Which foods contain salt?

It can be surprising which foods contribute the most salt to our diets. Some foods that we eat every day are not necessarily high in salt but because we eat plenty of them they contribute a lot to our daily salt intake. Salt is naturally present at low levels in all foods but around 80% of our salt intake is hidden in processed food.

Most of the salt children and adults eat is hidden in processed and convenience foods, and the rest comes from salt added during cooking and any salt added at the table.

Foods that are often high in salt

Anchovies
Bacon
Cheese
Chips (if salt added)
Coated chicken e.g. nuggets
Corn snacks e.g. Wotsits
Gravy granules
Ham
Noodle snacks pots
Olives
Pickles
Potato snacks e.g. Hula Hoops
Prawns
Salami
Salted and dry roasted nuts
Salt fish
Sausages
Smoked meat and fish
Soy sauce
Stock cubes and bouillon
Yeast extract e.g. Marmite

 

Foods where some brands are high in salt

Baked beans
Biscuits
Burgers
Breakfast cereals
Bread and bread products
Cakes and pastries
Cooking sauces
Crisps
Filled pasta
Pasta sauces
Pizza
Potato croquettes
Ready meals
Soup
Sandwiches
Sausages
Tinned pasta
Tomato Ketchup

 

Foods that are low in salt

Breakfast cereals*
e.g. Shredded Wheat
Couscous
Eggs
Emmental
Fresh fish
Fresh meat and poultry
Fromage frais
Fruit and Vegetables (dried, fresh, frozen and tinned)**
Homemade bread*
Homemade sauces*
Homemade soup*
Mozzarella
Pasta and Rice
Plain cheese spreads
Plain cottage cheese
Plain popcorn
Porridge oats
Pulses (peas, beans, lentils)**
Ricotta
Seeds
Unsalted nuts
Yogurt

* with no added salt
** choose tinned products with no added salt