Dehydrating garlic is simple and completely straight forward. All you need to do is peel the garlic, chop it and then place it in the dehydrator. Let me show you how to dehydrate garlic step by step, give you a few tips and then show you how to make garlic powder, which is also super simple.
Start out with garlic that has aged a bit. Garlic is ripe when it starts to smell. If your garlic comes from your garden you will know when to harvest it because the top leaves will begin to turn brown. However, store bought garlic is a little different. I let the garlic sit out until it gives off a strong odor. Of course check it regularly because you do not want it to get moldy or start to sprout. Keep in mind that garlic will last a long time in a cool dry place, and just because it gives off a strong odor does not mean that it will rot immediately. I find that garlic that has been allowed to age a bit peels easier.
Separate the cloves from the bulb.
Take the skin off of each clove. Start by cutting off the root end of the clove.
There are a couple of ways to easily remove the skin. One is to do as I mentioned above and age your garlic. If the skin still does not separate easily then you can microwave the cloves for about 8 seconds. If you choose not to use a microwave you can soak the cloves in cold water for about 10 to 15 minutes. Keep in mind that you want to remove the water content (dehydrate) from the garlic so this method will add water and add time to the dehydrating process. Check on the garlic frequently so that it is submerged the least amount of time possible.
Of course many hands make for light work......:)
Wash the cloves.
If you do not have a lot of garlic to dehydrate you could use a garlic press to chop your garlic.
A garlic press makes really small pieces and a lot of garlic juice is lost. Even though you want to remove the water content from the garlic you do not want to remove the garlic juice, with all it's flavor and nutrients. When the moisture is removed during the dehydrating process the flavor and nutrients will stay behind.
For chopping a lot of garlic I like this little hand cranked food processor. This is a gadget I got in a dirty Santa game; I would have donated it because of the "As Seen On TV" logo on the box (to me, "As Seen On TV" = junk), however, the prepper in me prevailed and I stashed it away in a closet, until one of my boys was curious about how it worked. To my surprise it does a great job with salsa and chopping things that the food possessor often pulverizes.
Here is a look at the inside. I will say that all the other parts are not very useful, but the parts you see above are worth the price alone. If I were going to buy one myself I would spend the few extra bucks to buy this one with the suction cups on the base.
Place the garlic in the processor.
Turn the handle.
It chops the garlic to just the right size.
Load up your dehydrator trays.
I started out with 5 lbs of garlic and filled eight trays in my nine tray Excalibur Dehydrator.
Set the temperature to 125ᵒF (the vegetable setting) and dehydrate for 8 to 12 hours.
This is what the garlic looks like when it is dehydrated.
Here is a closer look. You can stop at this point and just store the garlic in a vacuum sealed jar (see below). This dehydrated chopped garlic would be great in soup or any dish that calls for chopped garlic. I saved some to use for this purpose but then I took the rest and made garlic powder.
To make garlic powder you can use a food processor (the electric kind.....:). Maybe mine is just getting old but when I tried to make garlic powder I got a lot of powder blown into the air and the process was taking a very long time. I had this happen when making pumpkin flour too, so for this reason an electric food processor is not my first choice to grind the garlic.
So I tested a few other methods. The pestle and mortar method worked really well.
If you do not have a pestle and mortar I highly recommend adding one to your preps, it is an off grid solution for a lot of food preparation and it will last your entire life with proper maintenance.
However, my favorite method is my little coffee grinder that I use exclusively to grind spices.
Load it up and press the button.
You can see it does a great job.
I love that the attachment works on these little 4oz jars.
And the bigger jars; this is an 8oz jar. The attachment also works on quart size and pint jars.
Label and put away.