No spice rack is complete without salt. But there are so many kinds: processed salt, sea salt, table salt, himalayan salt, and so on. How are you supposed to figure which’ll suit your palate?
Well, it’s important to know what features to consider when purchasing salt. Find out where it’s from, how it tastes, what it costs, what’s inside, and what people have said about it. Then flip through your recipe book, and figure out just how you use salt.
Types of Salt
A good salt is more than just salty. It can be bitter, sour, or even sweet. So first, ask your taste buds what they like.
Differences in the Base Ingredients
Salt is divided into two categories: sea salt and rock salt. Surprisingly, one is actually saltier than the other.
Sea Salt Has More Minerals Than Rock Salt
Sea salt comes from seawater; oftentimes, it’s dried in the sun, and then boiled down to make salt. Salt that’s produced this way has more minerals in it than rock salt. Coastal states like California and New York abound in sea salt, as the ocean is a stone’s throw away.
Rock Salt is Saltier Than Sea Salt
A long time ago, inland seas meandered through the world. The sun beat down on these inland seas during dry spells in our geological history; the water evaporated; and the salt crystallized, forming salt deposits. Now, we mine these salt crystals, heat them up, and extract rock salt.
Rock salt contains more sodium than sea salt, so it’s often described as saltier. The color and taste changes depending on where it was mined. In iron-rich areas, the salt has a light blush.
Differences in the Way It’s Made
The production method also determines the kind of salt you get. There are three general categories: sun-dried, processed salt, and table salt. The biggest difference? Nutrients.
The Most Nutritious: Sun-Dried Salt
To make sun-dried salt, you pump water from the sea and dry it under the heat of the sun or by the force of the wind. Since there’s no extra heat added to it, you don’t lose any minerals like sodium chloride, calcium, or magnesium. So, out of the three, this one will have the most nutrients.
Nutrients Added After It’s Been Baked: Processed Salt
Processed salt is made by pumping seawater into the factory and heating it there. This makes it lose a lot of vitamins and leaves it a bit bitter. The bitterness is then offset by adding nutrients back into it.
On a basic level, manufacturers make processed salt because it looks whiter. And to a consumer, whiter means purer. But there’s another, more altruistic reason: if if the salt was harvested from a polluted area, they need to bake the toxins out of the salt–and the minerals are taken as collateral. So refined salt doesn’t just look cleaner; it actually is cleaner.
The Most Common: Table Salt
Table salt is the kind that lines supermarket aisles. After washing the sun-dried salt with brine, it’s refined. Unlike with processed salt, the manufacturers don’t add in the nutrients that were baked out back in. The packaging will say that Sodium Chloride is 99% of the salt. This one has the lowest nutritional value of the three.
How to Choose a Salt – Buying Guide
Depending on what you’ve got jotted down in your recipe book, you’re going to want either sea salt or rock salt. Below are several kinds of home-made dishes and the recommended salt to go with it.
How to Use Sea Salt
Here are some uncommon, multi-cultural ways to use sea salt.
Salt Can Make Fruit Sweeter
In Japan, you might see people sprinkling salt over watermelon. It adds sweetness and a new dimension of flavor–before you turn up your nose, think: we basically do the same thing when we throw a pinch of salt into the cookie batter. Sea salt can also enhance fruit mix powders.
Salt for Drying Vegetables
If you’ve got to suck water out of a vegetable, use sea salt. It’ll absorb water, without leaving your cucumbers tasting like pickles.
Salt Can Be Used to Prevent Discoloration
You wander over to the fridge to get out that bowl of guacamole, that plate of apples. You pull open the door–and find yourself face to face with brown mush. Here’s a trick: next time, sprinkle sea salt over food before serving. Not only will it enhance flavor, but also it’ll keep the colors fresh as spring.
Sea salt will keep heat from scorching the fish–and make sure it doesn’t just crumble in the pan. As you’re drying out your latest catch, sprinkle some on to draw out natural flavor. It’ll also get rid of that nauseating fish smell.
Rock Salt for Big Flavor
Rock salt is saltier, so it’s often mixed with black pepper or rosemary, then used to season chicken or beef. Add some to pork, and it’ll get rid of gaminess and harsh meat tones. If you are making focaccia for Italian dinner night, adding some rock salt with olive oil can make the dish sing.
Natural Salt for Beauty Spa Treatments
You want to pamper yourself? Use natural salt–none of that refined stuff. Add some in your bath to promote blood flow, increase metabolism, and relax your muscles. It’ll also soften keratin and remove dirt. Soak yourself in some salty hot water; massage any rough patches; come out with soft, glowing skin.
A word of warning though: salt can be rough, so go for finer grains. Don’t scrub yourself with it, and keep these treatments to once a week.
Top 10 Best Salts to Buy Online
Here are the top 10 salt products we recommend. As you scroll through–think about where you need a little salt in your life.
