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What Is A Clove Of Garlic?

A clove of garlic is one of the most versatile and flavorful ingredients in any kitchen. It provides a unique flavor and aroma that no other ingredient can match. What Is A Clove Of Garlic?

In this article, we’ll answer all of your questions about garlic measurements and share delicious ideas for the recipes you can make!

Tabletop with purple whole garlic head

Why Use Garlic When Cooking?

Garlic is a pantry staple that builds the flavor for many recipes.

It has a pungent flavor, powerful aroma, and a “spiciness” that can only come from garlic. 

Garlic doesn’t play favorites and pairs well with savory, spicy, salty, and even sweet tastes.

Garlic comes in different forms: fresh garlic clove, garlic powder, garlic salt, and jarred minced garlic.

Once a garlic clove breaks open, it releases sulfur compounds. These compounds give the vegetable its distinct taste and aroma.

To tone down garlic flavor, cook or roast it before adding other ingredients.

What Is A Clove Of Garlic?

One clove of garlic is a single segment of a head of garlic.

When you open the head of garlic, you’ll see individual lobes.

Each of these lobes is called a clove and has thin white peels.

Each clove can range in size depending on the variety.

Garlic cloves are typically small and oval-shaped, with a thin papery skin that encases the fleshy interior.

What are three cloves of garlic?

Three cloves of garlic are the equivalent of about 1-1.5 tablespoons worth of minced garlic.

It’s a common amount used in many recipes, from savory sauces to flavorful marinades and more.

Depending on the size of each clove, three cloves can be anywhere from 3-6 grams or around ½ teaspoon to 1 tablespoon.

How Many Cloves are in one garlic Head?

Most heads of garlic contain between 4-10 cloves, but this can vary depending on the variety.

Smaller heads may have fewer cloves, while larger heads may have more.

Each clove can range in size as well. Usually, the smaller the clove, the more pungent it will be when raw.

Infographic showing visually what is a clove of garlic.

How to mince garlic using a knife?

Mincing garlic with a knife is a quick and easy way to add flavor to your recipes.

  1. To mince garlic, start by peeling off the outer skin of the cloves and discarding it.
  2. Then, lay the clove flat on a cutting board and press down on it firmly with the blade of your knife. Move the blade back and forth until the garlic is finely chopped. You can also use a rocking motion while chopping to help break down the garlic further.
  3. Finally, scrape the minced garlic off of your cutting board with a spatula or spoon and transfer it to a bowl or pan. With practice, you’ll be able to mince garlic quickly and easily.

Ratios Of Garlic In Cooking

Garlic has been used for centuries for both its culinary and medicinal purposes.

Adding the right amount of garlic can make a big difference in the overall taste of a dish.

Knowing what ratio works best for different recipes or dishes can help you create delicious meals that your family and friends will enjoy.

How Many Tablespoons Is A Clove Of Garlic?

If we’re talking about an average garlic bulb, a clove of garlic equals one tablespoon. Again, the ratio depends on the size of the garlic bulb and the plumpness of each garlic clove.

Large garlic cloves next to measuring spoon filled with powdered garlic.

How Many Tablespoons Are Two Cloves Of Garlic?

Following the exact ratio above, two garlic cloves should be about two tablespoons of chopped garlic.

How Many Teaspoons In A Clove Of Garlic?

One clove of garlic is equal to three teaspoons of chopped garlic. Thus, two cloves should equal approximately six teaspoons.

How Many Garlic Cloves To Replace one tablespoon of Minced Garlic?

The answer to this question depends on the size of the cloves. Generally speaking, one to two garlic cloves are usually equivalent to one tablespoon of minced garlic.

The answer also depends on how finely the garlic is minced. Generally, one small garlic clove (approximately 1 teaspoon of chopped garlic) is equal to about 1/2 teaspoon of minced garlic from a jar.

Dish with minced garlic and grater and garlic cloves next to it.

How To Substitute Garlic Powder With Fresh Garlic?

Garlic powder can be substituted with fresh garlic by using a simple ratio.

For every one teaspoon of garlic powder, you will need to use one clove of fresh garlic.

If the recipe calls for more than that, it may be necessary to mince or press the cloves in order to get an even flavor profile throughout the dish.

It should also be noted that garlic powder typically has a milder flavor than fresh garlic, so you may need to adjust the amount accordingly.

Additionally, it is important to note that some recipes specifically require either fresh or powdered garlic; in these cases, using the wrong type could affect both the taste and texture of the dish.

How Much Minced Garlic To Replace Garlic Salt?

The amount of minced garlic needed to replace garlic salt depends on the recipe.

Generally speaking, one teaspoon of garlic salt can be replaced with one-half teaspoon of minced garlic.

However, it is important to adjust for taste as garlic salt typically contains other ingredients, such as sugar and cornstarch, which alter the flavor profile.

Popular Garlic Uses In Recipes

Garlic is a staple ingredient in various cuisines around the world.

It’s readily available and delicious, and its culinary use has no limits!

