Skip to content

Garlic Oil

Garlic Oil 01

Having a jar of home-made garlic infused oil on hand is almost a must in my kitchen. You can use just a bit of the garlic in recipes that call for it (and it is so much better than the commercial varieties of chopped garlic), or you can also take only the oil for stir-frying, or adding to salad dressings, etc. I personally find using a little of both is great for the base of marinades and the like.

Making some for yourself is not difficult at all, but you do need to be a little careful as improper procedures can result in potentially harmful spoilage. Both salt and refrigeration are required if you wish to keep the preparation for any longer than a few days and, after years of doing things this way, I can happily say that I have never had any problems…

Garlic Oil 02

For this batch, I used:

  • ½ cup chopped fresh Garlic (about 2 good sized heads);
  • 1 generous tablespoon of coarse salt (non-iodized preferred);
  • 1 ½ cups Oil (for the choice of type read on).

The ratio of salt to garlic used here is just about right, in my experience. It will help prevent spoilage but not yield too salty a result. As for the quantity of oil, there is no magic amount. A lesser quantity, say just a cup, will obviously result in a stronger tasting oil more quickly, but a cup and a half is fine too. I probably wouldn’t use much more though.

As to the choice of oil, this is up to you and depends upon the eventual use. If you are only going to be making salad dressings, for example, using an extra-virgin olive oil would be great but anything too strong tasting will limit the use a bit. I am using a very light and mild (non-virgin) olive oil here and I have on occasion used just a plain neutral-tasting vegetable oil, and sometimes a blend.

Garlic Oil 03

Put your garlic and salt in a suitable jar and combine them together. Don’t give just a few token stirs with a spoon but really mix them vigorously. This will not only allow the salt to penetrate the garlic fragments, it will also help develop the flavors of the garlic itself.

Garlic Oil 04

After you add the oil, stir again, and then put the covered container in the fridge. You will note that, once it chills, the oil becomes opaque and very thick. This is normal, however, and it will quickly revert to its normal appearance after only 10 or 15 minutes at room temperature. In practice though, I usually spoon out as much as I need without needing to ‘melt’ it.

You will probably want to let the mixture sit for a few days to allow the flavor to penetrate the oil but, after that, it is ready for use. I find that I use the oil more quickly than the garlic and so I replenish this from time to time. The garlic will darken somewhat as time passes, but the flavor will last for several months. I suspect that the mixture will actually last for considerable longer than that before it begins to deteriorate but I generally find that I use up the garlic pieces within 3 months or so and need to make a new batch.

Anyway, this is just a simple little post today but, if you haven’t tried doing this yet, I predict you will find it a practice you want to continue…



11 Comments Post a comment
  1. I have made my own chili oil with varying degrees of success. This seems like a great thought, particularly if one is making oriental dishes that use a deal of both garlic and oil in the wok.

    September 8, 2013
    • I gather that many Chinese chefs often do make a garlic oil ahead of time but that the garlic is generally lightly cooked in the oil rather than salted and left raw.

      September 8, 2013
  2. I’m like Conor, making chili oil but haven’t made garlic oil. I’ve worried about the garlic going bad but it seems you have solved that by using salt.

    September 8, 2013
    • And being embedded in cold, solid oil seems to prevent oxidation.

      September 8, 2013
  3. For lazy people like me, I can buy chopped garlic in bottles, even organic, in supermarket. But the chefs in restaurants use fresh garlic, and crush them with their big choppers, and just throw them immediately into the big wok with oil.
    I did prepare some garlic in oil like you, but I have not added salt. I will do that next time. Thanks for the details.

    September 8, 2013
  4. I did this with whole cloves of garlic and no salt. Keep it in the fridge. The next batch I will add salt. Thanks!

    December 5, 2016

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Roast Pork with Crackling II | Sybaritica
  2. Tataki Appetizer Rolls | Sybaritica
  3. Appetizer: Wensleydale Bites | Sybaritica
  4. Basil Pimento Crostini | Sybaritica
  5. Foodstuff: Camelina Oil | Sybaritica

Comments, thoughts or suggestions most welcome...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Meet & Eats

The food that I've had the pleasure of meeting and eating.

Uncle Grumpy's Playroom

Current events, humor, science, religion, satire

Food Travel Lover

走过的地方 尝过的美食 留下的回忆

The Odd Pantry

Essays on food

Reputable Sources

Organizing ferments since 2013

that Other Cooking Blog

. food . photo . sous vide .


My Virtual Cookbook to Share My Love and Joy of Food and Cooking One Recipe at a Time

lola rugula

my journey of cooking, gardening, preserving and more

Yummy Lummy

I cook, photograph and eat food with the occasional restaurant review!

Eye Of the Beholder

A pair of eternally curious eyes and a camera...Life is beautiful.

gluten free zen

Taking The Stress Out Of Gluten-Free Grain-Free & Dairy-Free Living

Clayton's Kitchen

Big flavors and fun cooking from a cubbyhole kitchen

Bunny Eats Design

Happy things, tasty food and good design


Dentist chef, just a dentistry student who practice the dentist's cooking recipes in a dentist's kitchen

Mad Dog TV Dinners

Guess what's coming to dinner?


Real Food & Real Opinions

Bento Days

Making bentos for kids

Garden to Wok

Fresh and tasty!

Bam's Kitchen

Healthy World Cuisine

Trang Quynh

everyone is special in their own way :)

Farm to Table Asian Secrets

Full-Flavored Recipes for Every Season


If people say that life is too short to drink bad wine, it means also that life is too short to eat crappy food!

The Blog

The latest news on and the WordPress community.

The Unorthodox Epicure

Confessions of an Aspiring Food Snob

The 好吃 Challenge

1 girl, 273 days, 100 recipes


a recipe sharing and bento blog


Just another site

The Food Nazi

Never try to eat more than you can lift

Expat Chef in Barcelona

From my kitchen to yours

Keeping Up With the Holsbys

a journey into my head and my pantry

Nurul's Culinary Adventures

I Love Food, the Universe and Everything!!


home-cooking recipes, restaurant reviews, International cuisine ,

Naked Vegan Cooking

Body-positive Vegan Goodness

Bites of Food History

Sharing my Experimental Archaeology of Food

Stefan's Gourmet Blog

Cooking, food, wine


A Journey About Food, Recipes And Destinations


Fresh, exciting and adventurous food journey

One Man's Meat

Multi-award winning food blog, written in Dublin, Ireland.

%d bloggers like this: