38 Different Types of Salt You Didn’t Know Existed

What is salt? What are the different types of salt? What are soluble and insoluble salts?
38 Different Types of Salt You Didn't Know Existed

Without salt, food cannot be flavored to its best, and further, salt deficiency can lead to various health problems. We have been using salt for over a long time now. And you must be aware of a couple of salts that you use in daily life, but today you will get to know about 38 different types of salt you didn’t know existed.

Types of Salt

Salt can be broadly classified into two types. One is used in cooking, while the other is used in chemical experiments. The salt we use in cooking is derived and extracted mostly from nature and the seas. The salt used in experiments is obtained by mixing acids and bases.

1. Acid Salt

Lemon pieces and a bowl of salt.

This type of salt produces an acidic effect in a solution when dissolved in a solvent. The substance formed as a result of the solution is a better conductor of electricity than other pure solvents. It has an acidic character, and the pH level is below 7. There is incomplete neutralization in this salt. Therefore, there are one or more replaceable hydrogen atoms. (See How is Salt Water Taffy Made?)

Some examples of acid salts are: 

  • Ammonium chloride (NH4Cl) 
  • Ammonium sulfate ((NH4)2SO4)
  • Disodium hydrogen phosphate (Na2HPO4)
  • Monosodium dihydrogen orthophosphate (NaH2PO4)
  • Potassium bisulfite (KHSO4)
  • Sodium bisulfate (NaHSO4)
  • Sodium carbonate (NaHCO3)

2. Alaska Flake Sea Salt

Flake Sea Salt

This salt is extracted from the seawater surrounding Sitka, Alaska. This salt is nice and clearly textured with brittle flakes. (Read Why is spilling salt considered bad luck?)

3. Antarctic Sea Salt

Antarctic waters

This salt is derived from the Antarctic waters that are carried by the Benguela current up to the western coast of Africa. On the way to the African shore, the waters pass through the underground aquifer and then reach under the severe African sun. (See Why Ice Floats on Water?)

4. Basic Salt

Salt harvesters harvesting the salt from a sea shore.

When a strong base and weak acid react with each other, the result is a basic salt. This salt also has incomplete neutralization. Therefore, the pH level of basic salt is below 7. The salt contains one or more hydroxyl ions and possesses alkaline properties. (See Why salt is bad for your health?)

Some examples of basic salts are: 

  • Bismuth oxychloride (Bi (OH)2Cl)
  • Iron (II) 
  • Hydroxide (Fe (OH)2Cl)
  • Magnesium oxychloride (Mg (OH)Cl)
  • Potassium cyanide (KCN)
  • Sodium acetate (NaOOCCH3)
  • Sodium hydroxide (NaOH)
  • Zinc chloride hydroxide (Zn (OH)Cl)

5. Celery Salt

Celery Seeds

This salt is formed through the combination of seawater salt and celery seeds. The sodium content in this salt is low in comparison to other forms of salts. Celery salts are used in different salads like potato, egg, coleslaw, tuna salads. (Read Are Potatoes Vegetables or Fruits?)

6. French Gray Sea Salt or Sel Gris

French Gray Sea Salt or Sel Gris

This salt is extracted from the coastal shores of France from its mineral-rich seawater. The traditional Celtic method of raking the salt from the bottoms of tide pools is used to extract this salt. People know it as sel gris and gray salt. This salt is slightly moist with a gray tint and a briny flavor. Further, it is mostly used for cooking and finishing, mostly meat and seafood. (Also read Interesting History of French Fries)

7. Cleaning Salt

Cleaning Salt

This salt treats hard water that contains magnesium and calcium. Therefore, the cleaning salt undergoes a cation exchange to remove it from the water. Metal surfaces are cleaned with cleaning salt through ion-exchange reactions. This one, among the 38 different types of salt, should solely be used for cleaning purposes, not for consumption. An example of cleaning salt is sodium carbonate salt or washing soda. (See 63 Amazing Ways to Use Baking Soda)

8. Complex Salt

Salt crystals

This salt is formed when ions and molecular compounds combine. As the name suggests, the molecular composition of this salt is complex. It has a central metal atom surrounded by charged ions and neutral molecules. (See What happens when you mix Vinegar with Baking Soda?)

