DIY Finishing Salts

You’ve certainly seen the gourmet finishing salts available in our markets and online? EXPENSIVE! DIY Finishing Salts make perfect edible gifts for the gourmet cook in your life! Citrus, Mushroom, and Dill DIY Finishing Salts are 3 of my favorites, and I’ve brought you DIY instructions and ideas for their use …

DIY Finishing Salts  feature image with citrus, dill, mushroom in small bowls with glass jars labeled in the background.

👩🏻‍🍳 Tamara Talks – About Homemade Finishing Salts

You just want to do a simple meal on the grill? A piece of poultry, fish, or meat, and some grilled veg? When there’s no time for a marinade, you can boost the flavor with a finishing salt!

Finishing salts require only a couple of easy-to-find ingredients, and a few inactive hours to make. The active time varies by ingredient. Photo above from left to right: Citrus Finishing Salt (about 15 minutes active), Mushroom Finishing Salt (about 10 minutes active), and Dill Finishing Salt (about 5 minutes active).

Once upon a time… salt was just that. Salt. It came in a cylindrical blue and white container, and we poured it into a dreary salt “shaker.” I don’t even own a salt shaker anymore, much less a salt and pepper shaker set.  😆

The evolution was gradual… I started with coarse sea salt in a salt grinder beside my pepper grinder. Pretty soon, a pinch bowl of fine sea salt joined them on the counter. Then it was all over!!!

I started seeing specialty salts everywhere I went – red Hawaiian, alderwood smoked, Himalayan pink, fleur de sel, flake salt – so many options. Before I knew it, those lovely salts were incorporated into finishing salt blends. Wow! So, I guess I’ve developed something of a salt addiction, and my addiction has spread to friends and family as well…

These fine quality finishing salts make a perfect edible gift for anyone on your list, but especially for the gourmet cook in your life! They’re so inexpensive to make, you’ll want to make them all…

What is a Finishing Salt?

Finishing salts are unrefined, all-natural flavor enhancers that add texture and depth to your food. A good finishing salt goes on your food rather than in your food.

Why is Salt So Important?

To avoid bland food. USE. SALT. I even include sea salt in my frozen desserts – Double (Fresh) Ginger Pumpkin Custard Ice Cream and Raspberry Double-Chocolate Sorbet with Stout.

🧂 Ways to Use DIY Finishing Salts?

  • combined with other spices as a dry rub for grilling
  • added to the rim of a cocktail glass
  • sprinkled on meat, poultry, fish, veggies to add dimension and flavor
  • tossed with salads
  • sprinkled on pasta to add dimension and flavor

So, once you make one or three of these finishing salts, how do you use them? At first glance, the Citrus Finishing Salt pairs beautifully with fish and shellfish, the Mushroom Finishing salt complements beef (great on a grilled steak or burger), and the Dill Finishing Salt enhances fresh grilled asparagus and steamed English peas.

In every recipe/post, I try to emphasize the importance of tasting and seasoning your food. Salt highlights flavors, suppresses bitterness, and enhances umami, sour, and sweet flavors.

❓ FAQ

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What Kind of Salt Should I Use?

My choice for DIY finishing salts is flake sea salt. The irregularly shaped and sized flakes provide a bit of crunch and a burst of flavor that is quite appealing. It is perfect for making a finishing salt.

DIY Citrus Finishing Salt  close up in a white bowl with gold spoon.

🥄 How to Make Finishing Salts

Making DIY Finishing Salts is just a matter of thoroughly drying the ingredient and then combining with the flake salt. Time varies accoring to ingredient. For example: Dill dries more quickly than mushrooms.

Once you’ve got the technique down (which is basically drying an ingredient that goes well with salt and getting it to an appropriate size), be creative. You can substitute your favorite fresh herb for the dill, combine whichever citrus fruits you’d prefer in the citrus, substitute truffles (expensive!) for the mushrooms.

You can try adding Aleppo pepper (a new favorite of mine), hot chiles, your favorite spices. Be creative!

DIY Mushrom Finishing Salt in a small white bowl with fresh sliced mushrooms in the background.

I hope this post has inspired you to add a few finishing salts to your pantry. I found the cute and practical cork-topped glass containers at my local grocers. You can also use small mason jars.

My “recipe” makes a fairly small quantity, as the flake sea salt is not cheap, and I like to do a variety (rather than 1 large batch). I use Falksalt Crystal Flakes which I find at my HEB market. You can order them on Amazon here.

Keep in mind, DIY Finishing Salts make really nice and inexpensive edible gifts!

DIY Dill Finishing Salt in small white bowls with tiny gold spoon on wood tray.

What do you think? Do DIY Finishing Salts appeal to you, or are they “too much like work?” Inquiring minds want to know!

Signature in red and green with chiles and limes. Healthyish Latin cuisine.

