Ultimate Garlic Peeling Trick -- How to Peel 20 Cloves in 20 Seconds!

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How to Peel a Garlic Clove

Five Methods:

Peeling a garlic clove isn't that difficult. Depending on whether or not you want full or chopped cloves, there are a variety of ways to peel a nice head of garlic.


Peeling by Knife

  1. Get a garlic bulb and separate a clove.A clove is one of the small, wedge-shaped pieces that make up the entire "head" of garlic. Simply pull one off the cluster with your finger tips.
    • You can cut away the papery white skin as well to make this easier.
  2. Cut away the brown top of the garlic.If there is a hard, thin brown "top" on the clove. Slice it away with your kitchen knife. This makes peeling slightly easier, but it is not strictly necessary, and some cloves will not have much of a stub to remove.
    • You can also cut the clove in half. This may make it easier to ultimately remove the skins.
  3. Place the clove on a chopping board.Lay it flat side down, so that the part of the clove that was nearest to the center of the head faces away from you.
  4. Place the flat side of the knife on the clove and push down firmly.You want a quick, firm strike with the heel of your hand. You'll hear a light crunch. Remove the blade to see the skin detached from the clove.
  5. Peel away the skin and waste with your hands.You may need to practice a bit to learn how much pressure you can apply, but when you lift the knife you'll find that the skin comes right off.
  6. Use the peeled clove, either chopped or full.Your clove is now ready for cooking.

Peeling by Water

  1. Remove as many cloves as you need from the head.Remove any easily peeled skins briefly before moving on.
  2. Soak the cloves in cold water for five minutes, making sure they are fully submerged.Place the cloves in 1-2 inches of water and let them rest. The water will loosen the skins. Use a metal whisk to beat the garlic and speed up the process.
    • Place the cloves in a covered or watertight container when possible. While the skins will loosen if they are soaked, you can also shake the container to knock the skins off the garlic even faster.
  3. Remove from water.The skin should be loose and easily removed by hand now. Pinch off the skin by pulling on the clove, and cut the ends off if there is any tricky bits still stuck on the clove.

Peeling by Microwave

  1. Remove the cloves you need from the head.Do no microwave the entire head of garlic, as this can ruin it for later nights. Simply remove the cloves you plan on using right then.
  2. Put the garlic clove/s in the microwave for 5-10 seconds.With the garlic on a small plate, heat them up briefly on high. You should notice the skin billowing and loosening.
  3. Cut away the loose remaining skin.Cut the root end off with a knife and the skin will slide off easily.

Peeling By Shaking

  1. Place the entire garlic head inside one stainless steel bowl.This is a great method for pealing an entire head of garlic at once. Remove whatever loose papery skin you can by hand before beginning.
  2. Cover the bowl with another identical stainless steel bowl.Place the bowls together, open side to open side, to form a larger 'sealed' bowl.
  3. Hold the edges of the two bowls together and shake.Let the garlic clang around inside the bowls for 1-2 minutes, shaking vigorously.
  4. Open the bowls and remove any waste.You should be left with the individual cloves, which will likely still be covered in skin. Remove the skins and the hard bottom chunk of the bulb and throw them in the compost or trash. Then reseal the bowls.
  5. Keep shaking until all of the skins are removed.You may have to pick off some of the finer, thinner skins by hand, or use another method to remove the individual clove skins, such as soaking the cloves in water in the stainless steel bowl. However, with enough shaking the majority of skins should fall off on their own.