10. La Baleine Sea Salt
Mediterranean Salt That Gives a Boost to Both Texture and Flavor
This 100% natural sea salt is made in France. It comes straight from their Mediterranean factory and has a cult following. The salt comes in flakes for a little boost of texture and flavor, right when you plate your dish.
Customers rave about the size of the flakes–it’s perfect for salting ham or pork belly. However, this salt isn’t meant for baths, so if you’re looking something multipurpose, keep reading. This salt does go great with balsamic vingear, truffles, Wagyu steaks, and even cheese.
9. Selezione Truffle Salt
Unique Sea Salt with a Unique Taste
This one is sure to please gourmet and aspiring chefs alike. Mixed with 10% black truffle, it’s a great way to get that truffle taste without going bankrupt. The salt comes from Italy, and is your standard sea salt.
It can be used to enhance a number of dishes–ranging from egg-based to pasta-based. Sprinkle it over buttered popcorn. Reviewers insist that this mixture is perfect, and that the black truffles don’t overpower the salt. They work together in harmony.
8. Fleur de Sel de Guerande Sea Salt
For Fleur de Sel That Comes in a Pinkish Shade
Fleur de Sel is a special kind of sea salt. It’s harvested from young salt crystals that form on the top of sea salt farms. And it can only be harvested during the hottest months of the year.
In case the name hasn’t made it obvious, Fleur de Sel is French. It has a pinkish grey coloring. It comes in small flaky crystals and works great as a final touch. It’s best with raw vegetables and salads. It also works well with grilled meats and fish. Being a natural sea salt, it’s packed with quite a bit of minerals and is healthy.
7. Morton Table Salt
The Classic Brand Name from Your Childhood
Morton is the America’s iconic table salt. For many, this brand was the only one around the house growing up–so if you’re the nostalgic type, you can’t go wrong with Morton. It is a table salt, which means it’s missing those trace amounts of vitamins and minerals.
Interestingly enough, loads of people also use Morton to fill the plastic salt guns used to kill insects in the garden. For some reason. The grains are fine; it’s been consumed for years and is definitely safe. And, as one five-star review put it, “Salt is salt.”
6. The Spice Lab Pink Himalayan Salt
For When You Want a Himalayan Salt That Won’t Break the Bank
Himalayan salt is a special subset of rock salt and has multiple purposes. It can be used as a healthy spice alternative, since it contains trace amounts of 84 vitamins and minerals. You can add it to your bath, where it’ll suck the toxins from your body and lower blood pressure.
Then, after your bath, bring the salt into the kitchen and use it for pasta, salads, meats, and fish. Bakers use it to enhance their breads and pastries. And, just as an extra bonus, it’s a lovely shade of light pink.
5. McCormick Sea Salt with Grinder
Great Sea Salt That Comes with Its Own Grinder
When it comes to spices, McCormick’s a powerful name brand among American households. What makes this sea salt special is that the bottle comes with a grinder. The sodium level is comparable to that of table salt. It’s harvested from the French Mediterranean coast.
It has a higher concentration of minerals then your standard table salt. So if you want to start eating healthier at home with a brand you trust, this is your salt. With the right tools, you can also pop open the bottle and refill it with other whole spices for all your grinding needs.
4. Maldon Sea Salt Flakes
High Quality Sea Salt Flakes at a Reasonable Price
Maldon is a fan favorite. Harvested from the Essex sea coast, these sea salt flakes add texture to your bread and meat dishes. It’s not bitter–just wonderful, clean, and fresh. Perfect for dishes that already shine on their own.
This product also has all the nutrients and minerals you’d expect from a natural salt. You can’t dump it in your tub, but you can use it dry out meats. At the price listed above, you get 8.5 ounces, which is great for the quality.
3. Celtic Sea Salt
Kosher Certified Salt From the Coast of France
This salt comes with trace amounts of 80 vitamins and minerals. It’s a natural sea salt that’s been finely ground. It’s Kosher certified and perfect for pickling or finishing dishes.
Because it’s so fine and healthy, it’s perfect for baking and grilling. And, yes, the name says Celtic–specifically, it’s from the coast of France. Celtic Sea Salt offers a variety of different salts, so if this doesn’t fits your needs perfectly, check out the other kinds too.
2. San Francisco Salt Company’s Fleur de Sel
An Amazing Salt for Yourself or As a Gift to a Loved One
This Fleur de Sel is a bit different from the one we talked about earlier. First, it comes with a cute wooden spoon, so you can measure out the perfect scoop. Second, look at that beautiful white color. The other one had a grey and pink shade to it, which doesn’t blend well with certain palettes.
This Fleur de Sel is certified as Kosher, and by a French agency (Nature & Progrés institute) for purity and excellence. And since the bottle is so cute, it makes a great gift. While you shouldn’t bathe in it, give it to your boyfriend, girlfriend, or novice cook friend.
