Rich, fresh garlic, slowly cooked and roasted in olive oil on the grill and smoked to perfection is the perfect way to elevate side dishes, spreads for breads or charcuterie, and much more.
Roasting garlic in the oven or on the grill is not a new concept, but it is so worth doing! I’ve always been a huge garlic fan, whether it’s raw or sauted, but there is something special about slow roasted in rich olive oil and infused with rosemary to really make your taste buds say wow and your eyeballs roll to the back of your head.
If you’re new to the concept of a confit, it literally means, “to preserve” in French. Typically this is done in fat. I prefer using a really high quality olive oil for my garlic confit.
I personally remove the garlic after it is fully roasted in the fat, and save the olive oil as a great option for infusing flavor into breads or other dishes.
Also I am kind of obsessed with pairing it with this Easy Cast Iron Focaccia Bread! It goes great with steak, chicken, veggies, and even in regular mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash too! Check out the steps below on how to smoke rosemary confit right at home!
- Small Pan/ Baking Dish
- Oven Mitt
Making garlic confit is really simple! This can obviously be done on the stove top or in the oven, but I really love the addition of light smoke added from the grill.
Because garlic is a stronger flavor in itself, I went with a lighter wood (pecan) so the smokiness is subtle and noticeable but not overpowering.
I use a small ceramic soup bowl (I love that it has a handle for easy maneuvering on and off the grill) and place my garlic cloves in the bottom.
Because I am admittedly sometimes lazy and had no desire to peel two heads of garlic, I buy the pre-peeled bags of fresh garlic (Aldi and Trader Joe’s carry this and I love that it’s fresh and easy to use).
How To Prep Your Garlic Confit-
Cover the garlic gloves completely with olive oil and place a little salt and a small spring of fresh rosemary into the center. If you want to try other herbs like thyme or oregano, those would work too. Or omit the herbs all together (but I think it adds a nice touch).
Get your grill smoke rolling and keep it a lower temperature. I roasted my garlic on indirect heat at 300 F for about an hour. Keeping a lower temperature is better for olive oil (it doesn’t have a high smoke point and we don’t want to start oil fires). You can do this method in your oven and on low heat on the stove top as well.
You’re looking for the garlic to slowly cook, caramelize, and ultimately tenderize. I remove it when it looks a nice golden brown color and smells fragrant. Allow it to cool before storing.
What You Should Know About Storing Roasted Garlic –
The culinary teacher in me wants to make sure you note some of the important food safety requirements for both infused olive oils and for the cooked garlic.
Garlic in this state can become unsafe if stored out in the open for a long period of time. Your best bet is to allow the garlic and oil to cool to room temperature, place he garlic and oil in a glass jar (plastic will absorb a lot of the flavors otherwise), and store for up to a week in the fridge.
If you don’t plan on using all the oil or garlic right away, you can freeze them in an ice cube tray as well and use as needed. Good quality olive oil will solidify in the refrigerator, that’s a good thing (since many olive oils are many times not actually pure olive oil).
Just allow the garlic and oil mixture to warm back up to room temperature or scoop some out and toss into the frying pan with your steak, chicken, or veggies too!
Don’t forget to try paring this smoked rosemary garlic confit with my Easy Cast Iron Keto Focaccia Bread! It is a serious game changer and also makes a great addition to a charcuterie board or my easy weeknight roast chicken too!
- 1 cup Peeled, Whole Garlic Cloves
- 1-2 cups High Quality Olive Oil
- Sea Salt
- Rosemary Sprig
- In the base of a small baking dish or ceramic pot, place the peeled whole garlic (I like to buy the fresh already peeled garlic from the store to make this super easy). Sprinkle with a little salt, add in the rosemary stalk, and cover the entire mixture with olive oil. Be sure it is fully submerged!
- Preheat your grill to 300 F and set it for indirect heat and get the smoke rolling. I prefer a lighter wood here (I used pecan) so that the flavors do not compete too heavily with the garlic and rosemary. Place the garlic mixture on the grill and smoke it for an hour. Remove from the heat and allow it to cool before storing.
To safely store your garlic and infused olive oil, keep it in a glass jar (plastic absorbs a lot of the flavor otherwise) and place in the fridge. Do not leave cooked garlic or infused oil to sit on the counter as this promotes potentially unsafe conditions for food. Store in the fridge for up to a week or freeze as well.