How To Season Food — Supercharge Your Next Meal With These Seasoning Tips

Get our transformative insider tips on how to season food. From an experienced chef, making it feel as though you've enlisted a private chef for your kitchen.

Knowing how to season food correctly has the potential to supercharge your next meal. As a seasoned chef, I’m sharing my culinary expertise on how to season food to perfection.

Armed with this knowledge you will be seasoning like a pro in no time at all. You will start injecting some excellent taste into your next meal and beyond.


Seasoning food is so much more than making food taste salty. Adding salt brings out the natural flavors of food that you’re seasoning.

Being a professional chef and knowing how to season food correctly is a skill that makes money. I’m going to share with you the tricks of the trade.

I’m going to show you the best way to season your food. Some of the varieties of salt you should be using, (there is more than Kosher salt).

Practical ways you can add unique flavor to your food. Herbs, spices, vinegary, and citrus flavors. All have their part to play when it comes to seasoning food.

I will also give you a solution when you have over-seasoned food. (And it is not adding more of something to dilute the salty flavor).

Think citrus juice, vinegar, and all those excellent sour, tangy ingredients that are so underutilized. So, keep reading and learn how to season food like a pro.

How To Season Food Supercharge Your Next Meal


How To Season Food To Make It Taste Incredible

I use Himalayan pink salt when cooking. I also use Maldon salt as a finishing salt. And from time to time I use smoked salt. This is when I want to quickly infuse a subtle smokiness into a dish. I avoid table salt at all costs! Most have an anticaking agent that imparts an insipid bitter flavor.

When seasoning food, especially chicken, fish fillets, or lamb, I season from a height. About 15-20cm (5.9- 7.9 inches) above the food. This will evenly cover a larger area and give you a consistent seasoning technique.

When it comes to steak, season a plate or a tray. Then rub the steak onto the seasoned tray. Make sure to cover the entire surface of the steak. Don’t forget about the sides. The more surface area of the steak you season the better it will taste.

Chef’s Pro Tip — I always season steak before cooking. (There are many chefs that prefer to season steak after cooking). The reason why I season streaks before cooking is I want to infuse the seasoning into the meat.

Yet, I will season the steak only when I’m ready to cook it. So the salt doesn’t draw out any moisture. Seasoning your steak too early can remove valuable moisture. Making it dry when cooked.

Seasoned Beef Ribeye Steak
Seasoned Beef Ribeye Steak

Salt The King Of The Kitchen Seasoning Food 101

Salty, versatile, and indispensable. Salt reigns supreme as the undisputed king of the kitchen. In our culinary world, it is more than just a seasoning. Salt is the essential element that transforms ordinary ingredients into extraordinary dishes.

Understanding how to season food in the savory realm of salt. Will help you to create memorable meals. There are many varieties available today, gone are the days of using iodized table salt. Salt is the most underrated ingredient in our kitchen. We are going to dive into some of the varieties of salt, and where you can get them.

Himalayan Pink Salt

  • Himalayan Pink Salt — Mineral-rich salt that has a unique savory flavor. This ancient sea salt can bring the natural taste of food to the forefront.
    • The salt crystals are excellent if you have a salt grinder. When freshly ground, they have a fresh savory taste (with no anticaking agent).

In all my recipes unless otherwise stated I use Himalayan pink salt. Which I grind when needed. Pink salt has a fantastic flavor profile. That brings out the natural flavors of every ingredient it touches.

Himalayan Pink Salt
Himalayan Pink Salt


Maldon Sea Salt

  • Maldon Sea Salt — I love using this amazing sea salt as a finishing salt. You’re most likely wondering what is a finishing salt.

A Finishing Salt takes the spotlight as the crowning jewel of seasoning. Adding a final touch of flavor and texture to a dish before serving.

Unlike salts used during cooking, I use finishing salts to sprinkle on top of the finished dish. Creating a flavorful and textual garnish. Their unique qualities is one way of how to season food. Injecting flavor into my completed dish.

  • Maldon sea salt flakes are excellent used as a finishing salt. The savory flavor and crunchy texture of these beautiful natural sea salt crystals are unique.
Maldon Sea Salt Flakes
Maldon Sea Salt Flakes

Smoked Sea Salt

  • Smoked Sea Salt — I love using this smoke-infused sea salt. When I want to quickly infuse a subtle smokey flavor into my food. Smoked salt is usually sea salt that has been treated with smoke essence. (Liquid essence with a smokey aroma and flavor).
    • I’ve tried smoking sea salt crystals in natural wood smoke. It doesn’t work the salt crystals are not absorbent and won’t take on the flavor of the smoke.

Chef’s Pro Tip — I recommend incorporating smoked salt into your casseroles, soups, and sauces. This will infuse the smokey flavors with the saucy essence of these dishes. Creating an underlying smokey taste that is intoxicating and delicious. Another way of how to season food.

