Cooking at home has become easier because many different tools and measurements are available.
Online recipes provide excellent reference points and make cooking easy and enjoyable.
However, sometimes, these recipes aren’t straightforward about how much of an ingredient you should add to complete the recipe.
For example, there could be any number of garlic cloves or tablespoons.
Yet, you need to know exactly how much fresh garlic to use in a recipe for optimal results.
So, how many cloves of garlic are in a tablespoon?
Two cloves of garlic equal one tablespoon of garlic paste.
As a result, one clove is equivalent to half a tablespoon, while the volume of four cloves is half as much.
However, garlic comes in different shapes, sizes, and types worldwide.
Therefore, this is a guideline to help give an approximation.
This article is a guide to help you estimate how many cloves of garlic are in a tablespoon.
Additionally, it informs you how to identify a bad clove of garlic.
What is Garlic?
Garlic is a bulb-shaped vegetable that’s a staple of the Mediterranean diet.
It’s a mild, aromatic, and spicy member of the allium family, including onions and leeks.
Moreover, it’s a popular vegetable and spice in many countries worldwide.
Garlic adds flavor to our food.
However, it’s also a medicinal herb because of its strong odor and taste.
That smell comes from a compound called allicin, which gives garlic its pungent flavor.
Garlic Clove vs. Garlic bulb
Garlic is grown for its cloves.
A clove is one of the small, round pieces removed from a garlic bulb when cooking.
It’s what is minced or crushed during cooking.
Garlic clove is soft, moist, and has a pungent, earthy flavor.
It’s common to use cloves in pasta and other dishes to add flavor to food.
A garlic bulb is what you see in the produce aisle while buying fresh garlic.
It’s the whole plant, just like with apples and other vegetables.
Crescent-shaped bulbs contain tightly packed garlic cloves that are either pressed into a paste or thinly chopped during cooking.
What is a Garlic Head
The garlic head is the topmost part of the plant, including the roots and leaves, and it’s attached to a stem.
It contains the bulb that grows at the center of the plant.
In other words, it contains all of the cloves, which are flat and round.
The stem, sometimes called the neck, grows out of the top of the head and meets with the root.
Garlic heads are easy to identify because they are bright green when mature and have a smooth, tapered shape.
Approximately how much garlic powder (granulated) is in one clove?
The amount of garlic powder you will need to make a dish varies based on the size of your garlic clove.
For instance, a large garlic clove can equal 1/4 teaspoon.
On the other hand, one granulated clove is equivalent to a 1/8 teaspoon.
In practice, using teaspoons to measure granulated garlic is more convenient.
How Many Cloves are in a Garlic Head?
A garlic head is made up of many cloves.
The number of cloves in a garlic head varies depending on the variety and size of the garlic.
For example, if you have a large head of garlic, there may be as many as 12 cloves in it.
If you have an average-sized head of garlic, there may be 8 or 10 cloves.
So, if you’re looking for a specific number of cloves, find out how big the head is.
For example: If you have a 3-inch (7.5 cm) long garlic head with a 2-inch (5 cm) wide neck, it will have 12 cloves.
If you have a 2-inch (5 cm) long garlic head with a 1-inch (2.5 cm) wide neck, it will have six cloves.
You can use any amount of cloves in a recipe that calls for garlic.
For example, to make a garlic dip with 1/2 cup of olive oil and 1/2 cup of sour cream, you could use two cloves of garlic.
You need four cloves to make the same recipe with two tablespoons of butter.
How much garlic does a clove contain in minced form?
Two cloves of garlic equal one teaspoon of minced garlic.
On the other hand, it takes three cloves to make one tablespoon of minced garlic.
Moreover, it takes six cloves of garlic to mince two tablespoons, while the amount of minced garlic in 12 medium cloves is 1/4 cup.
Most minced garlic is sold in ¼ cup and 1/2 teaspoon packets.
However, in some places, cloves are sold in 250-gram jars, ranging from 25 to 30 grams each.
Cloves vary in size and therefore do not always fit into ½ teaspoon or ⅛ cup measures.
Therefore, since garlic is a flavorful and often pungent vegetable, be exact when measuring the amount you need.
What is the weight of a clove of garlic?
Each clove will have its unique weight depending on your choice of garlic.
There is, however, a wide range of weights for cloves, ranging from 10 grams to 16 grams on average.
Each clove will have different amounts of the moisture trapped inside it and other natural ingredients such as oil and salt.
