• Simple ideas

Simple ideas to reduce your salt intake in your very own kitchen!

Shop-bought BBQ products such as burgers, salads and dips tend to be high in salt so why not try making your own? We’ve put together some top tips and simple recipes for a low-salt, low-fuss BBQ, packed full of flavour. Get together with friends to cook or all bring a dish to share to make a BBQ gathering even easier.

Top tips when hosting or attending a BBQ

  • Shop bought burgers are often saltier than sausages so try making your own burgers.
  • Mayonnaise can be high in salt. When making coleslaw, potato salad and dips, you could substitute half the mayonnaise for low fat yoghurt, low fat sour cream or low fat crème fraiche which are all lower in salt.
  • 'Flavoured' coleslaw's with prawn or cheese tend to be higher in salt, stick to basic coleslaw or, better still, make your own!
  • Venison burgers appear to be higher in salt compared to other burgers, try to limit these.
  • Sauces such as ketchup and mustard are often high in salt, some are even saltier than seawater, so limit the amount you have or chose a low salt option.
  • Cheese singles can be very salty, try using cheddar cheese slices or grated cheese  instead.
  • Try Kettles No Added Salt or Tyrells Naked - No Salt crisps,  you won’t even notice a difference if you’re using a dip.
  • Rather than buying peppered beef steaks which tend to have salt added, try making your own. Simply rub the raw meat with a little olive oil and sprinkle with black pepper and your choice of chilli, cumin, oregano or garlic before cooking. Serve with a wedge of lemon.

Simple BBQ Recipes

Lemon, Herb and Garlic Chicken Skewers
Spicy Beef Burgers
Vegetable Burgers
Potato Salad
Sour Cream and Chive Dip
Tomato Salsa
Caribbean Black Bean and Red Pepper Salsa
Broad Bean Dip with Vegetable Crudites

By using a combination of low salt supermarket items and homemade products you could have a full BBQ meal containing only 2.61g (a massive 9.5g less salt than if you chose the highest salt options). See below for details.

Typical BBQ MealLow Salt OptionsSalt Content/Standardised Portion
1 SausageWalls 8 Skinless Pork Sausages0.25g
1 BurgerHomemade Spiced Beef Burgers0.3g
1 portion/piece Marinated MeatHomemade Lemon, Herb and Garlic Skewers0.14g
1 Hot Dog RollEssential Waitrose 6 White Finger Rolls0.34g
1 Burger BunMarks & Spencer 4 Ultimate Burger Buns0.50g
15g American Style MustardASDA Squeezy American Mustard0.36g
15g BBQ SauceTesco Tangy BBQ Sauce0.12g
50g ColeslawHomemade Coleslaw0.1g
50g Potato SaladHomemade Potato Salad0.05g
50g CrispsKettle Chips - No Added Salt0.10g
1 Slice CheeseMorrisons Mature Cheddar 10 Slices0.3g
50g SalsaHomemade Tomato Salsatrace
50g Sour Cream DipHomemade sour cream and chive dip0.05g
Total Salt Content2.61g

If you have your own recipes that you fancy trying out, use the table below to find out the lowest salt ingredients to use.


Fromage Frais (Regular or Fat Free)0.09Low
Chicken Breast0.15Low
Low Fat Yogurt0.16Low
Greek Style Yogurt0.17Low
Chicken Drumsticks0.25Low
Half Fat Creme Fraiche0.75Medium
Soured Cream0.83Medium
Cheese Slice (Cheddar)*1.90High
Low Fat Mayonnaise2.35High
Cheese Singles*2.85High
Wholegrain Mustard2.91High
Worcester Sauce3.00High
Soy Sauce*14.93High
* All nutrient information taken from the McCance and Widdowson's The Composition of Foods Sixth Summary Edition (2002) except those marked with * which were taken from CASH survey data.


GREEN - use as much of these ingredients as you like;
AMBER - be careful with how much of these you use and the brands that you buy;
RED - use these ingredients sparingly

We would like to thank both the British Heart Foundation and Food Standards Agency for allowing us to use and adapt their recipes.

And remember: Food Safety at BBQs is important to! Check out the Food Standards Agency’s hot tips for BBQs at http://www.food.gov.uk/news/newsarchive/2006/jun/BBQs 

OR download a leaflet at http://www.food.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/BBQ_bugs_final.pdf