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In look and application, shallots and garlic seem to be extremely similar. Nonetheless, several key variances allow them to perform diverse functions in recipes. So what are the distinctions between shallots and garlic?

Both shallots and garlic are members of the Allium family. Shallots are garlic-like tiny bulbs that are made up of cloves separated by thin membranes rather than layers.

The bulb, on the other hand, is a smaller form of the onion, with a thinner skin, a faint onion-like scent, and one to six cloves. Garlic, on the other hand, has thick skin, 12 cloves, and a strong garlicky flavor.

What Are Shallots?

Shallots are vegetables with pinkish-brown skin that resemble little, elongated onions. They have white flesh and a taste that is similar to garlic and onion.

The mild taste of shallots integrates well into soups and sauces without overpowering them. They are also densely filled with victims and minerals.

Shallot is abundant in fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants such as sulfur compounds and flavonoids, all of which contribute to its many health advantages.

Shallots are available all year in most grocery shops, generally alongside the onions or garlic.

Select firm shallots devoid of wrinkles, sprouts, bruising, mold, or other symptoms of rot.

Finally, you may keep your shallots in a paper bag in a cold spot (like the pantry) for two weeks.

What Is Garlic?

Garlic is more than just a flavoring that makes your breath smell horrible; it is also a hardy vegetable that is essential in many cuisines.

It belongs to the Allium (onion) family, which includes onions, shallots, leeks, and chives. Its bulb is made up of many pieces known as cloves.

Additionally, this vegetable is well-known for its strong odor and the peculiar taste it adds to prepared foods. Garlic may be eaten raw or cooked and is versatile in a number of cuisines.

Garlic is also well-known for its therapeutic benefits.

Also see: Scallions vs. Leaks

Shallots Vs Garlic: Key Differences

Shallots and garlic may seem similar at first look, yet they have significant distinctions. Without a doubt, shallots and garlic are members of the onion family. They are related.

Shallots, on the other hand, are distinguished by their capacity to create little clusters of bulbs that divide into cloves when harvested.

Garlic, on the other hand, produces a single bulb per plant. Although it is possible to obtain garlic and shallot plants with numerous bulbs, shallots are much more prevalent.

Shallots have a milder, less strong flavor than garlic. Shallots and garlic have distinct scents when cooked together.

Shallots have a softer aroma and flavor with hints of onions, but garlic has a robust aroma and flavor with no touch of sweetness.

Garlic and shallots are both utilized in dishes all around the globe.

Although they have certain similarities, the most noticeable distinction is their flavor and scent, which determine how they might be employed in cooking.

Soups and sauces, for example, often utilize shallots since their taste is not as powerful and hence does not overshadow other components.

Pickled veggies are often prepared using garlic rather than shallots due to their stronger taste, which retains the vinegar better.

Apart from the various health advantages of consuming garlic instead of shallots, garlic contains less carbs and calories. Shallots contain around 12% carbohydrates, whereas garlic has just 5%.

We know from this research that selecting garlic over shallots results in a lower metabolic rate, which leads to greater weight loss for anybody who is overweight or obese.

Last but not least, avoid frying shallots since they may turn harsh when cooked for too long at high heat.

Garlic can withstand these circumstances far better, so bear that in mind when picking whether to use in which dishes!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Shallots Taste Like Garlic?

Not exactly! As you bite into a shallot, it immediately releases an oniony flavor, followed by a nice note of garlic but not nearly as intense as garlic.

Are Shallots More Like Garlic Or Onions?

The first crucial thing to understand about shallots is that they are a kind of onion that resembles garlic. Despite their garlicky appearance, shallots taste considerably more like onions than garlic.

Why Do Chefs Use Shallots Instead Of Onions?

Chefs prefer shallots over onions because they are more adaptable and tasty, and can be utilized in a larger variety of recipes. Shallots have a softer, more pleasing texture than onions, making them ideal for salads and salsas.

They also have a richer taste with softer onion flavors and more sweetness.

What Is A Good Substitute For Garlic?

If you like garlic, you may have encountered this issue previously. Nothing is more disappointing than envisioning how delicious a meal would taste with garlic only to discover that you are completely out of it.

However, there are several excellent methods to employ garlic substitutes in these instances. Garlic powder or garlic flakes, Chives, Shallot, Cumin, Leeks, Scallions, onion, or Asafoetida are a few examples.

Can Shallots Be Eaten Raw?

Absolutely, shallots may be consumed raw. Shallots are best eaten raw. Shallots are wonderful for salads and sandwiches since they have a milder taste than onions and a high vitamin C level. As a side dish, you may sauté or bake them whole. You may also pickle them in vinegar for added taste.

Additionally, they provide a kick without harming your eyes, and they will provide you with vitamins and minerals that other vegetables cannot.


It all comes down to what you’re preparing when deciding between shallots and garlic. The two are highly similar in that they are both members of the allium family, according to the comparison above.

If you are not a big eater, garlic is a good choice since it has a strong perfume and a sharp flavor.

Shallots, on the other hand, provide a rich, mellow, and nuanced flavor to your meals and pair nicely with a variety of seafood and poultry dishes.

It is all up to you!


What is the diff between shallots and garlic?

Garlic vs. Shallots

Garlic has the strongest taste of the allium family. Garlic grows in the form of bulbs (similar to shallots) that are made up of cloves. Shallots have a slight garlic flavor and, despite its appearance as a “clove type,” it has a more onion-like flavor.

How can you tell garlic from shallots?

The form of the roots is important to me. Onions are well known for their round bulb form. Garlic has a bulb that contains numerous cloves. Shallot roots are large but oval, like figs.

What is the difference between shallot and onion and garlic?

For good reason, scallions resemble little onions. This mildly sweet component is a member of the Amaryllidaceae family, which also includes leeks, garlic, and onion. Although the shallot has a bit of a bite, it’s smoother and less pungent than the onion, but not as mild or powerful as a leek or garlic.

What makes a shallot different?

Although they are related, shallots and onions vary in several fundamental aspects. To begin with, unlike conventional onions, which grow in solitary bulbs, shallots grow in clusters, similar to garlic. They are somewhat sweeter and have a more delicate taste than normal onions.

Are shallots and garlic interchangeable?

Shallots have a softer, sweeter taste than raw garlic.

Cooked or roasted garlic, on the other hand, is milder than raw garlic. As a result, garlic may be used in recipes that call for roasted, sautéed, or cooked shallots.

Can shallots substitute for garlic?

What about another decent garlic substitute? Shallots. Shallots have an onion-y garlic taste that might be reminiscent of garlic. They belong to the same plant family as garlic, just like chives!

How do you identify shallots?

Fresh shallots may be distinguished by the following characteristics:
They are rather little.
Their skin is coppery-pink and papery.
Its skin has a delicate purple and white color.
Its bulbs develop in bunches, similar to garlic cloves.
Dec 9, 2022

Are shallots like garlic made up of cloves?

A shallot bulb, like garlic, will have numerous huge cloves, and each clove, like an onion, will have many layers. Shallots often vary in color from pale brown to mid-purplish-red. Each teardrop-shaped clove is about the size of a thumb and has a papery skin.

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