How to Make Roast Garlic in the Air Fryer

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Roast Garlic in Air Fryer for a buttery, garlicky addition to all of your favorite dishes! Pizza, pasta, soups, and sauces — all could benefit from a little extra flavor. You can even use air fryer roasted garlic as a spread on sandwiches or in mashed potatoes!

Titled Image: Air Fryer Roasted Garlic


Roast Garlic in Air Fryer

It’s no surprise that I love cooking with garlic — this is The Slow Roasted Italian, after all! 

But it can be a pain to heat up the whole oven just for a small bulb or two, which got me thinking… Can you roast garlic in an air fryer?

I’m happy to report that it’s not only easy to make roasted garlic in the air fryer, but it may be my new favorite method!

Add it to the list of air fryer hacks like roasting pumpkin seeds, crisping strips of bacon, or making perfect, easy-to-peel hard boiled eggs.

air fryer roasted garlic ingredients

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Whole Head of Garlic – Look for fresh, plump bulbs that are firm without any sprouts or soft spots.

    Those that are larger are more likely to have evenly sized, substantial cloves inside.
  • Olive Oil – This helps to tenderize and brown the cloves, plus it adds a dimension of flavor. Other great alternatives include avocado oil, coconut oil, or vegetable oil.
  • Maple Syrup – Hear me out! This really boosts the caramelization, and the sweetness balances that pungent savory flavor of the cloves.

    Feel free to swap this with another sweetener like honey, agave nectar, or brown sugar, or leave it out entirely.

    Keep in mind that each sweetener will taste a little different.
  • Salt and Pepper – Kosher salt enhances the natural flavors without tasting too salty. Keep the pepper to a minimum (just a pinch) or leave it off if you prefer.
tops cut off of garlic

Pro Tips for Roasted Garlic in Air Fryer

  • Don’t overcrowd the basket.

Be sure to leave ample space between each head of garlic so the hot air can properly circulate. 

If you try to cram too many in there, you’ll get uneven results and it will take much longer overall to roast garlic in the air fryer.

  • Expose all of the cloves — even the tiny ones!

There may be a few that are tucked more on the underside of the bulb, and you’ll want those to roast as well. 

Don’t cut all the way across to reach these or you’ll lose too much of the larger cloves.

Instead, trim into the side of the bulb with a paring knife to remove the tops of the smaller ones.

  • Try out different flavor variations.

Grate some lemon or orange zest over the cloves before roasting to add some brightness. A little goes a long way!

You can also toss air fryer roasted garlic with herbs like rosemary, thyme, or oregano to amp up the freshness.

And for a tangy and sweet variation, swap the maple syrup with balsamic vinegar!

olive oil, maple syrup, salt and pepper whisked in a bowl

Storing and Freezing Roasted Garlic

If you plan to use your roasted garlic within a week, it’s safe to keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

For longer storage, freezing is your friend! Mash the cloves after you roast garlic in the air fryer, while they are still soft.

Place them in an ice cube tray and freeze until solid, then transfer to a freezer-safe bag.

This way, you can use just what you need in small portions! Roasted garlic will last for up to 3 months in the freezer.

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

  • Air Fryer – Different brands and sizes may require different cooking times, so be familiar with your model and make adjustments as needed.
  • Sharp Knife – In order to roast garlic in an air fryer, you’ll need to cleanly slice off the tops of the bulbs to expose the cloves inside.
  • Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil – This is thicker and sturdier than regular foil, meaning it won’t tear as easily.
roasted garlic in air fryer basket

Air Fryer Roasted Garlic FAQ

Can you roast garlic in an air fryer?

Yes! You can roast whole heads of garlic or individual cloves — whichever you prefer.

It’s an easy way to enjoy that incredible flavor without heating up your whole house with the oven. And, roasted garlic in the air fryer is ready in about half the time as the oven!

Does roasting garlic make it less strong?

In a sense. When you roast garlic in an air fryer, it transforms that sharp, pungent flavor into something more buttery and sweet.

The overall intensity is also milder, but it still packs a fantastic flavor punch!

Can I make this recipe in the oven instead?

Sure! Instead of leaving the garlic heads whole, remove and peel the individual cloves. Toss them with the olive oil and maple syrup mixture, then spread them into a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet.

Roast for 40 to 45 minutes at 375°F, or until the cloves are tender and golden brown.

How do you use air fryer roasted garlic?

The real question is what can you not add this to? Mix them right into mashed potatoes with the butter and your other fixings. Because of the creamy texture, it will blend in seamlessly while adding more flavor than garlic powder ever could!

You can also toss softened cloves into a food processor with chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, and salt for a creamy, flavorful hummus. Or mash the cloves and whisk them with olive oil, vinegar, Dijon mustard, and a touch of honey for a simple salad vinaigrette (also tasty on veggies).

To use whole cloves, reduce the cooking time so they are still slightly firm. Then, toss them into pasta dishes or use in my no-knead skillet bread recipe.

air fryer roasted garlic

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closeup up of air fryer roasted garlic

closeup of air fryer roasted garlic

How to Make Roast Garlic in the Air Fryer

Donna Elick
Learn how to Roast Garlic in the Air Fryer with a few simple ingredients. Even better, you can roast 4 whole heads of garlic in 30 minutes!
5 stars from 1 review
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Condiment
Cuisine American
Method Air Fryer
Servings 4 cookies



  • 4 large heads of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • pinch black pepper


  • Slice off the tops of the garlic cloves, leaving their shells on.
  • Place each clove in an aluminum foil sheet large enough to create a little garlic basket.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, maple syrup, salt, and black pepper. Give it a good whisk.
  • Drizzle this magical mixture over the garlic cloves.
  • Wrap up the garlic cloves in aluminum foil, making sure they’re evenly spaced in the air fryer basket to let that hot air work its magic.
  • Pop them into the air fryer and roast the garlic for approximately 25 minutes.
  • Once those golden, fragrant garlic cloves emerge from the air fryer, let them cool for a moment.
  • Unwrap them from their foil blankets and give them a gentle squeeze to release the creamy, roasted goodness from their shells.

Donna’s Notes

Always use fresh, plump garlic for the best flavor. Look for bulbs that are firm and free of sprouts or soft spots.
Make sure to space out the garlic heads in the air fryer basket to ensure proper air circulation. Overcrowding can lead to uneven cooking.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 71cal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 146mg | Sugar: 1g | Fiber: 0.1g | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Air Fryer Roasted Garlic - PIN

Originally published November 2023

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