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What Makes Salt Kosher

Can you tell me what makes salt kosher?  Is there something added or done to the salt that makes it kosher?

-- Ruth

'Kosher Salt' should really be referred to as 'Koshering Salt'.  Kosher salt is the same sodium chloride compound that you find in other types of salt such as sea salt and table salt.  What makes it different is that kosher salt has a larger grain size compared to, say, table salt.  Also, it contains no additives such as iodine or anti-clumping agents.

According to Jewish dietary laws, meat that has just been butchered must be sprinkled with salt to draw out the blood.  A finer grained or flakier salt would dissolve and run off of the meat.  Kosher salt stays in place.

So kosher salt is regular, unadulterated salt that is made so that it is suitable to use for koshering.

For those who are curious, a quick overview of what Kosher (or Kashrut, as it is sometimes called) can be found at Star-K's Kosher 101 page or the O-K page 'Kosher : An Overview'.

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© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward

Due to the volume of questions received, not all can be answered, nor can we guarantee we will answer questions immediately
© Lost Hobbit Enterprises 2004 onward


How does kosher salt affect high blood pressure?

Is this not the same as rock salt as we call it in Europe? Essentially large grains of salt that can be put in a grinder (like peppercorns).

Note that all salt is kosher, even salt that isn't labeled as "kosher salt". For example, even regular Morton table salt has the kosher certification "OU" (U in a circle, i.e. Orthodox Union) symbol on it.

Ken, if someone told you that kosher salt had been prayed over, they were wrong. That is not a requirement for kosher salt. All salt is inherently kosher. The correct answer for why some salt is named "kosher salt" is as per the article -- because that salt is suitable for kashering.

I have cooked with Kosher salt for years. I first learned of it on "Food TV". In regard to your question I find that adds that little "ZING" to all food. There is no metalic taste as with regular salt. I keep regular salt for shakers only (kosher grains are too large) and even then the shaker is seldom used as my food is to taste when served... I would urge you to use Kosher only for awhile. Soon you will see the difference....

I use Kosher salt for almost all of my salt needs. I find that I need less of it than ordinary "grained" salt. My family actually uses it in our salt shakers. We had to enlarge a hole or two, but it works for us.

I use finer-grained table salt or sea salt for mixing into batters and doughs, soups, stews, casseroles, and any other time when I want the taste or chemical benefit of salt to be throughout the substance.

I use kosher (kashering) salt when what I want is something to sprinkle on top of a food to add a little flavor and/or sparkle to the food. I sprinkle it on top of salt bagels, salads, focaccia, and other items to which I want to give a special sort of flavor. I also use it for pickling, for which it is ideally suited. Finally, I generally use kosher salt when I want to make a salt crust for baking fish or meat.

What is the advantage of Kosher salt in every day cooking? (i.e. other than for Koshering meat)
Is there any difference in the flavor of foods whether using ordinary table salt or kosher salt?

I drive a truck that loads salt at the Morton Mine in Windsor Ontario, Canada.
I was told by a long time employee that Sobeys has a contract with Morton for Kosher salt. My new friend at the mine told me that Kosher salt is brought to the surface in solution and is at some point prayed over.

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