How to Make Garlic-Infused Olive Oil

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

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Creating garlic-infused olive oil is a popular practice for many chefs who want some extra spice and nutrients in their recipes.

Garlic

Garlic is one of the most popular herbs to add into any dish, both for its unique flavor and the wealth of nutrients and health benefits that it can provide. Thanks to its active ingredient, allicin, as well as other sulfuric compounds and nutrients, garlic are known for its antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immunoprotective effects. Considering that olive oil is praised for its benefits, combining garlic and olive oil seems like a logical choice.

Garlic-infused olive oil is an excellent ingredient in marinades and other sauces, while also making for a surprisingly flavorful salad dressing or another drizzle for vegetables and fruit. You can pour small amounts of this oil over French bread to make your own garlic bread, and many people even enjoy topping their pizza with this tangy homemade oil variety.

A mini jar of garlic infused olive oil with dill, garlic pods, and a whole garlic

Garlic infused olive oil Photo Credit: Shutterstock

How to Make Garlic-Infused Olive Oil?

You can make delicious food using garlic-infused olive oil because garlic in itself has the potential to add so much flavor to the food you’re cooking. The delightful garlicky taste enhances the palate of the dish that’s being cooked or roasted. This flavorful oil is also used to sautee veggies or garnish salads. So how do you make this oil at home? Let’s find out.

A mini jar of garlic infused olive oil with dill, garlic pods, and a whole garlic

How to make Garlic Infused Olive Oil

Before you make garlic-infused olive oil, it is important to be sure that you've chosen the right ingredients. You will want to use extra virgin olive oil, as this will possess the highest concentration of phenolic compounds and other antioxidants, as well as omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats. The garlic bulbs you choose should also be undamaged and firm, showing that they have not begun to dry out or shrivel. Once you have the proper ingredients in hand, simply follow the steps below. 
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Course: Oil
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Garlic-infused olive oil
Appliance: Stove
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 1 cup
Author: Ishani Bose

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1-2 tsp cumin
  • 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes

Instructions

  • To make garlic-infused olive oil, first, pour 1/2 cup of olive oil into a saucepan.
  • In the meantime, peel 4 garlic cloves and use a garlic press to crush the cloves before adding them to the oil in the saucepan.
  • Thereafter, add 1-2 teaspoons of any other spices you desire (e.g., cumin, red pepper flakes, etc.)
  • Slowly heat the mixture, allowing the garlic to gradually become golden and brown, releasing its active ingredients.
  • Heat for 5-6 minutes, until the garlic becomes medium-brown.
  • Strain the resultant mixture, removing the mashed garlic.
    A mini jar of garlic infused olive oil with dill, garlic pods, and a whole garlic

Notes

Once you have made the oil, you will need to store it safely so it keeps as long as possible. One month is a safe estimate for the shelf life of this infused olive oil, even if you keep it in an airtight container. You can keep this oil at room temperature, but the risk of rancidity is higher, and the quality of the oil will diminish rapidly. 

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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