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Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan – What’s the Difference?

Pink Curing Salt and Himalayan salt are both pink salts. However, Himalayan salt is a purely natural product.

Curing salt is a mix of salt with other chemicals used exclusively for curing meat.

You can use both pink curing salt and Himalayan pink salt to cure meat.

However, the higher mineral content of Himalayan salt can affect the finished product’s flavor.

That is not a negative trait; it is merely a result of chemical reactions with the meat during curing.

Since Himalayan salt is natural, its mineral content can vary slightly from batch to batch.

Read on to learn the difference between pink curing salt vs Himalayan salt in your kitchen.

Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan Salt

When comparing Pink curing salt vs Himalayan salt one difference is that pink Himalayan salt is used with no additives. It has a lower salt and higher mineral content than pink curing salt. On the other hand, Pink curing salt is a blend of salt and sodium nitrite. Both have been used for decades to preserve fish and meat. However, pink Himalayan salt is the only one used at the table.

Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan Salt
Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan Salt

Main Takeaways Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan Salt

Pink Curing Salt Himalayan Salt
Ingredients Blend of 93.75 percent table salt, sodium chloride, 6.25 percent sodium nitrite, another salt, and an antioxidant Pure salt
Additives Contains additives Contains no additives
Salt content Lower salt content Higher salt content
Minerals Contains no minerals traces Contains more minerals
Uses Is not used as table salt Is used as table salt
Color Dyed pink Naturally pink

What is Pink Curing Salt?

Pink curing salt is used for curing meat and other foods. It is a blend of 93.75 percent table salt, sodium chloride, 6.25 percent sodium nitrite, another salt, and an antioxidant.

Other curing salt blends decrease the amount of salt in the product by throwing in sodium nitrate is another preservative.

There are no trace minerals in pink curing salt, so the blend of salt, sodium nitrite and sodium nitrate will give you the same result every time you use it.

Those interested in the art of curing meat will vary their recipes and the salt blends they use to get different results.

Curing salt is dyed pink to avoid confusing it with ordinary table salt.

This could be why it is called pink curing salt and where the confusion with pink Himalayan salt arises.

What Is Pink Himalayan Salt?

It is a naturally occurring mineral mined at the Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan.

This salt has been used in the process of curing fish for millennia.

However, unlike curing salt, Himalayan salt is pink, naturally. The pink hue comes from the trace minerals mixed in with the salt.

The number of trace minerals in pink Himalayan sea salt is 85.

The high concentration of minerals in pink Himalayan salt may be why it has the reputation of being healthier for you than plain salt.

We all need trace minerals in our diets, and pink Himalayan salt can help attain this goal.

However, it too needs to be used in moderation.

If you are using it to cure fish or meat, the presence of these trace minerals can give your food a different flavor than if you use pink curing salt.

Trial and error will lead you to the perfect cured meat.

Either pink Himalayan salt or regular table salt can cause health problems if you consume too much.

Salt is a necessary element in our diets. Much like anything tasty, too much can be as bad as too little.

Can you use pink curing salt vs Himalayan salt at the table?

Curing salt is more than sodium chloride.

The sodium nitrite added is toxic and not used at the table to sprinkle on your fried potatoes.

Curing salt formulations are only for curing meat and nothing else.

Pink Himalayan salt is not toxic and can be used at the table to cure fish and meat.

The added trace minerals of pink Himalayan salt will impart a different flavor to the meat you cure than pink curing salt.

Health benefits of pink Himalayan salt

We all need trace minerals in our diet, and the fact that pink Himalayan salt can be a source is encouraging.

However, pink salt from the fields of Pakistan or salt mined and labeled as Kosher, too much salt is not healthy and can cause high blood pressure.

If you are health-conscious, pink curing salt and pink Himalayan salt are not your only alternatives to curing meat.

You can use kosher salt or un-iodized table salt to cure meat, as well as on the table.

Although other salts than curing salt may have minerals, they are absent any sodium nitrite or nitrate.

Trying every approach will help you decide which salt you like best when curing fish and meat.

Frequently Asked Questions About Pink Curing Salt vs Himalayan Pink Salt

Can you use Himalayan salt to cure meat?

Pink Himalayan salt has been used to cure fish for centuries—those who practice charcuterie use it to develop new flavors in their cured meat recipes.

Why is curing salt pink?

Dye is added to the salt, sodium nitrite, and nitrate of pink curing salt to keep it from being confused with table salt.

Pink curing salt vs Himalayan pink salt

As you see, the two salts are more alike than different.

So, if you have meat that you want to cure and have pink curing salt or Himalayan salt on hand, you can get the job done.

The flavor of more minerals, imparted by Himalayan salt, won’t impede the curing process.

They merely give the cured meat a different taste.

The biggest difference between pink curing salt vs Himalayan pink salt is that you can use the Himalayan salt at the table.

On the other hand, pink curing salt at the table will result in inedible food.

Curing salt has a distinctly different flavor than table salt or pink Himalayan salt and is toxic.

Author Bio

Daniel Iseli (Head Chef)

Hi, my name is Daniel and I am passionate about cooking. I have been cooking for the past 20 years and am happy to share my best recipes and cooking-related knowledge with you.