Some examples are:

  • Hexamine chromium (III) chloride [Cr (NH3)6] Cl3]
  • Nickel carbonyl [Ni (CO)4]
  • Potassium ferrocyanide (K4[Fe (CN)6])
  • Tetra amino cupric sulfate ([Cu (NH3)4]SO4)

9. Curing Salt

Curing Pink Salt

Among the different types of salt in this list, it is a form of rock salt with a grainy and coarse texture. It is dyed pink with food coloring to distinguish it from table salt. It is used to remove toxins and impurities from meat, seafood, sausages, and other poultry products, before cooking them. It is known for curing meat. (See Where does Sea Glass come from?)

10. Cyprus Black Lava Salt

Activated charcoal in a container.

This salt is formed by natural solar evaporation and derived from the Mediterranean Sea in Cyprus. The crystals are large and pyramid-shaped, with a maximum size of about 1 mm. This salt is mixed with activated charcoal, but the salt taste is not very overwhelming. Instead, it has a very mild flavor and adds texture to the food it is added. (See How does it feel like to swim in the dead sea?)

11. Double Salt

Double Salt

This salt is formed as a result of the reaction between two simple salts. Of other different type of salt, it has more than one anion or cation in its composition, and it is more stable when in solid form. (Read 75 Little Known Uses of Vinegar)

Some common examples of double salt are:

  • Potash alum (K2SO4Al2(SO4)3.24H2O)
  • Potassium cerium fluoride (KCeF4)
  • Potassium Ytterbium iodide (K4[YbI6])
  • Mohr’s salt ((NH4)2Fe (SO4)2.6H2O)

12. Fine Salt

Fine Cooking Salt

As the name suggests, this salt has very fine-textured grains. This salt is extracted from the salt brines, and it is cleaner and inexpensive. Salt brines are created by pumping water below the surface of the Earth to dissolve the salt deposits. This dissolved salty solution is brought to the surface, and then the water is evaporated. This process helps in producing a large amount of fine salt, which is mostly used as cooking salt, sprinkler, and seasoning salt. (Read Who Named Our Planet Earth?)

13. Flake Salt

Salt falling out of the tumbled sprinkler.

This salt is extracted from the coastal regions of England. During the processing of this salt, most of its water content is evaporated, which gives it a dry and pyramid-like structure. It can dissolve quickly in comparison to other sea salts. This is one of the different types of salt that can be used in baking, finishing, and seasoning food. (See Why did the Pilgrims leave England?)

14. Fleur de sel or Fiore di cervia

Salt harvesters using wooden rake to harvest salt.

In French and Italian, the name of this salt means flower of salt. This salt is produced off the coast of Brittany, France, from May to September. It is extracted by a traditional wooden rake on dry, sunny days when the breeze is mild. Out of the 38 different types of salt, this salt is paper-thin and delicate in texture with a slightly briny flavor and a blue-gray tint. It can be used as a finishing salt but can also be used in chocolates and caramel. (How Are Jelly Beans Made?)

15. Flour Salt

Powdered spices and flour salt.

This salt is a finer version of the fine salt, with grains that are even finer than table salt. Besides, this salt blends easily and uniformly into food. It is also used for coating snacks, meat, and other food items. You can also use it as a sprinkling salt and last-minute seasoning salt. (Read What Everybody Ought To Know About Seasoning Uses Of These 53 Different Spices)

16. Hawaiian Alaea Red Salt

Red Salt

It is a form of sea salt mixed with alaea and can be called by different names, like Hawaiian red salt or simply Alaea salt. Alaea is a rich volcanic clay with iron oxide. An authentic red salt is hard to obtain and contains a minimum of 80 different minerals. The natives used it to clean and purify the temples and houses. It is an expensive salt. (See Why do people live near Volcanoes?)

17. Hawaiian Black Lava Salt

Black Salt

Hawaiian black lava salt is derived from the seawater of the pools that are evaporated as the lava flows. The salt crystals are detoxified by mixing them with activated coconut charcoal. The salt has the appearance of hardened lava rock, has a slight aroma of sulfur because of the minerals from the lava pools, and has an earthy flavor. (Read How Hot is Lava in Fahrenheit?)

