Finishing Salt – Making Your Own Flavoured Salts

Homemade finishing salt is super easy to make and adds amazing flavor to meats, veggies, pasta, rice, breads and so much more.

four finishing salts
Rosemary, lemon pepper, chive and chili lime finishing salts.

Also Read: Homemade Italian Seasoning, How to Make Infused Vinegars, Homemade Taco Seasoning

I love using my own homemade seasonings and finishing salts in my own cooking, but they also make great Gifts from the Kitchen.

four finishing salts in jars
Pretty, tasty and easy to make – the perfect Gift from the Kitchen.

Worried About Too Much Salt?

Worried about adding more salt to your diet? If you’re on a low sodium diet, I would recommend looking up some of my homemade seasonings that add great flavour without adding salt. Otherwise, using finishing salt is no more of a concern than regular salt. In fact, by replacing most or all of the salt you add during cooking with flavoured coarse salt at the end of cooking you get all the flavour while using less salt. When your taste buds hit those large grains of salt a little goes a long way. The salt hasn’t been dissolved and mixed to oblivion – it’s right there for your taste buds to notice. And with the added herbs and seasonings, you’ll enjoy great flavour in addition to saltiness.

making finishing salt
My favourite ingredient to add include herbs, spices, flower blossoms and citrus zest.

Tips for Making Finishing Salt

  • Use flaked or coarse salt – the size and shape of the grains do make a difference.  Check out The Kitchn for more details about salt varieties. Fancy, expensive, imported salts are very trendy right now, but honestly, because you’re adding other seasonings, you don’t need to buy the most expensive or colourful salt available.
  • When blending herbs and spices with the salt, be careful not to pulverize your salt – you want those large crystals or flakes of salt to stay large.
  • Salt has been used to safely preserve all types of food since the dawn of time. While it’s not necessary to completely dry herbs or flavour ingredients before adding to the salt, especially if you use small quantities, I prefer drying or wilting high moisture ingredients like citrus, hot peppers, ginger, garlic, flower blossoms and dense herbs before adding to the salt. It helps prevent clumping and is easy to do. Dry or wilt herbs before on your countertop overnight or dry them in the microwave to remove most of the moisture. Alternatively, you  could bake the finished mixed salt on lowest setting (150°F) of your oven for 2-4 hours
  • I’ve learned that glass containers work best as metal will corrode from the salt over time.
  • For most applications, use flavoured salt towards the end of the cooking process – as a finishing product.
  • Use on grilled meat, fish, chicken, vegetables, baked or fried potatoes, eggs, pasta, salad dressings.
Letting high moisture ingredients like fresh herbs, citrus and flower blossoms wilt or dry a little by leaving out overnight or partially drying in a microwave helps prevent clumping.

The Basic Ratio 

Here’s a general guideline to get you started. But, there’s really no hard and fast rule – let your taste buds lead the process.

1-2 Tbsp of herbs or flavour ingredients to 1/2 cup large crystal salt

Four Recipes for Finishing Salt

Here are four recipes I enjoy regularly. Lemon Pepper Salt, Rosemary Salt, Chili Lime Salt and Chive Blossom Salt

Lemon Pepper Finishing Salt

The lemon pepper finishing salt is great on fish, on roasted chicken, grilled asparagus or roasted vegetables.

lemon pepper finishing salt
Lemon Pepper Finishing Salt
lemon pepper finishing salt
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Lemon Pepper Finishing Salt

Great on chicken, pork, fish and veggies like asparagus.
Prep : 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp black peppercorns
  • 1 Tbsp lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup kosher or coarse sea salt

Instructions

  • Using a mortar and pestle, spice grinder, coffee grinder or small food processor, coarsely grind peppercorns and lemon zest.
  • Add salt and mix together gently to avoid pulverizing the salt.
  • Pour in small container and cap tightly.

