How to Make Garlic Infused Olive Oil at Home: Recipes & Safe Storage

Tired of adding extra ingredients to your salad dressings, marinades, or pasta dishes? Garlic infused olive oil is an excellent way to add that unique taste and flavor to your food without the need to have extra ingredients. What’s more, you can give the infused oils as gifts during the holiday season, but how do you make this at home?

Making garlic-infused olive oil at home is quite easy, but requires a lot of patience. You can choose to use the hot and cold methods of infusion. However, you should note that the cold method may take more time than the hot method.

Read on to learn more about what’s needed to make garlic-infused olive oil, how to preserve it, and the benefits of infused oils. 

Garlic Infused Olive Oil

Garlic cloves, pepper, salt, and rosemary sit next to a bowl of garlic infused olive oil

What You Will Need

To make garlic-infused olive oil at home, you will need:

  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • The preferred quantity of olive oil
  • An airtight seal bottle
  • A non-reactive and heavy-bottomed saucepan

The hot infusion method infuses the olive oil quickly. That means you can use the oil after you’ve made it. The fastest way to infuse garlic into olive oil is to simmer the garlic cloves in olive oil.

  1. Get the garlic cloves, peel them, and crush them with the back of a thick knife. That helps with the release of flavor. Put the cloves into a pan. 
  2. Put a little amount of olive oil into the pan to get a thin coating. 
  3. Saute the garlic over medium heat for five minutes. 
  4. Reduce the heat once the garlic begins to brown around the edges. Remember, you don’t want the garlic to cook. You only want it to sizzle.
  5. Pour the leftover olive oil into the saucepan and reduce the heat down to low. You need to be careful as you don’t want the oil to burn. 
  6. Check for bubbles on the oil and allow it to simmer for close to 20 minutes. That’s enough time for garlic to release its aroma and infuse the oil. 
  7. Reduce the heat further down if you notice the garlic has started burning. 
  8. After the 20 minutes, turn off the heat and allow the oil to cool down. The process of cooling also ensures the oil gets more infusion from the garlic. Ensure the oil has cooled down completely to avoid burning yourself when straining it into a bottle.
  9. Get a sieve and strain the bottle into an airtight sealed bottle. Store the infused oil in the fridge and use it for up to a week. 
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Making small batches of this oil reduces wastage in case you don’t plan on using it for the recommended period. When frozen, it can last for up to one month.

Note that you can repeat this process if you’d like to infuse other herbs into olive oil. 

Roasted Garlic Infused Olive Oil

What You Will Need

  • Olive oil
  • Some cloves of garlic
  • Jars to hold the infused oil inside

To get started:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Cut the head of the garlic and leave the cloves exposed. 
  3. Put the garlic on an aluminum foil and pot some teaspoons of olive oil over the cloves. 
  4. Wrap the garlic in foil and put it in the oven for at least 40 minutes. 
  5. Allow the garlic to cool and remove the roasted garlic cloves. Put the cloves in your preferred jar for infusing and throw away the skin. 
  6. Pour the olive oil over the cloves and tighten the lid. 
  7. Place the roasted garlic-infused olive oil in a dark and cool place to allow the oil to infuse. Swirl the infused oil around after a few days. 

Allow the oil to infuse for four to six weeks. You can test the taste to ensure you attain the desired flavor.

Note that you’ll need to store the infused olive oil in the fridge unless you used dried garlic or dehydrated your garlic. That’s because bacteria can harbor in the moisture in the roasted garlic, which is why you need to refrigerate it.

Garlic Basil Infused Oil

You can spruce up the recipe and create garlic basil-infused olive oil.

What You Will Need

  • Some olive oil
  • A bunch of fresh basil
  • A couple of garlic cloves

For cold infusion:

  1. Peel the garlic and place it at the bottom of the jar. 
  2. Add fresh basil in bite-size. You can use a wooden spoon to push any stuck leaves inside. All the basil leaves need to be submerged into the oil. 
  3. Seal the jar and put it in a dry and dark area. 
  4. Allow the oil to infuse for a week or more depending on your taste preferences. 
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You can also use the hot infusion method to create garlic basil infused oil.

To get started:

  1. Get a saucepan or small pot. 
  2. Add the oil, garlic, and basil and cook on low heat for 20 minutes. 
  3. Strain the oil using a sieve and allow it to cool to room temperature.
  4. Add the leftover basil leaves and store the infused oil in the fridge. You can use this mixture for up to a week. 

Rosemary Garlic Oil

If you’re thinking of experimenting with herbs, rosemary is an excellent addition that you can use to make an infused oil. 

What You Will Need

  • Fresh rosemary sprigs
  • Four garlic cloves
  • Two cups of olive oil

To get started:

  1. Wash the rosemary and ensure that it’s completely dry. 
  2. Next, get a saucepan and add in the olive oil. Heat the oil for two minutes, ensuring that it doesn’t bubble. 
  3. Add the minced or crushed garlic and allow it to cook for about three minutes on medium heat. 
  4. Switch off and add in the rosemary. Allow the mixture to cool before transferring it into a clean bottle.

You can opt to strain the infused oil or leave the rosemary sprigs in. Nonetheless, you should throw away the garlic. Refrigerate the infused oil and enjoy it for a maximum of two weeks. 

What Is Botulism?

Botulism is a type of food poisoning caused by a toxin. Keeping your garlic-infused olive oil unrefrigerated can lead to the growth of bacteria, which causes botulism. Interestingly, the bacteria doesn’t affect the smell or taste of the oil.

This fatal food poisoning can lead to symptoms like having double vision, breathing difficulties, speech problems, and progressive paralysis.

You can lower the risk of botulism in your garlic-infused olive oil by refrigerating the mixture. The infused oil should be used for a maximum of one week. Discard any garlic-in-oil that has stayed for two hours at room temperature.

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Companies that manufacture infused olive oils add chemicals and other acids to reduce the risk of botulism.  

Ways to Use Garlic Infused Olive Oil

Apart from cooking, you can also find other ways to use garlic-infused oil. Garlic is known for its antifungal and antibacterial nature. It can also be used as a remedy for other conditions. Here’s a look at what you can do with this oil.

For Supporting Ear Health

Garlic was used by the ancient people as a traditional remedy for ear infections. Using garlic-infused oil not only helps your body fight against bacterial infection, but it also relieves the pain caused by the infection.

All you need is to warm the garlic-infused olive oil on low heat, allow it to cool, and picture in a tiny bottle. Sprinkle some drops into the ear using a dropper or cotton bud. Seek medical attention if the infection worsens or the pain persists. 

For Cold & Cough Symptoms

Garlic is a natural antibiotic, which means it may help alleviate cold and cough symptoms. Indians are known to use garlic oil to treat fever and infections due to its immune-boosting factors like Vitamin B6, B1, C, phosphorus, and iron. 

For Alleviating Acne Symptoms

Garlic is rich in zinc, copper, selenium, and allicin, which boost skin health. Moreover, its anti-inflammatory properties help to relax the skin. For this remedy to work, combine some drops of garlic-infused olive oil to a facial paste. Apply it on your face and allow it to rest for ten minutes before rinsing off with cold water.


Making garlic-infused olive oil at home is simple. However, you need to be cautious when selecting the type of garlic to use. Avoid using canned or bottled garlic as this doesn’t give you that flavor and can lead to botulism when moisture forms inside the garlic. Remember that you can experiment with herbs and other ingredients for extra flavor.