There’s not a whole lot to say about roasted garlic, except that it is definitely worth the tiny bit of work it takes to make! This is especially true if the recipe you are using garlic for doesn’t end up cooking the garlic in any way. Think of recipes like hummus, pesto, salad dressings, and cold dips, which normally just call for a few cloves of minced garlic that end up getting tossed into whatever you’re making. Roasting the garlic first will take away the harsh raw bite and give you a mellow flavor that is full and robust.
Roasting the garlic is a very simple process and when you’re done, you can use the garlic cloves as you would raw garlic, chopping them, mashing them with the side of a chef’s knife, or blending them into a sauce, dip or dressing. I tend to throw in a couple more cloves of roasted garlic to a recipe that calls for fresh cloves. If you don’t use the whole head of roasted garlic, you can put the leftover cloves in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days or freeze for 3 months.
How to Use Roasted Garlic
Here are some of my favorite ways to use roasted garlic:
- Blend the roasted garlic cloves into a sauce (such as this roasted red pepper sauce)
- Add it to a homemade salad dressing (check out this garlic Parmesan dressing)
- Use it in place of fresh garlic in homemade pesto (such as this cilantro pesto, basil pesto, kale pesto, or lemon-pepper parsley pesto) – YES, I’m addicted to pesto!
- Mash it with a little olive oil and use as a spread for crostini (aka: toasted baguette slices)
Roasted Garlic How-To Photos:
Cut the top off the garlic head; remove some of the outer papers. Drizzle with olive oil.
Roast until garlic cloves are softened. Here’s what it looks like when it finished.
Squeeze the garlic cloves out of the peels. Leave them whole or mash with a fork.
- 1 head fresh garlic
- ½ teaspoon olive oil
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Using a sharp knife, cut about ½-inch off the top of the garlic head to expose the individual cloves. Remove any papery outer peel but do not expose the flesh of the cloves. Place garlic head, cut side up, in a small custard cup. Drizzle top with oil. Cover with foil. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until garlic is softened and lightly browned.
- Cool garlic completely. Pinch the bottom of the garlic head and the individual cloves will slide out of the peels. Some of the cloves on the outside may need to be individually peeled.