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Don’t have garlic powder, or realized you’re all out while you’re making a recipe? Here’s the best garlic powder substitute.

Garlic powder substitute

Making a recipe but don’t have garlic powder? Garlic powder is the dehydrated and ground form of garlic. It takes this popular member of the onion family and distills it down into its essence. It captures some of the pungent, savory flavor of garlic in shelf-stable form. Garlic powder is often used in seasoning blends, in particular seasoning salt, taco seasoning, and more.

Garlic powder is a unique ingredient that’s difficult to replace. But do you need a quick fix in the middle of a recipe? Here’s the best garlic powder substitute! Keep in mind, what to use depends on the specific recipe.

Best garlic powder substitute

1. Garlic flakes

The best garlic powder substitute? Garlic flakes. These dehydrated pieces of minced garlic best known for their use in Everything Bagel seasoning. If you happen to have them on hand, they’re perfect for using here. Here are the replacement ratios to follow:

  • Substitute 1 teaspoon garlic flakes for ½ teaspoon garlic powder.
  • Grind up the garlic flakes and use them as a 1:1 substitute!

2. Fresh garlic

Another great garlic powder replacement? Fresh garlic. Now, if you don’t have garlic powder, you might not have fresh garlic either! But in case you do, it’s a natural substitute. In fact, your meal will taste even better! Here’s the replacement ratio to follow:

  • Use 1 medium garlic clove to substitute for ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.

3. Chives.

A decent replacement for garlic powder? Chives. Chives have a light onion-y garlic flavor that evokes the savory scent of garlic. They’re part of the same plant family as garlic! It’s not perfect, but it’s close. Keep in mind, this would not work in places where you need a dry powder, like in seasoning blends or as a dry rub for fish. Here’s the ratio to follow:

  • Substitute 1 tablespoon minced chives for ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.

4. Shallot

Another decent garlic substitute? Shallots. Shallots also have a onion-y garlic flavor that can evokes the scent of garlic. It’s not perfect, but again: it’s close. Like chives, don’t use this in recipes where you need a dry powder. Here’s the ratio to follow:

  • Substitute 1 tablespoon minced shallot for ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.

5. Cumin (in a pinch).

A last ditch replacement for garlic powder? Cumin. This is not a flavor replacement, but the complexity can mimic the intrigue of garlic. Use this only in a pinch. Here’s the ratio to follow:

  • Substitute ⅛ teaspoon cumin for ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.

Here are some of our favorite recipes with garlic powder:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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