himalayan black salt image

Himalayan Black Salt | The Definitive Guide (2022)


“I have plenty of white salt in my kitchen, but what is black salt? What does it do?”

The above question might have popped into your mind when you skim through your favourite food recipes and see “black salt” there.

So, what is black salt? Does it make any difference in the taste, or is it overrated? What are its benefits and side effects?

You must’ve had these questions if you have been exploring black salt and landed on our blog. So, let’s dive in together to uncover the details of the black salt.

What is black salt?

Black Himalayan Salt along with Pink Salt
Himalayan black salt image

Black salt is volcanic rock salt or black lava salt found in the Himalayan region. Often known as Himalayan black salt or Kala namak, it’s believed to have healing properties. Himalayan black salt aids in the relief of issues with blood pressure.
It is mined extensively from the salt mines of the Himalayan regions of India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan. It is a central ingredient in Asian cuisine.

Its Origin

Before diving deeper into black salt and its properties, you need to know that it comes from different parts of the world in different varieties. (More on that later)

Some derive their name from their place of origin. For example, Hawaii black lava salt, a blend of sea salt and activated charcoal, is harvested from the remote Hawaiian islands of the Pacific.

The Cyprus black flake salt, a mixture of sea salt and activated charcoal, is harvested off the Cypriot coast from the Mediterranean sea.

Also, Indian black salt, known as Kala namak, is extracted from the mines of the Asian Himalayan range.

Taste, smell, colour, and chemical composition


Himalayan black salt sprinkler
Himalayan black salt sprinkler

People mostly use black salt for enhancing the flavour of the food. Its magic on the food is overwhelming. Just a pinch brings an incredible difference in the taste. It blends in the food perfectly that it makes you wonder why you were unknown about black salt taste and its usages.

Not just foods, it adds magic to the drinks as well. You can try it with cocktails or fruit juice and notice how it enhances the taste. Its beautiful texture and colour give a very beautiful touchup to your dishes, making food look prettier and tastier.

It has a distinctive taste that is different from regular table salt. It is due to the presence of sulphur in its chemical composition. Its flavour often gets compared to hard-boiled egg yolk. In a nutshell, its fantastic flavour adds an exquisite taste to any food.


The Cyprus black flake salt and Hawaiian black lava salts are black in appearance. But Indian black salt is not strictly black as its name implies. Instead, it has brown, pinkish shades. The presence of sulphur compounds in their chemical composition is responsible for the different shades.


Kala namak is full of mineral content. The sulphur compound releases a mild pungent smell, almost similar to rotten eggs. Some people find it repelling and prefer regular table salt.

Don’t let its distinctive smell fool you. It may smell strange but dissolves quickly once added to the food and brings out the distinctive flavour. It gives a distinct rich taste to your palate when used as finishing salt. You will immediately know the taste differences.


Kala namak consists primarily of chlorides and sulphates of a different chemical compound of salt and elements such as sodium, hydrogen, and iron.

The major constituents combination of sodium chloride, sodium sulphate, sodium bisulphate, sodium bisulphite, sodium sulphide, iron sulphide, and hydrogen sulphide.

Let’s have a quick look at its chemical formula and sodium content:

Sodium chloride (NaCl),
Sodium sulfate (Na2SO4),
Iron sulphide (FeS),
Hydrogen sulphide (H2S),
Sodium sulphide (Na2S),
Hydrogen sulphide (H2S),
Sodium bisulphate (NaHSO4),

Types of black salt

It is available in four different black salt varieties: Cyprus Black Flake, Black Ritual Salt, Indian Black, and Hawaiian Black Lava Salt. Each of them has its unique flavour and uses compared to regular table salt, also known as commercial table salt.

Let’s have a quick look at each of them.


As the name suggests, Cyprus black flake salt, harvested off the Cypriot coast from the Mediterranean Sea, is combined with carbon extracted from the charcoal of softwoods. These softwoods generally include linden, birch, and willow.

Mixing the Cyprus black salt with activated charcoal is the primary reason behind its detoxification property. Its texture is unique and exotic. It’s crunchy and has a pyramidal shape.