Smoked Sea Salt
Smoked Sea Salt

Salt The Culinary Cornerstone

Salt is a culinary cornerstone. It possesses the unique ability to draw out moisture from food, intensifying flavors. Creating a harmonious balance of taste. When sprinkled over the skin of pork belly hours before roasting, a magical alchemy occurs. The salt slowly draws out moisture from the skin. Resulting in deliciously crispy skin when slow-roasted.

The enchantment of salt doesn’t stop there. Blanching vegetables undergo a transformative experience. In a pot of boiling water, generously seasoned with salt, blanch your vegetables. The salt-infused water draws out the vegetable’s natural flavors and vibrant colors. Turning ordinary greens into captivating tasty morsels.

From preserving, curing, and pickling. Seasoning to transform textures and unlocking taste. Salt is a culinary magician. Its subtle but powerful influence amplifies flavors. It showcases the best in every ingredient it touches. Knowing how to season food correctly will make you a culinary powerhouse.

How To Fix Over Seasoned Food

You’ve cooked an amazing meal. However, after tasting the finished dish you realize you were heavy-handed with the salt. It tastes salty, what can you do?

Add an acidic Ingredient. The addition of acidic ingredients like fresh lime or lemon juice, or a splash of vinegar. Even a drizzle of your favorite vinaigrette dressing. This will help counterbalance excessive salty flavors. Adding a tangy or acidic ingredient will not only remove the excessive salt flavor. It can add a pop and bring your dish back to life.

Remember taste before you season. Season to taste in other words season as you cook, tasting all the time. This is seasoning food 101.


How To Season Food With Herbs Spices and Condiments

Seasoning food is beyond mere salt. Herbs, spices, and condiments. You can breathe life into your dishes supercharging them like never before.

The Advantage Of Fresh Herbs

I use a lot of fresh culinary herbs. Where freshness and versatility converge to transform your dishes into professional offerings. In my garden, I am fortunate and blessed. I have an abundant supply of thyme, rosemary, sage, and mint. These vibrant herbs provide colorful, aromatic, and herbaceous flavors and garnishes.

Fresh herbs allow us to incorporate their essence at various stages of the cooking process. Whether gently infused into simmering casseroles. Sprinkled through sautéed vegetables as a finishing touch. Or generously used as a colorful aromatic herbaceous garnish.

Fresh Herbs From My Garden
Fresh Herbs From My Garden

Dried herbs have an intensity, a concentrated flavor from the process of drying and preservation. Navigating the world of dried herbs requires a delicate hand. With their strength, a little goes a long way.

Should you find yourself turning to dried herbs, remember this advice. Use half the quantity of dried herbs as you would fresh. Or their robust flavors will overpower and unbalance your recipe.

The Power Of Spices

Seasoning With Spices
Seasoning With Spices

In my kitchen, these spices are staples.

  • Black peppercorns. (Always use whole peppercorns and grind them yourself).
  • Smoked paprika.
  • Ground cumin.
  • Cumin seeds.
  • Cinnamon.
  • Chili flakes.
  • Kashmiri chili powder (Mild rich chili powder).
  • Ground coriander.

These flavor powerhouses work wonders alone or in dynamic duos and trios.

How to season food using spices. Creating the perfect base for meat rubs, and marinades. Want to supercharge your dishes to gourmet status? Toast them in a sizzling pan with a drizzle of oil for a mere moment. Watch and smell as they unleash a rich spice explosion.

Heat a pan, drizzle in cooking oil like rice bran until it starts to smoke add your spices. Toast them in the pan for 20-30 seconds and then remove them from the pan. This is a powerful way of seasoning food with spices. This ancient technique is used by chefs and home cooks alike. Release an intoxicating fragrance. They will infuse into the food adding complex flavors.

Experiment with different spice combinations and timings. Witness the flavorful impact on your dishes. Embrace this powerful seasoning technique. Toasting spices will breathe soul into your food.

The Power of Toasting Spices
The Power of Toasting Spices

Fresh ginger, and garlic, never leave my side. As the backbone of marinades and spice pastes. These two spices are used together for a reason. Weaving flavor into food, turning ordinary dishes into tasty masterpieces.

Crushing garlic and ginger in a mortar and pestle will give you maximum flavor. When smashing garlic in a mortar with a pestle add a pinch of salt. The salt will bring out the natural oils of the garlic. Making it sticky, aromatic, and flavorful.

Extracting Flavor From Garlic — Here is a chef’s method (my method). Adding a sprinkling of salt to the garlic in the mortar yields excellent results. The salt acts as a catalyst, coaxing the flavors and oils of the garlic to the surface. Transforming it into a delicious amalgamation of stickiness, aroma, and depth of flavor.

Crushed Garlic
Crushed Garlic


The Magic Flavors Of Condiments

How to season food using condiments. Those flavor-enhancing companions to our dishes. They hold the power to elevate taste profiles. Adding depth, complexity, and a symphony of flavors to even the simplest of meals.

