Best Substitutes for Seasoned Salt

Seasoned salt is a popular choice for adding flavor to various dishes, offering a blend of salt and various herbs and spices. However, there may be times when you either don’t have seasoned salt on hand or want to explore healthier alternatives. This article will discuss some of the best substitutes for seasoned salt that you can try, providing options for both natural and low-sodium alternatives.

Understanding the common ingredients in seasoned salt is crucial for creating effective substitutes. Many seasoned salt recipes include a base of salt mixed with flavorful additions such as garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and black pepper. By familiarizing yourself with these common ingredients, you can experiment with different combinations to find the perfect seasoned salt substitute tailored to your taste preferences and dietary requirements.

Incorporating herbs and spices as seasoned salt substitutes ensures that you don’t compromise on flavor while still enjoying the benefits of a healthier choice. Furthermore, you can prepare your own substitute at home, allowing you the flexibility to control the ingredients and sodium content. With a little experimentation, you can create a seasoning blend that rivals the flavor of store-bought seasoned salt, without the drawbacks.

Key Takeaways

  • Best substitutes for seasoned salt include natural and low-sodium options.
  • Knowledge of common ingredients helps tailor substitutes to taste preferences.
  • Experimenting with herbs and spices allows for personalized, healthier substitutions.

Understanding Seasoned Salt

Seasoned salt is a versatile and flavorful blend of salt and various spices, designed to enhance the taste of your favorite dishes. It’s a popular choice for home cooks and professional chefs alike, as it adds a quick boost of flavor to a wide variety of recipes.

When you use seasoned salt, you’ll find that it often contains a combination of common spices such as paprika, onion powder, and garlic powder. These ingredients are mixed with salt, giving the seasoning its characteristic taste and versatility. The ratio of salt to spices may vary from one brand to another, resulting in subtle differences in flavor profiles.

One thing to note is that seasoned salt is not just a replacement for regular salt. Instead, you’re using it as an all-purpose seasoning that adds a hint of spices and a little extra taste to your dishes. Depending on the recipe, you might still need to use additional spices or seasonings alongside seasoned salt to achieve the desired flavor.

Using seasoned salt can save you time and effort in the kitchen, as it combines multiple elements into one convenient blend. This makes it particularly useful for those who enjoy cooking but don’t have the time or resources to maintain a fully stocked spice rack.

In summary, seasoned salt is a handy, flavorful blend of salt and spices that can enhance the taste of various recipes. By understanding its composition, you’ll be able to make better decisions regarding how and when to use it in your cooking.

Why Opt for Seasoned Salt Substitutes

Switching to seasoned salt substitutes can be beneficial to your health, especially if you’re concerned about high sodium content in regular seasoned salt. Sodium is often linked to high blood pressure and heart disease, so it’s important to be mindful of your intake. By opting for substitutes, you can still enjoy flavorful dishes without the potential health risks associated with high sodium consumption.

Seasoned salt substitutes come in various forms, offering a range of flavors to suit your taste preferences. Some options include herb blends, spice mixes, and even umami-rich alternatives such as nutritional yeast. These substitutes not only cut down on sodium content but also allow you to experiment with new and exciting flavors in your cooking.

Lastly, choosing seasoned salt substitutes can be a simple way to reduce your overall sodium intake without sacrificing taste. By incorporating these alternatives into your meals, you can gradually ease into a heart-healthy diet and maintain flavor and enjoyment in your culinary adventures.

Common Ingredients in Seasoned Salt

When creating your own seasoned salt or looking for substitutes, it’s essential to understand the common ingredients found in most commercial and homemade blends. Here, you will discover five key ingredients that highly contribute to the distinct flavor and aroma of seasoned salt.

Table salt is the base ingredient in seasoned salt, providing the characteristic salty taste. It often makes up a substantial portion of the mix, so when selecting substitutes, consider using a sodium source or a blend of complementary spices.

Onion powder adds a hint of sweetness and depth to seasoned salt mixes. It imparts an onion-like flavor that enhances the overall taste profile. If you’re looking to recreate seasoned salt without onion powder, consider using dried onion flakes or a small amount of fresh minced onion as an alternative.

Garlic powder is another essential component, contributing to the savory, umami notes present in seasoned salt. It is often used in combination with onion powder to create a richly flavored base. In case you don’t have access to garlic powder, you can opt for minced garlic or dried garlic flakes as a substitute.

