Garlic Leaves – Benefits, Side Effects & Preparation Method

Garlic is a popular herb and has been used in cooking for thousands of years. The leaves are one of the most important parts of garlic, but they’re often overlooked.

In this article, I’ll take a deeper look at garlic leaves, whether or not they’re edible, their health benefits, and their side effects.

To make it easier for you, I’ve also included tips on where to find garlic leaves as well as how to cook them. Let’s get started, shall we?

What are garlic leaves?

Garlic leaves, also called garlic greens, are the garlic plant’s green leaves. They have a fresh, mild scent and a subtle flavor that’s similar to leeks.

Garlic leaves have been used medicinally for centuries. They contain a variety of antioxidants and other compounds that help to improve overall health.

These leaves are also a key ingredient in many dishes. They add a distinctive flavor to rice pilafs, salads, and stir-fries. You can also eat them alone or use them to make your pesto.

SEE: Can You Substitute Garlic Salt For Garlic Powder?

Can you eat garlic leaves?

The answer is yes, you can. Garlic leaves are not only edible, but they are also very healthy for you. They contain antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and other compounds that can help your body fight off free radicals and toxins in your body.

The best part about eating garlic greens is that they taste great and have a mild flavor, so you will not regret it when you decide to try them out.

Before eating them, rinse them properly to get rid of any dirt that may be on them. After rinsing, you can slice them and add them to dishes as you would any other fresh leaves.

Can you eat wild garlic leaves?

Yes, you can. Wild garlic is an edible green plant available in many areas of the world. The flavor and aroma of its leaves are similar to that of regular garlic but stronger.

Wild garlic leaves contain several beneficial nutrients that make them worth eating. You can add them to salads, soups, stews, and many other dishes for extra flavor and nutrition.

SEE: Here’s the Best Curry Leaves Substitute for Your Dish

Garlic leaves health benefits

Cancer prevention

Garlic leaves contain several natural compounds like alliin and quercetin that have antioxidant properties. Research shows that these compounds help in preventing cancer by reducing the attack of free radicals on cells.

Improved brain function

Garlic greens may also help improve brain function because they contain vitamin B6, an important nutrient that helps form a protein sheath around your nerve cells. This is especially important for people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and brain cancer.

Reduced inflammation

When you eat garlic greens, they produce several compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties, such as diallyl disulfide and diallyl trisulfide. According to a 2007 study, these compounds play an important role in reducing inflammation throughout the body.

Reduced risk of heart diseases

Garlic greens contain high amounts of allicin, which helps to prevent heart diseases by reducing bad cholesterol levels and lowering blood pressure levels.

It also lowers the level of triglycerides in the bloodstream, thereby decreasing the risk of developing heart diseases and strokes.

Antibacterial activity

These leaves also have antibacterial properties that make them useful for treating infections caused by bacteria such as staphylococcus.

According to a study published in 2011, the antibacterial properties of garlic are effective against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). These bacteria are an increasingly common type of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the world.

Improved digestion

Garlic greens contain sulfur compounds which have excellent digestive properties. These compounds help in the proper functioning of the stomach, spleen, and liver, thereby improving digestion.

Cold relief

Garlic leaves are an excellent source of natural antibiotics that help to fight against colds and flu easily. They also help in keeping your immunity high so that you do not get sick easily.

SEE: Is Garlic Bread Healthy?

Side effects of eating garlic leaves

If you eat too many garlic leaves, you may experience side effects like:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Gas and bloating
  • Vomiting
  • Bad breath
  • Heartburn

These side effects tend to disappear after a few days, but if they last longer than that, see your doctor.

Where to buy wild garlic leaves

You can find wild garlic leaves at local markets or farmers’ markets. These markets have an awesome selection of fresh leaves, including many varieties of wild garlic leaves that you can choose from.

However, it’s often more expensive to buy wild leaves than regular leaves because of their rarity. You may also be able to find them online through reputable sites like Amazon.

SEE: Fenugreek Leaves Substitutes You Probably Already Have In Your Kitchen

Why are your garlic leaves turning yellow?

Garlic leaves turn yellow due to several factors. The first is that the soil in which the garlic plant is growing is too wet or too dry.

Another common cause of yellowing leaves is a fungal disease. Fungal diseases are more common during rainy seasons when there is enough moisture for fungus growth to occur.

How to cook garlic leaves

  • Wash and trim the leaves from the stalks.
  • Boil water in a pot and add the washed garlic leaves.
  • Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tender and soft enough to eat but not mushy.

You can also chop up the leaves and use them as a garnish for soups, stews, and other recipes that call for fresh herbs. Or you can add them to salads or stir-fries.

SEE: What Neutralizes Garlic In The Stomach?


Are onions and garlic the same?

No, they’re not. Onions are in the same family as garlic, but they differ from each other. The most obvious difference between them is that onion bulbs are much larger than garlic bulbs.

Another difference between them is that garlic bulbs are white colored while onion bulbs can be purple, white, or yellow colored, depending on the variety.

What causes white garlic leaves?

Powdery mildew. The most common cause of white leaves is powdery mildew. Powdery mildew causes a white patch on the leaves and can lead to leaf loss if you do not treat it.

Powdery mildew is usually caused by an overabundance of rain and humidity during wet spring weather conditions. This can cause moisture in the air around your garlic plants to become stagnant, which encourages powdery mildew to grow.

Can you add garlic greens to soups?

Yes, you can. Garlic greens have a mild flavor, which makes them an excellent addition to soups, stews, and many other dishes. You can also eat them alone or add them to vegetable salads for more nutrition and flavor.

Can you use garlic juice to heal wounds?

Yes, you can. A few drops of fresh garlic juice on the skin can help heal wounds and relieve itching caused by insect bites or stings.

To get the most out of your garlic juice, mix it with coconut oil or any other oil with great antibacterial properties before applying it to your skin. 


Garlic leaves are packed with nutrients and compounds that can help reduce inflammation while improving brain function and digestion. They can also help prevent heart diseases, bacterial infections, flu, and even cancer.

In addition to these health benefits, these leaves are also delicious. You can eat them alone or add them to just about any dish for extra flavor.

Thanks for reading.

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