I love garlic! Finding new ways to consume it and work it into my favorite recipes is always fun. Smoking garlic adds a whole new complexity of flavor. Add smoked garlic to any dish that you want a bold flavor and prepare to be amazed.
One of our favorite restaurants was called the Garlic Rose in Madison NJ. It was a wonderful place with garlic all over the menu. They did have vampire-friendly dishes too, but the garlic was my favorite part. When you sat down, they provided you with freshly baked bread and a whole head of roasted garlic that you could squeeze out and spread on your bread in place of butter. It was so lovely.
This inspired my smoked garlic. We will get into some of the many uses you can use this smoked garlic recipe to kick up the flavor of almost any dish, but in its simplest form, just squeeze some cloves out and enjoy it on a nice piece of rustic Italian bread. So delicious!
How to Make Smoked Garlic
Take several garlic bulbs and just slice them in half so that you expose all the cloves. Place them on foil and drizzle them with olive oil. We place the cloves on the foil so the cloves don't fall apart and fall through the grates of your smoker or grill. These smoked garlic bulbs store pretty well, so I like to do at least five or six garlic bulbs at a time. It will take up the three shelves in my small smoker.
Step One: Preheat the smoker while you go to prepare the garlic. You will be smoking garlic on medium heat at about 250 F for 90 minutes. If you are looking for very soft garlic, similar to that of roasted garlic, at the 90-minute mark, drizzle a little more olive oil, wrap up the foil and keep cooking at 250 F for an additional 60 minutes. Once the garlic is cooked to your liking, remove it from the smoker and let rest for 5 minutes.
Tips for Smoking Garlic
Since some of the cloves are different sizes and if your smoker or grill doesn't have even heat, you may have a few cloves that are a little more crispy. Enjoy them as a snack! You can remove the cloves from the bulbs. If you are using them in a dish immediately go ahead and do that. If you want to store them, put them in a Tupperware with a tight-fitting lid and place them in your fridge. If you don't have a tight-fitting lid, use a ziplock bag or everything in your fridge will smell like heavenly smoked garlic.
What Wood Should I Use for Smoking?
I prefer cherry, apple, or maple for smoking vegetables. The maple in particular will provide a little more of a sweet flavor to the garlic. But you can really use any flavor wood that you prefer or have available at home. The beauty of garlic is that its flavor can stand up to any wood smoke that you plan to match it with. Try different combinations to see what you like best.
How to Use Smoked Garlic
The ways to use smoked garlic are really endless. As mentioned above you can simply spread it on bread. I even found myself tossing them one by one straight into my mouth. You can easily incorporate it into any food you are making where the recipes call for garlic.
It goes great with stuffed chicken breast, dips and spreads, stuffed mushrooms, pasta, and smoked mashed potatoes. It will enhance the flavor of any salad and can be included with your favorite charcuterie boards. You can even use it in compound butter.
I used it in a sour cream based dip for veggies and chips. It added another whole depth of complexity to the flavor. So delicious! I hope you enjoy it.
We love to puree this and use it as a rub on Traeger chicken thighs.
- 1 lb garlic
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- Place the halved garlic cloves on a piece of foil and drizzle with one tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Add the garlic to the smoker. Smoke for 90 minutes on medium (225 degrees).
- Enclose in the foil and cook for about 1 more hour until the garlic is softened.