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Updated: 10 Jun 2022

Best garlic presses

We tested garlic presses from John Lewis, Lakeland, Le Creuset, Ikea and more, to find out which is the easiest to use and the most efficient at crushing garlic cloves
Olivia Woodhouse
Someone using a garlic press

A garlic press is an efficient way of prepping your garlic for cooking and it's much quicker and easier than finely chopping cloves of garlic with a knife. But if your garlic press is poorly designed, a nightmare to clean and more effort than it's worth, then it will take just as long as using a knife.

In October 2021, five researchers tested out garlic presses from Ikea, Jamie Oliver, Oxo, Joseph Joseph and more, ranging in price from £3 up to £40.

We assessed each garlic press for comfort, performance, mess and ease of cleaning, and put all of them through their paces by pressing a huge amount of garlic cloves with skin on and skin off.  

Prices and availability last checked: 6 June 2022.


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The best garlic presses from our test

Best Buy/Great Value: Ikea Koncis Garlic Press

Cheapest price: £4, available at Ikea, also available at Amazon.

Weight: 200g

Pros: Great at crushing cloves with skin on or off, minimal mess, easy to clean, lightweight

Cons: Detachable basket can fall out

Our verdict: It's the cheapest garlic press we tested and by far the best.

This great-value garlic press is excellent at crushing both peeled and unpeeled garlic with minimal wastage. 

It removes the garlic skin from cloves, and it's easy to clean off the minimal mess that's left behind. This garlic press feels comfortable to hold and squeeze together because of its straight handles.

Despite having a typical basket design, we found it easy to clean the garlic out of the small holes and crevices. 

However, although we didn't find this to be a massive issue, there is the potential for the basket to fall out during use.

Key features: Dishwasher-safe

How the rest fared

Here's our verdict on the rest of the garlic presses we tested, listed in alphabetical order.   

Jamie Oliver Garlic Slice and Press

Only available at Amazon: £13.10.

Weight: 400g

Pros: Great at removing garlic skin, good at pressing peeled and unpeeled cloves, minimal mess

Cons: Difficult to clean 

Our verdict: It would have been a Best Buy had it not been so tricky to clean.

We loved how satisfying it felt to press each clove with this garlic crusher. It has two sections to the main basket, so it can slice as well as dice garlic cloves. 

It's really consistent in removing the skin from the cloves if you don't fancy peeling them before crushing them. This made for minimal mess and there was very little wastage. 

The only issue we had with this garlic press was the difficulty in cleaning it. The design doubled the number of crevices where garlic could get stuck. The slicing basket, in particular, was very difficult to clean.

Key features: Dishwasher-safe

John Lewis Stainless Steel Garlic Press

Only available at John Lewis: £8 (out of stock).

Weight: 250g

Pros: Good grip

Cons: Uncomfortable to hold, basket gets caught, difficult to clean

Our verdict: We'd avoid this very average garlic press.

This press from John Lewis was average in terms of amount of mess, crushing the cloves and cleaning, but it was below average for comfort. 

We disliked the flex in the handles, which didn't allow enough pressure to be applied. 

We also noticed that the basket sometimes gets caught during use.

Key features: Dishwasher-safe, five-year guarantee 

Joseph Joseph Rocker Garlic Crusher

Cheapest price: £9.60, available at Dunelm, also available at Amazon, John Lewis.

Weight: 50g

Pros: Compact

Cons: Uncomfortable to use, messy, difficult to clean

Our verdict: A flimsy and impractical device for crushing garlic.

This crusher works by pressing and rocking on top of the garlic cloves to, in theory, leave the minced garlic in a neat pile on the top of the lattice. 

In practice, the clove gets stuck in the lattice and doesn't even make it past the garlic skin in some instances. 

You'll also have to clean the surface you're using it on, which adds to the mess you've already created from the crushed garlic. 

Researchers felt it was uncomfortable to press down on, and it felt flimsy to use, as the plastic flexes too much. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe, three-year guarantee if bought from Lakeland 

Kuhn Rikon Epicurean Steel Garlic Press

Only available at Amazon: £43.45.

Weight: 300g

Pros: Good with unpeeled cloves, easy to clean

Cons: Badly designed, messy, expensive

Our verdict: Poorly designed and overpriced. 

There are a lot of moving parts with this garlic press, which made it difficult to hold together during use. One of our researchers even managed to pinch their hand with it. 

However, this came in useful when it came to cleaning, because it made it easier to access usually hard-to-reach areas. 

It was fairly good at pressing peeled cloves, but it was slightly better at unpeeled cloves. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe but hand washing is recommended

Lakeland Garlic Slice and Dice

Only available at Lakeland: £11.99.

Weight: 120g

Pros: Two pressing attachments, not messy, easy to clean

Cons: Poorly designed, bad at pressing unpeeled cloves

Our verdict: A nice idea in theory, but one which is poorly executed.

