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Any Such Thing As Gourmet Garlic Powder?

The last year has found me using this quiet secret of good cooks more and more. But I am stupidly unaware of what would distinguish good from bad, having only bought jumbo tubs of whatever brand is on a grocer's or resto supply shelf and sticking with it 'till gone.

Is there a "better" or "best"?


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    1. re: ipsedixit

      Wow! Thank you Ipsedixit! Linden Garlic Farm looks like the real deal.

      1. re: ipsedixit

        Thanks, Ipse:

        You tried this yourself? They're sold out until August, but I put myself on the order list. Odd that 2, 1.5 oz jars are cheaper than 1, 3-oz, but what the hey?


        1. re: kaleokahu

          I've given it as a gift in the past, and have heard nothing but positive reviews.

          Hope you like it.

      2. Most of the major brands use the best garlic they can find to make their products. Years ago (50 years ago to be precise) when I worked for a company that made dried onion and garlic products (garlic was trucked in from Gilroy, Ca.) I witnessed how they graded the various products as they were processed. The lower grades and floor sweepings were packaged for animal food, the better grades were used in prepared foods manufacturing, the best grades were usually purchased by the major brand cooking ingredient packagers and the premium was reserved for baby food (yep; some baby foods include onion and garlic - at least they did back then). So IMO if you rely on a major herb/spice packaging company you'll get pretty near "gourmet" as you need for that type of ingredient.

        3 Replies
        1. re: todao

          Hi, todao:

          Ah, Gilroy! Who can forget the famous local garlic-flavored wine? http://www.rapazziniwinery.com/world-...


          1. re: todao

            I remember driving through Gilroy about every 3 months going from San Jose to Fresno to visit relatives in the 80's and 90's. Every time we drove near the Christopher Garlic facility it made you hungry because of the smell of garlic in the air (being dried at the factory). Then we would have to stop in nearby Casa de Fruta for lunch. ;-)

            1. re: todao

              Just what I was going to say, McCormicks or Tones are fine, just don't buy no name or bulk stuff at the ethnic store for something like this. Just watch out if it's dark colored, if it is check the date.

            2. Have not tried it yet, but about to...I"m told Penzey's Graulated Garlic is superb

              4 Replies
              1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                I'm a fan of the Penzey's. We use it primarily for dry rubs.

                1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                  We've also had good luck with Penzey's powdered garlic and dried minced garlics.

                    1. These guys are currently making garlic powder and granules with their early 2012 crop so they have them available now: http://www.strawhatfarms.com/food-gar... (scroll to bottom of page)

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: yellowstone

                        Wow, I'm impressed with their varieties. Thanks!

                      2. Just received an email about this garlic farm yesterday so I can't attest to how good it is but their garlic powders and pesto's seem interesting without additives

                        1. Cook's Illustrated did a garlic powder taste test in the July 2012 issue.
                          Here's how they rated the brands they tested. They were all recommended with reservations except for the last one, which wasn't recommeded.

                          Spice Islands Garlic Powder
                          McCormick Garlic Powder
                          Penzeys Granulated Garlic Powder
                          Simply Organic Garlic Powder
                          Badia Garlic Powder

                          They thought the Spice Islands had a roasted, sligthly deeper garlic flavor than other brands.

                          They thought Penzey's had a mild flavor, and it compared to roasted garlic. It was described as tasting nutty, sweet, and almost cheesey and it was too mild and lacked oomph.

                          They said number one just barely edged out number two. None were as good as fresh garlic.

                          They also said that garlic powder had its place where you didn't want the moisture of fresh garlic like on a hot grill (to prevent burning). Just about any brand worked okay on the grill, mixed with other spices in a rub. You should not use it were garlic was the dominant flavor such as garlic bread and croutons.

                          10 Replies
                          1. re: Antilope

                            Being a garlic farmer myself and a producer of gourmet garlic powder, I was wondering how local garlic farmers could submit their products to Cooks Illustrated to learn how their products stack up against each other and store bought garlic powder. I really would be interested in those results!

                            Don Womack

                            1. re: donwomack

                              just send them some with an info package. When I was a full time writer I got stuff sent to me several times a week.

                              1. re: JMF

                                Thanks. I will do that as soon as we start making our powder later in August.

                                I've ordered and bought a lot of garlic powder in the last couple of years just for comparison purposes. These days I don't even have to open the jar or the package to know what it's going to taste or smell like, I can tell just from looking at color that it's made from imported ingredients!

                                1. re: donwomack

                                  I've wondered why garlic powder I've bought (only 2 or 3x in my life) has always hardened, and I had to throw away. Certainly it was in there for a while, because it was only bought for use in case of an emergency.

                                  I'm wondering if many brands add an additive, such as in salt, to keep it flowing or from hardening. (Not necessarily use of the same ingredient as salt.)

                                  There is a well-known garlic (fresh) in the U.S. that gives both my husband and me severe headaches. After keeping a food diary we discovered that it was this ususpected ingredient. I can't quite imagine why, as now we grow our own garlic each year, wondering what the differences might e. (We grow different types.) Since this company is so large, I've often wondered if they provided other companies garlic for their grandules/powder.

                                  1. re: Rella

                                    "There is a well-known garlic (fresh) in the U.S"

                                    I didn't know that there was any known garlic let alone "well-known". I see garlic in big bins of... well, garlic.

                                    Please advise, what is the "well-known" garlic?

                                    1. re: FrankJBN

                                      I'd rather not say here on this site because when I ever give an opinion about a certain product, posters come out with an opposite view point; and it becomes too tedious.

                                      The company really is of no matter, as I was illustrating the fact that there are differences in garlic, but know not why the reasons, and would really like to know what it is.

                                      But, also to respond to your 2nd paragraph, I have never seen garlic in big bins. We must be in different hemispheres.

                                  2. re: donwomack

                                    donwomack, what is the shelf life of garlic powder once opened?

                                    1. re: HillJ

                                      Sorry for the delayed post; we've been out in our fields harvesting garlic for the past two weeks. A great crop this year I'll tell you

                                      If stored properly, the garlic powder will certainly last a year, but most folks tell us that it doesn't last that long in their household because they use it on a daily basis!

                                      1. re: donwomack

                                        Thanks for the reply, donw. I need to order...

                                        1. re: HillJ

                                          No problem. We may be a week ahead of schedule before the first batch. We don't make it until the garlic has properly cured! I think this year's batch is going to be out of sight. We've been eating raw garlic for a couple of weeks now checking out all our varieties ... should make for some very interesting new blends this year.

                            2. I justgot some of Penzey's minced dehydrated garlic and it's actully quite good.a major cut above garlic powder. Reconstitues very quickly

                              1. I was impressed by the costco brand. Good aroma.

                                1. In addition to Penzys --
                                  www.savoryspiceshop.com has great onion, and garlic products as well as other herbs and spices