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In this Lesson you will Learn

  1. What is the difference between table salt, kosher salt, sea salt, etc.?

Like pepper, salt is used all over the world. There is a huge range of salts available on the market, and people often wonder whether expensive salts are worth the money.

The truth is, all salt—whether table salt, kosher salt, or sea salt—is primarily sodium chloride. The differences between them include where they come from (rock salt vs. sea salt) as well as the size and the shape of the crystals.1

Kosher salt is a type of coarse-grained salt popular among chefs because it is easy to pick up with the fingertips and sticks well when coating meat. The name "kosher salt" comes from the word "koshering", the process of making food suitable for consumption according to Jewish law. Dissolved, it tastes no different than table salt.2

Sea salt can add a unique texture or provide bursts of salty goodness, but, again, only when it isn't being dissolved. Once it dissolves, the flavor is indistinguishable from table salt (because as we said, they are mostly the same thing, sodium chloride!). Sea salt is not "healthier" than table salt either, because they contain the same amount of sodium, which is the part of salt people are concerned about.3

Some gourmet salts that have been mixed with small amounts of volcanic clay or that have been roasted or smoked may in fact impart a unique flavor to your dish and could be worth the splurge.


  1. Quick and Dirty Tips - What is the healthiest salt?
  2. wiseGEEK - What is kosher salt?
  3. Mayo Clinic - Sea Salt


  1. For the most part, salt is salt. If you are dissolving it, there is probably no reason to spend extra money on expensive salts. For curing meats or adding the finishing touch to a dish, coarse-grained kosher or sea salt can be useful.
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