How to Make Spam Less Salty? (And Low-Sodium Spam Alternatives)

Salty Spam

To make Spam less salty, you can boil the Spam slices in a pot of boiling water and simmer for 30 minutes. After boiling, you can cook the Spam to your preference. This method effectively reduces its salt content.

Alternatively, you can soak the Spam in a bowl of cold water and let it sit. To maximize the desalting process, change the water multiple times.

You can chop the Spam and soak it in hot water. Use pre-boiled water for this method. After soaking for a few minutes, your Spam will be less salty.

These methods need patience, but the result is less salty Spam with the same classic taste.

Why Is Spam So Salty?

Spam is salty due to its high sodium content and the use of sodium nitrite.

A small serving of Spam has 32% of the daily recommended sodium intake, which makes it taste salty.

Sodium, a key ingredient, serves two purposes – it acts as a preservative and enhances the taste of Spam.

Additionally, sodium nitrite is used in Spam to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria like Clostridium botulinum, which causes botulism.

This combination of sodium and sodium nitrite allows unopened Spam to be stored indefinitely.

So the salty flavor and long shelf life of Spam are mainly due to its sodium content and the use of sodium nitrite.

How Much Sodium Is in Spam?

A two-ounce serving of Spam contains 790 mg of sodium, which is 32% of your daily recommended intake. Sodium is necessary for the body, but too much can lead to issues like high blood pressure and heart disease.

Spam, like other canned meats, is preserved with salt to prolong its shelf life, which is why it has a high sodium content.

However, there are ways to enjoy Spam without exceeding your sodium intake.

You can pair it with low-sodium foods, rinse it to remove some surface salt, or cut it into thin slices to decrease the portion size.

Regardless of how much you enjoy Spam, monitor your sodium intake. Be mindful of your portion sizes and aim to balance your meals throughout the day.

How Much Sodium Is in A Can of Spam?

A can of Spam contains 4740 mg of sodium, over two times the daily recommended intake. This exceeds the FDA’s suggested daily limit of 2300 mg.

However, you can still enjoy Spam by reducing its sodium content.

3 Ways to Reduce the Saltiness of Spam

To decrease the saltiness of Spam, you can rinse, soak, or boil it.

If you have time, soak the Spam in cold water, changing the water multiple times for maximum effect. This action removes some of the salt.

If you’re in a hurry, rinse the Spam under running water to remove surface salt.

Another option is to boil or blanch the Spam. Boil Spam slices for around 30 minutes to significantly reduce the sodium content. If time is limited, blanching in boiling water for a few seconds can also work.

Here are these methods in a table:

MethodTime Required
SoakingLong (hours)
RinsingShort (minutes)
Boiling/BlanchingMedium (30 minutes/40 seconds)

Experiment to find the method that works best for you in terms of taste and time.

What Are Some Low-Sodium Alternatives to Spam?

Low-sodium Spam

If you want to reduce your sodium intake but enjoy the taste of Spam, consider these lower-sodium alternatives:

  1. Low-sodium Spam: SPAM® Less Sodium has 25% less sodium than the regular version, offering the same flavor with less salt.
  2. SPAM® Lite: SPAM® Lite has 33% fewer calories, 50% less fat, and 25% less sodium than regular Spam, making it a healthier choice.
  3. Fresh poultry or unsalted canned fish: These are completely different options that provide high protein without the extra sodium.
  4. Turkey-based alternative: If you like Spam musubi, a turkey-based option can be a healthier yet tasty substitute.

You can also enhance the flavor of these low-sodium options by seasoning them with herbs and spices.

Give these alternatives a try; you may discover a new favorite that’s also healthier.

How Can You Balance the Saltiness of Spam in Recipes?

You can balance the saltiness of Spam in recipes using the following cooking techniques:

  1. Combine Spam with less salty foods such as potatoes, rice, or noodles. These absorb the salt and balance the dish’s overall flavor.
  2. When it comes to seasonings and sauces, avoid adding extra salt or salty ingredients. Opt for herbs, spices, or low-sodium sauces to enhance flavor without increasing saltiness.
  3. You can also add acidic or sweet elements to your dish. Ingredients like lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, or maple syrup can offset the saltiness of Spam.
  4. For soups, stews, or sauces with Spam, dilute the saltiness by adding more water, low-sodium broth, or other liquids. If needed, thicken the dish with cornstarch or flour.

Implementing these tips can help you make tasty Spam dishes without excessive saltiness.

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