When I buy garlic, I normally put it in a bowl on the kitchen counter or in the pantry, and then pop off cloves as need. Sometimes, if the garlic has been around for a while, I find what looks like green sprouts inside / popping out of the cloves. What is the best way to keep my garlic fresh?


2 Answers 2


I always store mine in the pantry. I use it frequently enough that sprouting is rarely an issue. If you need it to last longer you can freeze garlic, though I have never needed to.

Shelf Life

An unbroken bulb of garlic can last 3-5 months in a cool (55-60 F) dark place. Once broken, the remaining cloves last only about 7-10 days.

Frozen, you can store garlic 10-12 months.



  • 5
    We do exactly what hobodave does: dark pantry, rarely do we have it so long it gets a chance to go bad. One thing I wanted to add, if you find that your garlic bulbs are getting close to the end of their life and you can't think of a use for them immediately, you can also make roasted garlic and freeze that. Roasting garlic in the oven is incredibly easy and the result is delicious! Commented Aug 25, 2010 at 22:13

This technique works for garlic, as well as fresh ginger root: use a small grater or zester on the garlic and arrange the pulp on a piece of plastic wrap. Roll the garlic in the plastic wrap and twist the ends so it roughly resembles a long tootsie roll and freeze. When you want to use garlic, snap off a piece and add it to your dish.

This would probably also work with minced or sliced garlic.

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