How to Fix Salty Rice: 7 Easy Hacks That Actually Work

How to fix salty rice

Looking for easy ways to fix salty rice?

If you add too much salt to a pot of rice, you can fix it fast if you know how to neutralize the salty flavor or adding ingredients that absorb the salinity.

Here are 5 quick & easy fixes to reduce the sodium levels in your rice.

Related: Salty Beans? 5 Ways to Fix Overly Salted Beans

How to Fix Salty Rice

What do I do if my rice is too salty?

You have several easy options if your rice turned out too salty,. Try one of these 7 fool-proof techniques for fixing salty rice.

1. Add Unsalted Rice

To fix salty rice, add half the amount of (unsalted) cooked rice you used into the pot of salty rice.

Double the original amount of rice if the rice is very salty.

Gently combine both batches thoroughly.

If you’re in a hurry, you can easily microwave an unsalted batch of rice, for combining with your salted batch.

How to cook rice in the microwave

  1. Use ratio of 1-1/2 cups rice: 2-1/4 cup water
  2. Microwave 5 minutes on full power, 15 minutes at 50% power
  3. 5 minute rest

Hot Tip: Cooking rice in the microwave is cheaper than other methods like stovetop or a rice cooker.

Related: Salty Kimchi? 5 Ways to Fix Overly Salted Kimchi

2. Add a Veggie

Mix in some cooked cauliflower (finely chopped), peas, carrots, or avocado in your batch of overly salted rice.

These salt-thirsty ingredients will dilute quite a bit of salt.

An acidic ingredient — like chopped tomato — will further absorb some of the salty flavor.

3. Add Egg Whites

Egg whites can counteract over salted food.

This is also a great hack for adding more nutritious protein to your meals too.

Add raw egg whites into your rice, mixing thoroughly.

Stir continually over a low heat until the egg whites are thoroughly cooked.

4. Add Tofu

Instead of eggs, use a good amount of tofu. This will balance out the saltiness in rice.

Tofu will also increase the protein quotient and keep it vegan.

  1. Simply crumble up extra-firm tofu and add to the cooked, salty rice batch.
  2. Over a low heat, briefly stir until well combined.

5. Rinse With Hot Water

How to fix salty rice - Rinse rice in a strainer

Boil a pot of hot water. Place the salty rice in a strainer, and move it around in the strainer.

Pour the hot water the over the rice thoroughly. Shake the excess water out of the strainer.

Heat the rice in a skillet to allow some evaporation of water.

6. Add Potato

How to fix salty rice - Add potato

If your rice ends up too salty, you can add diced potatoes to the dish to cut the salty flavor. Adding bulk to your salty rice, like unsalted potatoes will help absorb some of the excess salt taste when combined.

The “potato can absorb salt” cooking myth has been debunked.

However, simply adding diced, cooked potato to salty rice dilutes some of the saltiness on your palate and disperses the overall amount of salt on your plate as well.

7. Add an Acid

How to fix salty rice - Add an acid

While you might not want to add lemon or lime juice directly to your cooked rice, as this can make it soggy, adding a side salad to the menu will help neutralize the saltiness of your meal overall.

Use extra tomatoes which will add more acidity to your side salad. The extra acidity in the tomatoes will cut down the salinity even more.

Did you know?

White rice lasts at least 4-5 years, or even longer if vacuum sealed.

Classic White Rice Recipe

When you need a filling and inexpensive staple, there’s nothing better than rice.

How to fix salty rice - White Rice Recipe (1)


  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 tsp oil (or butter)
  • pinch of salt


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine rice, water, oil, and a large pinch of salt. Cook over a high heat, bringing water to a boil.
  2. When the water is absorbed, place a lid on the pot and simmer over a very low heat, 18 minutes, or until rice is tender. 
  3. Remove from heat and let sit, covered, 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork and serve. 

5 Rice Cooking Tips

1. Use Enough Water

If you don’t add enough water, the rice will be underdone and likely burn on the bottom.

If you add too much water, the rice will be mushy.

Tip: Salt the water during cooking, or else you’ll have bland rice.

2. Do Not Place Rice In Boiling Water

Combine rice, water, oil, and a large pinch of salt and allow it to come to a boil.

