell the difference at all between fresh and frozen garlic.

The good news is that you’re not looking to add garlic to your cooking for texture or to alter the appearance. All you want to do is to add a hit of garlicky flavour. Freezing garlic will not impact its flavour and, therefore, freezes well.

Related FAQs

If you’ve still got questions about freezing garlic or garlic in general, then these may help:

What is the Best Way to Freeze Garlic?

There are a number of ways to freeze garlic, and all are effective. Consider how you normally use garlic and freeze it in this form. If you normally toss a whole clove in, then freeze them whole, for example.

Does Freezing Garlic Ruin It?

No, freezing garlic doesn’t impact the flavour if it is used within 6 months. It’s safe to say that freezing garlic does not ruin it at all.

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