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How to Make Garlic-Infused Oil at Home (Low FODMAP)

Low FODMAP & Gut Health Recipes | May 16, 2022

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This easy homemade garlic-infused oil recipe is a staple to have in your home if you follow a low FODMAP diet for IBS. It’s packed full of garlic flavour, but without the FODMAPs! It’s the perfect gut friendly cooking oil for people who are sensitive to the FODMAP in garlic called fructans.

What are fructans? It’s not just a funny word. Fructans are a type of fermentable carbohydrate that can increase gas production, bloating, and abdominal pain for some people with IBS. When following a low FODMAP diet, particularly during the elimination phase, it is recommended to avoid fructans. And yes, garlic is a BIG source of fructans in our regular diets. After all, garlic is used in so many different cuisines and dishes. Try using this homemade garlic-infused oil in low FODMAP recipes like our favourite roasted red pepper hummus.

As a gut health dietitian, I often recommend that people buy garlic infused oil such as this one from Fody Foods but it’s also so easy to make!

Is garlic infused oil low FODMAP?

Yes – and here’s why:

Fructans, as well as other FODMAPs are water soluble, meaning that they will leach out into things with a water-base, like a soup stock or broth. However, FODMAPs are not fat soluble. This means that when garlic is combined with oil, the FODMAPs (fructans) remain in the garlic, but don’t actually escape into the oil. By removing the garlic, we are then left with the a garlic flavored oil without the FODMAPs. The science of food is so cool!

NOTE: Although many garlic-infused oils are low FODMAP, there are some store-bought oils on the market that have chunks of garlic in them. Therefore, not all pre-made garlic oils are safe – if there are visible chunks of garlic or garlic powder, the oil is going to contain FODMAPs.

Storing Garlic-Infused Oil Correctly

Does garlic-infused oil need to be refrigerated? Can you freeze it? How soon should you consume it? These are important questions, as homemade garlic-infused oil is not a shelf stable product and can spoil quickly.

Does garlic infused oil need to be refrigerated?

Because it is not shelf stable, we suggest that this oil be refrigerated after it’s made and used within 3 days. Making this oil in small amounts is best so you don’t end up throwing it away!

Can garlic infused oil be frozen?

If you can’t utilize the oil within 3 days, there is another storage option – freezing it! You can indeed freeze garlic-infused oil and this protects the integrity of the product (ie. less likely to develop harmful bacteria) for much longer. If this is your plan, we suggest making a double or triple batch to freeze, which can save you some time in the future!

Tips to freeze garlic infused oil

The only problem – freezing in a large portion will make it difficult to access small amounts for various recipes. It’s not very food-safe to thaw and refreeze this oil over and over. Instead, freeze the oil in smaller amounts like in an ice cube tray. Once it’s frozen in small cubes, pop them into a larger container with an airtight seal for peak freshness! When it’s time to use the oil, you can let it thaw naturally or add it immediately to a preheated pan – for example if you’re making a low FODMAP stir-fry with it!

What Oil Works Best for Garlic-Infused Oil?

We’ve chosen olive oil for this recipe, but garlic-infused oil can be made with any neutral, mild cooking oil like canola oil, avocado oil, or vegetable oil. If you’re using this oil for mediterranean flavours like greek salad or pasta sauce, olive oil is my suggestion!

A jar filled with oil and a bulb of garlic sitting on a cutting board
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Homemade Garlic-Infused Oil (Low FODMAP)

Using low FODMAP garlic-infused oil is an easy and delicious way to get garlic flavour without actually consuming high FODMAP garlic. Perfect for people with IBS!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Servings: 5 servings (1 tbsp each)

Equipment

  • 1 small pot
  • 1 small jar or container with airtight lid; rinse with hot or boiling water before use

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil (or other neutral cooking oil)
  • 3 cloves garlic (peeled & cut into quarters)

Instructions

  • In a small pot, heat oil over low heat until it is warm to the touch. It does not need to be sizzling or bubbling.
  • Once the oil is warm, turn off the heat completely. Add the pieces of garlic and allow the oil and garlic to sit for 1-2 hours depending on the strength of flavour you want.
  • Strain the oil into a clean jar or container using a fine mesh strainer, ensuring all pieces of garlic are separated and removed from the oil. In a sealed jar this oil will safely keep in the refrigerator for 3 days.

Notes

Make it last: If you want to make a larger batch of oil to use later in recipes, this oil can be frozen for up to 3 months. Try freezing it in ice-cube trays and then storing the cubes in an airtight container, so you can use smaller portions in your favourite recipes. 
Add more flavour: If you’re looking to amp up the flavour even more, try adding your favourite low FODMAP herbs into the oil while the garlic infuses. Some of my favourite additions are rosemary, thyme, and basil.

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