How to Fry a Whole Head of Garlic

Garlic is great in all of its many forms, but like most plant parts, it works best when fried. Roasting the garlic softens the pungency and softens its aggressive flavor, but also enhances its sweetness and creates new, deeper aromas thanks to this lovely little Maillard reaction . Plus, it’s pretty darn easy to do.

Part of the Skillet The Grown-Up Kitchen series , designed to answer your most basic cooking questions and fill in any gaps that may be missing from your home chef education.

Honestly, the hardest part about making fried garlic is remembering to put it in the oven 45 minutes before you want to eat it. Once you master this, all you have to do is:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 ℉.
  2. Take the head of garlic and remove the outer, paper-covered pieces.
  3. Cut about half an inch from the crown to expose the studs.
  4. Place the head in the center of the piece of foil and sprinkle a few teaspoons of oil on the open cloves, tapping the head against the table to get the oil into the cracks.
  5. Wrap the garlic in foil, place in the oven and wait.

Begin checking the garlic after about 40 minutes and remove from the oven as soon as it turns dark and golden and the medium cloves are soft (poke it with a knife to check). Remove the prize from the oven, let it cool slightly, then squeeze out a clove or seven and place them on a piece of good – or even not-so-good – bread. Roasted garlic is certainly good when sprinkled with carbs, but don’t be afraid to add it to soups and sauces, to mashed potatoes, or serve whole cloves with some protein. The fried garlic will keep well in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks, but I never ate it last night.


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