Goot salve is one of the best-selling natural remedies on the market, but did you know you can easily make goot salve at home? If you like to reach for something natural to heal the body before relying on conventional medicine, goot salve is something you should try. It’s great for coughs, flu, bronchitis, minor wounds, ringworm, hair loss and so much more!
It’s one of my go-to’s when anyone in my family comes down with a fever or cough, especially my little one. See, both raw garlic and coconut oil have incredible health-boosting properties, but obviously, we can’t have our infants eat raw garlic!
That’s why I first used goot salve. Because most of the health-boosting properties of raw garlic and coconut oil can be absorbed right through the skin. Plus it’s simple to make, so effective, and easy to use!
On this page… (JUMP TO)
- What is goot salve?
- Why use goot salve? the benefits
- Homemade goot salve recipe
- How to use goot salve for different ailments
- Precautions & safety
- Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
With a little bit of coconut oil (or another carrier oil), olive oil, raw garlic cloves, and 5 minutes, you can have yourself a natural all-purpose healing salve that’s safe and effective to use on your whole family.
What is goot salve?
Goot salve (also known as Garlic salve) is a natural all-purpose herbal remedy with antifungal, antiviral, antibacterial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties that you can use for babies, children, adults, and seniors.
It’s one of the few natural antibiotics that you can make at home and safely use. This salve can kill fungi, harmful bacteria, parasites, and viruses.
It’s well known for its ability to heal coughs and colds but has many more health-boosting uses.
Why use goot salve? the benefits
Garlic is one of the most well-researched herbal remedies used to naturally protect against and treat infections of many bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Credible studies have shown that garlic can be one of the most effective common home remedies out there!
It simply works. Goot salve has antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. It also has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.
It does not destroy healthy gut bacteria.
Unlike conventional pharmaceutical antibiotics that wreak havoc on your gut’s healthy bacteria, goot salve kills only the bad bacteria. Destroying your good gut bacteria can lead to dysbiosis, which can lead to GI symptoms. In addition to its fewer side effects compared to antibiotics, garlic has positive side effects.
It’s been used successfully for centuries.
Many ancient cultures have used garlic as medicine to heal various health problems including viral diseases. In fact, it formed the principal ingredient in the “Four Thieves Vinegar,” a protection agent against the plague created in the middle ages and used so successfully.
The combination of coconut oil and garlic in this recipe brings out amazing healing properties from both all-natural ingredients.
Its medicinal properties absorb through the skin.
Goot salve can penetrate through the skin and get into the bloodstream, so it’s perfect for babies who can’t really eat raw garlic, or for people who don’t want to eat raw garlic to treat their ailments. There are many of the same and some different benefits when ingesting garlic instead of using it topically in a goot salve form, but using goot salve topically still brings incredible results (though you could technically eat your goot salve also!).
It’s very versatile.
Goot salve (garlic salve) when used correctly can:
- Clear cough, congestion, and fevers
- Treat viruses
- Heal minor wounds faster
- Treat fungal skin infections like athlete’s foot, toenail fungus, yeast infections, plantar warts, etc
- Calm psoriasis
- Clear dandruff and reduce hair loss, including alopecia areata
- Cure ear infections
- Clear acne and pores
- Fade scars including keloid scars, stretch marks, and hypo-pigmentation
- Brighten and tighten skin
- Soothe muscle and joint pain
- Be used as a natural bug repellent
- Conquer sores inside the mouth and cold sores
- Alleviates the itch and pain of bug bites
LOVE HERBAL REMEDIES? Check out our immune-boosting turkey tail mushroom tea recipe!
How to make goot salve
This recipe for garlic salve can be found in “Be Your Own Doctor” by Rachel Weaver but I have slightly altered the method of preparing and added some alterations. This book is a go-to for times of illness: a must-have for every bookshelf!
Homemade Goot Salve Recipe
Have you tried this recipe? Leave us a review!
- 1 Blender, food processor, or immersion blender
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- Warm ⅓ cup of coconut oil on the stove until melted and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Mix to combine.
- Remove from heat, then add 8 cloves of fresh chopped garlic and drop in the (optional) lavender essential oil.
- In a blender, food processor, or by using an immersion blender, blend at slow speed to start, then at high speed for 2 minutes or until the mixture is very smooth. The more finely ground the garlic is, the better it will work medicinally.