1. San Francisco Salt Co’s Sherpa Pink Himalayan Salt
A Fabulous Two in One Salt That is Healthy and Tasty
Sherpa Pink Himalayan Salt is a very popular brand–and for good reason. It’s lovely with grilled veggies and meat and enriches your baked goods. It doesn’t just have trace amounts of vitamins and minerals; it’s packed with them. And you can dump this one in your tub. It’ll smooth out your skin and ease away the pain.
If you do use it for a bath, pour in a pound of it, and give it a bit of time to dissolve before getting in. If you’re looking for health, taste, and relaxation, then this salt’s got you covered.
For the aspiring chef, the sore athlete, the grill master at family barbecues–we’ve introduced a bunch of different salts for a bunch of different people. When you pick one, think again about what you want the salt for.
A final word of advice: if you are using a kind of salt for the first time, go for one that has a customer satisfaction guarantee. That way you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain (in the world of salt).
Even though popcorn is mostly air, many conventional options are full of fats, preservatives, and artificial flavors. That’s why we decided to look into healthier options. In our research, we found that the best popcorns contain only whole foods ingredients, have limited fat and sodium, and may be organic or gluten-free. Both pre-popped and microwave popcorns can be equally healthy. With these things in mind, we handpicked our favorite healthy popcorns available online. Top 5 Best Healthy Bagged Popcorns to Buy Online If you’re looking for convenience, pre-popped bagged popcorn could be the way to go. Here are some of the best out there. 1. LesserEvil Organic Popcorn, Himalayan Pink Salt (18 Count, .88 oz Each) Visit Amazon for more details Price: $25.02 Best Single Serving Popcorn These single-serving bags of popcorn make for the perfect light snack. It has a light coconut oil aroma and just a touch of salt to give it flavor. If you’re not a fan of coconut oil, this company also make
About 65% of Americans own an American flag. About 90% of Americans households have peanut butter somewhere in the house. It’s official. Loving peanut butter is now more American than flying the flag. All jokes aside, it seems that most of us aren’t going to give up peanut butter anytime soon. So might as well find something that isn’t going to give us diabetes. Though most peanut butters have all kinds of extra junk added in to them, there are healthy options. Let’s talk about how to sniff them out, so you can go back to making PB&J, guilt free. How to Choose a Healthy Peanut Butter – Buying Guide Let’s start talking about America’s favorite condiment. We’ll show you how to find a peanut butter you can lick off the spoon without horrible health effects. Ingredients: Get a Peanut Butter That’s All-Natural and Almost All Peanuts Thinking about it logically, peanut butter is just peanuts ground into paste–which shouldn’t be unhealthy. What’s unhealthy are the extra ingredients: na
When it comes to snacking, nothing beats the crunch of a chip. But most conventional chips leave much to be desired in terms of health. That’s why we’ve decided to figure out what makes a great healthy chip. While researching, we found that the best chips are made from whole foods ingredients aside from white potatoes, have a good balance of macronutrients, and cater to your dietary restrictions. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve put together a list of our favorite healthy chips available online. Top 10 Best Healthy Chips to Buy Online When picking out a healthy chip to try, don’t be afraid of branching out and trying a chip made from an unexpected ingredient. Often, those turn out to be the tastiest. 1. Terra Original Chips with Sea Salt (6.8 oz) Visit Amazon for more details Price: $3.51 Best Potato Chip Alternative These mixed root chips are like an elevated version of potato chips. They’re thick and crunchy like kettle-cooked chips, and each of the five different root vegetables
Barbecue sauce has a history that stretches as far back as the 1800s and is a common ingredient in many American foods today. From Sweet Chuck’s All Natural Barbecue Sauce to Annie’s Original Original BBQ Sauce, choosing the right sauce that’s healthy and that also complements your food can be a tough choice. In this article, we’ll show you how to choose the right healthy barbecue sauce, tell you which ingredients to avoid, and recommend some delicious, healthy barbecue sauces. Whether you’re looking something sweet and subtle or something bold and spicy, there’s a healthy barbecue sauce out there for you; here are our top picks for the best healthy barbecue sauces that you can buy online today. How to Choose a Healthy BBQ Sauce It can be difficult to decipher what sauces are healthy and which are not. A healthy barbecue sauce is going to have low sugar and low sodium, ingredients you will recognize, and still provide substantial flavor. Let’s break down what exactly you sh
