What is the best way to peel garlic? This guy tries and ranks five different ways to do it

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/07/02/what-is-the-best-way-to-peel-g.html


For once I agree with a garlic peeling method being discussed on Boing Boing! Smashing it with the side of a knife has been my favorite technique for a long time. It’s quick, and doesn’t require any fancy gadgets to store or clean afterwards. Elegant in its simplicity, especially since you were probably already going to use that knife to cut up the garlic after peeling it anyway.


If I may be so bold, the best way to peel garlic is to just peel the damn garlic.
Smashing anything is just rude.


An elegant method for a more civilized age.


I have had decent luck with the pierce and twist method, but I have noticed people testing different competing methods handicap the pierce-and-twist method by either not removing the outermost skin of the bulb or by using too large a knife. That said, I remain a smash with the knife person.

An excellent! discussion. I do Numbers 2 ( with the floppy tube) and 3 for volume. I may still do 1 (but primarily the garlic press) after the peeling.

I am also in agreement with the 2 bowl technique. I was sure nesting was going to fail and IT DID!

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I suppose the smashing isn’t appealing if you want nice whole cloves for visual effect, but I’m generally chopping it up immediately after peeling so the knife smash seems to work best for me.

Knife smash! No unitaskers!


Paper gets in there though.

And all that smooshed bit will flavor the product differently.

I’ve found you don’t need to use much force. Just whack it a bit with the dull edge of a knife. The skin usually comes off around the whack mark in a single piece so I don’t know how any would get in the final product.

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The biggest thing I got out of that video was that he needs sharper knives.

Knife smash FTW. No downsides, quick and easy. I’m interested in the comparo on packaged garlic. I’ve been tempted by the jars of whole cloves…


I do the half-knife-smash – basically pressing with the flat of the knife until I hear it crack – which loosens the skin but keeps the clove intact for an easy peel.


Knife bashing all the way, fastest and most efficient way to peel garlic. So say I.


I just turn it over and shake.

I kid! I kid!


#1: Bash with the side of a knife.

F T moth%^rf&(king W!

And, while I am a Big Time Fan of The Right Tool For The Job™:



there are only two methods needed.

If you need garlic diced or sliced, the give it a mild crush with the flat side of the knife, drop the little bundle of love out from the skin and slice or dice away.

If you need are adding it to anything like a stew or sauce, then give it a hard crush with the side of the knife and drop in as is…the skin will dissolve away in a long braise or boil.

There is a third method for getting it out, but it means you are using the garlic in a very different method and want a different flavor. Slice off the top of the head, drizzle with ovoo, salt, pepper, and roast the whole thing for 20-30 min at 400 deg or so. Then it will be as easy as squeezing the gooey love from the skins…but that flavor profile is radically different than using garlic raw (chopped, diced, or pressed) in a sauce.



Pistols at dawn, sir!



My current method is to cut off the root, if any, slice the peel with a paring knife and use the floppy tube thingy that @frauenfelder recommends.

It’s fine for a few cloves, but not if you need many.

The problem, for me, with smashing cloves is I tend to grate them on a rasp-style grater, and smashing them often makes that impractical.

The search continues!


Martin Yan knows. I remember the smashing method from his cooking shows in the 90’s.