When it comes to seasoning your food, there are endless options out there. You might have seen garlic salt and garlic powder in the grocery store, but do you know what they are? These two are not the same ingredient, and you should be aware of them.
Let’s take a closer look at what garlic salt is and how it differs from the other seasoning garlic powder!
What Is Garlic Salt?
Garlic salt is a mixture of dry and ground garlic with table salt. An anti-caking agent is also added, usually calcium silicate. The most basic recipe consists of three parts salt and one part dry garlic powder.
In some cases, granulated garlic is used instead of garlic powder, making the texture coarser. For the most part, garlic salt is very soft and delicate, almost like flour. You may also find garlic salt that contains another seasoning, such as pepper, chili powder, or paprika.
You can make this seasoning at home, and all you need is an oven or dehydrator, garlic, and salt. Bake or dry your garlic at a maximum temperature of 200 degrees F, then combine it with the salt, and blend everything in a food processor or blender.
For more flavors, you can add dry oregano, lime salt, or smoke the garlic before drying it.
One serving (1 g) of garlic salt has the following nutritional content (*):
- 0 calories
- 0 g water
- 0 g protein
- 0 g fat
- 0 g carbohydrate
- 0 g fiber
- 240 mg sodium
Is Garlic Salt Healthy?
There is no nutrient density to garlic salt except for sodium. Although it is a great seasoning agent, it provides no benefits to your meal in terms of nutrition. However, it can help make meals more flavorful.
You should be aware that the garlic content of garlic salt is too small for it to offer any of the benefits of garlic. Your product will have no fiber, no vitamins, and no minerals, but it will have sodium due to the salt. It is essential only about the flavor and nothing else.
Using garlic salt does not reduce sodium, like some may think, which means you should still watch how much you use if you happen to follow a low-sodium diet. Be sure to watch out as well if you are using table salt when cooking, as it can add much more sodium to your meal. You can use garlic or garlic powder instead to reduce sodium.
When it comes to salt, one gram contains 388 mg of sodium as opposed to the 240mg that garlic salt will give you. It is a better choice when you also want to add a bit of flavor to your meal and reduce your sodium intake. When you make garlic salt at home, you can also alter the amount of table salt you use.
What Is Garlic Powder?
In contrast to garlic salt, garlic powder only contains dehydrated and ground garlic. It is the precursor to garlic salt, and it is often part of other spice mixes. Sometimes manufacturers may add other flavors to the powder.
The use of garlic powder dates back to Central and South Asia but has expanded to the Western world, especially French and Italian cuisines. Garlic powder is a preferred seasoning because it can last in the pantry for many years.
In some cases, garlic powder may also contain an anti-caking agent to prevent moisture and clumping.
You can also make garlic powder at home, and all you need is an oven or dehydrator and garlic. Bake or dehydrate the garlic at 200 to 210 degrees F, allow it to cool down, and then grind it in a food processor or blender. You can also roast the garlic beforehand for added flavor and smokiness.
One serving (1 g) of garlic powder has the following nutritional content (*):
- 0 calories
- 0 g water
- 1 g protein
- 0 g fat
- 0 g carbohydrate
- 0g fiber
- 0 mg sodium
Is Garlic Powder Healthy?
Garlic powder does not contain any sodium, but it also does not contain much of anything else. The flavor in garlic powder is stronger because the garlic is more concentrated, but it is not as strong as fresh garlic.
For the most part, you can use garlic powder as a seasoning in cooking.
Unlike garlic salt, with garlic powder, you do not have to worry about how much you use. This seasoning will not harm your health, though it may turn your dish a bit pungent. You can safely use garlic powder without any consequences.
If you happen to be on a low-sodium diet, this seasoning can be a good alternative to salt. Sometimes you may even find garlic powder mixed with other herbs and spices that can add more flavor.
When you prepare the garlic powder at home, you can also roast or smoke your garlic for more aroma and flavor.
While there are no nutritional benefits to garlic powder, it can provide minimal amounts of carbohydrates, protein, and fiber. However, none of these are significant enough to be reported. Your seasoning is essentially not altering the nutrient profile of your food and will only add flavors.
What Are The Key Differences Between Garlic Salt and Garlic Powder?
The main difference between garlic salt and garlic powder is the ingredient profile. As the name suggests, garlic salt contains salt. Garlic powder only contains dehydrated garlic, and there is no added salt in it.
Although these two seasonings contain garlic, they do not taste the same. Garlic salt tends to be salty and slightly pungent. Garlic powder is much milder and only has a slight garlic flavor that does not overpower dishes.
Another difference is texture, which can be very similar, although not the same. Garlic salt can be a bit coarser because of the salt crystals, even when it is ground. For the most part, garlic powder is extremely thin and resembles flour.
One final way to differentiate these two seasonings is their nutrient profile. Even though garlic salt does not contain any nutrient density, it does contain sodium. On the other hand, garlic powder can add a bit of protein, though not any relevant amount.
|Main Differences||Garlic Salt||Garlic Powder|
|Taste and Smell||Salty, and slightly pungent. Garlic salt smells slightly garlicky.||Sweet and mild flavor. Garlic powder tastes slightly pungent, but not very noticeable.|
|Uses||Added to season and salt food.||Added to season food.|
|Cost per bottle||$0.95 to $2.50||$0.95 to $1.50|
|Calories per 1 gram serving||0 calories||0 calories|
Is Garlic Salt or Garlic Powder Healthier?
Despite both of these foods not adding caloric or nutrient density to dishes, garlic powder is generally considered healthier. Since garlic salt contains sodium, it may not be adequate for individuals with salt sensitivities or who follow a low-sodium diet.
On the other hand, garlic powder is safe because it does not add anything but flavor to your meals.
When you need to substitute salt but can still consume sodium, it is a good idea to choose garlic salt because it contains less sodium.
However, if you are looking to avoid sodium altogether, then choosing garlic powder is a better idea. You can add more spices or herbs to your garlic powder and boost the flavor.
Never be confused again when you go searching for seasonings. Even though these two foods contain garlic, they are not going to add the same flavors to your dish. Be sure to pick the right seasoning next time you cook your meals.
*image by smspsy/depositphotos