A plate of garlic sauce, bread with garlic sauce and Garlic head
Appetizers, Condiments

Traditional Garlic Sauce (Toum)

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The traditional Garlic sauce or in Arabic “Toum” is pretty popular in the Middle East, and it has become widely available in the west thanks to Middle-eastern restaurants. I used to fix this garlic sauce almost every day during our restaurant days, and sure enough, Chicken Shawarma with Garlic sauce was hands down our best seller ? (Stay Tuned for a restaurant-style chicken shawarma recipe)

This Garlic sauce recipe is vegan and very easy to make. In this post, I will share my tips and tricks to make creamy and fluffy garlic sauce without using eggs or Mayonnaise!

A plate of garlic sauce, bread with garlic sauce and Garlic head

What is Garlic Sauce “Toum”?

Toum or garlic sauce is widely popular in the Middle East. Traditionally, garlic sauce is made from fresh garlic cloves, salt, lemon juice, and neutral oil. Before food processors were a thing, the ingredients were crushed using a wooden mortar and pestle back in the day. (Thank God for food processors ?)

Garlic sauce is just like Mayonnaise; it’s an emulsion of oil into the water with an emulsifier (Lemon juice).

A plate of garlic sauce and two pieces of bread with garlic sauce and a head of garlic.

Is Garlic Sauce Healthy?

Garlic was treated by ancient cultures worldwide, such as the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, and Chinese, as a drug or, believe it or not, as a performance enhancer for laborers and Greek athletes! (1,2)

  • Research suggests that consuming Garlic helps boost your immune system and decrease the likely hood of developing common colds (3,4)
  • Consuming garlic regularly has also been linked to several Cardio Vascular Benefits such as reducing blood pressure and reducing LDL cholesterol (AKA Bad Cholesterol) (5,6,7)
  • Garlic has potent antioxidant properties, which can help protect your liver, reduce the risk of cancer and enhance immunity (8)

Finally, garlic sauce usually contains a lot of neutral oil; I have seen anywhere from (1 and 1/2 cups to 4 Cups); that’s a lot of fat ? This Traditional Garlic Sauce recipe only calls for 1/2 a cup of oil, making it healthier and lighter!

Garlic Sauce Ingredients:

A cup of water, a cup of corn starch, a cup of oil, garlic cloves, half lemon, and sea salt.
  • Garlic: It should be fresh to get the best result and a strong flavor. I used four cloves of Garlic.
  • Oil: I used ½ cup of Canola Oil, but you can use vegetable oil, sunflower oil, or any neutral oil. I don’t recommend using Olive Oil; it will give the garlic sauce a darker color, and the oil’s flavor will overpower the garlic’s flavor.
  • Lemon Juice: 2 tablespoons of lemon juice acts as a binder and add brightness. If you like the taste of lemon, feel free to add more ?
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Corn starch + Water (Slurry): It’s an alternative to Mayonnaise and Eggs; it gives the garlic sauce that creamy texture, and when using the slurry, you will use a minimal amount of the Oil, which makes it healthier.
  • Iced water: ½ cup helps in the emulsification process.

How to Make Garlic Sauce (Toum)?

A step by step picture guide to make the recipe!
  1. Making the Slurry: Whisk the corn starch and cold water in a small pot over medium heat.
  2. Keep stirring until it thickens. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool down completely (This step may take 1 hour).
  3. Add the garlic cloves and salt to the food processor. Grind until the Garlic looks minced.
  4. Add the cooled corn starch mixture (slurry), iced water, and lemon juice. Blend until combined.
  5. While the food processor is running, very slowly drizzle the oil from the top opening of the food processor (it should be a small stream of oil). After adding all the oil, keep the processor running for 7-8 minutes until the texture becomes whipped, fluffy, and thick.

Important Tips:

  • Do not rush the emulsion process; take your time pouring the oil very slowly; to get the best result without breaking the sauce.
  • Adding the lemon juice is very important, as it acts as a binder and emulsifier.
  • Using the corn starch mixture (Slurry) is an alternative to Mayonnaise and eggs, making the garlic sauce last longer in the fridge.
  • If your sauce was too runny, add 1-2 boiled potatoes to the food processor to help emulsify it. That’s why it is crucial to add the oil very slowly.

What to Eat with Garlic Sauce?

  • It is perfect as a dip with warm pita bread and sliced veggies.
  • It is also very yummy as a spread with Chicken shawarma sandwich and grilled meats such as Chicken kabob, Grilled Chicken, or Crispy Chicken Drumsticks.
  • Traditional Garlic Sauce is the perfect topping or dressing for chicken shawarma with rice or salad.

Storage:

Place it in an airtight container and cover it with paper towels to absorb the moisture. Store in the fridge for up to one month.

For more dip recipes, check out my Easy Hummus Recipe, Best Guacamole and, the Best Tahini Sauce Recipe

Traditional Garlic Sauce (Toum)

5 from 4 votes
Recipe by Raneem Course: AppetizersCuisine: Middle EastDifficulty: Medium
Servings

14

servings
Prep time

1

hour 
Cooking time

15

minutes
Calories

75

kcal
Total time

1

hour 

15

minutes

This Garlic sauce recipe is vegan and very easy to make. In this post, I will share my tips and tricks to make creamy and fluffy garlic sauce without using eggs or mayonnaise!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 Corn Starch

  • 1 Cup 1 Cold water

  • 4 Cloves 4 Garlic

  • 3/4 Teaspoon 3/4 Sea Salt

  • 2 Tablespoons 2 Fresh Lemon Juice

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 Iced Water

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 Oil (Canola or vegetable)

Directions

  • Step one (Slurry): Whisk the corn starch and 1 cup cold water in a small pot over medium heat. Keep stirring until it thickens. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool down completely (this step may take 1 hour).
  • Step two: Add the garlic cloves and salt to the food processor. Grind until the Garlic looks minced.
  • Add the cold corn starch mixture (slurry), iced water, and lemon juice. Blend until combined.
  • While the food processor is running, very slowly drizzle the oil from the top opening of the food processor (it should be a small stream of the Oil).
  • After adding all the oil, keep the processor running for 7-8 minutes until the texture becomes whipped, fluffy, and thick.

Recipe Video

Notes

  • Do not rush the emulsion process; take your time pouring the oil very slowly; to get the best result without breaking the sauce.
  • Adding the lemon juice is very important, as it acts as a binder and emulsifier.
  • Using the corn starch mixture (Slurry) is an alternative to Mayonnaise and eggs, making the garlic sauce last longer in the fridge.
  • If your sauce was too runny, add 1-2 boiled potatoes to the food processor to help emulsify it. That’s why it is crucial to add the oil very slowly.

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