How many teaspoons is 4 cloves of minced garlic?

When cooking with garlic, it’s important to know how to properly measure it. Garlic provides wonderful aromatic flavor to dishes, but too much can make a recipe taste unpleasantly strong. Measuring garlic by the clove can be imprecise. The size of cloves can vary greatly, from small nubs to large plump cloves. For consistent results, many cooks prefer to measure garlic by the teaspoon. But how many teaspoons are in 4 cloves of minced garlic? Let’s take a closer look.

What is a clove of garlic?

First, it’s helpful to understand what constitutes a clove of garlic. The garlic bulb is made up of multiple individual cloves, each with its own papery skin. The cloves grow in segments around a central stem emerging from the head. The size and number of cloves in a head of garlic can vary quite a bit. There might be as few as 10 or as many as 50 cloves per bulb. Larger cloves from mammoth garlic bulbs could weigh as much as 3-4 grams each. Tiny cloves may weigh less than 1 gram.

How to mince garlic

For this measurement, we are interested in minced garlic. So what exactly does “minced” mean? Here are some tips for mincing garlic:

  • Peel the papery outer skin from the garlic clove. Discard skins.
  • Trim the ends of the clove off, exposing the interior clove.
  • Lay the clove flat on a cutting board. Place the side of a chef’s knife on top and press down firmly to smash and crush the clove.
  • Gather the crushed garlic in a pile and rock the knife back and forth over it to chop finely.
  • Continue mincing and scraping the garlic against the cutting board until it forms a paste-like consistency.
  • Scrape up the minced garlic and add it to your recipe.

Mincing helps release garlic’s pungent oils and provides broader flavor distribution than slicing or dicing. It also makes it easier to measure in teaspoons.

How many teaspoons in a clove of garlic?

So how much minced garlic equals a clove? Here are some general guidelines:

  • A small clove (2 grams) = 1/4 teaspoon
  • A medium clove (3 grams) = 1/2 teaspoon
  • A large clove (5 grams) = 3/4 teaspoon

Keep in mind clove sizes can vary. But in general, an average medium sized clove of garlic weighs around 3 grams and will produce approximately 1/2 teaspoon of minced garlic.

Cups, tablespoons and teaspoons

Before we can calculate how many teaspoons are in 4 cloves, let’s review some key measurements:

  • 1 teaspoon = 5 ml
  • 1 tablespoon = 3 teaspoons = 15 ml
  • 1/4 cup = 4 tablespoons = 12 teaspoons = 60 ml
  • 1/3 cup = 5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon = 16 teaspoons = 80 ml
  • 1/2 cup = 8 tablespoons = 24 teaspoons = 120 ml
  • 1 cup = 16 tablespoons = 48 teaspoons = 240 ml

Knowing these conversions allows us to determine the teaspoon amount based on the number of garlic cloves.

How many teaspoons in 4 cloves of minced garlic?

Okay, let’s get to the main question – how many teaspoons are in 4 cloves of minced garlic? Since the average clove produces around 1/2 teaspoon minced, we can do the math:

  • 1 clove = 1/2 teaspoon
  • 2 cloves = 1 teaspoon
  • 3 cloves = 1 1/2 teaspoons
  • 4 cloves = 2 teaspoons

So there you have it – 4 average sized cloves of garlic, when minced, will yield approximately 2 teaspoons of garlic.

Tips for cooking with minced garlic

Here are some handy tips for cooking with minced garlic:

  • Add it early – For the most flavor infusion, add minced garlic early so it has time to mellow and incorporate.
  • Sauté it – Briefly cooking garlic intensifies its sweetness and takes away harsh raw edge.
  • Watch the heat – Garlic can burn quickly. Cook over medium-low heat.
  • Make a paste – Mixing minced garlic with a little oil or butter before adding helps prevent burning.
  • Roast whole cloves – For mild sweetness, roast whole unpeeled garlic cloves until tender and caramelized.

Garlic is used in cuisines around the world to add its unique pungent, sweet and savory qualities. Understanding how to measure it properly helps ensure recipes turn out balanced and flavorful. With this knowledge of how many teaspoons are in 4 cloves of minced garlic, you can boost the flavor of soups, stews, sauces, roasted vegetables, and more.

Other common garlic measurements

Here are some other handy garlic conversions:

  • 1 garlic clove = 1/2 teaspoon minced
  • 2 cloves = 1 teaspoon minced
  • 6 cloves = 1 tablespoon minced
  • 1 head of garlic = 2 tablespoons minced (about 12-15 cloves)
  • 1/8 cup chopped garlic = 12 cloves
  • 1/4 cup chopped garlic = 24 cloves

Remember clove size can vary, so these conversions are approximations. When a recipe calls for minced garlic by the teaspoon, you can use the guidelines above to determine how many cloves you need.

Substituting garlic powder

Fresh minced garlic has a stronger, brighter flavor compared to ground dried garlic powder. But in a pinch, you can substitute powder in place of fresh:

  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder = 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder = 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder = 6 cloves garlic, minced

However, garlic powder lacks the full nuance and pungency of fresh garlic. For best flavor, use fresh garlic when possible.

Storing garlic

To get the most out of your garlic:

  • Store whole bulbs in a cool, dry place away from sunlight. Do not refrigerate.
  • Use fresh garlic within a few weeks of purchasing for optimal flavor.
  • Wrap peeled/minced garlic tightly and refrigerate for up to 4-5 days.
  • Freeze minced garlic in oil or water in ice cube trays for longer storage. Defrost before using.

Pickling garlic

For an additional way to enjoy garlic, consider pickling it. Here is a quick pickled garlic recipe:


  • 1 cup peeled garlic cloves
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 bay leaf


  1. Peel garlic cloves and place in a sterilized jar.
  2. In a saucepan, bring vinegar, salt, sugar, peppercorns, coriander and bay leaf to a boil.
  3. Pour hot brine over garlic cloves to cover. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  4. Cover jar and refrigerate for at least 1 week before using to allow flavors to develop.
  5. Store pickled garlic for up to 3 months refrigerated.

Pickled garlic cloves add a tasty punch of flavor to sandwiches, salads, pizza, hummus and more. The brine mellows their bite.

Garlic equivalents table

For easy reference, here is a table summarizing garlic equivalents covered in this article:

Garlic Equivalent
1 small clove 1/4 teaspoon minced
1 medium clove 1/2 teaspoon minced
1 large clove 3/4 teaspoon minced
4 cloves 2 teaspoons minced
1/8 cup chopped 12 cloves
1/4 cup chopped 24 cloves
1 head garlic 2 tablespoons minced
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1 clove minced
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder 2 cloves minced


Understanding conversions for minced garlic allows you to translate measurements in recipes. On average, 4 whole cloves of garlic produce around 2 teaspoons minced. But clove size can vary, so taste as you go to adjust amounts to suit your taste buds. With this handy guide to garlic equivalents and conversions, you can enhance your dishes with the perfect amount of garlic flavor.

Leave a Comment