Roasted garlic is not only one of the easiest ways to cook garlic — you can prepare it and pop it in the oven in less than 5 minutes — but the rich, buttery taste is a perfect way to ease into the world of gourmet garlic.
It takes zero culinary skills or expertise to learn how to roast garlic. Seriously. All you really need is some garlic, aluminum foil, and an oven and you’ll be making roasted garlic just as good as you might find at The Stinking Rose.
You can spread roasted garlic on bread and crackers, mix it into mashed potatoes, or add it to a pasta dish.
The garlic roasting process also takes some of the bite and heat out of many garlic varieties, creating a smooth, mellow flavor that pairs well with just about any food on the planet.
It’s not necessary but a cast iron garlic roaster is a great way to roast garlic and it can be used on the grill as well as in the oven.
How to Roast Garlic
Any head of garlic will do but try to select larger ones for roasting garlic, as prep time isn’t an issue and you’ll end up with more delicious garlic in the end with larger heads.
Cut off the top 1/4″ to 1/2″ of the garlic head. You want to expose the ends of each clove so they’ll cook properly, so cut off just enough so that all the clove ends are exposed.
Drizzle the exposed garlic cloves with olive oil and add a little salt and pepper if you like. Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees while you’re preparing your garlic. Rub the oil in thoroughly with your fingers or a brush to make sure the clove ends are well coated.
You can roast just one head of garlic or many heads of garlic at the same time. If roasting just one or two heads, wrap each up in aluminum foil so that they’re sealed up. It doesn’t have to be pretty, just make sure they’re wrapped up.
If you’re roasting many heads at once, place them in a dish or pan and then cover the top of the dish or pan in aluminum foil (just cover the dish or pan in foil and don’t wrap the heads individually if you go this route).
Try to place your garlic heads so that the ends you drizzled in olive oil are facing up when you put them in the oven. This isn’t critical but is easy enough to do and helps them cook a little more evenly.
Roast your garlic for about 45 minutes and remove from the oven. Once it has cooled a bit you can pick up each head and squeeze at the bottom to ease the roasted cloves out of the skins. Collect roasted cloves on a small plate or bowl and serve however you like.