Kosher, iodized, sea salt, and more—we break down which types of salt are healthiest, tastiest, and best for cooking.
February 19, 2013
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A guide to salt
Fancy gourmet salts are super-trendy these days, but what kinds are healthiest for you and work best in your recipes?
Use our guide to see how it all shakes out, and don't forget that the American Heart Association recommends getting less than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a daythat's roughly equal to two-thirds of a teaspoon of table salt.
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Table salt is fortified with iodine, which is important for thyroid regulation. It also dissolves the quickest in food, making it ideal for most of your cooking and baking needs.
Bottom line: Use it in recipes with exact measurements and in pasta water (you'll get your iodine).
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While you get more precise measurements cooking with table salt, many pro chefs go for kosherwhich is flatter, lighter, and flakierbecause the irregularly shaped granules add subtle crunch.
Bottom line: Use it to salt your food. Larger grains give you less sodium per teaspoon.
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Big granules mean more flavor for less sodium, but skip this briny salt in routine cooking or baking since it doesn't dissolve easily, which can cause issues with the taste and texture of dishes.
Bottom line: Try it as a flavorful garnish for soups, salads, and even chocolate chip cookies.
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Sodium chloride (salt) is cut with potassium chloride, a mineral that tastes salty but is bitter when heated. Most of us could use more potassium, but those on blood pressure meds should avoid it.
Bottom line: To slash sodium, swap it into your shaker. Just don't cook with it.