Paprika provides both color and a mild, sweet pepper flavor to seasoned salt blends. While not overly spicy, it adds warmth and complexity to the mix. In the absence of paprika, consider using a dash of cayenne pepper if you’d like some heat or a blend of mild, sweet chili powders.

Lastly, black pepper imparts a subtle heat and bite, which enhances the other flavors in the mix. Although not as dominant as other ingredients, it still brings a necessary balance to the blend. If you’re without black pepper, you could use a small quantity of white or green pepper to achieve a similar peppery note.

Armed with the knowledge of these common ingredients, feel confident to experiment with various combinations and discover your own perfect seasoned salt substitute that suits your taste preferences and dietary requirements.

Best Natural Substitutes for Seasoned Salt

If you are looking to replace seasoned salt with a more natural alternative, consider the following options that provide a flavorful blend of spices without any added preservatives or additives.

Garlic, Onion, and Pepper Blend: A simple combination of garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper can create an all-purpose seasoning that can rival the taste of commercial seasoned salt. Adjust the proportions to your taste, and consider adding a pinch of sea salt or pink Himalayan salt if desired. This blend is versatile and works well with a variety of dishes, such as meats, vegetables, and casseroles.

Herbal Blend: Experiment with various herbs to create your own custom mix. Start by combining dried basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary in equal parts. Other herbs you could consider adding include marjoram, sage, or tarragon. You may want to tailor your blend to specific dishes or cuisines—for example, adding cilantro and cumin for a Latin-infused flavor, or utilizing dill and parsley for a Mediterranean touch. Personalize your herbal blend and enjoy vast natural flavor combinations in your cooking.

All-Natural Store-Bought Alternatives: If you prefer a prepared mix, seek out store-bought options that prioritize natural ingredients without additives or artificial preservatives. Check labels for salt substitutes that only include recognizable herbs and spices to ensure you’re maintaining a focus on natural flavors.

When choosing natural substitutes for seasoned salt, keep your purpose and taste profile in mind. With endless combinations of garlic, onion, pepper, and a variety of herbs, you can create a seasoning blend that suits your preferences and elevates your cooking to new heights. Remember, you always have the freedom to adjust any of these options to perfectly suit your taste buds while embracing the benefits of natural ingredients.

Using Herbs as Seasoned Salt Substitutes

When looking for a substitute for seasoned salt, you can turn to a variety of herbs for a flavorful and healthy alternative. In most cases, you can use dried or fresh herbs, depending on your preference and availability.

Oregano is a versatile herb that adds a distinct flavor to your dishes. It works well in pasta sauces, Mediterranean dishes, and marinades. Thyme is another great choice, offering a subtle earthy taste, perfect for seasoning meats, soups, and stews.

Rosemary is an aromatic herb that pairs well with chicken, lamb, and pork. It has a slightly minty, lemony taste that enhances rather than overpowers the dish. Parsley is a popular herb used widely in cooking, with its mild flavor and bright, fresh notes. You’ll find parsley is often a key ingredient in many herb blends.

Herbs de Provence is a mixture of herbs that typically includes thyme, rosemary, marjoram, savory, and oregano. This blend is great for seasoning meats, vegetables, and soups. You can also make your own custom blend using your favorite herbs.

Sage is a potent herb that adds a hint of bitterness and mild peppery taste to dishes. It’s a perfect addition to poultry and works well in dressing and sautéed dishes. Use it sparingly to avoid overpowering other flavors.

Lavender is less common in savory cooking but can be an interesting addition to your dishes. It provides a sweet floral flavor and is often included in Herbs de Provence. Be cautious when using lavender, as a little goes a long way.

To substitute seasoned salt with herbs, start by eliminating the salt in your recipe and using a combination of the above-mentioned herbs instead. Begin with a smaller amount, taste your dish, and adjust the quantity accordingly. This way, you can create a healthier, flavorful alternative to seasoned salt tailored to your personal tastes.

Herbs & Spices

Spice-Based Substitutes for Seasoned Salt

Sometimes, the best way to replace seasoned salt in your recipes is by using spice-based substitutes that still pack a flavorful punch. Relying on these alternatives allows you to have more control over the taste and sodium content of your dishes.

