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How To Add More Flavor Without Adding Salt

Praveena Kumar, MS, RD
4
December 21, 2020

Are you tired of the same old salt and pepper seasonings? Wondering how to add more flavor to your food while still limiting salt. Here are some fun ideas for adding a little zest to your meals!

We love using fresh and dry herbs and spices as rubs and marinades, or as a finisher on a cooked meal. What we may not realize is that just a sprinkle of some fresh herbs or citrus does the same job that salt would do - or better! Simple Seasonings:

  • Citrus (lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit)
  • Fresh or dried herbs (cilantro, basil, mint, parsley)
  • Fresh onion and garlic or onion and garlic powder
  • Spices such as turmeric, ginger, cumin, coriander, cinnamon

Tastes from Around the world:

Here are a few spice mixes you can try that have mostly the same ingredients, but with a few tweaks:  

French Flair

Italian Influence

Mediterranean Mix

Traditional Thai 

Mexican Melody

Southeast Asian

Spice

Onion

Onion

Onion

Onion

Onion

Onion

Garlic

Garlic

Garlic

Garlic

Garlic

Garlic

Rosemary

Basil

Basil

Basil

Cilantro

Dried cilantro seed (coriander)

Chive

Bay leaf (remove after cooking)

Lemon and lemon zest

Lemon and lemon zest 

Cumin

Cumin

Chervil

Parsley

Mint

Kaffir lime leaf (remove after cooking)

Chili Powder

Turmeric

Other flavor profiles to experiment with:

Herbs De Provence - Thyme, rosemary, basil, mint, lavender, tarragon

Zaatar - sesame seed, thyme, sumac, aleppo chili flakes (optional)

Garam Masala - Cumin, coriander, fennel, green cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger

Jamaican Jerk Seasoning - Thyme, allspice, parsley, paprika, onion and garlic powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cumin.

Not only do all of these wonderful herbs and spices help make our food more flavorful and delicious without adding extra salt, they have wonderful health benefits as well (helping with digestion and immunity). Have fun experimenting in the kitchen!