How to Remove the Salty Taste in Sauces

Updated April 17, 2017

While salt adds taste to foods, excessive amounts of salt can also ruin the flavour of the dish. There may be instances when you accidentally add excess salt to sauces while cooking. Rather than discard the sauce, reduce the salty flavour and salvage it, by using one or several quick fix methods.

Peel and cut two stalks of celery into 2-inch bits. Add to the sauce, set on slow heat for 15 minutes, and stir occasionally. Scoop the celery bits out and discard. Use the sauce as desired. Celery absorbs the salt as well as other spices from the sauce -- therefore you may need to additional spice if required.

Pour a can of salt-free meat or vegetable broth in the sauce and bring to boil. Increase the quantity of the broth proportionately to minimise the saltiness, if required. Add 1 tsp of cornstarch to the broth to thicken the sauce and improve its texture.

Mix 1 tsp each of sugar or honey and lemon juice or cider vinegar in the sauce; stir and taste. Add more if required. The acid from the vinegar and the sugar will neutralise the salty flavour of the sauce.

Peel and cut a potato into medium-sized chunks. Add to the sauce and simmer for 15 minutes. Discard the potato once cooked, or use as desired. The potato acts like a sponge and absorbs excess salt from the sauce.

Add 1/2 cup each of cooked rice, noodles, chopped vegetables, fish or meat to absorb the salt from the sauce. Use ingredient that will blend well with the sauce. For instance, combine noodles and chicken with a sweet and sour sauce, and fish fillets with a creamy, white sauce.


Avoid adding extra salt, by measuring the approximate quantity of salt required in advance. You can also sprinkle just a little salt over the sauce and taste; instead of pouring salt straight from the container over the food without measuring.


You can increase the quantity of the other ingredients such as herbs and spices in the sauce to dilute and reduce the saltiness. However, the final outcome of your dish may not turn out as initially expected.

Things You'll Need

  • Celery
  • Broth
  • Raw potato
  • Sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • Cider vinegar
  • Cooked rice, noodles, vegetables and meat
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