The pyramidal shape forms due to the crystallisation of Cyprus Black Flake Salt. Because of its seductive way, crystals of salt and perfect black colour, it gives a finishing touch to the foods compared to regular salt. It adds a mouthwatering taste exceptionally in meat, roasted vegetables, and sashimi.

Also, it adds a great flavour to homemade bread and pretzels. Not just this, its outstanding earthy flavour is perfect to be enjoyed other food products with even tomatoes, cucumber, fruits, and fresh vegetables.

You can even try it with your margarita. Only provide a slight coating of Cyprus salt around the edge of your cocktail glass and see the magic happen when you take your sips—never tried before? Try it right now, and you can thank me later for the tip.


Hawaiian Black salt, harvested from the remote Hawaiian Islands of the Pacific Ocean, is mixed with activated charcoal extracted from coconut shells. This process gives its bold black colour.

Its richness in taste and flavour makes it a must-have element of any chef’s kitchen. Its colour is similar to Cyprian Salt but crunchier in texture than normal table salt. It has its uniqueness and glamour to be cherished.

Popularly used to provide the finishing touch to foods, its earthy flavour gives a divine taste to fish and meat. It provides a fantastic feeling of smoky flavour when eaten with pork. Also, people pair it with fruits, sashimi, potatoes, and popcorn.

Without a doubt, it also brings out the authentic flavour of the cocktails.


People obtain Indian black salt – Kala Namak from the crushed Indian volcanic rock salt. Since ancient times, they have extracted it from the volcanic mines of different parts of India and Pakistan. Interestingly, Indian black salt is a misnomer. Unlike its name, which suggests it has a black colour instead has a lovely pinkish brown shade. It is due to the presence of iron sulphide.

People consume black salt for ages in Asian countries located in the Himalayan range ( mainly India, Nepal, and Pakistan). Since the extraction takes place in the Himalayas, it is highly renowned as Himalayan black salt.

It is called Kala Namak in Hindi and Bire Noon in Nepali. People believe that the Himalayas protect the salt. Hence, they regard the Himalayan black salt as the purest salt form on the earth.

It has a distinctive savoury and earthy flavour and tastes mildly sour than regular table salt. Some might find the smell a little odd at the beginning. But once added, it magically blends with the food.

It reveals such a taste to the palate that you will forget all about its smell. It adds an actual unreplicable flavour to the food. Thus, it is a must-have ingredient in any dish in Asian countries despite its smell.

Kala namak, a popular ingredient in Indian cuisine, is added to almost every dish, from chutney to chaat. People often sprinkle their salads, vegetables, and fruit with Kala namak. This Indian salt fits just perfectly in nearly all the recipes.

A pinch of salt can enhance takes of your fruit juice. It’s a perfect thing to keep in your kitchen. More so, if you want to make delicious next-level vegan dishes. It seems like regular salt, but only the one who has tasted it can understand the difference due to the various minerals compounds in salt.


Black ritual salt, primarily used in rituals and spells instead for culinary purposes, is made by a blend of charcoal powder. It is dark coloured. People believe it has magical properties. They generally use it for purification and protection.

It is of great importance, mainly in Hoodoo and Santeria. People mostly use it to drive off negative entities and energy away from their homes and prevent them from returning.

Potential Health Benefits vs. Side Health Effects


People have been using it for various purposes incredible health benefits since ancient times. Especially Kala namak, identified by Charaka, the father of Ayurvedic medicine, possesses more considerable medical significance to ayurvedic healers to relieve health issues.

It has therapeutic properties with many benefits for health. People suffering from any digestive problem use it for a sodium intake diet to ease their plight. Kala namak is also the right solution for poor eyesight and hysteria.

It has lower sodium content compared to regular table salt. So, people with high blood pressure use it instead of common salt in their diet. But it’s essential to consult proper medical personnel for the recommended amount of sodium per day in case of any health risks and abnormalities.


Black salt contains fluoride in high amounts. Fluoride is beneficial for teeth and bone. But increased daily sodium intake can spike sodium levels, and accumulation of fluorides can cause fluoride toxicity.

Thus, doctors advise against intaking a high amount of Kala namak regularly. However, taking salt in moderation for flavours will not harm you. You can add egg-like flavour to your tofu scramble. Just be careful not to overconsume it.

