We cook with a lot of seasonings but perhaps the most ubiquitous of them all is salt. This simple but vital micronutrient somehow magically brings out the essential flavors of most foods, making almost anything delightfully palatable. While some of us use a saltshaker, using a salt grinder brings seasoning food to a whole new level.
With a salt grinder, you can experiment with different kinds of salt, from course sea salt and chunks of kosher salt to the healthy pink Himalayan variety. What’s more, you won’t get salt clumping up – no need to add rice to absorb moisture, right? Instead of accidently over-salting your food, with just a few quick twists, you use only the amount you desire.
While most salt grinders will do the job, what they are made of, the kinds of grinding blades they have and how they are built will all affect the quality of the salt.
We feature six salt grinders you can purchase online. Read on to find the one that most appeals to you.
Top Pick Best Versatile: Kaiciuss Salt/Pepper Grinder Mill
If you’re looking for a sleek salt grinder with a simple yet effective design, this acrylic salt grinder is the way to go. Its transparent body matches any décor and when filled with white or pink course salt, makes a beautiful visual statement. But this salt grinder is not just about looks – it’s equipped with a quality ceramic grinding mechanism. Instead of crushing the course salt, it strips it down by its individual layers to release maximum flavor into your food.
The adjustable rotor allows you to choose between a fine or coarse setting and the size, measuring 8.75 x 2.25 inches, gives it an easy and comfortable grip. This salt grinder is pretty versatile, too, so while you can use it for all kinds of salt, it will also grind peppercorns and whole seasoning, as well as spices like cumin, fennel and cloves.
And when it comes to moisture getting at the salt, there’s no need to worry. Its top-sealing design keeps out moisture and dust so all you get is a fresh dash of salt every time.
- Attractive look
- Made from refined acrylic materials
- Has a ceramic grinder
- Clear body allows you to see the contents
- Adjustable rotor provides choice of fine to coarse grind
- Not dishwasher safe
- Creates dust that can end up on the table
Top Pick Best Long-Lasting: COLE & MASON Derwent Salt Grinder
For a more modern look, this clear acrylic salt grinder with a stainless steel finish from Cole & Mason hits all the high notes for style and functionality. It not only looks good, it is a high-quality, durable grinder that you will happily use years for many years to come.
You can conveniently select between three precise grinding levels for fine or coarse granules and this grinder’s new durable top design creates a smooth and even turn to grind salt. It’s easy to refill, too; simply pull up on the salt grinder top and put in your favorite coarse sea salt. The professional gourmet precision mechanism doesn’t crush the salt but instead, strips the granules down by their individual layers, releasing maximum flavor.
The design also keeps moisture and dust away from what ever you have stored in the grinder. Makes a very special housewarming gift.
- Modern style of acrylic and stainless steel
- Three precise grinding levels
- Easy to fill
- Diamond-sharp ceramic salt grinding mechanism
- Leaves salt powder residue on table
- More expensive than other models
Top Pick Best Overall: OXO Good Grips Contoured Mess-Free Salt Grinder
Preparing food can make your hands wet, oily or dirty so when you grab the salt shaker or grinder, it can slip out of your hand, fall to the floor or become covered in whatever you happen to be cooking at the time. So annoying, right? We like this salt grinder from Oxo because of its non-slip grip. Easy to hold, it will stay in your wet or oily hand. And with its airtight lid, no matter what’s on your hands, what’s in the salt grinder stays dry and fresh.
Constructed from acrylic with stainless steel accents, the clear body lets you keep track of how much salt you have used and when you need a refill. And speaking of refilling, this grinder comes pre-filled with coarse salt and when it’s all used up, all you have to do is turn the grinder over, unscrew the cap and refill with your favorite salt granules.
Another interesting feature is that it doesn’t leave salt dust powder or residue on your table. With this model, you turn it over, slide the tab to adjust the setting from fine to coarse and use the bottom as the grinder. The top is where the salt exits. When you’re done, you turn it back onto the bottom and voila, no dust!
- Comes pre-filled with coarse salt
- Non-slip grip
- Doesn’t leave salt powder
- Can adjust grinder setting from fine to coarse
- Hand wash only
Top Pick Best Portable: McCormick Grinders Sea Salt Grinder
Great for a picnic, the cottage or camping, this sea salt grinder is the perfect portable solution for when you’ll be cooking or eating outside your home but you don’t want to cart around the good salt grinder that you use in your kitchen.