Peeling by Mallet

  1. Separate the cloves.Pull the cloves you want to peel off the head and place them on a cutting board.
  2. Place the cloves evenly under a dry cloth.The cloth will control the garlic from flying off the table as you hit it. Any kitchen towel will do.
  3. Pound the garlic cloves once or twice with a mallet.This will crack the shell, allowing for better peeling. This is similar to using the knife blade, but it is easier to do on many pieces of garlic at once.
    • You don't want to smash the cloves, simply hit them lightly but firmly to get the skins off.
  4. Remove the cloves from the cracked outer shell.Lift the cloth and pull away the remaining skins. You may need to cut some of the ends off to fully remove them.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    When converted, how many teaspoons does one clove of garlic produce?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    It depends entirely on the size of the clove. You will likely need at least 5-6 cloves of garlic for one tsp. of garlic paste.
  • Question
    This may sound like a novice question, but what makes a single clove of garlic? One of the seeds or the whole head?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    One of the smaller parts of the garlic head is 1 clove. When you peel the whole thing, you should see smaller parts and those smaller parts are each cloves.
  • Question
    How can I grow garlic?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Peel a store bought clove of garlic that is of high quality. Get a container and put a paper towel over the bottom of it and add about a centimeter of water. Align the garlic cloves in the bottom. Leave them in there until there are sprouts coming out the tops. Once the sprouts are two or three inches tall, plant the garlic in soil.
  • Question
    Can freshly made garlic powder be stored in a glass container with a cork stopper? Or does it need a plastic or metal lid?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    A glass container is non-reactive so it should be great storing it in this container. I would avoid metal due to it reacting with the elements. Cork will prevent the product drying out and preserve it longer.
  • Question
    How do I store the remainder if only one clove is needed?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    The rest can be stored in a ventilated, dark vegetable cupboard.
  • Question
    How many layers of skin does garlic have?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Whole garlic cloves should be covered with a whitish peel and not skin. There's usually just a layer or two protecting the cloves.
  • Question
    Can I peel garlic and keep it in the freezer?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    It's better preserved in a bit of olive oil: crush the clove and mix in some olive oil and store it in the fridge.
  • Question
    Can I use a hammer instead of a mallet?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Yes. But don't overexert your force on it, as it may mash the garlic clove entirely.
  • Question
    When making 4-6 servings of soup, how many cloves should I use?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    About 1 and a half to 2, but it depends what other ingredients you are using in the soup and on your tastes. For example; if you are using a lot of tomato, balance this with a bit more garlic, etc.
Unanswered Questions
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  • If you're not keen on slamming your fist down on a knife, you can instead do away with the knife and smash the clove with a canned item from your pantry.
  • What makes peeling hard is the dry skin of the garlic. While the Water Method takes longer, it is much easier and the clove will stay mostly intact.


  • Avoid using an unstable cutting board.
  • Always take extreme care when using knives.

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Quick Summary

To easily peel a garlic clove, microwave it for 10 seconds on high, whichwill loosen the skin so it's easy to peel. You can also put the clove in a metal bowl, cover it, and shake it vigorously for 1 minute to get the skin off. If you don't have a microwave or metal bowl, try putting the clove underneath a dishcloth and then hitting it with a mallet or other hard object so the skin breaks off.

Success Stories

Linda McKinney

Mar 21, 2019

"I had always used prepared garlic in a jar, because I had no idea what to do with fresh garlic. These instructionswere easy to follow. The illustrations were awesome, helping me to see what exactly to do. I used the knife method to get the skin off the garlic cloves. It was very simple. The cloves were not difficult to chop. The flavor and aroma of fresh garlic is worth the extra few minutes. Thank you for great instructions. "
Rated this article:

Liz Neill

Jul 23, 2019

"I have been cooking more and it seems like all of the recipes call for fresh garlic. It was taking me a long timeto peel the cloves. I read this article and tried the knife method. Much easier! Thank you!"
Rated this article:

Helen P.

Jun 20, 2019

"I have always peeled my garlic so carefully and thought there must be an easier way! You have showed me, thank you."

Lirpa Kooz

Jul 4, 2019

"Photos with clear instructions made a brand new food prep and cooking experience painless. Thank you very much!"

Becky Hodges

Feb 10, 2019

"It told me how to store it in olive oil in the fridge. Clarified other issues I had with garlic."

George Haysler

Jul 29, 2019

"Needed to know how to perform this task. Pictures and description were very helpful."

Partha Sarathy

Jul 6, 2019

"A great and easy way. Within minutes it helped to peel garlic with ease."
Rated this article:

Shaja S.

Sep 18, 2019

"How awful it is to peel garlic. But now things are a lot easier."


Mar 11, 2019

"I liked the pictures with specific steps outlined. Thank you."

Denise Studlien

Sep 16, 2019

"Loved the videos illustrating the different peeling methods."

Anita Johnson

Sep 22, 2019

"It gave all the information I needed and more."

Emmanuel Abam

Oct 8, 2019

"I love wikiHow. Keep up the good work.

Video: How to Peel and Chop Garlic | Kitchen Daily

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Date: 01.12.2018, 10:20 / Views: 32365