This self-contained garlic slicer and dicer was a letdown for researchers. It has no grip on the bottom of the device, so it has a tendency to slide around during use. 

We found it didn't fare well with bigger cloves and generally required quite a lot of effort to press down. It was almost impossible to use with unpeeled cloves, and even with peeled cloves the cutter felt blunt. 

One handy thing about it is the removable tray that catches the garlic, creating minimal mess and aiding clean-up. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe, Lakeland three-year guarantee

Le Creuset Garlic Press

Only available at Le Creuset: £27 (out of stock).

Weight: 330g

Pros: Comfortable to hold, good for peeled cloves 

Cons: Not effective on unpeeled cloves, messy, hard to clean, expensive 

Our verdict: For the price we expected more.

Before we could even start using this garlic press, we were confused about where to put the cloves, but once we'd got to grips with it we found it comfortable to hold and use. 

It's better with unpeeled cloves, although there was still a lot of wastage. 

Despite having a rubber cleaning surface on one of the handles, there was a fair amount of mess during use. We also felt that the cleaning device simply moved the mess from one place to another. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe

Oxo Good Grips Garlic Press

Cheapest price: £14.99, available at Amazon, John Lewis, Robert Dyas, also available at Lakeland.

Weight: 360g

Pros: Comfortable to hold, OK for peeled cloves

Cons: Not great on unpeeled cloves, messy, hard to clean

Our verdict: As the name suggests, it's good to grip, but that's about it.

We found this garlic press to be almost impossible to use with unpeeled cloves, but it wasn't too bad with peeled cloves. With both types there's mess and wastage though.

It's comfortable to hold, and the rubber handles have good grip, but the rubber cleaning surface isn't very useful. 

Cleaning is difficult as there's a lot of residual garlic stuck in the basket. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe

Zyliss Susi Garlic Press

Cheapest price: £12 available at Dunelm, also available at Amazon, Lakeland, Ocado.

Weight: 130g

Pros: Good for peeled cloves, easy to clean

Cons: Not great for unpeeled cloves, feels cheaply made

Our verdict: If you're not interested in pressing unpeeled cloves, then this is a decent option. 

This garlic press was consistently average in most of our tests, which is more than we can say for the majority of garlic presses we tested. 

It's a solid option for pressing peeled cloves, but it really struggles with unpeeled cloves. We also noticed that it rattles a bit and feels rather cheaply made. 

However, we did find it really easy to clean, as it comes with a rubber brush that helps you to get to hard-to-reach areas. 

Key features: Dishwasher-safe, five-year manufacturer's guarantee

What's the best way to peel a garlic clove?

Peeling garlic is a tedious cooking task. We tried out a few techniques to see if we could find the best method.

  • Soaking in warm water - We left a garlic clove soaking in warm water for five minutes, and afterwards the skin slipped right off.
  • The jar trick - We put some unpeeled garlic into a large jar, closed it shut and shook it vigorously for 30 seconds. To our surprise, the garlic came out peeled and ready to go.
  • Knife - Less of a trick and more of a standard procedure that's quicker than the above two methods, but it's more fiddly.

Should you crush garlic with the skin on or skin off?

Many chefs, most notably Jamie Oliver, stand by their choice not to bother peeling garlic. It's a time-saver and avoids the unnecessary cleaning of another knife. 

As it's become popular to press both peeled and unpeeled garlic, we made sure we tested each garlic press with both types. 

Our results show that it's rare to find a garlic press that can crush both well. Strangely, some of the presses we tested actually worked better with unpeeled garlic. However, our Best Buy recommendation from Ikea and the Jamie Oliver Slice and Press were the only garlic presses that could handle both to a high standard. 

How to get garlic off your hands

The whiff of garlic coming from your skin and under your nails is rarely enjoyable. If washing your hands isn't working, try one of these methods to remedy that garlic smell:  

  1. Salt and baking soda - rub one part salt to two parts baking soda into your hands with a bit of water until you have a paste. Then rub together for 30 seconds and wash off. 
  2. Mouthwash - pour a capful of mouthwash onto your hands and wash them along with some soap and water. 
  3. Stainless steel - supposedly if you run your hands under cold water while touching something made of stainless steel, the sulphur molecules from the garlic will transfer onto the steel surface. 
  4. Salt and lemon - wash your hands in a little salt and a squeeze of lemon. The citric acid from the lemon and the exfoliation from the salt should get rid of the smell. 

How we tested garlic presses

We chose nine popular garlic presses available at major retailers and put them through their paces. As always, Which? paid for all of the products we tested, so you can be sure we're giving you our honest, unbiased opinion.

Ease of use

Five researchers spent an afternoon pressing and crushing lots of peeled and unpeeled garlic cloves. During this time, the team rated each garlic press for comfort, performance and mess. 

Cleaning 

After all the garlic presses had been used and left out to sit for a while, they were then washed by hand in hot soapy water.