Garlic is a staple ingredient in many recipes, but mincing it can be a chore. It’s hard to mince a few cloves quickly and easily when bits of garlic cling to the knife blade and need to be removed repeatedly, and it's hard to avoid getting garlic-scented fingers in the process. That being said, pre-minced garlic in a jar does not compare to fresh garlic when it comes to flavor—this is where a garlic press comes in handy. Besides being ideal for small quantities of garlic, many can be used without peeling the cloves first.
Garlic presses come in a number of styles, shapes, and colors. To help you figure out which one is right for your needs, we tested them side by side and evaluated each on their design, performance, versatility, ease of use, ease of cleaning, and overall value. We tested them out on garlic, ginger, mint, and more to get a clear look at their performance.
Here are the best garlic presses, according to our testing.
Best Overall: OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Garlic Press
Large enough for multiple cloves
Reverse handle loosens peels from press
Soft, non-slip grip handles
Sturdy high-quality construction
Yield was lower than expected
Who else recommends it? Delish and Good Housekeeping both picked the OXO Good Grips Soft-Handled Garlic Press.
What do buyers say? 93% of 30,900+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.
This press is designed for hand comfort, with soft, non-slip handles that absorb pressure. Our tester found that pushing through a garlic clove took moderate pressure, but it didn’t leave her hand cramped afterward. The large-capacity chamber can hold a couple of cloves at a time. OXO says the hole pattern is designed to get the maximum amount of usable garlic with the least effort, but our tester found that both peeled and unpeeled cloves left a fair amount of garlic behind.
When you’re done, you can flip the handles in the opposite direction, and supposedly a built-in cleaner loosens the peels. However, our tester found that this self-cleaning function was not as effective as hoped—she had to tap the press and scrape out the garlic excess manually. Thankfully though the press is dishwasher-safe and can also easily be washed by hand. Some customers have reported that the press can snap in half after long-term use, but our reviewer had no such issues during the testing window.
Price at time of publish: $19
Material: Die-cast zinc, plastic | Dimensions: 2 x 1 x 7 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"This press is comfortable to hold, and it takes moderate pressure to push through a garlic clove, working best with a bit of additional pressure at the end. The mince size is quite fine."
Best Press and Peeler Kit: Alpha Grillers Garlic Press and Peeler Set
Includes a peeler tube
Produces a fine mince
Easy to push handles together
Lower yield than others
The Alpha Grillers garlic press is made from heavy-duty stainless steel, so it’s strong enough to crush unpeeled garlic and won’t stain, rust, or retain odors. The handles are designed for comfort, making it easy to squeeze, and when it’s time for cleaning, the press is dishwasher-safe.
Our tester tried pressing peeled cloves, prepping them with the included peeler tube. They found that inserting one clove at a time and rolling the tube on the counter removed the peels with a few motions, but noted that it may get tiring to peel a whole bulb's worth of garlic this way. However, our tester also found that the hinge was easy to move and push together without cramping or exerting your hand.
The manufacturer says this press is capable of crushing ginger and nuts as well, but our tester was disappointed with these results. The press mostly turned ginger to juice and jammed up the chamber with peanut solids, so it’s best reserved for garlic cloves. Whether you're a kitchen novice or a frequent cook who wants to speed up prep time, this press is a solid and reliable choice.
Price at time of publish: $15
Material: Stainless steel, silicone | Dimensions: 7.5 x 2.6 inches x 1.4 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"The garlic is finely minced, but the yield is 25 percent of that of some other tested presses for an unpeeled clove, and half for a peeled one. Almost as much additional garlic squeezes up over the plunger and gets caught in the top handle."
Best Rocker: Joseph Joseph Garlic Rocker
Turns garlic to mince instead of paste
Requires minimal storage space
Doesn't require much hand strength or force
Must press several times for fine mince
Unlike a standard garlic press, this garlic rocker doesn’t have any moving parts, which makes it ideal for folks who may struggle with squeezing a press (it also requires less storage space). All you need to do is put a garlic clove on your work surface, place the press on top, and while applying a little pressure, rock it back and forth to squeeze the garlic through the holes. Then, just scoop the garlic out to use in recipes.
Our tester liked this press for peeled garlic and even oversized unpeeled cloves. The large square holes produced a mince more typical of knife-cut garlic, but repeating the process gives a finer mince with the same high yield. The press also worked great with ginger during testing, only leaving a small amount of fibers behind. This stainless steel tool is dishwasher-safe, but our tester found it easy to hand wash. As a bonus, the stainless steel helped remove the garlic scent from her hands as she cleaned the press.
Price at time of publish: $15
Material: Stainless Steel | Dimensions: 7.3 x 2 x 1 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"The skin tends to work through the holes, so I recommend peeling, and the garlic pushes entirely into the holes, so the final yield is higher than that of the tested squeeze-style presses. The rocker comes with a small spoon."