- (optional) Pour mixture through a strainer to remove chunks of garlic that the blender may have missed.
- Pour into a wide-mouth jar or metal tin and place in a refrigerator. Goot salve turns into a thick soft paste after 1 hour.
Storing goot salve
This makes approx 4-6 oz depending on if strained.
If you will be using the salve right away, store it in the fridge and use it as needed. The recommendation is to use it within two weeks, but I have personally used a garlic salve all year long with amazing effects. Once it starts to smell off or grow mold, dispose of it.
I sometimes even make a few batches ahead of time and just freeze them right away until I’m ready to use them in the future.
You can add or adjust the recipe as needed, of course. Simply add into the mixture along with the garlic before blending.
Here are some ideas I’ve used to boost the strength and effectiveness of goot salve:
- 1 dropper-full of oregano oil (do not use with children under 7 years old)
Great to improve skin conditions like psoriasis, acne, eczema, and fungal infections, since it eliminates yeast, bacteria, and fungi. It’s also great for the pain, itchiness, and general discomfort of insect stings and bites.
- 1 teaspoon of honey
Perfect addition to soothe and hydrate dry skin, sunburns, and more. Honey is a good option if planning to use it on sensitive areas like your face or sunburns.
- 2 drops of tea tree oil
Antibacterial and anti-inflammatory boost. Used to treat acne, athlete’s foot, lice, nail fungus, wounds, and insect bites. It also calms redness and swelling.
Also acts as a natural preservative to help extend shelf life. The downside? The smell!
- 2 drops of peppermint oil
Excellent if using goot salve for cough, cold, or other respiratory illnesses.
- To adjust softness
If needed, add more olive oil to soften the salve more, or add more coconut oil to harden it to your liking.
How to use goot salve for different ailments
What would you use goot salve for? So many things! It’s surprising at first to see how much this salve can do1.
For general use, you can simply rub the buttery mixture onto the area and see improvement. There are nuances in application though, depending on what you’re trying to treat:
Goot salve for cough, congestion, fevers, and treating viruses
This stuff is absolutely amazing for coughs, congestion, and fever, especially for babies. Rub on feet, back, and chest every 2-3 hours until healed. Cover feet with socks. Socks that you don’t care about cause getting rid of the garlic smell is tough. Do not wash garlicky socks with your other laundry – TRUST ME.
Many people start to see improvement as early as 30 minutes after applying! Apply hourly for more intense conditions like pneumonia, croup, whooping cough, serious asthma attacks, etc
Goot salve for sinus infection
Rub goot salve into your nostrils for sinus infection relief as needed.
Goot salve for ear infections
Goot salve works wonders for ear infections. You can warm it and put 3-5 drops into infected ears 3-4 times per day until the pain subsides for at least 5 days. When crafting your salve for the use of ear infections, strain out any lingering bits of garlic before setting.
Try and keep the infected ear turned upwards for up to 10 minutes to allow the drops to work. You could alternatively saturate the salve onto a cotton ball and stick it into the infected ear.
Since garlic being applied topically can enter into our bloodstream, it can also absorb through an eardrum and work its wonders there, too!2 Be sure not to make it too hot and always patch test on the skin before inserting it into ears. Do not use goot salve for ruptured ear drums.
Goot salve for sore joints or muscles
Garlic works as an anti-inflammatory which is why if you have sore and inflamed joints or muscles, you can simply massage them with goot salve for some natural relief.
Goot salve for hair loss & dandruff
Goot salve massaged into the scalp boosts blood circulation, cleans hair follicles, strengthens them, and prevents clogging, which helps curb hair loss and treats stubborn dandruff.
Simply massage it into your scalp and then wash it out with shampoo as usual, or mix some into your shampoo before massaging. Garlic has been shown to help with alopecia areata3 by using this method as well.
Goot salve for clearing skin (aging, acne, pores, blackheads, and whiteheads)
All ingredients used in this salve help fight against common skin issues like large pores, acne, blackheads, and whiteheads. It can also help reduce wrinkles!4 Apply to face, leave on for 3-10 minutes, then rinse away with water. Remove garlic from your skin immediately if it begins to burn or itch.
