How To Peel Garlic Without All The Fuss

Welcome to Advice for Impatient Foodies, R29's new cooking column. Each week, our executive food editor and Impatient Foodie founder, Elettra Wiedemann, will tackle any and all questions you might have about food. Seriously, no query is too big or too small. And don't be embarrassed! We've all had moments in the kitchen when we had no idea WTF was going on and wished we could ask someone other than Google for some pointers. So whether you need help frying an egg, knowing when your chicken is done, or deciding what to make for dinner, we've got your back.

Peeling garlic is always such a pain — I can never get all the skin off and my fingers wind up smelling for so long after. What is the best way to peel garlic cloves without all the fuss and mess?
Photographed by Danny Kim.
There is a lot of content out there on how to hack garlic skins. Some people say to put the garlic cloves in a jar and shake them, others suggest putting them in some hot water.

Honestly, what I find quickest and easiest is to cut off a tiny piece from both sides of the garlic clove — the root end and the pointy side. Because the garlic skin has nothing to hold onto, it peels right off. Once the garlic is peeled, lay your cutting knife flat, holding the knife handle to keep the knife steady, then, using the palm of your other hand, press down on the knife to crush the garlic (it makes a very satisfying noise). Mince from there.

As far as hand smells, a lot of people say rubbing your hands on stainless steel works. I don't think it's 100% effective. Exfoliation always gets the smell off for me. I combine some regular old pantry items — coconut oil with sugar and salt — to make a scrub, rinse with warm water, and that does the trick.

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