Ever wonder why many recipes call for kosher salt instead of table salt? When we first started cooking, we assumed they were interchangeable. However as we started to learn more, we found kosher salt is generally preferred by cooks for bringing out the flavor of ingredients. Why?
- Kosher salt has wider, coarser grains that salt food in a gentler way than table salt.
- Kosher salt has no iodine, which can lend a bitter taste to foods salted with table salt. (If you eat a balanced diet with fruits and vegetables, you likely consume enough natural iodine and don’t need the additional iodine in table salt.)
Once we switched to using kosher salt, we noticed a distinct difference in the way it brings out the flavor of ingredients without making them taste salty.
Intrigued? Here are a few of our salt tips:
- Try switching to kosher salt for a few weeks, then switch back to salting something with regular table salt. See whether you notice a difference (then let us know!).
- Due to the size of the salt grains, you’ll have to ditch your typical salt shaker. We use something like this salt cellar for cooking and this salt cellar on our table.
- All of our recipes on A Couple Cooks use kosher salt! Use kosher salt if you can, and remember if you do use table salt, you’ll likely need to use a bit less than the specified amount.
- When salting food to taste, remember this crucial rule: you can always add more. We try to add about half the salt we think is needed before adding the remaining half (just in case).
- A pinch or two of salt can work wonders in a recipe; even desserts usually taste best with a small amount of salt.
- If you cook something and it tastes bland and flat, try adding a bit of kosher salt! It makes flavors pop in a way no other ingredient can (with a squeeze of lemon as a close second!).
- We enjoy sea salt as well, but since it’s grains are much larger, we generally use it as more of a garnish than in our recipes (on a salad, for example).
- Thanks to commenter Cath T on our sweet potato fries post who jogged our memory to write about kosher salt (it’s been on our minds to share).
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About the Authors
Cookbook Author and writer
Sonja Overhiser is an acclaimed vegetarian cookbook author and cook based in Indianapolis. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Cookbook Author and photographer
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the “best vegetarian cookbooks” by Epicurious.