Garlic powder is pretty much what you think it is, cloves of fresh garlic which has been dried, dehydrated and then ground into a fine powder.
Garlic powder is used for cooking but can also often be found in rubs, marinades, and spice mixes.
If you are out of garlic powder, you can substitute it with granulated garlic.
The main difference between the two is texture as they are both made from garlic that has been dehydrated.
Garlic powder is super fine, with its consistency being similar to flour, granulated garlic is a lot bigger.
Garlic powder is generally more potent than granulated garlic.
It is usually considered to be a better option for dishes with short cooking times as the flavor releases much quicker.
Granulated garlic is less likely to clump compared to its powdered counterpart, so depending on the recipe this could be a better option.
The granulated form combines smoother with liquids and is great in sauces, soups, and salad dressings.
Granulated garlic is also better for spice rubs as it mixes better with other spices compared to garlic powder.
Garlic powder is still a more intense garlic flavor, and depending on the dish and the desired flavor, either one can be used.
As garlic powder is more potent and has a finer consistency, if a recipe calls for garlic powder but you are using granulated garlic it is best to use more than the recipe calls for.
If the recipes call for granulated garlic, but you are using garlic powder, then add less than is stated.
Can I use garlic powder instead of garlic?
Using fresh garlic can sometimes be a hassle compared to using its powdered form.
Having to peel, chop and then clean up your mess can be time and energy-consuming.
If you want to cut down your kitchen time and reduce the amount of effort to cook your meals, garlic powder is an easy hack.
Of course, there are some situations where using fresh garlic is preferred over the powdered version.
An advantage to using fresh garlic is that it is less likely to burn, for example, when sautéing it in oil or bitter.
However, if you were to bake some oh-so-delicious garlic bread, you definitely want to use garlic powder.
When it comes to dry rubs, garlic powder is also the better option.
This is because no matter how finely you mince fresh garlic it will never be small enough to be able to be used as a rub and it won’t spread as easily as garlic powder.
It’s worth noting that garlic powder’s potency does reduce over time.
It’s very likely your stash of garlic powder has been sitting in your spice cupboard for a long time.
If this is the case, be aware that it may no longer be as potent and fresh garlic may be a better option.
For dishes where garlic is not the main ingredient, you can comfortably reach for the garlic powder.
Where a dish is heavily garlic-flavored, fresh garlic is your best bet as long as the consistency works for the dish.
For recipes that call for heavy use of garlic flavor, fresh garlic will ensure the vibrancy of the food.
However, if you can’t be bothered with the hassle of dealing with fresh garlic, you can still always use the powdered version.
A quick tip if you love the taste of fresh garlic and want to be able to use it often in your cooking is to peel, chop and mince a batch of garlic.
Pop them into ice trays and leave them in your freezer.
You can purchase peeled or minced garlic stored in oil, however, the taste is not as potent as fresh garlic so if the taste is a big factor for you, you might want to steer clear.
Is garlic powder the same as garlic?
Garlic powder is a little less nutritious than fresh garlic although it has fewer calories.
6 cloves of garlic are around 27 calories, providing 1g of protein, and minerals such as calcium, selenium, and iron.
Fresh garlic is also high in vitamin C.
A pinch of garlic powder is the amount usually used ina.
Recipe has around 8 calories and 0.4g of protein.
Mineral-content wise it has much less than fresh garlic.
The major nutritional difference is that there is much less vitamin C compared to fresh cloves.
This is because heating and powdering the garlic destroys much of the vitamin C content.
Despite the reduced nutritional content, garlic powder is often used as a substitute for fresh garlic due to its convenience.
The difference in the nutritional content is not substantial enough that fresh garlic is a healthier option, as it is only slightly healthier and the mineral and vitamin content is not nearly enough to make a huge dent.
The extra calories or increased mineral and vitamin content is not generally counted.
Cooking the fresh garlic will also reduce the nutritional value so you won’t for example, be getting the same amount of vitamin C that is in fresh garlic in the final product as the content will have diminished due to the cooking process.
How do I substitute garlic powder for garlic?
Some recipes and dishes call for fresh garlic as the flavor and aroma are so intense.
However, if you don’t have fresh garlic on hand or you would rather use garlic powder, you simply need to know the right quantities to substitute correctly.
When replacing fresh garlic with other garlic substitutes, the flavor potency is not the same so you need to adjust the amount you use.
If you only have minced garlic on hand, around ½ teaspoon can be used per fresh clove.
Garlic flakes which can also be called dehydrated minced garlic can be used in place of fresh garlic.
Around ½ teaspoon equals one clove.
For granulated garlic, ¼ teaspoon equals one fresh garlic clove. ⅛ of a teaspoon equals one fresh clove.
½ teaspoon of garlic salt equals one fresh clove.
Garlic salt will add an extra ⅜ tsp of salt so ensure you use less salt than the recipe calls for if you opt for garlic salt.
Minced garlic is the closest texture to fresh garlic if that is important to you.
Although the jarred versions of minced garlic usually have other ingredients in order to preserve the garlic.
For this reason, many people choose not to use store-bought minced garlic as the preservatives can affect the flavor.
Garlic flakes are also fairly close to the texture of fresh garlic once they have been cooked into the food.
Both powdered and granulated powder provide flavor but no texture.
I’m Chris Watson & the Founder of EatForLonger.com. I’m a food and wellbeing enthusiast researching and sharing foodstuffs and simple food-based concepts, such as fasting and clean eating.
I hope it inspires you to make tiny changes to what you eat and when you eat while optimizing your healthspan and all-around well-being.
Read more About Me here.