Turmeric is a fantastic substitute for seasoned salt, especially if you’re looking for an earthy, slightly bitter taste. Known for its bold yellow color, it also adds visual appeal to your dishes. You can use turmeric in combination with other spices to create a personalized blend for your recipes.

Cayenne is an excellent choice for those who want to add some heat to their dishes. Use cayenne pepper sparingly, as a little goes a long way in providing a spicy kick. This potent spice works well in dry rubs and seasonings for meats, vegetables, and other dishes that can benefit from a touch of heat.

Ground mustard adds a sharp, tangy flavor to your dishes without overpowering other ingredients. It’s commonly found in spice blends and can be used as a stand-alone substitute for seasoned salt or as part of a customized blend.

Red pepper flakes are another versatile substitute for seasoned salt, particularly for those who enjoy a bit of heat in their meals. These crushed, dried chili flakes can be sprinkled on various dishes, such as pasta, pizza, and roasted vegetables, to give them an extra burst of flavor.

Incorporating a combination of these spices in your cooking allows you to achieve a balance of flavors that suits your taste preferences. Feel free to experiment with different proportions to find the perfect blend for your dishes. Remember, it’s always easier to add more spices later on, so start with small quantities and adjust accordingly.

Options for Low-Sodium Substitutes

When looking for low-sodium substitutes for seasoned salt, it’s important to remember that there are plenty of alternatives that can add flavor to your dishes without the added sodium. Here are some options to consider:

Salt substitute: Many salt substitutes are available on the market that can serve as a low-sodium replacement for seasoned salt. These products usually contain potassium chloride instead of sodium chloride and often include other seasonings like onion and garlic powders to enhance flavor. Be sure to check the label for sodium content, as some brands might still have significant amounts.

Celery and celery salt: Celery is a natural source of sodium, but it is much lower in sodium content than table salt. You can use fresh, chopped celery or celery salt (made by mixing ground celery seeds with salt) to flavor your dishes. However, be cautious with store-bought celery salt, as it can still be high in sodium. You can make your own low-sodium celery salt by using less salt and more ground celery seeds in the mixture.

Garlic salt: Replacing seasoned salt with garlic salt is another option, especially if you enjoy the taste of garlic. To keep the sodium content low, you can create your own garlic salt mixture using less salt and more garlic powder. Additionally, you may consider using fresh minced garlic for an even lower sodium option.

Lemon pepper: Lemon pepper is a seasoning made from lemon zest, pepper, and sometimes salt. The tangy flavor of lemon zest combined with the spiciness of black pepper can be a great low-sodium alternative to seasoned salt. You can find salt-free lemon pepper blends in stores or make your own by combining lemon zest with cracked black pepper.

To sum up, there are several low-sodium substitutes for seasoned salt that can help you add flavor to your dishes without increasing your sodium intake. When using store-bought seasoning blends, always pay attention to the sodium content on the label. Additionally, making your own seasoning mixes allows you to control the amount of sodium in your food.

How to Use Substitutes in Different Dishes

When substituting seasoned salt in your favorite dishes, it’s crucial to consider the flavors and spices that work for each meal type. By doing so, you’ll be able to achieve the desired seasoning while staying true to the dish’s authentic taste. Below are examples of how different substitutes can be used in various dishes.

Dishes and Soups: In dishes like soups and casseroles, you can use a blend of herbs and spices like parsley, thyme, and oregano along with garlic and onion powder. For more heat, consider adding paprika or red pepper flakes. Experiment with measured amounts to find the perfect taste for your dish without overpowering it.

Salads: For salads, consider using fresh herbs like basil, chives, or dill instead of seasoned salt. A simple seasoning of plain salt and cracked black pepper can also enhance the natural flavors of your salad ingredients.

Potatoes: When seasoning potatoes, such as French fries, baked potatoes, or roasted potatoes, you can mix garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika. This combination adds a delicious flavor, closely mimicking the taste of seasoned salt.

Steaks and Roasts: When preparing steaks and roasts, consider using a blend of black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. You can also add a touch of smoked or sweet paprika to give your meat a delicious, savory flavor.

Casseroles: For casseroles, try combining spices like thyme, marjoram, and oregano with a pinch of salt and pepper. These flavors can enhance the depth of your casserole without compromising the original taste.

Beans: When seasoning beans, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano work well together. Add a light touch of smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for an extra kick.

