If Your Soup Is Too Salty, Try This Simple Trick

There's nothing worse than taking a big bite of an otherwise perfect recipe and getting a mouthful of salt. It could be a result of you reading the recipe's salt measurement in tablespoons instead of teaspoons, or simply due to the fact that you overestimated what the recipe's author meant by a "dash" of salt. Either way, it happens to the best of us — even Wolfgang Puck, or so he would have us believe in his MasterClass. In one lesson on how to fix over-salted soup, the celebrity chef assured home cooks that no soup is too salty to the point of no return. 

You may think that the only solution is to dilute the broth with more water and cross your fingers, but as it turns out, one of the best solutions is to use a potato. As explained in Puck's MasterClass, simply place a raw, fully peeled potato into your pot of soup, and let it sit there while the soup continues to cook. You'll know the potato is ready to be removed once it has absorbed the excess salt and hasn't cooked all the way through. This will take about 30 minutes.

It's never too late to fix a salty soup

If you were already finished cooking your soup and only realized it was too salty afterwards, the potato hack still has a good chance of working without 30 minutes of extra cooking time. Puck's MasterClass guide instructed in this case to cut the potato into pieces instead of leaving it whole. By maximizing the potato's surface area, this will speed up the process so you don't have to overcook your soup. The one caveat, however, is that this "increases the chance that the salty potato will incorporate into the soup."

Either way, whether or not you cut the potato up, it still contributes starch to your soup. So while your soup won't be as salty, the starch will thicken it, and if you're working with a clear soup, it will cause it to become cloudy. It's also important to remember that the potato absorbs other flavors as well as salt, for example, if you're using chicken broth, your soup will lose some of the strong chicken flavor too. If saltiness is your main concern though, there's nothing a little potato can't fix.