My husband was diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure in Jan 2020 and from that day, how and what we cooked for meals changed, sometimes dramatically. We had to find a way for him to maintain his quality of life being able to eat the foods he liked while also maintaining a longer quantity of life. This meant the salt in his diet had to be severely curtailed and given the amount of salt in almost every food in the store, that was a challenge. The first thing we did was to clear the pantry of all the foods he could no longer eat. We donated those foods to our local food bank. Then we had to restock our pantry with the lowest sodium foods we could find. It took days of research and unending label reading.
My approach is this, go almost NO sodium in as many products as possible to compensate for the products like bread or cereal that you can't do as much about. I keep our main meals as low as possible so we don't have to measure every little condiment or piece of candy, and yes there is sodium in some candy!
If you or a loved one is in this same situation, this page will save you time by showing you the products we've found and added to our low sodium pantry. If you buy brands other than the ones I specify, read the ingredients VERY carefully as I have found some of the spice mixes like shawarma & zaatar having salt in them. Since we live in a rural area, we have to order many of these specialty items online.
Products in red text can be found on Amazon.
- Mrs. Dash seasonings & marinades (the seasonings have a tendency to clump, so get some silica packets to help prevent this problem.)
- Crystallized Lemon (also has clumping issue.)
- Peanut butter (natural separates and is a pain to deal with, so we've gone to Fifty 50 brand, Maranatha also offer a no added salt version.)
- Spice + Leaf Shawarma Blend, great on meat.
- Hickory Smoke Powder from Hoosier Hill Farm, great on meat and in beans.
- Lebanese Zaatar from Spice Way. Very savory and great on meat.
- Common spices: garlic powder, onion powder, celery powder (or celery seed ground into powder.)
- Liquid Smoke
- White wine
- Mayo: Store brands are usually lower (Walmart Great Value has70 mg/Tbsp. )
- Teta Foods Garlic Dip & Spread, basically mayo with lots of garlic. I use as flavor enhancer (87 mg/Tbsp.)
- Ketchup: Heinz makes a no salted added version.
- Brick House Creamy Garlic Herb Dressing (32.5 mg/Tbsp)
- Trader Joe's Rose Vinaigrette (80 mg/Tbsp)
- Mustards are usually low or make your own from powdered mustard.
Meats, Cheeses & Dairy
- Fresh ground pork try for 85% lean or less for sausage making.
- No salt cheese is available online from Northstar Bison. They offer both cheddar & colby unsalted. Colby is best for melting on cheeseburgers and cheesesteak. Cheddar is crumbly.
- Hoosier Hill Farm Heavy Cream and Buttermilk powders. Also have clumping issues, so use silica packs with these. Great for recipes & if you don't regularly keep cream in the frig.
Other Pantry staples
- No salt added canned goods. These have become more widely available lately.
- Tomatoes, tomatoes sauces and pastes
- Certain beans: black, kidney, pinto and garbanzo
- Albacore tuna (cans & packets.)
- Organic butternut squash (Wegman's & Amazon.)
- Canned green beans
- Rotel tomatoes & green chilies
- Campbell's Mushroom soup
- Nutritional yeast as a cheese substitute for sauces and more.
- Aluminum-Free Baking Powder & Baking Soda Substitutes by Ener-G
- Hain Pure Foods Featherweight Baking Powder
- Herb-Ox Sodium Free Bouillon, Beef and Chicken
- 4C Premium Bread Crumbs Salt Free
- Swanson Unsalted Broth & Stock, Chicken or Beef
- Instant coffee or unsweetened Chocolate powder
- No salt added Potato chips from Utz
- No salt added tortilla chips
- Unsalted nuts - We Got Nuts and Nuts.com
- 365 Organic Microwave popcorn
- Galil Roasted Chestnuts (in a pouch) no sodium
- Convenience rice: Tasty Bite has plain jasmine and basmati microwave packets with no salt
- Frozen potato products. Beware, many have salt, but there are a few select brands that have no salt: Nathan's crinkle cut fries and Harris Teeter shredded hashbrowns
Low or No Salt Recipes
Condiments ~ Soups ~ Meats ~ Sides ~ Baked Goods ~ Desserts
The truth is, you'll have to make many of your food items from scratch to get the sodium content down. The food industry salts the living daylights out of many products. Especially dressings, sausages and baked items. If there is a diabetic in the house, you can substitute Splenda for sugar in these recipes.
Condiments, Dressings & Spice Mixes
Meats & Main Course