How to Make Gravy Less Salty: 7 Best Tips

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Imagine yourself in the heart of your kitchen, sweat and love pouring into what was meant to be the culinary masterpiece of your meal—the gravy. However, as you take that first taste, instead of the anticipated burst of flavours, you’re met with a disappointing realisation: it’s too salty!

Fear not; it happens to the best of us. This is why we searched for the best solutions to improve your meal and how to make gravy less salty in a matter of time.

So, fasten those apron strings a bit tighter, and let’s plunge into the world of perfect gravies!

Identifying the Salty Situation

Before we start the rescue mission of how to make gravy less salty, it’s crucial to identify the level of saltiness in your gravy. Taste a small amount and assess the intensity of the salt. This will guide your approach to fixing the situation.

How to Make Gravy Less Salty

Any dish can become a little too salty at times, but with the appropriate ingredients, certain recipes can still be saved. These tips can assist in de-salting gravy and any other sauce you may have made.

Here are the 7 best ways to make your gravy less salty.

1. Fix Salty Gravy with Sweeteners

Adding sugar, especially white sugar, can help balance out the saltiness and reduce the salty taste. Add 1/4 teaspoon of sugar at a time and give it enough time to dissolve.

You can always add more if you need to, but make sure to give sugar enough time to completely dissolve.

2. Add More Ingredients

Adding more ingredients to the gravy can help dilute the saltiness. For example, you can add more vegetables or meat to the gravy

One effective method to reduce saltiness in gravy is dilution. If your gravy is too salty, try adding more unsalted broth or stock to balance out the flavours. This will not only reduce the salt concentration but also increase the volume of your gravy.

3. Add Some Veggies

This tactic was used by our grandmothers, and for good cause. Any recipe will benefit from including a few potato slices to absorb the moisture and salt. To make this dish, simply peel the potato, cut it into wedges, and cook it in the gravy for around fifteen minutes.

The gravy will thicken when the potatoes are removed, and some additional water will be added after a gentle simmer. Due to their natural starchy and absorbent qualities, potatoes are a great way to reduce saltiness without sacrificing flavour.

We have further recommendations below if that wasn’t able to resolve the issue.

Peel and finely cut your carrots, celery, or onions to help your gravy taste better and serve as good sponges for salt. By playing two roles, these unassuming vegetables make sure the main act doesn’t lose focus.

4. The Symphony of Acidity:

Any sour or acidic ingredient added to your gravy will counteract the salt and improve the overall flavour of the meal. Whichever vinegar or lemon juice you happen to have on hand might be used.

Remember that you only need to add a tiny bit in order to prevent the gravy’s flavour from becoming entirely different. If you add too much, the sauce will taste sour; however, you may balance it again by adding a small amount of sugar.

As you may have noticed, the key to making saltines is achieving the ideal component balance.

5. Increase Volume

Increasing the amount of gravy is one of the easiest ways to remedy saline gravy. You can do this by adding water or, even better, unsalted stock, but keep in mind that you will need to adjust other ingredients too.

Adding too much liquid can make the gravy runny, but you can easily solve this by adding some butter, flour, or cornflour. The flavour and consistency will be perfect, and you will have some leftovers for tomorrow.

The good news is that you can also freeze gravy, and it will be as good as new even after a few months in the freezer. Thus, it is not an issue to have leftovers.

6. Creamy Solutions

Not only will creaminess make your sauce spread more easily and taste better, but it will also reduce the amount of salt in your gravy. So feel free to add extra milk, sour cream, or heavy cream if you don’t have a lactose intolerance.

This will result in a more subdued and less salty gravy, which is ideal for any food you are going to serve.

Remember that not all gravies are supposed to contain dairy, so before adding anything, make sure to check the recipe and the meals that will be served with your sauce.

7. Add Roux

Grease is a fantastic foundation for any gravy, and you can add extra of it if the gravy seems too salty. To make roux, mix equal parts butter and flour and heat over medium heat until the mixture takes on a golden-brown hue.

Once you have the ideal colour base, you may add it to your gravy to make the meal look bigger and less salty. You are adding the same amounts of flour and fat, so the sauce won’t be greasy. It will taste and feel just right to go with any meal.

Just be aware that if you prefer your gravy runnier, you may need to add extra water or unsalted stock since this may result in a thicker gravy.

8. Pro Tips Unveiled:

  • Taste as you go: Gradually make adjustments and taste your gravy frequently to ensure you achieve the desired balance.
  • Go easy on additional seasonings. Be cautious when adding more herbs or spices, as they can contribute to an overwhelming taste.
  • Use low-sodium alternatives: Use unsalted butter, low-sodium broth, and other ingredients to control the overall salt content.


Does potato absorb salt in curry?

Yes, adding a raw potato to a salty curry can absorb excess salt. Remember to take out the potato slices before serving the curry.

Can bread remove salt from food?

Yes, placing a slice of bread in overly salty food can help absorb some salt. Similar to potatoes, remember to remove the bread before serving.

How many potatoes to reduce salt?

The number of potatoes needed to reduce salt depends on the size of the dish and the level of saltiness. Start with a couple of medium-sized potatoes and adjust as needed.

Does sugar fix salty food?

Yes, sugar can help balance out the salty taste of food. Start by adding a small amount and adjust according to your taste preference.

Why are my dishes coming out salty?

Dishes may turn out salty if you’ve added too much salt during cooking. It’s advisable to taste as you go and be mindful of the salt content in individual ingredients.

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