How to peel, chops, and cook with fresh ginger in 40+ ways! This post includes how to prepare ginger and how to use ginger, the wonderfully spicy, robust, fragrant flavor booster we all need in our lives!
I honestly can’t say that I remember the last time I didn’t have some form of ginger in my house ready to use at a moment’s notice for drinks, meals, and more! It has a sweet and spicy robust flavor that just can’t be reproduced (in my opinion) and helps elevate dishes and the depth of flavor.
Along with garlic paste and chili flakes, ginger is a must-have for all sorts of Asian cuisine, but it is also enjoyed around the world! More than just adding flavor, this tasty root also provides a whole ton of health benefits. These include containing anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, with the ability to help with stomach issues and helping to fight the symptoms of colds and flu.
But let’s just straight into how to prepare ginger and how to cook with ginger!
How to Choose and Store Ginger?
When looking for ginger, look for firm roots heavy for their size, with a taut and slightly shiny skin, without looking shriveled or dry or with any soft spots. Young ginger may have a slight pink tinge to the skin and is often thinner and paler than mature versions.
When it comes to storing it, you can do so in the fridge or freezer. To store in the refrigerator, keep it in the crisper drawer in an airtight bag (excess air removed) for between 2-3 days – this is best when you use ginger multiple times a week. However, if you only use this root 1-2 times a week, I recommend storing it in the freezer instead, for up to 6 months!
When freezing, you can wrap the entire thing tightly in plastic wrap or freeze it after it’s “prepared” (see methods and links below) or peeled and grated.
How to Prepare Ginger (Peel and Chop Ginger)
Before chopping/preparing the root, you may want to peel it. It’s not always necessary to peel ginger. Especially if you’re using younger ginger with papery skin, or it will be finely chopped into a larger meal. However, I recommend using organic if you plan on eating the skin. If using organic, make sure to clean the root in water with a vegetable brush. Then pat dry.
If you want to peel your ginger, put away that vegetable peeler, instead turn to this peeling hack using a spoon! You won’t regret it. You can use a small paring knife to remove any bits that are remaining.
There are four main ways to chop/prepare ginger
- Sliced into disks: simply use a sharp knife or mandoline to chop ginger slices as thin or thick as needed. Slice across the grains of the fibers.
- Julienne the ginger: I find this easier to do after first slicing it. Then lay 2-3 slices on top of one another and, using your knife, chop fine matchstick pieces. Alternatively, you could use the julienne slicing blade on your mandoline.
- Finely chopped: the easiest way to do this is to use your julienned pieces and use a knife to dice the pieces very finely. Then, you can break it down further for a rough mince.
- Minced/Grated: you can use a garlic grater plate to mince it, too, for a soft ginger paste. You can also grate the root using a microplane (which helps to reduce the fibrousness).
When using either of the latter method (minced/grated), you’ll likely also end up with some excess juice, so make sure to use the microplane over a small dish.
Other Ways to Prepare Ginger
- Ginger paste: you can also easily make a large amount of paste in minutes using a food processor. What’s great about it is that you can freeze it for a long period of time.
- Ginger powder: if you have an excess of ginger and already have some in your fridge and freezer, then why not turn it into ginger powder? You can do this with fresh ginger or the leftover pulp after juicing. And it also had a long shelf-life.
- Ginger juice: instead of chopped, you can also make ginger juice (with and without a juicer). Whatever you don’t consume quickly, you can freeze into ice cube trays and keep them in the freezer for months.
How to Use Fresh Ginger root?
Fresh ginger root can be use in all sorts of dishes. It really depends what you are in the mood for. Here is a collection of my top recipes that include fresh ginger root.
- Turmeric and ginger-spiced pumpkin soup – this immune-boosting pumpkin soup is warm, comforting, and creamy. Plus, it can be served directly from a mini pumpkin with a side of crusty bread.
- Japanese vegetable ramen – a light and refreshing vegetable broth that you can enjoy topped with an egg or omit for a delicious vegan version.
- Thai-inspired vegan green pea soup – this soup is creamy yet light- perfect for spring/summer.
- Creamy Thai Tom Yum soup – Thai hot and sour soup that is aromatic, rich, spicy, and satisfying. While this recipe actually calls for galangal (Thai ginger), regular ginger would also work.
- Creamy butternut squash and carrot soup – a true crowdpleaser, this creamy soup is perfect for entertaining and a healthy, wholesome, comforting fall/winter soup.
- Coconut curry pumpkin soup – with a hint of spice, this curry pumpkin soup is wonderfully warming, helped by the warm addition of ginger.
- Steamed vegan mushroom dumplings and quick dumpling sauce – these little dumplings/gyoza are packed with flavor and naturally vegan. The perfect party appetizer!
- Healthy roasted carrot dip – use it as a dip or spread, this Tunisian carrot salad combines carrots, onion, garlic, and a selection of spices/aromatics for a flavorful dish.
- Golden turmeric hummus – hummus with a “golden” immune-boosting twist, you’ll love it!
- Napa cabbage kimchi – this is a classic kimchi recipe using napa cabbage and tons of aromatics to pack in flavor.
- Thai-inspired salad in a jar – with plenty of veg, noodles, and an aromatic Thai dressing. This meal-prep salad is quick to prepare and can be enjoyed for days!
- Pineapple cucumber salad – fun, fresh and fruity – this pineapple cucumber salad requires just a few simple ingredients. It’s at home as a part of any summer spread!
