Can You Slice Garlic Ahead Of Time?

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Garlic is a staple for a whole lot of different recipes out there.

And since it is an ingredient that is used so much in cooking, a lot of home cooks have asked if you can slice it and chop it in advance.

The answer is yes, you can store peeled garlic and whole cloves in a glass jar or resealable bag and it will stay good for 7-10 days. However, when you slice, mince, or chop fresh garlic, it can lose both its potency and flavor, so you shouldn’t slice garlic too far in advance.

When slicing garlic, it’s recommended to slice it right before it is cooked so that you retain as much flavor as possible.

Since most people buy their garlic in bulk, it’s important to keep it as fresh as possible.

That’s why in this article, we’ve compiled a couple of tips that you can use to store your garlic and keep it fresh for as long as possible.

Read on to learn more.

Chop As You Go

One of the biggest factors in keeping this ingredient fresh is not to slice or chop it in advance.

Once the garlic is chopped, sliced, or minced, it will begin to lose both its flavor and potency.

So if you chop it too far ahead of time, you might end up with dull ingredients that won’t add character to whatever dish you’re cooking.

To avoid this, only slice it right before you’re cooking, following the chop as you go philosophy.

That way, you will be sure that any garlic you’re cooking in the kitchen will add a whole lot of flavor, aroma, and character to your dishes and you don’t end up with dull and flat ingredients.

How To Store Garlic

Garlic is considered an herb and is part of the allium family, the same as onions.

This herb can add a whole lot of flavor to a lot of different dishes, and is best when fresh, which is why it’s important to store it properly, especially if you buy the ingredient in bulk.

Make Sure To Buy The Freshest Ingredients

To start, make sure to only buy fresh garlic.

It’s best to buy the bulbs that are fresh, with papery and white skin, and are firm when you hold them.

The fresher your ingredients, the longer they will last in the kitchen, and the better they will taste overall.

Make sure that there are no sprouts popping out of the herbs, as this means that they are overripe and won’t last too long in the kitchen regardless of how they are stored.

It’s also best to avoid buying ingredients that are refrigerated in the supermarket as it will be hard to tell how fresh or old they are.

Store In A Cool & Dry Place

After buying the garlic, you have to make sure you’re storing it right, otherwise, they won’t last long, even if they are as fresh as possible.

To avoid it overripening or rotting, make sure to keep it in a cool and dry place so that it won’t develop mold or start decaying.

A cupboard or kitchen pantry is one of the best places to store these ingredients, and it’s also ideal to keep them in a wire or mesh container since they need proper airflow to stay fresh.

There are also specific containers designed for garlic that keeps things both cool and dry, while also allowing air to flow properly.

Do not store this ingredient in your refrigerator, however, since this will result in moisture building up inside that could cause it to mold.

This is a mistake a lot of people make, so make sure to avoid it.

Storing it in plastic is also a bad idea as this will contribute to mold development and even cause it to sprout.

Freeze It

If you really don’t find yourself using garlic too much and you won’t store it for as long as possible, then we recommend freezing it.

Keep in mind, however, that this isn’t the most recommended method of storage since keeping it in the freezer can change the flavor and texture of the herb.

But if you do have to use this method, make sure to store the whole cloves individually and wrapping them in foil before putting them in a freezer bag.

Make sure that the bag is sealed tightly and air can’t escape preserving as much flavor as possible.

You can also do this to chopped or minced garlic, but you have to make sure to store them in a freezer bag that is airtight so the flavor won’t escape.

Again, this isn’t the most recommended method but could be very useful as a last resort for some people.

Conclusion

And there you have it, a quick guide to storing garlic.

Just remember that once it is sliced, the herb begins to lose its flavor so only chop as you go when cooking in the kitchen.

And with this information, you’re ready to head out to the market, get your hands on some fresh bulbs, and store them properly to be used whenever the recipes call for it!

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My name is Andy Wang, and I'm a retired chef. I used to work at the City Vineyard restaurant in NYC. I also had a culinary degree from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York. And this blog is where I share my love for knives and cooking with people like you.