Take the 2-minute tour ×
Seasoned Advice is a question and answer site for professional and amateur chefs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is there a way to estimate consumption of salt when dealing with the boiled meat? I.e. I had 500 grams of meat, boiled in 2 litres of water, with 5 grams of salt diluted in that water. If the water is to be discarded, how much salt will be left in the meat?

share|improve this question
See also cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/27407/… –  derobert Aug 22 '13 at 6:34
This is probably going to be pretty difficult to answer - the answer depends on the exact quantities (and the kind of meat, and so on), and I doubt there's a nice simple formula or anything, just the various specific circumstances someone's bothered to test in a lab. –  Jefromi Aug 24 '13 at 4:38
My non-scientific answer would be "almost nothing", since meat generally loses water during boiling rather than absorbing it. That's why it comes out so dry. Salt would normally be absorbed with water, as in brining. –  Aaronut Aug 24 '13 at 16:27

3 Answers 3

In my opinion you can add payaya in the boiled meat.Papaya has a tendency to absorb excess salt.you can try it out.

share|improve this answer

As I understand it, salt moves in and out of meat via osmosis.

If you were willing to check the leftover water with a multimeter, you might be able to figure it out. Pure water doesn't conduct electricity very well, but impure, salt water conducts a bit better. I tried to check the salt level of a brined chicken with a multimeter, but it was too difficult to get an accurate reading because it was so dependant on the contact made with the probes (area, pressure, body part (perhaps due to fat content) etc.)

But if you start with 2L of water, and gradually add salt by the gram, you should be able to detect different resistance at different concentrations.

Note the resistance at the different levels and compare to the final solution before you dump it, and then do...

original salt - salt left in water = salt in meat


That last sentence was the important one.

I think animals are pretty salty. I think humans are the same as salt water. At your salt %, I wouldn't be surprised if there was less salt than the meat started with, but not less than if you hadn't added the salt. If that makes sense. The osmosis thing takes a while (eg brinning meat for 24 hours) and two hours of cook time might not be enough to complete the process. [EDIT by me - Osmosis works by (I think) a pressure difference caused by an imbalance of salt levels. The greater the difference, the faster the change.]

-You might need to re-dilute the original sample back to 2L

-If you plot your 5 gram results on a graph and connect the dots, you should get a pretty good approximation of the in between values.

-you need to fix the distance between the probes. Changing the distance will change the values.

-It might not work :)

share|improve this answer

The meat will absorb about 40% of the salt. So in your case:

0.4 x 5 = 2

So 2 grams of salt will stay in the meat.

share|improve this answer
For this specific amount of meat, water, and salt? How do you know? –  Jefromi Aug 24 '13 at 4:16
Meat is porous. If the amount of water is less than 2 gallons meat has a 40% porosity and can absorb the salt. –  Young Guilo Aug 24 '13 at 9:40
Wow, the meat's porosity depends on the volume of water, but not the amount of salt? And it doesn't depend on the kind of meat? (Also, porosity is the fraction of a material which is empty space, not the fraction of a solute it'll absorb.) –  Jefromi Aug 24 '13 at 15:23
Cite your sources, please. –  Carey Gregory Aug 24 '13 at 19:23
Yeah, I'm going to call hogwash on this. The porosity of meat will tend to vary between different cuts and animals. Furthermore, what does porosity have to do with it? –  razumny Sep 25 '13 at 18:42

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.