Best High-End: Dreamfarm Garject Self-Cleaning Garlic Press with Peel Eject
Requires little pressure
Avoids garlic contact with your hands
Minces multiple cloves of garlic at once
Doesn't slice garlic
Not great for mincing ginger
Dreamfarm loves to come up with creative mash-up names for its cooking tools. In this case, Garject is a mashup of garlic and eject. Our tester liked the innovative features of this press: The integrated scraper tool rubs across the face of the press to neatly scrape the garlic off, so there’s no need to use a knife to retrieve the last bits of garlicky goodness.
Our tester was very impressed with the performance of this press—especially how it can fit multiple cloves of garlic and produce a consistent fine mince. Even with unpeeled garlic cloves, the result was thorough and neat. She also loved how you can avoid having to touch your fingers directly to the garlic, saving you from that unpleasant lingering smell on your hands.
Although this gadget comes at a higher price than others, rest assured it's of a superior quality and performance. The sleek design makes for a high-end aesthetic and will last years and years.
Price at time of publish: $55
Material: Chrome-plated zinc and plastic | Dimensions: 7.6 x 2 x 2 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
" I've never really felt the need for a garlic press but the fact that it peels and minces multiple cloves at once really sold me. The consistency of the minced garlic is great and it had no problem separating the peel—and then quickly extracting it from the hopper using the eject button."
Best Twisting Press: NexTrend 3rd Generation Clear Garlic Twist
Great for garlic, ginger, shallots, and more
Clear polycarbonate for easy viewing
Produces very fine mince
Does not work well for ginger
Believe it or not, this is for garlic and not dried herbs. This model made entirely from clear polycarbonate uses a twisting action. You simply place peeled garlic (or nuts or herbs) in the bowl, put the top on, and twist to grind and mince the garlic as much as you like. Since the vessel is clear, you can see how coarse or fine the garlic is without opening it. Our tester needed a little practice to get the minced garlic to gather into neat triangles free of the cutting teeth; it was easiest to do this with two or more cloves in the device.
The Garlic Twist can be used for peeled shallots, small peppers, and more. Our tester doesn’t recommend it for herbs, which it tended to rip apart and crush, but found it made neat work of garlic and peanuts. The twisting produces a very crushed and fine mince that is borderline paste texture-wise. This is the fourth generation of this design, so improvements have been made over the original, making it even better at mincing garlic evenly. It is also dishwasher-safe.
Price at time of publish: $19
Material: Polycarbonate plastic | Dimensions: 3.5 x 2 x 3.5 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"Once you get the first twist the remaining motions become much easier as the product quickly minces the garlic and begins to turn it into somewhat of a paste. Throw a little salt in the grinding chamber and you can have a nice paste after a minute or so of twisting."
Best for Kids Helping: Chef'n GarlicZoom Garlic Chopper
Can be used one-handed
Easy for kids to use
Chops more than just garlic
Comfortable ergonomic design
Doesn't work well on unpeeled garlic
This has spinning blades that chop and mince the garlic. It operates by rolling the wheels back and forth on your work surface, and since the blades are completely enclosed during use, kids can use this to help with cooking. Testing found how comfortable and nice it felt to do this rolling motion, thanks to the soft ergonomic design. The more rolling, the more finely the garlic is chopped. Even better, leafy herbs like mint can be tossed in and chopped as well.
Our tester liked how gently tapping the chopper against a countertop drops almost all of the garlic on the hinged doors, where it’s easy to scrape out with a spoon and avoid brushing your fingers against the blades. With the blades vertically aligned (faint impressions on the clear plastic show the placement), the roller base pops out so that you can tap it again to remove the remaining bits. Our tester also noted that although this roller is efficient at mincing, it does not produce very uniform results. There were some larger uneven chunks, so keep that in mind. Overall. its safe and easy features make this garlic chopper a fun option for kids to use in the kitchen.
Price at time of publish: $17
Material: Plastic | Dimensions: 2.25 x 2.5 x 3.5 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"Once you get the blades to spin once, the process is much easier so cut your cloves into smaller pieces before mincing if needed. The garlic press was effective at mincing the garlic, however the end result could have been finer and more uniform."
Best Value: Dreamfarm Garject Lite
Intuitive and easy to use
Works well on peeled and unpeeled garlic
Cannot mince ginger
If you're looking for a more affordable alternative to our highly-rated Dreamfarm Garject Press, look no further than this lightweight plastic version. It has all the same features—fine mincing results, an eject button, and multiple clove capacity—at half the price. And since it is constructed of plastic, it's a lot lighter than the original metal press.
