Prep Time  5minutes
Total Time  5mins

How to Peel Garlic

Said very simply, I cook with a lot of garlic.  While I don’t put it in every dish I make (or think I have a heavy hand), garlic is pretty close to universal, and I probably go through a full bulb about every week.  For such a small item, garlic packs quite a punch and there’s a whole lot of lessons and tricks to learn. Here, I only show you one.

In this cooking video, I show you how to peel a clove of garlic.  The outside skin, or paper, on a clove of garlic is very very thin, and when fresh (the only kind you should buy), that skin clings tightly to the clove.  And while you can certainly peel garlic any number of ways, I find the crush technique the best.

Using the technique I demonstrate here, I’m able to peel a garlic clove in about 5 seconds, compared to 30 – 40 seconds if I keep the clove whole. Seems like a small time save, but if you’re peeling a few cloves, dicing an onion, a carrot, etc, etc, etc,…it all adds up quickly.

To Peel a Clove of Garlic

  • Use your chef knife to cut off the stem end (the non-pointy end) of the garlic clove, and discard
  • Place your knife flat, on top of the garlic clove
  • With your other hand, bang down on the knife crushing the clove.  You don’t have to go too hard, you just need to break the clove up a little bit
  • With one hand, grab the pointy side of the crushed clove, holding on to the very tip of the skin
  • Use your knife, or your other hand, to jiggle the garlic clove back and forth.  After just a few jiggles, if you’ve crushed it enough, the clove will fall right out, leaving the skin in your hand

Sometimes you have to pick a bit of skin off, but generally the garlic cloves come out very clean and ready to be chopped, sliced, or minced.  This is a great way to peel garlic, and I hope you find it useful.


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