Black Garlic

Nicola Royce

Nicola Royce

Registered Dietitian,
Postgraduate Diploma Diabetes
Masters in Nutrition

Black garlic is regular garlic that undergoes a slow-cooking process, resulting in enhanced nutritional properties and a mellowed flavour. Its potential health benefits include more antioxidants than regular garlic, blood sugar regulation, and anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties. With a unique texture, taste, and aroma, black garlic can be used subtly in various dishes from marinades to salad dressings for an umami touch.


Black garlic is normal garlic that has been slowly cooked at 70 – 79°C for a 9 – 14 days, this process induces the maillard reaction, improving the nutritional properties. The process blackens the garlic and it gets a soft, sticky texture, while removing the classic sharp flavour and replacing it with something more subtle and mellow. It has a very deep umami flavour similar to that of soy sauce, cooked mushrooms and molasses. 


Black garlic has many potential health benefits. It contains more antioxidants than regular garlic due to the heating process, which converts allicin, the compound that gives garlic its pungent odour when crushed, into antioxidant compounds like alkaloids and flavonoids. Black garlic may help regulate blood sugar, reduce the risk of diabetes, and even prevent damage from uncontrolled diabetes. It also has anti-inflammatory and anti-carcogenic properties.

Black Garlic

  • Texture : Soft, Slightly Sticky Silky smooth, Creamy, Jelly like
  • Taste: Subtle, Smokey, Slightly sweet, Omami, No aftertaste, Nutty
  • Smell: Sweet, Smokey, Subtle
  • Appearance: Black, Charcoally, Shiny, Blump

Normal Garlic

  • Texture : Firm, Crunchy, Chunky
  • Taste: Pungent, Slightly spicy, Lingering aftertaste, Semi-sweet
  • Smell: Sharp, Intense, Oniony
  • Appearance: Creamy white, Smooth, Blump

How to cook with black garlic

Black garlic is versatile and fun for culinary experiments. You can use it in place of regular garlic anytime you want a slightly smokier, more subtle garlic flavour. Here are some practical tips on how to include black garlic in your cooking:

  • Blend it into a condiment with some mustard, lemon juice, herbs, salt and pepper to use as a dip or spread.
  • Spread it onto a sandwich or hamburgers.
  • Stir it into salsas, pasta sauces, soups, and stews.
  • Use it to top pizzas and flatbreads.
  • As a marinade you can rub it onto chicken, fish, meat or mutton before roasting.
  • Add it to salads thinly sliced.
  • Add it to salad dressing or pickled items for some extra flavour.
  • Can be added to any hummus.
  • Sprinkle over egg dishes or use inside an omlette.
  • Add to mash potato, roasted vegetables, patties, mince, sausage filling and chicken stuffing.