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Bread - How to reduce Sodium?

EggNorthEggNorth Posts: 1,128
edited January 2017 in Baking
A question for the bakers out there, when baking bread, which is my new hobby, have you had any success in reducing sodium?  I've cut the salt in haft (from 2 tbsp (correction 2tsp) to 1) and have not noticed a difference.  I understand the importance of salt in the whole reaction of the yeast, and how it keeps it under control, but I must reduce the sodium in my diet.

Will be doing my first loaf of sourdough today  :)

I'm using the 'Josey Baker Bread' book, which was recommended here, and I recommend it also.

Cambridge, Ontario - Canada
LBGE (2010), Mini Max (2015)


  • RedSkipRedSkip Posts: 1,294
    "No Salt"
    Large BGE - McDonald, PA
  • EggNorthEggNorth Posts: 1,128
    edited January 2017
    Have you noticed a difference with no salt?  I will try the next recipe, one with no salt, and another with no salt + diastatic malt to see the difference.

    Thanks for the reply.
    Cambridge, Ontario - Canada
    LBGE (2010), Mini Max (2015)
  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,708
    I bake bread all the time and have had no problems in cutting down the salt.  I generally use less than half what the recipe calls for.  I bake sourdough and regular yeast breads and have had no problems with them rising properly.

    I generally use high gluten white flour mixed with oatmeal and/or white whole wheat flour.
    Large BGE
    Barry, Lancaster, PA
  • scdafscdaf Posts: 74
    Where did you find a bread recipe calling for 2 tablespoons of salt?  The no-knead recipe, which is my go-to, calls for 1-1/4 teaspoons to 3 cups flour and makes darn good bread.
  • EggNorthEggNorth Posts: 1,128
    scdaf said:
    Where did you find a bread recipe calling for 2 tablespoons of salt?  The no-knead recipe, which is my go-to, calls for 1-1/4 teaspoons to 3 cups flour and makes darn good bread.
    Good catch!  That should have said 2 tsp.   
    Cambridge, Ontario - Canada
    LBGE (2010), Mini Max (2015)
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 16,947
    I've made sourdough a few times with no salt. Definitely not a preference of mine. I normally range 5-12 grams kosher depending on the rest of the ingredients. 
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,132
    I'm just getting into baking bread, but my understanding is that salt slows down the yeast. If just decreasing the salt throws off your bulk ferment or proofing times, you may have to reduce the amount of  yeast or starter. I would start by reducing only the salt and see what happens. 

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,113
    Most of the bread recipes I have seen use 1.5t of salt for a 1.5 pound loaf.  The salt helps to retard the yeast growth and provides for a taste enhancement (fights flatness).  You can reduce the salt, reduce the yeast, and be prepared for a different rise time.    

    The yeast in natural starters are not as robust as commercial yeast, so you need less salt to control the rise.  You should be able to reduce the salt way down if using a natural starter. You might try a 1/2 t or less for a loaf, just enough to fight flat taste but not for yeast growth control.  You can use temp to help control yeast growth rates to counteract the reduced salt.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
  • HogHeavenHogHeaven Posts: 294
    edited February 2017
    Professional bakers use salt for flavor ONLY. Most sourdough bread recipes call for 1.5% or 2% of the weight of the flour for the salt quanity. Your bread will not taste very good if you completely eliminate the salt but you can do that. 

    Flour/water/starter or commercial yeast have very little flavor. Most food requires salt to boost its flavor... including bread. 

    Rise time is dictated by how much starter/yeast you use and the ambient temperature you let it proof in. 

    For really kick ass bread use very little starter/yeast, 2% of the weight of the flour. Preferment half of your flour and and equal weight of water and let it ferment at room temperature about 16 hours. Then add the rest of the flour, water and the salt and do your final mixing. You will get better bread. 

    BBQ and Bread are exactly alike... low and slow produces better tasting food.
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