Knife Skills: How to Mince Garlic

Knife Skills: How to Mince Garlic

Emma Christensen
May 28, 2008

Some folks will tell you that the best way to mince garlic is with a garlic press!

A garlic press is certainly handy, but if you don't have one or just feeling like doing it the old-fashioned way, here's one method that works well!

After peeling your garlic clove, lay it on the cutting board on one of its flat sides so it's stable and doesn't roll. Trim off the tough roots from where the garlic clove was attached to the head.

Cut the garlic in thin strips along its length -- from root to tip.

Carefully turn the garlic 90-degrees and cut strips in the other direction. You'll be left with a little pile of thin sticks.

Sprinkle the pile with a pinch of salt. This is a little chef's trick that helps keep the garlic from sticking to your knife!

Run your knife back and forth over the pile of garlic until it's as finely minced as you like it.

It's easiest to do this if you hold your knife in front of you parallel to your body. As demonstrated in our How to Dice An Onion video, set the tip of the knife on the cutting board just to the left of the pile of garlic (to the right if you're a leftie!).

Leaving the tip of the knife against the cutting board, use the heel of the knife to chop the garlic. Use a rocking motion and move the heel of the knife a bit when you lift up so you cut into the pile at a different place each time.

If you think cutting the garlic into sticks fussy, you can certainly start with a whole clove and just keep chopping until it's as finely minced as you like it!

Related: Recipe: Garlic Salsa Verde

(All images by Emma Christensen for the Kitchn)

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