It’s important to place rice in cold water rather than boiling water.

This gives the rice more of a chance to soften.

3. Do Not Cover With A Lid While Boiling

Covering your rice while boiling will cook the rice too quickly, the rice will be soggy and overcooked.

4. Don’t Stir It

Stirring your rice before it is cooked activates starch and will make your rice gloppy.

Stirring can also cause your rice to cook unevenly.

5. Let It Steam

Let the rice sit covered for 5 minutes after it’s done cooking.

Then fluff it with a fork.

2 Tips to Avoid Overly Salted Rice

How to fix salty rice - Measuring spoons and cups

Rice can become over salted easily. Follow these tips to prevent salty rice while you cook:

  1. Follow the recipe. If a recipe calls for sea salt, kosher salt or table salt, make sure to use that specific ingredient. Else, you could end up with overly salted rice. Different types of salt have varying levels of salinity.
  2. Measure the ingredients. Avoid eyeballing the amount of salt, rice, and water you use when preparing rice, if you want to ensure that your rice comes out perfectly each time, use proper measuring spoons and cups each time.

The 10 Best Rice Brands

Which type of rice is best?

When buying rice, choose brands that are high in quality, taste, texture, nutrient content.

Organic rice, is less likely to have pesticide residues, additives, or preservatives.

Here are 10 best brands of rice in each category:

Brown RiceSeeds of Change Organic Brown Rice
White RiceNishiki Premium Grade White Rice
Basmati RiceBanyan Botanicals Organic Basmati Rice
Jasmine Rice365 Rice White Thai Jasmine Organic
Sushi RiceShirakiku Koshihikari Rice
Sprouted Brown RicePlanet Rice Sprouted Brown Rice
Red RiceLotus Foods Organic Red Rice
Black RiceBgreen Organic Black Rice
Wild RiceNon-GMO Minnesota Wild Rice
Mixed Grain RiceNishiki Premium 7 Grains 

Rice and Salt Q&A

How is rice served?

Rice is most commonly served as a side dish in the United States and other countries.

But it can also be combined with other ingredients to make a main dish.

What are some dishes made with rice?

If your rice is too salty, make another dish out of it.

Here are some ideas for how to fix salty rice by turning it into a masterpiece:

  • Make it Mex by adding canned black beans, avocado, tomato, onions, mozzarella cheese, and cilantro.
  • Chicken Rice Soup
  • One-Pot Creamy Chicken and Rice Casserole
  • Guacamole Rice
  • Vegetable Fried Rice
  • Brown Rice Bowl with Egg
  • Tex-Mex Rice with black beans, avocado, tomato & onions
  • Tomato-Basil Chicken and Rice
  • Beef and Broccoli Fried Rice
  • Baked Mushroom Risotto with Caramelized Onions

How do I fix soggy rice?

To fix soggy rice, cook the rice over a low heat for 5 minutes to allow evaporation of extra water.

Strain the rice with a colander.

Spread the rice out evenly onto a cookie sheet or baking pan.

Then bake in the oven for 5 minutes at 350 °F (177 °C).

Is white rice bad for you?

White rice lacks many vitamins and minerals that are present in brown rice.

But it contains about 80% less arsenic than brown rice.

And also contains less phytate than brown rice.

Phytate is present in staple foods like rice, cereals, and corn, can inhibit the micronutrient absorption of zinc, iron, magnesium, and calcium in the digestive system.

Here is how to cook rice to remove the most arsenic:

  1. Soak your rice overnight – this opens up the grain and allows the arsenic to escape.
  2. Drain the rice and rinse thoroughly with fresh water.
  3. For every part rice add 5 parts water and cook until the rice is tender – do not allow it to boil dry.
  4. Drain the rice and rinse again with hot water to get rid of the last of the cooking water.

Why do bodybuilders eat white rice?

The carbohydrates in white rice help replenish muscle and liver glycogen stores, which leads to faster recovery.

White rice is also regarded as a way to boost testosterone levels naturally.

How do you fix over salted food?

Here are the easiest ways to neutralize salt in food:

1. Add Bulk

If the dish is very salty, make another batch (without adding salt) to double the original amount.