18. Himalayan Black Salt (Kala Namak)

Himalayan rock salt lamp

Among the 38 different types of salt, this salt is reddish-black, and it gets the color after it is kept in a hot oven for a day or until it completely cools down. Then it is processed and aged properly for a specified time. In the preservation of the black salt, various things are used like tree bark, seeds, assorted spices, and charcoal. This salt is used for culinary and preservation purposes. Black salt also treats health issues like constipation, stomach cramps, heartburn, bloating, and spasms. (See What Everybody Ought to Know About Medicinal Uses of General Spices)

19. Kona Deep Water Sea salt

Deep water sea salt

This salt is raised from a depth of 2200 feet off the Hawaiian coastline. After bringing above the seawater, the water evaporates in the sun. It has a rich mineral content of 78 percent sodium. Still, the taste of this salt is clean. (See Hydroponics: Plants That Grow In Water Only)

20. Korean Sodium Salt

Kimchi

It is extracted from a small island off the Korean coast after solar evaporation takes place. This is one of the popular salt from different types of salt available. It looks like little blocks of salt and is used in making kimchi. (See How Are Pickles Made?)

21. Kosher salt

Salt sprinkles on meat

This salt is grainy textured, coarse, rough, and flaky. It can be used in place of table salt, but it is not fortified with iodine, and it also does not have any anti-caking agent. Still, it is widely used because of its coarse texture, which makes it perfect for topping the meat. It can draw out the blood from a piece of meat, and this process is known as koshering. (See What Does It Mean When Your Blood Is Dark Red?)

22. Mixed Salt

Mixed salt

Mixed salt is formed when more than one base or more than one acid reacts with each other. As a result of such a reaction, the number of cations or anions present in the salt is not balanced. The salt may either have two anions sharing one cation or two cations sharing one anion. (Read What Happens When you Mix Bleach and Ammonia?)

For example: 

  • Bleaching powder (Ca(ClO)2)
  • Calcium disodium EDTA
  • Sodium potassium sulfate (NaKSO4)

23. Neutral or Normal Salt

Salt in a mortal and pestle.

This type of salt does not have any replaceable hydroxyl ions or protons (hydrogen atoms). This salt does not have an alkaline character or acidic character. Therefore it is known as neutral salt. The pH level of this salt is near about 7. (Read Why do atoms form chemical bonds?)

Examples of neutral salts are:

  • Calcium phosphate (Ca3(PO4)2)
  • Potassium chlorate (KClO3)
  • Potassium chloride (KCl)
  • Potassium Perchlorate (KClO4)
  • Potassium sulfate (K2SO4)
  • Sodium chloride (NaCl)
  • Sodium nitrate (NaNO3)
  • Trisodium orthoborate (Na3BO3)

24. New Zealand Lake Grassnear Salt

Salt field

This salt is harvested from the deep oceans. After extraction, it is brought to the seaside ponds around Lake Grassnear and kept there until the end of summer. Then this salt is lifted from the bottom of the ponds for further process. (See 10 Whirlpool in Lakes Facts)

25. Persian Blue Diamond Salt

Blue salt

Persian Blue Diamond salt is extracted from the salt mines of Semnan province, Iran (ancient Persia). In the 38 different types of salt from this list, this salt has small blue flecks on some crystals because of its unique mineral content. (See What does the Diamond Shaped Traffic Sign Mean?)

26. Pickling Salt

A glass jar full of green vegetables for pickling.

Pickling is the process of preserving fresh vegetables by adding oil, spice mix, and salt to protect the food from rotting. Pickling salt is free from all additives, iodine, and minerals. It will not discolor the food because it is more concentrated in comparison to other salts. It helps in maintaining the food quality because of its fine-grained texture. (See 54 Best Dip for Chip Fries and Tortilla)

27. Himalayan Pink Salt (Sendha Namak)

Himalayan Pink Salt

This salt is one of the purest forms of salt available in nature. It is found on Pakistan’s side of the Himalayan mountains and is known by different names, like Himalayan Pink salt, Sendha Namak, or Pink salt. This salt is rich in 84 different types of minerals and nutrients that are essentially required by the human body, and they also make it bolder in quality. It is used in both cooking and finishing. (Read 90 Mind Blowing Human Body Facts)

28. Popcorn Salt

Popcorns

It is super fine in texture and adheres easily to cooked food and snacks. As its name suggests, it is best to coat the popcorn because of the fine grains. This salt is available in different flavors, like garlic, butter, jalapeño, sour cream, and onion. It makes it the best choice for seasoning and flavoring different other food items, like nachos, corn on the cob, fries, and many more. (See What are the health benefits of garlic?)

29. Pretzel Salt

A bowl full of pretzels seasoned with salt.

