If I buy dishes, such as garlic chicken, from take-away restaurants, the garlic appears to be in small white particles in the meal.

How do restaurants chop up the garlic for this purpose? Are they using some kind of food processor, or do they purchase pre-made garlic sauce from a supplier?

  • 7
    You can buy jars of minced garlic, or you can buy jars of peeled whole cloves and mince them, run them through a garlic press, or puree them in a food processor. Or you can buy unpeeled garlic and peel it yourself. I'm sure that restaurants in general do all of these things.
    – Kenster
    Sep 18, 2012 at 13:15
  • You can even buy garlic powder
    – nico
    Sep 18, 2012 at 21:57
  • I generally see peeled whole garlic in restaurants. That way they can slice, puree, crush or leave whole depending on application. They save time from peeling.
    – jeffwllms
    Sep 19, 2012 at 14:23

2 Answers 2


Having worked in Institutional Kitchens, I'd bet the rent that the garlic came from kilo plastic jars of the minced preserved variety.

Restaurants of some quality cut up there own raw as needed for each sauce or even for each order. A paste of roasted garlic can be made daily with several heads of garlic covering the needs of a dinner shift.


Depends on the restaurant and the labour available and the quantities needed.

If you have staff standing around for an hour each day waiting for things to happen then you buy the whole bulbs and let the staff peel.

If you need greater amounts faster you buy pre-peeled.

Both would then have you chop the peeled garlic in a food processor with a touch of oil to help it get nice and fine.

Lastly you'd buy it in pre-chopped.

It's all about cost.

One restaurant I worked at we had this 70 year old Italian guy called "Papa" that had been with the organization for decades. His job was to peel garlic, onions, carrots then help out with dishes. He was old and slow but apart of the "family" and after putting in his time doing decades of hard excellent work this was sorta his retirement package. It gave him a reason to get up in the morning and put food on his table. We could have bought pre-peeled and made out a little cheaper but that wasn't the point. You don't see that sort of employer/employee respect anymore and it's really sad.

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