Childhood is when bodies are built and taste preferences are made, so it’s important that kids eat healthy–including snacks. That’s why we’ve decided to figure out what makes a great healthy snack. We found that the best snacks include whole food ingredients and are free from overly processed and artificial ones. They’re also low on added sugars and cater to any allergies or dietary restrictions. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite healthy snacks for kids available online. Top 10 Best Healthy Snacks for Kids to Buy Online When looking for the right snack for your kids, alongside ingredients and health benefits, be sure to consider their personal tastes and preferences too. 1. FreeYumm Allergen Free Granola Bars (15 Bars) Visit Amazon for more details Price: $14.24 Best Allergy Friendly Snack These granola bars are perfect for kids to take to school. They’re free from the Big Eight allergens and are made in a facility where there’s no risk o
Nothing beats a stack of pancakes for breakfast, but traditional pancakes can be full of refined grains and artificial ingredients. That’s why we decided to look into healthy pancake mixes. While researching, we found that the best healthy pancake mixes use whole food ingredients and often incorporate grains other than just white wheat. Some mixes only require you to add water, while others take a bit more effort. In either case, the best pancake mix for you will cater to your macronutrient and dietary needs. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve picked our favorite healthy pancake mixes available online. Top 10 Best Healthy Pancake Mixes to Buy Online While a pancake mix can sound amazing from its description, the best way to judge how good it actually tastes is by reading the reviews. So be sure to pay attention to what those who have tried it have to say. 1. Bob’s Red Mill Organic 7 Grain Pancake & Waffle, Whole Grain Mix (4 Pack, 26 oz Each) Visit Amazon for more details Price:
As much as you try to get a balanced breakfast in every day, sometimes it’s just not possible to sit down and have a proper meal. While fast food and granola bars might seem like an easy fix, they can often cause sugar spikes and lethargy–exactly the opposite of what you’re looking for. Instead, it’s best to find a healthy breakfast bar that will energize you and keep you full. But “health” is in right now, and every package seems to be trying to convince you that what they’re selling is good for you, so it can be hard to sift through the junk. In this guide, we’ll go over exactly what you should look for in a healthy breakfast bar. At the end, if you’re still stuck on all the options, we’ve got a list of our 10 favorites to help you along. How to Choose a Healthy Breakfast Bar – Buying Guide Nearly everything in the grocery store claims to be healthy, but we all know that’s far from the truth. Keep the following factors in mind when trying to decipher what’s good for you and what isn
Oatmeal is normally thought of as a pretty healthy breakfast, but most pre-packaged oatmeals can be full of unnecessary sugars and artificial ingredients. That’s why we’ve decided to figure out what makes a great healthy oatmeal. In our research, we found that the best oatmeals often contain extra nutritional ingredients like nuts and seeds. And depending on your tastes and health preferences, you may want to look for oatmeals that are specifically gluten-free, rolled, or steel-cut. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve put together a list of our favorite healthy oatmeals available online. Top 10 Best Healthy Oatmeals to Buy Online When looking for a good oatmeal, it’s as much about the texture as it is the flavor, so be sure to read reviews thoroughly before buying to see if it matches your preferences. 1. Farm to Table Foods Ultimate Organic Oatmeal (3 Pack, 16 oz Each) Visit Amazon for more details Price: $25.99 Best Oatmeal Blend This blend of oatmeal, grains, and seeds is hearty, fi
While bread may have a bad reputation for causing weight gain, not all breads are bad for you. And to prove it, we’ve rounded up some of the healthiest breads available online. In our research, we found that the best healthy breads include only unprocessed, whole food ingredients and fit into your diet or lifestyle–whether that be vegan or keto, there’s a bread for everyone. Keeping these things in mind, here are some of our favorite healthy breads. Top 10 Best Healthy Breads to Buy Online When looking for a healthy bread, consider your dietary goals as well as personal tastes and always read reviews. 1. Dave’s Killer Bread Organic Good Seed Bread Visit Amazon for more details Price: $5.98 Best Healthy Sandwich Bread This organic, whole-grain bread is packed with seeds for flavor, texture, and nutrients. It has a moist, chewy texture that’s ideal for sandwiches. Reviewers rave about this bread’s flavor and texture and write that it has a good amount of seeds, which give it a light, n
When looking for a quick snack that’ll satiate your hunger, jerky is one of the best options available. Most conventional jerkies are full of chemicals, sugars, and fat, so we’ve looked into some healthier options. In our research, we found that the best healthy jerkies can be made from a variety of meats, contain just a few whole food ingredients, and have a balanced macronutrient profile. Keeping these things in mind, we’ve handpicked some of our favorite healthy jerkies available online. Top 10 Best Healthy Jerkies to Buy Online When looking for a jerky that’s good for you, simplicity is almost always better. 1. Ayoba-Yo Biltong Grass Fed, Tender Beef Snack (2 oz) Visit Amazon for more details Price: $8.99 Best No-Fluff Beef Jerky Biltong is a minimally processed South African jerky that’s been sun-dried and contains no sugar. It’s soft, easy to chew, and great for those watching their macros. Reviewers write that it’s well-spiced and tasty, despite the lack of sugar. The slices ar