The smaller cloves have less moisture than the larger ones.
So, they weigh less than their larger counterparts even when fully grown.
What is the size of a garlic clove?
The length of a small clove ranges from 1″ to a smidge longer than a large clove measuring about 1.25″ to 1.4″.
Smaller varieties of garlic are around the size of a pencil eraser (approximately 0.8 inches across).
However, the larger types can be as thick as an inch (1 cm across).
In general, you can expect the largest cloves to be closer to 2 inches (5cm) in diameter.
Yet, smaller cloves may be as little as 1 inch (3cm) in diameter.
This shows that garlic doesn’t have a uniform size.
Each clove has unique dimensions and features.
So, although their length and width are pretty constant, there is a wide range in overall size.
Some sellers use terms like “large”, “extra-large”, or even “extra-jumbo” to describe the size.
These are different measurements.
Therefore, you may receive a few different sizes in your order.
Although there are hundreds of varieties of garlic, the number of sizes is limited.
For instance, small garlic cloves can be used in making pickles and artichokes, while tiny finger-shaped garlic is sold as a garnish.
You can use the bulbous or garlicky heads to flavor food.
A basic rule of thumb is to use the largest clove you can comfortably handle.
Crushed garlic versus minced garlic: What’s the difference?
Crushed garlic and minced garlic are great for adding flavor to your food, but there are some subtle differences.
Crushed garlic is a puree of fresh processed garlic that breaks it down into tiny pieces.
It’s usually used in recipes for fish and meat where you want a strong, sharp flavor.
The garlic is crushed by hand or with a mortar and pestle.
The smell and flavor are stronger.
Still, that can be good if you’re looking for something bolder than plain old plain ol’ garlic.
Moreover, crushed garlic might be what you need if you’re looking for something that has less bite.
Minced garlic is simply garlic that has been chopped into smaller pieces with a knife or in a food processor.
This means it’s easier to incorporate into your dish without waiting around too long while it cooks down.
It’s often used as an ingredient in dishes that don’t need as much of a strong flavor but still want some extra kick.
You’ll get more of a subtle garlic flavor with this method than you would with crushed garlic.
Minced garlic is milder and more delicate than crushed.
This garlic adds punch to your dish without making it taste overpowering like some other kinds of chopped ingredients might.
Signs that Your Garlic has Gone Bad
Though garlic has a long shelf life, it is not impervious to spoilage.
When your garlic has gone bad, there are a few warning signs on how to identify it.
Here are some signs that garlic is going bad:
The cloves will likely sprout if you keep garlic for an extended period.
Sprouting is normal behavior for any plant.
If your garlic starts sprouting, throw it away and replace with a fresh clove.
Garlic sprouts indicate they’re not fresh anymore, so you should avoid them.
Use squeeze test
Test the texture of your garlic to determine whether it is bad through squeezing.
Press down on a clove with your fingers or with a table knife without cutting it.
If the garlic is soft, then toss it.
However, if the cloves are firm, they’re still good to eat.
They can last for 5-6 months at room temperature but only if kept away from direct sunlight and humidity.
Surface spots or mold
You should also discard garlic cloves if they have surface spots on them.
Surface discoloration on the clove’s outside or on its stem (if it has one) indicates that some damage occurred during storage.
Most likely, moisture caused mold growth during storage.
That’s not good news for anyone who loves this delicious vegetable.
So, replace them with fresh ones.
We hope this article has provided useful information about how many cloves of garlic are in a tablespoon.
Your garlic clove’s size and shape will determine the actual amount, but for most uses, this is sufficient.
This explains why you find varying measurements for the exact same ingredients in different cookbooks.
That’s because there is no hard and fast rule for the exact measurements of garlic.
Garlic French Loaf Recipe
- 1 oven
- 1½ sticks unsalted butter
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 French loaf
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
- Kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley leaves finely chopped
- Arrange a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F.
- Melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and cook, occasionally stirring, until the butter is golden and the garlic is very fragrant, about 3 minutes.
- Slice the bread in half lengthwise.
- Turn the bread cut-side up. Slice crosswise at 2-inch intervals without cutting through, making pull-apart garlic bread.
- Generously brush the cut sides of the bread with more garlic butter, spreading it evenly over the top.
- Carefully transfer the bread to a rimmed baking sheet.
- Sprinkle the loaves with the Parmesan and a pinch of salt and bake until the edges of the bread are a deep golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Top with the parsley and serve warm.
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