Then combine the salty and unsalted batches. Mix thoroughly over a low heat.

2. Add a Starch

Another way to easily add bulk to neutralize salt in food is to add pureed white rice or instant potato flakes to your dish.

Starchy foods absorb the salt while thickening your soup, stew, sauce, chili, casserole, or dish.

You can also mix in some cooked (unsalted) pasta or quinoa.

These salt-thirsty ingredients will absorb quite a bit of salt.

3. Add Some Greens

Throw in some greens like finely chopped kale, spinach.

Cooked cauliflower, carrots, peas, corn, avocado, and other veggies work great too.

These salt-thirsty ingredients will absorb quite a bit of salt.

An acidic ingredient — like chopped tomato — will further absorb quite a bit of the salty flavor.

Of course, adding more avocado, or ingredients like corn, low-sodium cheese, and veggies will also reduce the salty taste of your guacamole.

Veggies will neutralize the saltiness.

This is also a great hack for adding more nutritious vegetables to your meals.

4. Add Dairy

Dairy can counteract over salted food.

Sour cream or a low-sodium cheese like fresh mozzarella, Swiss, goat, and ricotta are great fixes.

There are also brands that offer low-sodium cheese options like Helluva Good Cheddar Cheese.

Yogurt and sour cream have a slightly-tangy flavor that counteracts too much salt in food.

These ingredients works best in dishes that already contain dairy.

5. Add A Protein

Egg whites can counteract over salted food.

This is also a great hack for adding more nutritious protein to your meals too.

Add raw egg whites into your dish as it cooks, mixing thoroughly.

Stir continually until the egg whites are thoroughly cooked.

Instead of eggs you may also use a good amount of tofu, beans, or lentils.

This will also increase the protein quotient of your meal.

Simply cook these protein ingredients separately.

Then add to the salty dish. Stir until well combined.

6. Add Fat

Fats neutralize salty flavors.

Butter, cream, milk, and plant-based oils like olive oil can help reduce the perception of saltiness by coating the tongue with fat.

Try adding a fatty cut of pork, beef, chicken, or fish to the salty dish.

Be sure not to use cured bacon, ham, or other processed meats that may already contain salt.

Some other high-sodium proteins to avoid are canned meat, fish or poultry, cold cuts, frankfurters, sausage, sardines, caviar and anchovies.

7. Rinse With Hot Water

Boil a pot of hot water. Place the salty food in a strainer and move it around in the strainer.

Pour the hot water the over the food thoroughly.

Shake the excess water out of the strainer. Heat the food in a skillet to allow some evaporation of water.

8. Add Sugar

Sweet ingredients like white sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, and agave can fix over salted food.

Add a little at a time and taste as you go to avoid adding too much sweetness

9. Add An Acid

Vinegar, lime/lemon, and tomato juices are also great for reducing the salty taste in dishes.

This works best in dishes that already have a bit of acidity in them.

But if you enjoy tangy flavors, you can experiment with other (non-dairy based) dishes like soups and beans.

10. Dilute With Liquid

Add either water, milk or stock to your over salted dish to mitigate the salty flavor.

Water and stock work for most recipes.

Milk works well with cream based dishes to reduce salinity.

Is kosher salt less salty than regular salt?

Yes, due to it’s larger crystal size, kosher salt is less salty tasting because there’s less of it per unit of measure.

Regular table salt crystals are more compact so there is salt in each teaspoon of salt when preparing food.

What is kosher flake salt?

Unlike table salt and kosher salt, which have even shapes to their crystals, flake salt has rough, flat, or spiky crystals.

The flakes are can be sprinkling over dishes to provide a salty crunch.

Can you substitute sea salt for kosher salt?

You could use sea salt instead of kosher salt, but sea salt is generally more expensive.  

Which salt is the healthiest?

Sea salt is the least refined with no added preservatives. 

Pink Himalayan salt is considered the purest in the sea salt family.

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Written by Gina Elizabeth

Gina Elizabeth is a lifestyle blogger and former drink mixologist (bartender). She sometimes eats pretty good food, other times not. Hey, you gotta live, you know?