There’s a certain sophistication in using a salt grinder to season bland food that you just can’t achieve with a regular salt shaker. A good one, though, will do a lot more than give you the aura of a five-star diner at the kitchen table. They allow you to adjust the size of the salt crystals that reach your food, whether they’re fine salt grains for seasoning popcorn or larger chunks to make a juicy steak look and taste great. Although some brands package salt in disposable grinders, these aren’t as effective at getting a consistent grain size, and they tend to wear down pretty quickly. Reusable salt grinders are more dependable than disposable ones, and they’ll look a lot more attractive in your kitchen setup.
- Grain Size: Look for a salt grinder with a hand crank that is easy to maneuver. You don’t want to wear yourself out grinding the salt before you even start eating. The best salt grinders will allow you to change the fineness and coarseness of the grains to accommodate different recipes. For those who struggle with manually turning the crank, battery-operated salt grinders might be easier and more comfortable to use.
- Material: Stainless steel gear mechanisms have more longevity than acrylic ones, but since salt is not as compatible with metal as pepper, a model with a ceramic rotor will work better than one with a metal one. Unfortunately, ceramic also isn’t as durable as stainless steel, so you may have to replace it more often. Certain types of salt contain more moisture and may make the grinding burrs sticky. Stay on the safe side by storing your salt grinder in a place with low humidity.
- Amount of Salt: When spices are freshly ground, the aromas are released immediately before they hit your food, so the flavor is fresher and fuller. A grinder can also make the particles smaller than table salt. Salt kept in coarse form won’t need the anti-caking additives used with prepackaged table salt, and since a grinder gives you more control over the amount of salt that comes out, you may end up using less of it to get the desired seasoning effect.
Our Picks for the Best Salt Grinders on Amazon
Top Pick Overall: Willow & Everett Stainless Steel Salt and Pepper Grinder Set
Basic, Elegant Design
Twist-off lids and wide openings make for quick and easy top-ups. These manual dispensers don’t require batteries and let you change the size of your seasoning.
Willow & Everett
Set of Two
This dishwasher-safe option is easy to clean and fill. The rotor is made from ceramic to make it long-lasting and tough.
A complimentary silicone tube is included to make refilling easy and mess free. Each container holds up to three-quarters of a cup (6 ounces) of seasoning.
Premium Pick: Gravity Electric Salt and Pepper Grinder Set
Simply flip this powered model upside down and it will automatically turn on to dispense seasoning. Twist the top to turn on a blue light and more easily see the amount you’ve put on your meal.
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