Marinade Too Salty? Try These 10 Fixes

Is your marinade too salty?

Fear not, for salvation is at hand!

In this article, we present to you 10 ingenious fixes to rescue your marinated masterpieces.

From diluting with water or broth to sweetening with sugar or honey, these techniques will have your taste buds singing with joy.

Marinade Too Salty

So, put on your culinary cape and embark on a journey to conquer the salty marinade monster!

Dilute With Water or Broth

If your marinade is too salty, you can dilute it with water or broth. This is a simple and effective way to balance out the saltiness and bring back the desired flavor.

Start by adding a small amount of water or broth to the marinade and mix well. Taste it and adjust the dilution according to your preference. Keep in mind that you don’t want to dilute it too much, as you still want the marinade to impart flavor to your dish.

Gradually adding liquid and tasting along the way will help you achieve the right balance. Remember, it’s always better to start with less liquid and add more if needed. So don’t worry if you’re unsure, just go slow and trust your taste buds.

Add Acid for Balance

To balance the flavors, consider adding some acid to the marinade. When your marinade is too salty, a simple solution is to introduce acidity. Adding acid not only helps to counteract the saltiness but also brings a bright and tangy flavor to your dish.

You have several options to choose from when it comes to adding acid. A squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice works wonders, as does a splash of vinegar, such as apple cider or white wine vinegar. If you prefer a milder acidity, you can try using yogurt or buttermilk in your marinade.

Experiment with different acids and quantities until you achieve the desired balance of flavors in your marinade.

Sweeten With Sugar or Honey

Consider adding a bit of sugar or honey to sweeten the flavors of your dish. If your marinade is too salty, a touch of sweetness can help balance out the flavors. Sugar and honey are great options for this. The natural sweetness they bring can add depth and complexity to your marinade, making it more enjoyable to the taste buds.

Simply mix in a small amount of sugar or honey into your marinade, and let it dissolve completely. Taste the marinade and adjust the sweetness to your liking. Remember, a little goes a long way, so start with a small amount and gradually add more if needed.

With just a touch of sweetness, you can transform your overly salty marinade into a perfectly balanced and delicious one.

Incorporate More Vegetables or Fruits

Incorporate more vegetables or fruits to add a fresh and vibrant element to your dish. Not only will they enhance the flavor, but they will also provide essential nutrients.

Try adding colorful bell peppers, juicy tomatoes, or crisp cucumbers to your salads or stir-fries. If you’re making a pasta dish, toss in some roasted vegetables like zucchini or eggplant for added texture and taste.

For a fruity twist, add slices of fresh strawberries or chunks of pineapple to your desserts or smoothies. These natural ingredients will not only brighten up your plate but also provide a burst of vitamins and minerals.

Use Dairy Products to Neutralize Saltiness

If you find your dish too salty, using dairy products can help neutralize the saltiness. Adding dairy products like milk, cream, or yogurt can balance out the excessive salt in your marinade. The calcium and proteins in these products work to counteract the saltiness and bring back the desired flavor profile.

Start by adding a small amount of dairy and taste the dish before adding more, as you don’t want to overpower the other flavors. You can also try using sour cream or buttermilk, which have a tangy taste that can help mask the saltiness.

Incorporating dairy products into your dish not only helps reduce the saltiness but also adds a creamy and rich texture, enhancing the overall taste of your meal.

Soak in Milk or Buttermilk

To reduce saltiness, soak your dish in milk or buttermilk to help balance the flavors. When your marinade or dish ends up too salty, don’t panic! Simply pour some milk or buttermilk into a bowl and submerge your food in it.

The milk will work its magic by drawing out the excess salt and adding a creamy, mellow flavor to your dish. Whether it’s meat, poultry, or even vegetables, a milk or buttermilk soak can be a game-changer. Just let it sit for about 30 minutes to an hour, allowing the milk to penetrate and neutralize the saltiness.

Afterward, rinse off the milk and proceed with cooking as usual. Your dish will be saved from overpowering saltiness, leaving you with a perfectly balanced and delicious meal.

Marinate for a Shorter Time

When you’re pressed for time, shorten your marinating time to avoid overpowering the flavors in your dish. Sometimes, you just don’t have hours to let your meat soak in a marinade. Luckily, there’s a solution.

By reducing the marinating time, you can still infuse your dish with delicious flavors without risking it becoming too salty. Instead of marinating for hours, try cutting down the time to just 15-30 minutes. This shorter marinating time allows the flavors to penetrate the meat, but not overpower it. You’ll still get that wonderful taste, but in a fraction of the time.

Rinse off Excess Marinade Before Cooking

Now that you’ve learned about marinating for a shorter time, let’s move on to another helpful tip: rinsing off excess marinade before cooking.

Sometimes, marinades can become too salty because of the salt content or the length of time spent marinating. But don’t worry, there’s a simple fix.

After you’ve finished marinating your meat, take a moment to rinse off any excess marinade. This will help reduce the saltiness and prevent it from overpowering the flavors of your dish.

Simply place your marinated meat under cool running water and gently rub off the excess marinade. Once rinsed, pat it dry with a paper towel and continue with the cooking process.

Cook With Ingredients That Absorb Salt

If you’re using ingredients that tend to absorb salt, such as potatoes or rice, be mindful of the amount of salt you add to your dish. These ingredients have a natural tendency to soak up salt during the cooking process, which can result in an overly salty final product.

To avoid this, start by reducing the amount of salt you add to your recipe. Taste as you go, and only add more salt if needed. Alternatively, you can try using low-sodium broth or stock instead of regular ones.

Additionally, consider adding ingredients that can help balance out the saltiness, such as lemon juice or vinegar. By being mindful of the salt content when cooking with ingredients that absorb salt, you can ensure a perfectly seasoned dish every time.

Adjust Seasoning With Additional Herbs and Spices

To enhance the flavor of your dish, consider adding a variety of herbs and spices to adjust the seasoning. This simple addition can take your meal from bland to bursting with taste.

Whether you’re cooking a savory stew or a zesty stir-fry, the right combination of herbs and spices can elevate your dish to the next level. Sprinkle in some aromatic basil or thyme for a fresh and earthy flavor. Add a pinch of fiery cayenne pepper or paprika to give your dish a spicy kick. Don’t forget about the classics like garlic and onion powder, which can add depth and richness to any recipe.

Experiment with different herbs and spices to find the perfect balance for your taste buds. So go ahead, get creative in the kitchen and let your seasonings do the talking!


So there you have it, 10 fixes to save your marinade from being too salty.

Now, you may be wondering which one will work best for you. Well, the suspense is building as you contemplate which solution will rescue your dish and leave your taste buds yearning for more.

Will it be diluting with water, adding a touch of acid, or perhaps incorporating more vegetables? The choice is yours, and the answer lies within these simple yet effective fixes.

Get ready to turn your overly salty marinade into a culinary masterpiece!

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Ben, a culinary enthusiast and owner of, shares his passion for food and cooking through delectable recipes and valuable tips. Ben delights in exploring international cuisines and inspiring home cooks on their culinary journeys.

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