Our tester highlighted how efficiently this press worked, handling multiple cloves with ease and extracting the peel easily. She also noted how the included scraper mechanism made the garlic extraction and clean-up a breeze. Plus, the plastic handle makes it comfortable to grip. For effortless and perfectly minced garlic in minutes, this sturdy little tool is your answer.
Price at time of publish: $25
Material: Nylon plastic | Dimensions: 7.76 x 2.13 x 2.09 inches | Dishwasher-Safe: Yes
"This performs as advertised, is easy to use, and doesn't seem flimsy or like it might break. This is a quality garlic press that peels and minces garlic efficiently and with minimal effort."
How We Tested
We sent seven garlic presses to our experienced product tester, who tried each one out with peeled and unpeeled garlic cloves as well as other items that included ginger, mint, soft nuts, and more. Each garlic press was rated on design, comfort, versatility, performance, ease of use, ease of cleaning, and overall value. Many garlic presses were also tested by our team of editors in order to ensure even more authentic feedback. All testers offered detailed insights on the strengths and weaknesses of each.
What to Look for in a Garlic Press
Most garlic presses push garlic through holes by squeezing together two handles, which can require a fair amount of hand strength and often works best with two hands. Other versions let you use both hands to rock or twist the tool to mince the garlic. There are also single-hand choppers with blades that cut the garlic to the desired size.
The overall size of a garlic press can affect where you store it, but specific parts of the press matter as well. The chamber size determines whether you can press one or more cloves of garlic at a time; the larger the chamber, the more cloves it can hold and the more pressure you may need to start squeezing. The hole size and shape dictate what the pressed garlic looks like. Small, round holes tend to make a coarse garlic paste. Large, square holes create more of a mince.
Knife vs. Press
A sharp stainless or carbon steel chef’s knife does a good job of crushing and mincing garlic—you smash the garlic with the side of the knife, then turn the knife perpendicular to the cutting board and use a rocking motion (with one hand on top of the knife) to cut the pieces to the size you want. If your knives are ceramic, dull, or too small to use the rocking technique, mincing garlic with a knife can be a pain.
A press makes quick work of a clove or two of garlic at a time, and most presses actually work best if you don’t spend time peeling the garlic first. Often, you can squeeze the garlic straight into your prep bowl or pan, and the best ones easily release the peel and remaining garlic. That squeezing action also releases loads of alliinase, which can make pressed sharper in flavor than knife-chopped garlic.
How do you use a garlic press?
With the squeeze design of many garlic presses, squeezing the handles together causes the press’s hinge to close and a plunger to extrude the garlic in the chamber through a screen of holes. Then you scrape the pressed garlic free, open the handles, and remove the remaining peel and skin. Other presses may have you rock, twist, or roll the device to push the garlic through the device’s holes or blades.
“I think that people get frustrated with using a garlic press because they often make the mistake of using peeled garlic cloves, which tend to get stuck in the little holes and make the press harder to clean," says Kristen Hartke, food writer, recipe developer, and culinary producer for Carla Hall. The trick is to use unpeeled garlic cloves—the skin is thin enough to allow the garlic flesh to press through, but the skin also still stays intact.”
What else can you use a garlic press for?
Some garlic presses and choppers have the strength or versatility to mince other foods like ginger, leafy herbs, chilies, seeds, and soft nuts. Check the manufacturer’s instructions for specific uses to avoid gumming up your press.
Ginger is a common secondary use for a garlic press. It often works best to peel the ginger and cut it into small pieces before you put it in the press, though. The more fibrous the ginger, the more likely you are to get pungent pulp and juice instead of finely minced pieces.
How do you clean a garlic press?
The quicker you clean a press after using it, the easier it will be to remove remaining garlic skin and flesh. A few dunks in a bowl of soapy water and a rinse under a running faucet typically does the trick. A short soak and dish scrubber can remove leftover garlic bits and juice later on. Many presses are dishwasher-safe, too.
Stainless steel presses have an added advantage: the metal binds with the garlic’s sharp-smelling molecules, so as you rub your hands over the stainless steel parts, it reduces the garlic odor on your fingers.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Julie Laing has been a writer and editor for more than 25 years and published her first cookbook, "The Complete Guide to Pickling," in 2020. She puts garlic in almost everything, from pickles and salsas to hummus and pear preserves. Julie personally tested all seven of the garlic presses in this roundup.
This article was updated by Katya Weiss-Andersson, a writer and editor who has nearly a decade of experience as a professional chef. Katya is a born-and-bred garlic girlie who uses three to four cloves per every one clove called for in the recipe.
The 8 Best Garlic Presses Of 2022. Delish. https://www.delish.com/kitchen-tools/cookware-reviews/g39539215/best-garlic-presses/
5 Best Garlic Presses of 2021. Good Housekeeping. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/cooking-tools/g35050160/best-garlic-presses/