How to preserve ginger garlic paste

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “how to preserve ginger garlic paste” and discuss the methods used to preserve ginger garlic paste.

How to preserve ginger garlic paste

Ginger garlic paste can be preserved by:

  • Refrigerating 
  • Freezing 

Ginger garlic paste can be either store-bought or homemade. Garlic and ginger can be used biopreservative due to their antibacterial and antifungal properties to extend the shelf life of food (1). 

However, due to its initial high ph value (5.4), it can spoil easily by bacterial spoilage. It is necessary to apply preservation treatments on the assumption that their effects are synergistic and the rate of degradation is minimized. Spoilage in the ginger and garlic paste may result in the degradation of the physical characteristics like color, texture, flavor or aroma as well as microbial degradation  (3).

Store-bought ginger garlic paste has added preservatives and can be kept on the kitchen counter until it is opened. After opening it must be refrigerated and used according to the best-before date provided by the manufacturer.

Homemade ginger garlic paste can spoil fast since it does not have any added preservatives. It must be refrigerated soon after it is produced.

A simple method to extend the shelf life of homemade ginger garlic paste is to add 150 ppm (15 g in 1 kg) of sodium benzoate to the paste and heat it in the microwave prior to storage. The thermal treatment on a high power for 1 minute can extend the ginger garlic shelf life for up to 90 days at room temperature (2).

Another form is to add citric acid (an amount of 25% w/v) into the paste. This will lower the pH value to 4 – 4.5 and hinder the bacterial growth (3). 

How to refrigerate ginger garlic paste for preservation

Refrigerating preserves homemade ginger garlic paste for 7 to 10 days.

  • Transfer the ginger garlic paste into an airtight container, label it and refrigerate.
  • Use a clean dry spoon to transfer the paste into the container.
  • Use a small container that does not have much space after filling the paste. This will reduce the amount of air and preserve the paste for longer.
  • Place the ginger garlic paste away from the cut vegetables. Garlic has a strong smell and its odor may be absorbed by fruits and vegetables.
  • The color of the ginger garlic paste may change slightly when refrigerated. If it smells good, it’s good to eat.

Store-bought ginger garlic paste must also be refrigerated once opened.

How to freeze ginger garlic paste for preservation

Freezing preserves homemade ginger garlic paste for about 6 months.

To freeze ginger garlic paste:

  • Transfer the ginger garlic paste into an ice cube tray.
  • Place the tray in the freezer until the paste is completely frozen.
  • Remove the ginger garlic cubes from the tray.
  • Transfer the cubes into a ziplock bag.
  • Squeeze out the air, seal, label, and return it to the freezer.

There is no need to thaw the frozen paste before using.

How is ginger garlic paste made?

Ginger garlic paste can be easily made at home using just 4 ingredients: Ginger, garlic, oil and salt. Some recipes suggest using a 1:1 ratio of ginger to garlic, but you can adjust this according to your preference.

To make ginger garlic paste:

  • Wash and peel both ginger and garlic. Dry the ginger and garlic with paper towels before peeling.
  • Chop the ginger and garlic roughly. You can also use them without chopping. 
  • Transfer the ginger and garlic into a food processor. You can also grind the ginger and garlic together using a mortar and pestle. This would be time-consuming and tiring but can be done if you are only making a small quantity of paste.
  • Add salt and oil. You must use an oil with a light flavour such as avocado oil or mustard oil.
  • Grind the ingredients together.

Uses of ginger garlic paste

Ginger garlic paste is integral to many dishes of the Asian cuisine. Especially in Indian cuisine, ginger garlic paste is considered to be essential. It is used in most curries and even rice dishes such as biriyani.

Ginger garlic paste adds a good aroma and flavor to the dish.

Ginger garlic paste also aids in digestion and boosts immunity.

Making ginger garlic paste and preserving it in the refrigerator or freezer will save you a lot of time.

Tips for preserving ginger garlic paste

  • Use fresh ginger and garlic. Make sure that the ginger does not have any mold growth. The fresher the ginger and garlic, the longer the shelf-life of the paste.
  • Make sure that the garlic and ginger are free from water when grinding. Any water will cause the paste to spoil faster.
  • Make sure that the storage container is clean and dry. If you are using a glass jar, you could sanitize the jar by placing it in boiling water for a few minutes and then air drying.
  • When refrigerating, use a clean, dry spoon to take the needed amount from the ginger garlic paste.
  • Return the ginger garlic paste to the fridge as soon as possible. Do not keep it on the kitchen counter.
  • Use oil instead of water for mixing. Oil will increase the shelf-life of the product.
  • Garlic may turn green upon oxidizing with air. This does not affect the quality of the paste. If the paste smells fine, you can eat it. Once again using oil instead of water will reduce the chances of the paste turning green. You can also add a bit of vinegar during grinding to prevent the paste from turning green.

Besides, you can add citric acid (or lemon juice) to the paste, which will decrease the pH value and extend the shelf life by retarding bacterial growth. Salt is also a natural preservative for the ginger garlic paste (3). 

Other FAQs about Ginger that you may be interested in.

Can you eat ginger leaves?

Can you eat ginger raw?

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question “how to preserve ginger garlic paste” and discussed in depth the main methods used to preserve ginger garlic paste. We also looked at how ginger garlic paste is made.

If you have any questions or comments, please let us know.

References

  1. Olaniran, Abiola F., and Sumbo H. Abiose. Proximate and antioxidant activities of bio-preserved ogi flour with garlic and ginger. F1000Rese, 2018, 7.
  2. Akhtar, Javeed, P. K. Omre, and Mohd Aftab Alam. Effect on quality of developed ginger-garlic paste during storage. Int J App Pure Sci Agri, 2015, 1, 32-41.
  3. Topno, Priya Namrata, et al. Ginger–garlic paste in retort pouches and its quality. J Food Process Eng, 2013, 36, 1-8.