Baked Goods: In select baked goods where seasoned salt is called for, use a mix of spices that won’t disrupt the flavor profile of your bake. Substitute with a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, and a hint of salt. Be cautious of the quantity used, as baked goods are sensitive to spices, and too much can easily overwhelm the taste.

Keep in mind that the key to finding the perfect substitute for seasoned salt in any dish is to balance your flavors and experiment with different combinations of herbs and spices. Feel confident in your ability to create a custom mix tailored to the dish you are preparing, enhancing its taste while staying true to its roots.

Preparing Your Own Substitute for Seasoned Salt

When looking for the best substitutes for seasoned salt, consider making your own blend at home. By using a variety of herbs, spices, and other ingredients, you can make a flavorful, versatile replacement to store-bought seasoned salt. Preparing your own substitute gives you control over the taste and the amount of sodium content.

First, gather your desired spices and herbs. Some popular choices include:

  • Paprika: provides a smoky flavor and rich color
  • Garlic powder: adds a deep, savory taste
  • Onion powder: contributes a subtle sweetness
  • Black pepper: offers a mild heat
  • Cayenne pepper: infuses a stronger heat
  • Dried oregano: creates a Mediterranean twist
  • Dried thyme: imparts a delicate and earthy flavor

Once you’ve selected your preferred spices, combine them in a small bowl. The typical ratio is 1 part each of your primary spice (such as paprika) and ½ part each of the secondary spices, depending on your desired taste. Adjust the proportions to suit your preferences.

After mixing, the prep time for your blend should be around 5 minutes, with a total time of approximately 8-10 minutes when you consider cleanup. Store your homemade seasoned salt substitute in an airtight container to retain its freshness. Keep the container away from heat and direct sunlight for optimal preservation.

Creating your own seasoned salt substitute lets you tweak the mixture to accommodate specific dietary restrictions or preferences. By making small batches, you can experiment with flavor profiles and find the perfect combination for your palate. Additionally, this home-prepared alternative can save you money as compared to pre-mixed store-bought products.

The Health Benefits of Using Substitutes

Using substitutes for seasoned salt can provide several health benefits without compromising flavor. Many of these alternatives incorporate natural flavors that not only taste great but also contribute to your well-being.

One of the key advantages of using substitutes is their potential to deliver antioxidants. For instance, many herbs and spices, such as turmeric and cinnamon, contain these vital compounds. Antioxidants combat free radicals in the body, which can cause harm when their levels become too high. As a result, incorporating antioxidant-rich substitutes in your cooking can help protect your body from cell damage.

Furthermore, opting for seasoned salt substitutes can aid in reducing inflammation. Chronic inflammation is linked to various health issues, such as heart disease and arthritis. Some well-known anti-inflammatory-containing spices include ginger, black pepper, and rosemary. By choosing to use these ingredients instead of seasoned salt, you’re also promoting a healthier inflammatory response in your body.

To incorporate these substitutes effectively, consider the following list of options:

  • Herbs and Spices: Replace seasoned salt with a blend of flavorful herbs and spices. You can create custom blends catered to your taste preferences or utilize pre-made mixtures available at your local grocery store.
  • Citrus Zest: Grated lemon, lime, or orange zest can impart a bright, tangy flavor to your dishes, acting as a natural salt substitute.
  • Vinegars: Apple cider vinegar, balsamic, or red wine vinegar can enhance the taste of your meal while cutting down on sodium intake.

By making a conscious effort to incorporate seasoned salt substitutes into your cooking, you are taking a step towards a healthier lifestyle. The added benefit of natural flavors and potential improvements in your overall well-being make these alternatives an excellent choice.

Popular Pre-Made Seasoned Salt Substitutes

If you’re looking for a pre-made substitute for seasoned salt, Old Bay is an excellent option. With a unique blend of 18 herbs and spices, it can provide a versatile flavor to a variety of dishes, such as seafood, poultry, and even popcorn. Its distinctive taste comes from ingredients like celery salt, paprika, and mustard seed, offering a slightly spicy kick to your meals.

Another popular choice is Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, a well-recognized brand that has a combination of salt, sugar, spices, and onion and garlic powder. It’s great on meats, vegetables, and even incorporated into your favorite burger recipe. Just be aware of its slightly higher sodium content when substituting it for regular sea salt.

For a flavorful and rich substitute, consider trying soul food seasoning. This mix typically includes salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and paprika, creating a hearty and slightly spicy seasoning that will enhance your dish. It works particularly well with fried foods, meats, and stews.