This grinder from McCormick is filled with naturally harvested salt from the French Mediterranean. Sea salt tends to be coarser and has a higher concentration of minerals than table salt, with a comparable level of sodium, so you know you’re getting a quality product. The downside is that when it’s empty, you can’t reuse it or fill it with a salt of your choice. Nonetheless, there’s no reason to forgo flavor when you’re out of the comfort of your kitchen. Lightweight and compact, just pop this salt grinder into your food hamper and you’re good to go.
- Portable to take on picnic, camping and to the cottage
- Grinder filled with naturally harvested salt from the French Mediterranean
- Can adjust the size of the grind from the center dial
- Not reusable
- Cannot fill it with the salt of your choice
Top Pick Best Electric: Ayuse Electric Salt Grinder
You used to love your salt grinder but as arthritis has crept into your hands, grasping the grinder and twisting the top has become increasingly difficult. To save you the pain and aggravation of grinding by hand, we recommend this electric salt grinder that uses advanced USB charging technology. Now you can easily and painlessly grind salt any time you want and you won’t be wasting money on batteries.
This stylish salt grinder that can also be used to grind pepper is made of high-quality 304 stainless steel and glass, which is non-corrosive and anti-oxidant, keeping your salt fresh and free of toxins. With its one-button action, it’s really easy to use, too. A switch button controls the entire salt mill. Just press the button and tilt the grinder to start automatically grinding. When you’re done, press the switch to turn off the grinder, which will prevent accidental grinding.
The large capacity is easy to fill and clean plus, by rotating the knob on the top of the grinder, you can adjust the coarseness settings, accommodating any spice and thickness you want, including being able to grind coriander and mustard seeds, black pepper, Himalayan pink salt, coarse salt, and sea salt.
- Electric salt grinder with rechargeable USB technology
- Large capacity
- Easy one-button control
- Can grind other spices and seeds
- Has coarseness settings
- More expensive than a manual model
Top Pick Best Set: Hearth & Crate Wooden Salt and Pepper Grinder Set
Salt and pepper go together like mustard and ketchup, so it doesn’t make sense to have a salt grinder without having a pepper mill as well, right? If you are looking for a truly unique and beautiful salt and pepper mill set, then you may want to consider this one made from wood.
These grinders are sourced from sustainable, chemical-free Acacia wood farms and create a superb luxurious surface that feels naturally comfortable in your hands. They are equipped with a ceramic grinder head that is designed to stop sediment and particles from getting into food while letting the salt and pepper enhance its flavor.
The only materials used in these grinders are Acacia wood, ceramic parts, and food grade stainless steel, making them naturally PBA-free and rust proof. The set also comes with a bonus copper spoon that you can use as a scoop to fill your salt and pepper grinders.
These two beauties will enhance your table, or the table of a good friend or loved one as a thoughtful anniversary or housewarming gift.
- Sourced from sustainable, chemical-free Acacia wood
- Comes in a set of salt and pepper grinders
- Comes in a gift box with a bonus spoon
- Equipped with a ceramic grinder head
- Does not have different coarseness levels
- More expensive than other sets
- Not indicated which one is for salt and which one is for pepper
Things to look out for:
Consider these things when looking for a salt grinder so you will choose one that best suits your needs:
Grinding mechanism material:
Salt on its own is a pretty corrosive mineral – think of how it can melt the ice you sprinkle it on in the winter, not to mention what it can do to the metal on your car. Salt can corrode or oxidize steel and even stainless steel. That’s why the best salt mills have a grinder constructed from a material that won’t rust or corrode, like ceramic. Ceramic is naturally oxidized. It doesn’t rust or deteriorate even in warm environments like a kitchen.
That doesn’t mean you should not choose a salt mill with a grinder made from carbon steel or stainless steel. A good quality stainless is more corrosion resistant than carbon steel.
Manual versus electric:
Most salt grinders are manual and work by twisting either the top or the bottom to grind the larger particles into smaller ones. This is convenient because you direct how much, or how little, you want. Some manual models twist from the top while others twist from the bottom. If you have problems with arthritis or with gripping, then choose an electric or battery-operated model. These work well and make the whole process easy and pain-free.
While most salt grinders work in the same way, some have added features that may be convenient for you. For example, some have an easy-grip base, which makes it easier to hold onto the grinder if your hands are wet or oily from cooking and chopping food as you prepare. If you want a choice in the coarseness of the grind, look for a salt mill that gives you the option of different levels of grind. If you are looking for versatility, some salt grinders are also suitable to be used as a pepper mill and can also grind other spices such as fennel and mustard seeds.