How to Tell if Garlic is Bad?

When buying minced garlic, remember to check its appearance, feel, and smell. If the skin has dark spots or mold, toss it. The bulb will last a few months in the refrigerator if the skin is dry. If the cloves are intact, you can use them. However, if the skin has mold, you should throw the entire bulb. If the cloves are moldy, discard them. Knowing how to tell if garlic has gone bad is essential for avoiding food waste and ensuring that the dish you’re cooking with it tastes good.

In this article, we’ll go over the most common signs of bad garlic, as well as the steps you can take to keep your garlic as fresh as possible. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or just starting out, knowing the signs of bad garlic will help you make the most of this versatile ingredient.

When minced garlic is old, it loses its flavor and becomes soft, turning to mush. If it has softened, you should get rid of it. Botulism is a disease that can kill you if you get it. If your minced garlic is too soft, it might not be safe to eat. It has clostridium botulinum in it, which is a bacteria that attacks the nerves. If these spores are eaten, they can make you paralyzed or kill you.

Garlic Nutrition Fact

garlic nutrition fact

How to Tell if Garlic is Bad?

If you wondering How to Tell if Garlic is Bad? Garlic is that spicy fragrance that has been employed in culinary traditions all across the world! If you’re like most cooks, you keep ahead or two on hand to add a splash of fiery, zesty flavor to your dishes. The good news is that whole garlic can be kept at room temperature for a long time and can be touched, smelled, and looked at to see if it’s gone bad. Don’t worry if yours sprouts; you can still use it as long as it doesn’t show other signs of rotting.



First, you should check the color of your garlic. If it’s brown or yellowish, it’s time to discard it. It will also start to have a bitter taste. It’s also easy to detect if your garlic is moldy if it begins to develop a fungus on the outside. A sour smell means it’s oxidized and will have a more intense flavor. When it’s time to cook with your roasted garlic, try cutting off the sprouts from the top before using them.

Secondly, check the color. If it’s brown or has a pungent odor, it’s likely to be wrong. Dark-colored garlic is not as good as light-colored garlic, and a darker color means a darker quality. The taste will also be diminished. If you’re not sure, check the texture, too. A dry glove of garlic can be stored in a cool, dry place for two years. After opening the jar, you should refrigerate it to maintain its freshness.


The smell of fresh garlic is pleasant and intense, but if it’s dark, it probably isn’t. A sour garlic smell has a strong ammonia-like aroma, and the taste of oxidized garlic is also sour. The pungent odor is a sure sign that your minced stale garlic is off. If you don’t know what it smells like, don’t hesitate to toss it. You won’t regret it!

Bad garlic is a pungent smell that’s a little bitter. Its color is also a good indication that it’s not fresh. Light orange or light-colored garlic is fresh. But black garlic is terrible. It is moldy and has a foul odor. It should be discarded. In addition, it has a pungent smell. It should be thrown out if it’s old.

Garlic has a distinct aroma that is spicy, savory, and mellow. If your garlic begins to lose its characteristic aroma or develops a sour odor, it has most likely gone rotten. To avoid contaminating your other garlic bulbs, it’s better to get rid of that garlic bulb.


The smell of fresh garlic is a key indicator that it’s not old. However, it may be spoiled or even moldy if you’re using bottled minced. It’s best to discard it or keep it refrigerated. The best way to tell if minced garlic is terrible is to check the date on the label. If you’re unsure, you can use the leftovers and save them for another time.


Spoiled garlic develops brown patches on the cloves and changes color from white to yellow or brown. Another feature is the green roots growing in the clove’s heart, which are the beginnings of fresh sprouts. These roots are not hazardous, but they have a strong bitter flavor and should be removed before cooking.

Side Effects of Bad Garlic

Botulism can be caused by ingesting rotten garlic. Botulism caused by food is extremely rare, but it can be dangerous and fatal.

The bacteria that causes botulism, Clostridium botulinum, produces ordinarily inert spores found in low-acid foods like garlic. These spores may become active under certain circumstances. Botulism can be caused by a combination of low acidity, a lack of oxygen, moisture, and warmth. Garlic has a low pH and can grow active harmful spores if not appropriately preserved.

Botulism is a disease that affects the nerves that control the eyes, mouth, face, and throat. Nausea, vomiting, dizziness, double vision, and trouble swallowing and breathing are symptoms of botulism caused by garlic. If you eat spoiled garlic and have these symptoms, visit a doctor regularly.

How do you Store Garlic?

Follow these guidelines to get the best quality and shelf life from your garlic bulbs.

Store in a fabulous, dry location. Mold can grow in garlic as a result of light and moisture.
Garlic should be kept at room temperature. Your garlic’s quality and shelf life will quickly deteriorate at hot temperatures. Refrigerating garlic extends its shelf life, but it can also cause sprouts to form quickly.

Make sure to choose containers that allow for plenty of air circulation. Use a wire-mesh basket, a paper bag, or a garlic keeper with holes to store your garlic.

Garlic’s texture and flavor can be altered by freezing, but it has a significantly longer shelf life. Wrap the whole bulb of unpeeled garlic in a plastic wrapper or aluminum foil before freezing.

The following suggestions will help you extend the life of your peeled garlic:

Freeze your peeled garlic cloves for 20 minutes after spreading them out on a baking sheet. The garlic cloves should then be placed in an airtight container or freezer bag and kept frozen.
Cover minced and chopped garlic with olive oil in an airtight container or jar. Refrigerate any leftovers.
If you don’t want to use oil, you can preserve chopped and minced garlic frozen. Garlic should be stored in an airtight container or carefully wrapped in freezer plastic wrap.


When it Comes to Garlic, How Long does it Last?

Whole garlic heads can last up to six months if stored at a cool room temperature with proper ventilation. Time is ticking once you’ve removed cloves from their entire head. As long as the papery skin on a single clove is intact, it will survive roughly three weeks.

After peeling, fresh garlic cloves can be kept in the refrigerator for about a week. Cut cloves should only be kept for one day after chopped, sliced, or otherwise cut. Putting chopped, peeled garlic in oil or frying it will make it last longer.


If the garlic is too soft, it’s not safe to use. If it’s too soft, it’s too old to be edible. The odor of bad garlic can be unpleasant, a clear sign of spoilage. You should throw away the garlic and replace it with a fresh one. If the odor is still there, it’s safe to use it. It’s worth finding out how to tell if minced roasted garlic is terrible.