Goot salve for psoriasis
Both the coconut oil and garlic used in this goot salve recipe are known to be very helpful with clearing psoriasis. Massage into your scalp and leave on for 15 to 20 minutes. Afterward, rinse with cool water. This treatment is safe to use daily.
Goot salve for healing wounds
Garlic has been used historically by many cultures to heal wounds. Goot salve will speed up healing, slow the rate of infection and reduce the appearance of a developing scar5,6. Both the coconut oil and garlic used in this recipe work to help heal wounds like lacerations, cuts, burns, and infected wounds.
Use goot salve in place of an antibiotic ointment 1-3 times daily for 1-2 weeks. Cover the wound with a sterile gauze dressing if needed and change the dressing with each application.
Goot salve for fading scars and skin pigmentation
Works on keloid scars, stretch marks, and traditional scars. Some people have reported success with fading hypo-pigmentation spots but no research has confirmed this.
Goot salve for fungal infections like athlete’s foot, jock itch
Apply salve to the affected area with a cotton ball, working from the outside of the area toward its center, and cover with clothing or a bandage if treating warts. Use twice daily for best results, and keep using for 3 days after symptoms disappear to be certain that the fungus is gone for good.
Goot salve for killing parasites
Dip a clean cotton swab into the salve and apply it to your anus. Do not use it if you have broken skin, hemorrhoids, or inflammation in the area. Coconut oil and garlic work together here to kill unwanted parasites.
Goot salve as a natural bug repellent
Don’t know why, but many bugs hate garlic. You can use this salve to keep most small flying or crawling insects away. It’s super effective, but you will smell like garlic. It does not work with burrowing insects, but it is known to work well against aphids, ticks, mites, caterpillars, armyworms, cutworms, beetles, slugs, mosquitoes, and flies.
Goot salve for cold sores
Dab some of the salve directly onto the cold sore, leave it on for 3-4 minutes then rinse with water. Pat dry and repeat twice daily.
For corns and calluses
Goot salve promotes faster healing because it can treat corns from the root. Apply it directly to the corn’s surface, keep it on overnight, and wash your feet with warm water the next morning. Repeat this until you get relief.
If after applying you feel any burning, itching, or discomfort, or if your skin turns red, then remove it immediately as you may be sensitive to garlic or coconut oil applied to the skin.
Precautions & safety
As with any medicine, there are precautions you should take to make sure you’re using it safely. There are a lot of fear-mongering stories about using garlic directly on the skin that can, in most cases, be blamed on improper use or not following basic safety steps of using something new on the skin.
How to use goot salve safely
Applying garlic remedies to the skin can sometimes cause reactions like contact dermatitis where you develop scaly rashes or blisters, or even a chemical burn. It’s rare and usually due to improper use, but may still happen if you are allergic to any of the ingredients in the salve and it’s left on the skin for too long.
Now, here’s how to safely use garlic remedies topically:
- Make sure raw garlic is in a cream or ointment vehicle like this goot salve recipe to significantly reduce the risk of any side effects
- ALWAYS test the garlic remedy on a small part of your skin first and wait 10-12 hours to ensure that you won’t have a reaction.
- If you ever feel burning, itching, or discomfort after applying goot salve, or your skin turns red, remove it with water.
- If you are allergic to ingesting garlic, you are more likely to be allergic to garlic on the skin.
Goot salve is generally considered a very safe natural home remedy, but if you are nursing, pregnant, or considering pregnancy, you should consult your doctor or herbalist to be sure.
There have been people who have had chemical burns using garlic as a home remedy. In most cases, if not all, these people simply crushed garlic or applied raw garlic right to the skin and left it on for hours. Do not do this!
Studies show that garlic should be mixed with carrier oil to help prevent these rare reactions.
Coconut oil allergies
It’s possible to get a burning sensation or scalded skin if you are allergic to coconut oil, too. In this case, replace the coconut oil in this recipe with another carrier oil. The below list of recommended oils is also safe for newborns, infants, babies, and toddlers.
Examples of carrier oils that work well include:
- Jojoba oil
- Grapeseed oil
- Argan oil
- Hemp seed oil
- High-quality lard
Goot salve for babies
I love goot salve for babies and children! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard mothers break a stressful fever only 30 minutes after applying it on their baby, or finally get rid of a stubborn cough that had lasted days prior to using goot salve.