Citrus Finishing Salt

Just a hint of citrus will brighten grilled fish, seafood, and chicken, and liven up grilled, steamed, and sauteed veggies!
5 from 14 votes

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 15 minutes
Cuisine Eclectic
Calories 1 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 blood orange - (see notes)
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 lime
  • ½ cup flaked sea salt

Instructions

  • Remove zest from your citrus using a peeler or wide slot microplane. Don’t use a citrus zester. 
  • Place on a baking sheet or glass pan sprayed lightly with cooking spray. Place in a warm oven (“warm” or “proof” setting). Allow to remain in the oven until zest is completely dehydrated. This process takes about 6 hours (depending on temperature).
  • Add citrus zest and flaked sea salt to the bowl of a small food processor. Pulse several times until well combined, and there are not large pieces of zest.
  • Store in an airtight container.

Notes

I used the 3 citrus fruits mentioned above. Feel free to use your own combination. You’re looking for 3/4-1 cup of loosely packed zest…

Nutrition

Calories: 1kcal

NOTE: Macronutrients are an approximation only using unbranded ingredients and MyFitnessPal.com. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and/or star rating! Email us with any questions: tamara@beyondmeresustenance.com
DIY Dill Finishing Salt

Dill (Fresh Herb) Finishing Salt

A fresh, herbilicious finishing salt for grilled salmon, asparagus, English peas… 
4.83 from 17 votes

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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes
Cuisine Eclectic
Calories 1 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup fresh dill - stems removed and packed
  • ½ cup flake salt

Instructions

  • Lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Place the fresh dill on the baking sheet, and place in a warm oven (“warm” or “proof” setting). Allow the dill (or other herb) to completely dry. My oven required about 2 hours.
  • Carefully scrape the dill into the bowl of a small food processor. Add the flaked sea salt. Pulse several times to combine
  • Store in an airtight container.

Notes

Substitute your favorite fresh herbs. Each will require different amounts of time to dehydrate.
Dill is pretty fragile, and will break down quickly in the processor. Don’t over-process!

Nutrition

Calories: 1kcal

NOTE: Macronutrients are an approximation only using unbranded ingredients and MyFitnessPal.com. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and/or star rating! Email us with any questions: tamara@beyondmeresustenance.com

Mushroom Finishing Salt

Add a little umami flavor to your favorite grilled meat or egg dish… Use your imagination!
5 from 13 votes

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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Course Other
Cuisine Eclectic
Servings 80 servings
Calories 1 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 16 ounces crimini mushrooms - stems removed and sliced very thin
  • ½ cup flaked sea salt - see post

Instructions

  • Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Arrange the thin-sliced mushrooms in a thin layer. Some overlap is fine.
  • Place in the oven on “warm” or “proof.” Stir and spread about once per hour. Allow the warm oven to completely dry the mushrooms. My oven took about 5-6 hours.
  • Pulse mushrooms in a small food processor several times, then add the flaked sea salt, and pulse a few more times until the mushrooms are well combined.
  • Store in an airtight container.

Notes

I make a fabulous Roasted Mushroom Stock. Whenever I have mushroom stems, I pop them into a zip bag. When I’ve collected plenty, I make stock! Waste not, want not!
 

Nutrition

Calories: 1kcal

NOTE: Macronutrients are an approximation only using unbranded ingredients and MyFitnessPal.com. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and/or star rating! Email us with any questions: tamara@beyondmeresustenance.com

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5 from 14 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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16 Comments

    1. Good morning Jennifer! Salt is a natural preserver. If your ingredients are thoroughly dry, they should keep indefinitely. Of the 3 I did for photos, I didn’t use the dill one as often, and finally finished it over a year later. I hope that helps!

  1. Fantastic post!!!! I’ve always wanted to give a citrus salt a try, but now I want to do a mushroom salt as well. Thanks for much the inspiration and your method. I’m going to give at least one a try. I do make a red chiel and green chile salt but I’m sure that’s no surprise. 🙂

    1. Thanks MJ! I love the citrus salt! I used it last night on some spiralized and roasted root veggies with fresh thyme and the citrus salt. It was so good! I hope to hear back when you get one made!

  2. These are brilliant. Who would have imagined that something so expensive to buy could be so simple AND CHEAP to prep at home. (sorry to shout – I’m quite excited). Can’t wait to make some up – particularly the lemon one – but also i can’t wait to experiment. Thanks for the push in the right direction here Tamara.

    1. Shout away lovely! I had fun with this post… They are quite simple to make, they look pretty on my counter in little jars, and they add a nice bit of flavor and texture in finishing a dish. I want to experiment with rimming a cocktail glass too!

  3. These are so awesome – salt really does make such a difference, and it gets such a bad rep these days!
    That citrus one would be perfect for rimming cocktail glasses too!

    I definitely need to try making my own soon! Oh, and your photos are absolutely gorgeous!

    1. Great minds think alike Michelle! I was thinking the citrus one would be lovely on a spring/summer cocktail, and the mushroom one would be nice on a savory cocktail (because I’m weird that way 😉 )…