From pasta to salmon, here are several appetizing ways of using garlic in recipes.

1. Aglio Olio

Spaghetti Aglio e olio literally translates to “spaghetti in garlic and oil.”

It’s a classic Italian dish with simple yet rich flavors.

What’s great about the recipe is that you can make it with ingredients from your pantry!

Browned garlic plays a central role and adds a savory flavor to al dente pasta. The “sauce” is a simple mixture of olive oil and pasta water.

For a modern twist, fry the garlic with chili flakes or sprinkle with parmesan.

2. Steak

It’s almost impossible to cook steak without adding garlic. Aside from salt and pepper, garlic completes the trinity of flavors for the perfect steak.

Here’s the trick: crush the garlic and let it cook with the butter and natural fat from the steak.

The garlic’s flavor is released slowly and complements the butter and herbs.

Basting also allows the garlicky flavor to cover the meat evenly. Following these tips guarantees a juicy and savory steak every time.

3. Garlic Bread

When it comes to garlic bread, garlic is the undeniable star of the show. It’s a quick and no-fail recipe that you can do with any crusty bread. For an even spread, mix minced garlic and herbs with soft butter.

Coat both sides of the bread, and if you want a cheesier flavor, add shredded cheddar or mozzarella.

And if you’re only after the flavor, substitute garlic powder for fresh garlic. Eat garlic bread on its own or pair it with tomato-based dishes.

4. Garlic Confit

Garlic confit in jar and bread

Garlic confit is one of the easiest garlic recipes you can do. Confit means to cook something in oil at a low temperature for a long period of time.

All you have to do is soak garlic cloves and rosemary in olive oil and bake for two hours.

This roasting method caramelizes the garlic, bringing out its sweet and nutty flavors. You can spread it over bread or flavor sauces and marinades.

5. Garlic Fried Rice

Garlic fried rice is a savory dish common in Southeast Asia. The recipe calls for day-old rice and minced garlic fried under high heat.

If you want a golden brown color on your rice, add slices of butter or margarine.

In Filipino cuisine, the dish is called “sinangag” and is served with fried eggs, beef tapa, or salted fish.

6. Roasted Chicken

Similar to steak, garlic enhances the flavor and aroma of roasted chicken. Since it’s a slow cooking process, using crushed garlic cloves maximizes the flavors.

When roasting a whole chicken, stuff the garlic with rosemary, onions, and halved lemon.

But with breasts or thighs, it’s better to crush garlic and scatter it across the roasting pan. The garlic roasts as the chicken cooks, building up a sweet aroma and nutty flavor. For a more garlicky taste, try spreading roasted garlic on the chicken!

7. Pizza Bianca

Pizza Bianca or “white pizza,” doesn’t use tomato sauce. Instead, the traditional recipe only uses simple ingredients like olive oil and herbs.

But in the Italian-American version, pizza Bianca uses garlic and ricotta cheese. The result is a garlicky and creamy pizza with a very satisfying cheese pull.

8. Salmon

For quick dinner recipes, try pan-searing salmon with garlic, olive oil, and a squeeze of lemon. Aside from adding a savory taste, garlic also removes the salmon’s fishy taste.

And not only is lemon a great neutralizing flavor, but it also pairs well with the garlicky taste. Cooked salmon tastes best with asparagus or fluffy rice.

How Long Does Garlic Last?

An intact garlic bulb will last six months in the pantry at room temperature.

When it comes to individual garlic cloves, they’re only fresh for up to three weeks.

Once you peel the cloves, they turn rancid quickly after a week.

You should also use fresh chopped garlic within 24 hours to keep its flavor intact.

The only exception is pre-made minced garlic. Luckily, these jars come with added preservatives and best-before dates.

tabletop with granulated garlic in the glass bowl

How To Store Garlic

When buying garlic, always buy whole bulbs so that they last longer. You can also store garlic cloves at room temperature in the pantry.

Remember only to peel the garlic that you’ll use.

If there’s any leftover, store peeled garlic in an airtight container. Even then, make sure to use stored garlic as soon as possible.

Related Questions:

Which Tastes Stronger: Minced Garlic Cloves Or Garlic Powder?

Minced garlic tastes stronger because it’s fresh. Garlic powder still tastes strong. But it loses most of its flavor from commercial processing.

Is Jarred Minced Garlic As Good As Fresh Garlic?

Nothing beats fresh garlic when cooking. But if you’re in a pinch, jarred minced garlic will do. The only downside is that pre-made minced garlic is less potent than fresh garlic.


So, what is a clove of garlic? A garlic clove is a single lobe from a garlic bulb. Minced garlic has a stronger, pungent flavor than whole garlic or garlic powder. It’s also incredibly versatile and does wonders for sautees, marinades, and spreads.

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Natalia | Flavorful home
Natalia is a recipe developer, food photographer, and home cook. She started Flavorful Home to document her recipes and share home cooking tips. She loves creating flavorful and nutritious meals while keeping the cooking process simple and joyful!
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