- Korean cucumber salad – with a few key aromatics and a vinegar base, this cucumber salad is super simple to prepare. Enjoy cucumber like you’ve never had it before!
- Miso-glazed sweet potato salad – a simple sweet potato salad or side, boosted with the addition of ginger, miso, and several aromatics.
- Chinese eggplant stir-fry with garlic sauce – this is a quick, simple, flavorful eggplant stir-fry perfect for serving over rice or noodles for a simple mid-week meal!
- Simple vegetable Lo Mein (chili garlic noodles) – mix out the veg and add-ins based on what you have for an aromatic but quick and simple mid-week stir-fried noodle dish!
- Stir-fried Thai basil vegan beef – based on the classic Thai dish but 100% meat free. Eat with rice for a protein-rich, flavor packed meal!
- Kimchi fried rice (Kimchi Bokkeumbap) – if you love fried rice and kimchi, then this is an amazing dish for you. With the kimchi already prepared, this dish is also super quick and can be enjoy for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
- Vegetarian butter chicken (with paneer or vegan tofu) – enjoy this aromatic butter “chicken” with either paneer (cheese) or tofu (for a vegan option). Better (and healthier) than takeout!
- Breakfast egg fried rice – instead of spicy kimchi rice (above), why not enjoy a more mellow, savory fried rice. Top it with a fried egg (or not, if you’re vegan). Perfect for using day-old rice!
- Thai red curry paste and Thai green curry paste – these both ask for galangal (Thai ginger) and are filled with fresh, aromatic flavors. They’re perfect for a mid-week Thai curry!
Other Ginger Recipes
- Honey fermented ginger and lemon – this fermented mixture is the perfect immune-boosting tonic when you feel a cold/flu/sore throat coming on. However, it can also be added to lemonades, cocktails, and drizzled over desserts!
- Crystallized/candied ginger – don’t want the flavor of ginger subtly mixed into your dish, but front and center. Why not enjoy this candied ginger – enjoy it as a snack, add to desserts, etc.
- Ginger marmalade – this simple marmalade/jam is fresh, clean, and full of zing. Plus all you need is four ingredients and a simple method even beginner jam-makers will enjoy!
- Crispy ginger chips – if you love ginger as much as I do (a lot!), then these homemade naturally-sweetened crispy chips are going to become your new obsession!
How to Use Ginger Juice?
- Lemon, ginger, and cayenne immunity shots – these immunity shots will help you start the day right during cold/flu season (or any time!).
- Beetroot ginger juice – a simple beetroot detox juice recipe. It’s loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to help your body detox and add much-needed nutrients.
- Orange juice with zing – enjoy freshly squeezed orange juice with the added zing of ginger.
- Carrot ginger juice – for an even lighter choice, why not try this nutritional carrot and ginger juice combination.
- Silky ginger milk pudding – this “magic” pudding combines just 3 ingredients and 10 minutes. The result is a silky pudding with tons of flavor.
- Ginger turmeric immune-boosting energy shots – enjoy these shots for a daily boost to your immune system. Plus, they contain anti-inflammatory properties and aid with digestion!
Other Drink Ideas
- How to make ginger tea – I love sipping on this ginger tea in the colder months and when I feel a cold coming on. It’s warming, zesty, and packed with flavor! Plus it contains tons of healthful benefits.
- Healthy ginger lemonade – combining lemonade with a simple ginger syrup should be on every ginger-lovers to-do list!
- Zero-waste ginger syrup – how to make ginger syrup at home with just 3 ingredients in 40 minutes. This simple ginger syrup is packed with zingy flavor and perfect for adding to cocktails, drinks, desserts, and more. Best of all, you can use the leftover pulp for delicious crackers, too!
- Pineapple lemonade/limeade with ginger and mint – add a hint of zing to this tropical pineapple lemonade for a summer must-try!
- You can add fresh ginger or ginger juice to smoothies too.
How to use ginger powder?
- Christmas gingerbread cookies or the ultimate Gingerbread house – the Christmas period wouldn’t be complete without gingerbread treats – especially homemade!
- Gingerbread salted caramel ice cream – use leftover biscuits to create simple, flavor-packed ice cream and Christmas treat.
- Gingerbread fluffy pancakes – combining pancakes and gingerbread flavor – you’re in for a winner!
- Simple banana milkshake – Okay, the ginger is technically optional, but adds a lovely extra layer of flavor to your shake.
- Vegan pumpkin pie – creamy, rich, and the ultimate fall dessert!
- Mini pumpkin cakes with coconut cream frosting – baked directly into mini pumpkins, this warming pumpkin cake is a showstopper dessert for gatherings and dinner parties.
This roundup seems endless but I am sure I can include many more recipes which rely on the powerful ginger flavor and health properties. Feel free to browse my blog for more ideas on how to use fresh ginger root or ginger powder in your dishes and baked goods.
More Helpful Round-Ups
- 40+ Delicious Summer Drink Recipes
- 25 High-Fiber Healthy Recipes
- Top 20 Immune-Boosting Foods
- 40 Easy Summer Salad Recipes – The Best Summer Salads
- Amazing Food and Storage Fridge/Freezer Hacks
If you try any of these ginger recipes, I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions below. Also, feel free to tag me in your recipe recreations on Instagram @Alphafoodie!