To add a zesty twist to your recipes, lemon zest can be a fantastic alternative to seasoned salt. The bright, citrusy flavor pairs well with fish, chicken, and roasted vegetables, adding a delightful tanginess to your dish. Be sure to use a fine grater or lemon zester to create tiny shavings for the best results.

Fennel can offer a unique substitution for seasoned salt, imparting an earthy, slightly sweet and herbaceous flavor. It works well in Italian and Mediterranean dishes, such as pasta sauces, salads, and seafood recipes. Be aware that fennel has a stronger taste, so start with a small amount and add more according to your preference.

Lastly, if you’re seeking a mildly spiced alternative, try incorporating white pepper in your recipes. It has a more delicate, less pungent flavor than black pepper and can add a subtle warmth to your dishes. Use it sparingly, as too much may result in a bitter aftertaste.

With these popular pre-made seasoned salt substitutes in mind, you’ll easily be able to enhance your cooking and add extra flavor to your dishes without relying on store-bought seasoning blends.


In conclusion, finding the perfect substitute for seasoned salt depends on your taste preferences and the ingredients you have on hand. Remember to always adjust the ratios and experiment with combinations to find the one that suits you best.

Some great options to consider include:

  • Herb mixes: Use blends like Italian seasoning, Herbes de Provence, or your own homemade mix of preferred herbs. These provide a flavorful alternative to seasoned salt and can easily be customized based on your taste preferences.
  • Spice blends: Combining spices such as onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika can create a flavorful substitute for seasoned salt. Adjust the ratios according to your desired taste.
  • Salt alternatives: Low-sodium options like potassium chloride and NoSalt® can help reduce the sodium content in your dishes while still providing the salty flavor you’re looking for.

Always keep in mind the flavors and textures of the ingredients you are using to ensure the substitute complements your dish. Happy cooking!

Frequently Asked Questions

What can be used instead of Lawry’s seasoned salt?

There are several alternatives for replacing Lawry’s seasoned salt in your recipes. Some common substitutes include homemade seasoned salt mixtures, combining equal parts of garlic salt, onion salt, and celery salt, or using alternatives like Old Bay seasoning or Mrs. Dash. Feel free to modify these suggestions to suit your taste preferences.

How do seasoning salt and table salt differ?

Seasoning salt is a blend of table salt, herbs, and spices designed to add flavor to your dishes. Table salt, on the other hand, is pure sodium chloride used primarily for enhancing the natural taste of food. Seasoning salt has a more complex flavor profile than table salt, and is typically used for specific recipes and purposes.

What are some popular seasoning salt brands?

Lawry’s seasoned salt is one of the most popular brands, but there are many others available, including Adobo seasoning by Goya, Old Bay, and Tony Chachere’s Original Creole seasoning. These brands have their unique blends of flavors, and some contain less sodium or are specifically designed for certain types of cuisine.

How can I make a salt-free seasoning salt?

To make a salt-free seasoning mix, you can create a blend of your favorite herbs and spices—such as garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and black pepper—without the inclusion of salt. To replicate the flavor-enhancing effects of salt, consider using a small amount of a salt substitute, which often contains potassium chloride, or a splash of acid like lemon juice or vinegar.

What are common uses for seasoned salt?

Seasoned salt can be used in a variety of dishes to add flavor and depth. Some typical uses include seasoning meats (like chicken, beef, or pork) before grilling or baking, adding it to potatoes or vegetables during roasting, or even sprinkling it on popcorn or other snacks. Just be mindful of your seasoned salt’s sodium content and adjust your application accordingly.

What are the key ingredients in seasoned salt?

The core ingredients found in most seasoned salts include table salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika. Seasoned salt blends also contain various herbs and spices to create specific flavor profiles, which may include oregano, thyme, black pepper, cayenne pepper, rosemary, or other components based on the brand or particular recipe.

Best Substitutes for Seasoned Salt + Recipe

Homemade seasoned salt is a great way to add flavor to your dishes. Here's a simple recipe you can try:
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Seasoning, Substitute
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 44 kcal


  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper


  • In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients.
  • Mix well until all the spices are evenly distributed.
  • Store the seasoned salt in an airtight container.


Calories: 44kcal
Keyword seasoned salt substitute
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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
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