From the tangy embrace of mustard to the umami-rich notes of soy sauce. Condiments serve as gateways to gastronomic highs. Condiments come in an array of forms, textures, and tastes. Each boasts its unique characteristics to suit diverse culinary creations.

Condiments and ingredients can be a substitute for salt. Taking full advantage of these, here’s another method on how to season food.

  • Fish sauce.
  • Soy sauce.
  • Capers.
  • Olives.
  • Anchovies.
  • MSG (Monosodium Glutamate).
  • Dried mushrooms (Porcini’s).

Crushed Capers And Garlic, are a dynamic duo. That imparts a complex, savory crust to succulent lamb. When smeared over the surface before roasting. This delightful combination infuses the meat with various flavors, creating a culinary masterpiece.

Steeping Dried Porcini Mushrooms in hot water will create an amazing stock. Mushroom stock can be used for soups, sauces, and casseroles to infuse the most amazing flavors. This is an easy way to add depth and intense savouriness.

Condiments that can enhance the flavor of your recipes. Taking full advantage of these condiments is how to season food.

  • Mustard — This is perfect for classic pairings like baked ham. Whisk it into vinaigrettes for salads. Elevate burgers, hot dogs, and sandwiches. The tangy flavor of mustard is Ideal for adding to sauces like Béchamel.
  • Olive Oil — I Use extra virgin olive oil in salad dressings, drizzled over roasted vegetables. Or as a finishing touch on soups and stews for a fruity and peppery flavored garnish.
  • Vinegar (Balsamic, Red Wine, Sherry, and Champagne Vinegar) — Drizzle balsamic vinegar over roasted vegetables. Or even strawberries for a sweet and tangy glaze. Use red wine vinegar in vinaigrettes for salads.
    • Combine sherry vinegar with shallots and olive oil. To create a sophisticated dressing for leafy greens or grilled fish. Add a splash of champagne vinegar to your Hollandaise sauce reduction. For a delicate and refreshing acidity.
  • Sugar, Corn Syrup, Honey, Maple Syrup — Use corn syrup or honey in dessert recipes like feijoa cake. For a subtle sweetness. Add sugar to spice rubs or maple syrup to marinades. That can add another layer of flavor.
  • Cheese (Parmesan) — For a burst of umami. Use a Microplane grater to sprinkle freshly grated Parmesan over sautéed asparagus or roasted corn cobs. This simple technique. Enhances the delicate green spears and vibrant corn kernels with the nutty, salty essence of Parmesan.
  1. What Are The 5 Taste Sensations?

    The 5 taste sensations are salty, spicy, sour, and sweet. The fifth is umami. The concept of umami, the fifth taste sensation has gained significant popularity in the culinary world. Umami is often described as a savory and rich taste. Using these taste sensations to your advantage is how to season food.

  2. What Is The Best Way To Season Meat?

    The best way to season meat is with freshly ground Himalayan pink salt. Seasoning by sprinkling the salt from a height. Allowing its delicate crystals to evenly cover the meat’s surface. Ensuring a harmonious infusion of flavor. Next garlic, thyme, and rosemary. Rub this fragrant trio over meat, allowing their essence to infuse into the meat.

    For steak aficionados seeking the pinnacle of taste. Pan-sear the seasoned steak, as it sizzles in the pan. Seize the opportunity to introduce butter, thyme, and garlic. Watch as the butter melts, becoming infused with herbal essence. Embrace the technique of basting. Generously ladle the infused melted butter over the steak. Which elevates its succulence and imparts unparalleled flavor.

  3. What Is The Best Seasoning For Vegetables?

    The best way to season vegetables is with Maldon salt and freshly ground black pepper. A simple yet effective combination is drizzling olive oil over the vegetables. Along with a splash of balsamic vinegar. Or toss in fresh thyme leaves with a homemade vinaigrette.

Cooking Is A Science And A Skill

Cooking is a science and a skill that requires a deep understanding of both the technical and creative aspects. Cooking is also a matter of precise measurements and ratios.

For example, baking is particularly sensitive to accurate measurements and temperatures. A slight deviation in the amount of an ingredient or cooking degrees can result in a completely different outcome. So, to help you here is a handy little unit converter tool for cooking without guesswork.

Final Thoughts

Mastering the skill of seasoning is the key to unlocking a world of extraordinary flavors. Elevating your culinary creations to new heights. By understanding how to season food and the five taste sensations. You can supercharge your food to craft delicious well-balanced dishes.

Embrace the diverse array of herbs, spices, and condiments. Allowing them to infuse into the food you cook. Adding depth, complexity, and character. From the delightful brininess of capers to the umami-rich allure of parmesan cheese. Each seasoning imparts its unique charm, transforming your meals into memorable experiences.

Remember, salt will always be king, the most underrated ingredient in your kitchen. The true beauty of seasoning lies in its versatility and personal touch. Trust your instincts, experiment, and refine your seasoning skills. Tailoring each dish to your individual taste and preferences. This is when you will truly know how to season food.