Notes

Yield 1/4 cup
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Rosemary Finishing Salt

Try the Rosemary Finishing Salt on Rosemary Focaccia, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes or the Rosemary Pita Crisps.

rosemary finishing salt
Rosemary Finishing Salt
rosemary finishing salt
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Rosemary Salt

A wonderful addition to pan fried potatoes, beef, pork or veggies. Terrific topping for focaccia bread.
Prep : 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp rosemary fresh or dried
  • 1/2 cup kosher or coarse sea salt

Instructions

  • Strip rosemary from stem.
  • Chop rosemary into small pieces.
  • If fresh, chop or grind rosemary in mortar and pestle to release oils.
  • If dried, crumble rosemary into smaller pieces to release oils.
  • Add salt and mix well. If salt crystals are very large, grind a little in mortar and pestle, but do not pulverize into powder.
  • Pour in small container and cap tightly.

Notes

Yield 1/2 cup
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Chili Lime Finishing Salt

This chili lime salt kicks up popcorn and chicken or veggies used in Southwestern style dishes.

chili lime finishing salt
Chili Lime Finishing Salt
chili lime finishing salt
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Chili Lime Salt

Giddy-up! Use this finishing salt when you want to add a little extra zip to poultry, meat, fish or mexican dishes.
Prep : 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 cayenne pepper 1 tsp flakes
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 1/4 cup kosher or coarse sea salt

Instructions

  • Chop cayenne pepper into small pieces. Wear gloves.
  • Add to mortar and pestle with lime zest and salt.
  • Grind gently just to mix ingredients - avoid pulverizing the salt.
  • Pour in small container and cap tightly.

Notes

Yield 1/4 cup
Tried this recipe?Mention @GetGettyS or tag #GetGettyS

Chive Blossom Finishing Salt

This chive blossom finishing salt is great on potatoes, roasted veggies, focaccia or grilled meats.

chive finishing salt
Chive Blossom Finishing Salt.
chive finishing salt
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Chive Blossom Finishing Salt

A pretty and aromatic addition to focaccia, pan fried potatoes, mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables and grilled meats.
Prep : 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins

Ingredients

  • 5-6 fresh chive flower heads fresh or dried
  • 8-10 green chive stems
  • 1/2 cup coarse salt

Instructions

Prepare Chives

  • Wash and swish chive flower heads in water. Rinse and repeat to ensure any dirt and tiny critters are removed. Pat dry with towel or dry in salad spinner.
  • Pluck individual blossoms from flower head and let dry.
  • Wash and dry chive stems. Chop into small pieces 2-3 mm or 1/8 inch long.
  • Leave chives on counter overnight to wilt and dry somewhat. Or, sandwich between a paper towel placed on a plate and microwave at 50% power for 2 minutes, at 30 second intervals. The chives don't need to be completely dry, but removing some of the moisture will help prevent clumping.

Assemble

  • Add prepared chives to salt and mix well. If salt crystals are very large, grind a little in mortar and pestle, but do not pulverize into powder.
  • Pour in small container and cap tightly.
  • Store in a dry cupboard. Colour of chives may fade after 6-8 months, but the salt will be safe to use for a long time.

Notes

Yield 1/2 cup
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Need some labels for your finishing salts? Here’s a pdf of Finishing Salt Round Tags you can download and print. Or use them as an inspiration to design and create your own labels.

rosemary focaccia

Here’s a look at a rosemary salt gift basket I put together. It includes a lovely bottle of olive oil and rosemary focaccia bread mix along with a few odds and sods.

Note: Revised June 2021, I published the first three recipes in 2013. Thought it was time for an update and new photos.

Interested in other  Gifts from the Kitchen?  Check these out:

Infused Vinegar

Candied and Spiced Nuts

Nuts and Bolts Recipe

Popcorn Seasoning Recipes

Ready to Make Soup Mixes

Cookies in a Jar

What are your favourite seasonings? Have you tried finishing salts? Leave a comment below or tag me on Instagram @getgettys and Facebook @GettyStewart.HomeEconomist.

Getty Stewart is a Professional Home Economist,  speaker, frequent media guest and writer dedicated to putting good food on tables and agendas.  She is the author of several recipe books on enjoying and preserving fruit, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener. Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, practical tips and great food information like this.

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