Ina Garten Chicken With 40 Cloves


Ina Garten Chicken With 40 Cloves has to be one of my absolute favorite recipes from Ina Garten. I really love her recipes and she has helped me step up my cooking game immensely. To say that the world loves Ina Garten is an understatement. These days, everyone wants to know the secret of her success — but what most people don’t realize is that this celebrity chef has been keeping it Southern for years now. Her recipe for chicken with 40 cloves of garlic is proof of that.


It is not only delectable but simple to host a dinner in honor of Ina Garten and her recipes! Ina’s delicious Forty Cloves of Garlic Chicken served as our main course.

Platter of chicken with whole garlic cloves.

It can be quite beneficial to begin by gathering and measuring all of the components. Time was saved greatly by Ina’s advice to boil all the garlic cloves for one minute before peeling.

I had never made it before, but when I saw that it only required a handful of ingredients—chicken, garlic, wine, and cognac—I knew it must be delicious!

I learnt from Ina that when throwing a dinner party, doing as much of the preparation ahead of time allows the hostess to enjoy the company of the guests rather than spending all of her time in the kitchen.

It saves a ton of time to prepare this dish the day before, put it in the refrigerator in a casserole dish, and then reheat it in the oven just before serving. How simple is that, to use Ina’s phrase?

I’m really happy we served this for the G8 dinner because all of my G8 buddies thought it was wonderful and savory. Since then, I’ve succeeded numerous times.

Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic

The flavor of Ina’s chicken with forty cloves of garlic is outstanding. After being cooked with the chicken, the garlic becomes delicious and incredibly soft.

Prep Time35 mins

Cook Time1 hr 5 mins

Total Time1 hr 40 mins

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: French

Keyword: Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic

 Servings: 6 servings


  • 3 heads garlic, about 40 cloves *(see Gr8 tip below)
  • 2 3 ½ pound chickens, cut into eighths (I used packaged breasts and thighs with skin and bones.)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Cognac, divided (I did not have Cognac so I used Brandy.)
  • 1 ½ cups dry white wine
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream

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Gr8 Tips:
  • *When peeling the garlic, remove and discard any green sprouts.
  • I purchased 4 breasts and 4 thighs with the skin and bones since I was unable to find the chicken already chopped up.
  • Making this dish in advance is a great idea. I prepared it one afternoon, put it in the refrigerator in a casserole dish, then warmed it the next evening in a 350°F oven for about 30 minutes while it was covered with foil.

Prep time

15 mins

Cook time

60 mins

Total time

1 hour 15 mins

Author: Mink adapted from Ina Garten’s

Recipe type: Chicken

Cuisine: French

Serves: 6


  • 3 whole heads garlic, about 40 cloves
  • 3½-pound chicken thighs with skin on
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1½ cups dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons Cognac (optional)


  1. Peel 40 garlic cloves (about three entire heads), or you may purchase them fully peeled. The secret of Ina is to separate the garlic cloves and place them for 60 seconds into a kettle of boiling water. Peel the garlic after draining.
  2. Utilize paper towels to dry the chicken. On both sides, liberally season with salt and pepper.
  3. Over medium-high heat, melt the butter and oil in a big saucepan or Dutch oven. Cook the chicken in batches, with the skin side down, in the fat until well-browned, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Use tongs to turn. Reduce the heat to medium if the fat is burning. Cook the chicken in batches, transferring each finished batch to a platter or baking sheet. The chicken will steam instead of brown if it is crowded. The final bird should be moved to a baking sheet (or a plate).
  4. Add the entire bulb of garlic to the saucepan. Reduce the heat and stir often for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the food is evenly browned. To a plate, transfer the garlic. Scoop some of the extra fat out and throw it away. In the pot, I prefer to leave around 3 teaspoons.
  5. After scraping the browned bits from the pot’s bottom, pour in the wine. Add the liquids from the chicken, garlic, and chicken back into the saucepan, then top with the thyme leaves. For around 30 minutes, simmer the dish with the cover on low heat.
  6. Transfer the chicken to a plate and shield it with foil to maintain warmth.
  7. 12 cup of sauce and the flour should be combined in a separate bowl before being whisked back into the sauce in the pot. Like Ina Garten suggests, you can also add cream and cognac, but I didn’t, and it still tasted good.
  8. Boil for three minutes at a higher temperature. To taste, add salt and pepper to the food. Serve the chicken hot with the sauce over it.

Slow Cooker Garlic Chicken

The traditional French dish Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic served in a slow cooker inspired this garlicky chicken dish. In this recipe, the garlic is cooked slowly and gradually until it becomes buttery soft cloves that are excellent spread on toast. For simple preparation, use pre-peeled garlic.

Slow Cooker Garlic Chicken

NOTE: You’d be better off avoiding this recipe or braising this meal in the oven if you know your slow cooker operates at relatively lower temperatures and you’re worried the garlic won’t soften as planned. See the cooking notes for more advice.



  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, more as needed
  • 3 pounds of bone-in chicken pieces: drumsticks, thighs, or leg joints
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly ground nutmeg (optional)
  • Flour (optional)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 40 peeled whole cloves garlic, approximately 3-4 bulbs, or use pre-peeled garlic, see notes
  • 2-4 tablespoons dry vermouth, or dry white wine
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 stalks celery, sliced thinly
  • A few sprigs fresh thyme
  • For garnish: chopped parsley and a squeeze of fresh lemon
  • Toasted bread or baguette slices are a traditional accompaniment


  • With paper towels, dry the chicken legs. Add nutmeg if desired, along with salt and pepper. The chicken pieces can optionally be briefly tossed in flour (this can help thicken the sauce a bit).
  • In the slow cooker, warm the olive oil (or a large Dutch oven). Chicken should be seared in batches, about 4 to 5 minutes per side. Add the garlic and onions, and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown. Vermouth the pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape the bottom of the pan. Add celery, chicken broth, and thyme by stirring. On top of the vegetables, arrange the chicken pieces and any accumulated fluids. Close the lid. The chicken should be cooked and extremely tender, and the garlic should be soft and mellow, which should take 4-6 hours on LOW or 2-4 hours on HIGH.
  • Lemon juice and parsley are used as garnish. Spread melted garlic on toast.


  • How to peel all that garlic? You can peel large amounts of garlic quickly by placing individual cloves in a container or bowl with a lid, then shaking vigorously until the garlic separates from its skin.
  • Potatoes are a nice alternative to toast. These could be steamed or roasted separately, or added to the slow cooker.
  • Tarragon is an herb commonly used in this dish.
  • Of interest. A slow cooker “doesn’t get quite hot enough to mellow out 40 whole cloves,” according to NYT Cooking’s slow cooker version of the dish, and they recommend 15 cloves if using the low option, although this is absurd. Your slow cooker cannot mellow garlic if it cooks at a temperature too low. And if your slow cooker can cook down 20 cloves, it can cook down 40 or more. The solution is not to reduce the amount of garlic from 40 to 20 cloves. The ensuing mellow, gentle, slightly sweet garlic cloves are the entire idea of this recipe. Therefore, if you believe your LOW setting cooks food at an excessively low temperature, try cooking it at HIGH, braise it in the oven, or (3) add garlic confit as advised below. Be aware that compared to ceramic crock pots, searing slow cookers generally cook a little hotter.

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