Where can you use it?


Marinating meat with spices and salt
Himalayan salt uses

Due to its depth flavour profiles, Kala namak is a must-have ingredient in a wide range of Indian dishes, vegetarian and non-vegetarian. It is popular among Indian spices as most of the Indian recipes uses black salt.

Vegans use it to substitute the egg flavours in their diets. Meat and fish sprinkled with Kala namak make the meat tender and add extra flavour to the rich and juicy taste. Youflavourdd it to enrich your stews, marinades, stocks, soups, and sauces. Also, you can enhance the flavour of omelettes, cheese and egg dishes with its use.

Sprinkle it over any fruits you like and enjoy the rich mineral taste. Mixing it with olive oil and vinegar makes it easier to dress the salad. Add it to your mashed potatoes, chickpea omelette and snacks, feast on your taste buds. Or use it for dips and cold appetisers, replacing your regular table salt.

Kala namak has a never-ending list of dishes where you can use it. Smokey tofu and tandoori tofu tikka are my favourite Indian cuisine. These are very generic dishes I have listed above. But you can always try it with different egg-free dishes delicious recipes, and impress everyone with the irresistible savoury flavour of food and Indian spice blend in your Asian recipe.


When it comes to food, Kala Namak is a fantastic ingredient. It can turn any plain and ordinary dish into a lavish feast. Its bold and savoury flavour sufficiently offers a unique taste in foods.

It is an ideal ingredient for cooking and seasoning that you can use instead of regular table salt. The uniqueness of the gourmet salt magically glorifies the taste of any food. Its dramatic colour is just a perfect thing to provide the finishing touch to any dish.

Not just cooking, but you can also use it for drinks. It articulately offers soothing rimmers for drinks. You can expect many things from this intriguing salt when it comes to making delicious salad recipes, adding smoky flavour or flavour of eggs. You should still use this salt in moderation when replacing regular table salt.

Price and Vendor

The price differs according to the quality and quantity of the product. According to my shopping experience, a small bottle(about 100g) of black salt generally costs a small bottle(about 100g) of black salt costs around $10. It is slightly more expensive than regular table salt.

Many online stores such as Amazon, Bakersalts, Woolworths, IGA, etc., sells black salt. You can check the store website to read the details of the product.

Compare the price of different online stores. Before purchasing, be sure to check the user reviews and ratings of the product. It helps to give you some clarity about the quality of the product.


Keep an eye out for friendly recipe resources for more use of black salt for delicious dishes.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Himalayan Salt?

Himalayan salt is a type of rock salt (halite) mined in the Northeastern part of the Pakistani province.

The pinkish hue comes from trace minerals, and it can be used as an alternative to refined table crystals for food preparation, decoration or even spa treatments at home.

2. Where does Himalayan salt come from?

Himalayan salt is derived from an old maritime deposit before the last glacial period.

The famed Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan’s northern Punjab region produces Himalayan salt. The mine, located in the Himalayan foothills, was discovered in 320 BC by Alexander the Great’s army when they passed through the area. The troops’ horses, according to legend, were the ones who discovered the Khewra salt deposits when they began licking the rocks they came across in the countryside.

3. Is Himalayan Salt bad for you?

Himalayan salt contains trace elements like iron, manganese, zinc, calcium, and potassium and has a lower sodium concentration than table salt or sea salt.

Himalayan salt is touted as a healthier alternative to normal salt due to its lower sodium level and availability of trace minerals.

Regardless of the type, excessive salt consumption can lead to high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease, hence it should be consumed in moderation.

4. Is Himalayan Salt good for you?

Many believe Himalayan salt to be a healthier alternative to regular table salt or sea salt.

  • Sodium content is lower than table salt, which helps control blood pressure.
  • Himalayan salt does not dehydrate you. Indeed, it improves hydration by assisting in maintaining fluid balance and blood pressure in the body.• When compared to table salt, a small amount of Himalayan salt goes a long way in taste, so you’ll eat less of it.
  • Himalayan salt helps build bones by containing minerals like calcium and magnesium, which are crucial for bone growth and density.


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