It’s an all-natural home treatment that just works. Especially for babies. The first time I made this goot salve, in less than 24 hours my sweet daughter was resting and barely coughing anymore. From that point on it became a staple in our home for times of illness.
However, babies have thinner skin which makes them more vulnerable to adverse reactions from anything applied to the skin. That’s why we need to test a small patch of skin before applying goot salve liberally.
While adults need to wait 10-12 hours to see if they’ll have a reaction, babies will react (usually) within 6-8 hours. If there are no reactions by then, you’re in the clear!
If your baby has a reaction (discomfort or redness) then you will need to see if it was the garlic or the coconut oil that caused it by further test patching each ingredient on its own. Make sure to rinse it off with water immediately at any signs of a reaction.
If making this goot salve recipe to use on a newborn, you can use fewer garlic cloves to make it less agitating for their skin or dilute it with more coconut oil (it’s not needed but it’s an added precaution). Also, limit the application to just the soles of the feet of newborns.
Toxic essential oils to avoid for children
Stay clear of other goot salves that are made with eucalyptus, rosemary, and/or peppermint essential oils for children. They tend to have high doses of chemicals that may cause breathing issues in kiddos under 6 years of age.
Goot salve is such a valuable, inexpensive, and effective home remedy that no mother should be without! I wish it didn’t smell like a roast chicken, but the results are so worth the smell.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Can I eat it?
You sure can! There are many different benefits to ingesting raw garlic, and some may not want to go the raw-garlic-on-its-own route, so creating a paste to spread on toast with other ingredients may be a more appealing option.
Will goot salve burn skin?
It can cause chemical burns in rare cases. That’s why you should follow basic safety precautions when using anything new on your skin. Test a patch of skin and wait up to 12 hours before applying it liberally. If you feel any discomfort, pain, or itchiness, or see redness, remove it by rinsing with water.
How long will a batch keep in the fridge?
Garlic salve can technically last months, but the common recommendation is to keep it for two weeks refrigerated. It will grow mold if it has gone bad or smells “off”. Garlic is extremely antibacterial and there is very little water in the mixture from the garlic itself to encourage it to spoil. You can always make it fresh when needed or freeze it for future use.
What if I’m allergic to coconut oil?
High-quality lard, jojoba, hemp seed, argan, and grapeseed oils are great alternatives to the coconut oil used in goot salve. You can also steep garlic in olive oil, cool it, and store it in a dark place at room temp for a similar effect.
Why is it called goot salve?
The “goot” in goot salve is short for “Garlic Oil Ointment Treatment.” It’s often referred to as garlic salve, too.
- Garlic in dermatology (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4211483/)
- Antimicrobial Activity of Garlic Derivatives on Common Causative Microorganisms of the External Ear Canal and Chronic Middle Ear Infections (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7032553/)
- Combination of topical garlic gel and betamethasone valerate cream in the treatment of localized alopecia areata: a double-blind randomized controlled study (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17314444/)
- Anti-Wrinkle and Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Active Garlic Components and the Inhibition of MMPs via NF-κB Signaling (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3774756/)
- Mechanism of Action of Topical Garlic on Wound Healing (https://journals.lww.com/dermatologicsurgery/Abstract/2018/05000/Mechanism_of_Action_of_Topical_Garlic_on_Wound.5.aspx)
- Effect of Topical Garlic on Wound Healing and Scarring: A Clinical Trial (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31490311/)
- A clinical study of efficacy of garlic extract versus cryotherapy in the treatment of male genital wart (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1027811718300612)
- Investigating the therapeutic effect of vaginal cream containing garlic and thyme compared to clotrimazole cream for the treatment of mycotic vaginitis (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3208935/)
Well, that’s it! Enjoy the sweet, stinky, garlicky goodness, and let me know how it worked for you!
Hope you enjoy and make use of this powerful goot recipe (garlic salve recipe)!
*DISCLAIMER I AM NOT A DOCTOR. Check with your doctor or herbalist if you feel like your symptoms are serious or getting worse. I am not guaranteeing that this salve or garlic will cure you or your family of any of the above-listed ailments, nor am I suggesting that this is the best course of action for you. This post is for informational purposes only.