Among the 38 different types of salt from this list, this salt is specially made into a large rectangular shape to stick onto the surfaces of pretzels. The shape of these salt speckles enables them to remain stuck to the surface glazed with the egg wash. It is a finishing salt because of its non-melting quality, which makes it the best choice for sprinkling over pretzels and other baked goods. (See Legend of the Pretzel)

30. Rock Salt

Rock salt

This type of salt is extracted from underground salt mines. Scientifically, it is known as halite and is present in rugged layers on the surface of the Earth. It is extracted by using dynamite in the form of large rocks, which are then crushed, to make them usable as cooking salt. It is used to give flavor and dimension to bread and baked foods. It can also be used in rimming cocktail glasses. (Read Rum Ingredients)

31. Worm Salt (Sal de Gusano)

Insect Larvae

It is a form of rock salt and the traditional Mexican salt made by toasting and grounding dried worm larvae with Chile peppers and rock salt. It is accompanied by mescal (a distilled alcoholic beverage made with any form of maguey) and is also used as a smoky seasoning. (Read How to Get Rid of Gnats without Apple Cider Vinegar?)

32. Sea Salt

Sea salt

This salt is minimally refined and is formed by evaporating the seawater. It has the highest iodine content in comparison to all other types of salts and low content of sodium. It does not melt when steamed, which is a special quality and does not make the dish watery. It is one of the known different types of salt in the world. (See 270 Really Delicious National Food of the World)

33. Simple Salt

Salt balls

A simple salt, from the 38 different types of salt list, is formed by a simple interaction between a weak acid and a strong base. Simple salts can be of three types, namely, acidic salts, neutral (normal salts), and basic salts. The most common example of a simple salt is sodium chloride NaCl. In this, HCI (hydrogen chloride) is the acid and NaOH (Sodium Hydroxide) is the base. (Read How Acidic Is Stomach Acid?)

34. Smoked Salt

Smoked salt

Different types of wood, including apple, hickory, pine, and alder, are used in the slow smoking process of this salt. The salt may differ from one brand to another because of the difference in the time for which it has been smoked. The smoked salt, one of the known salt from different types of salt in this list, is capable of enhancing the smoky flavors in the food and is suitable for flavoring potatoes and meats. (See Who Invented The Potato Chip)

35. Table Salt

8 salt sprinkles from which one has fallen down and the lid is opened and salt flowing out. Other 7 sprinklers are satanding.

This salt is the most common form of salt available. It is highly polished and processed with an anti-caking agent, which helps it to stay compound and prevents it from falling apart. The salt also undergoes iodine fortification. Table salt is finely grounded and contains no impurities. The salt we use in daily cooking is also a form of table salt. (See Why Do We Eat Pancakes on Shrove Tuesday?)

36. Truffle Salt

Winter truffle

It is a type of flavored salt that gets its flavors from the subtle amount of truffle added to it. Truffles are black and white, so truffle salts are of two types too. This salt, among the 38 different types of salt you never knew existed, fulfills the requirement of truffle in a dish and gives it a special touch. 

37. Water Softener Salt

Water softner salt

It is a type of cleaning salt that is available in different forms, like pellets, cubes, or crystals. It removes the hardness of the water by removing magnesium and calcium from it. It effectively cleans towels, clothes, other clothing, and also kitchenware. (See How Quickly Do Moths Eat Clothes?)

38. Soluble and Insoluble Salts

Handful of fresh extracted salt | 38 Different Types of Salt You Didn't Know Existed

Generally, salts are soluble in water, but there are a few salts that are insoluble in water. Ammonium salts, Ethanoate salts, Nitrate salts, sodium salts, and potassium salts are all soluble in water. Other different types of salt are listed below according to their type. (Read Is NH3 polar or nonpolar?)

  • In Carbonate salts Sodium carbonate (Na2CO3), Potassium carbonate (K2CO3), and Ammonium carbonate {(NH4)2CO3} are insoluble in water.
  • In chloride salts, all are soluble except silver chloride (AgCl), Mercuric chloride (HgCI), and Lead chloride (PbCl2).
  • In Lead (II) salts also all are soluble except Lead (II) Nitrate {Pb (NO3)2} and Lead (II) acetate {Pb (CH3COO)2}.
  • Sulfate salts, Lead sulfate (PbSO4), Calcium sulfate (CaSO4), Barium sulfate (BaSO4), and silver sulfate (Ag2SO4) are insoluble, and the rest are soluble.
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