I made pasteles, but they ended up too salty. How can I reduce the salty taste? Is there something that I can add to the water when I boil them so they don't end up too salty?

  • 2
    Might try raw potato.
    – pnuts
    Commented Feb 12, 2015 at 19:11
  • related : cooking.stackexchange.com/q/255/67
    – Joe
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 15:20
  • It would be helpful to have some indication of what exactly you mean by pasteles, since it's the generic Spanish word for cakes. Commented Apr 16, 2015 at 16:15

2 Answers 2


The jury is still out (as far as I know) whether diced, raw potato in the water used to boil something like this will help draw out salt, but it's worth a shot. It won't help a lot, but it might help a little. You can then use the potato in another application.

Be sure not to salt the water you're boiling them in, and change the water if it gets salty.

Your best bet is to serve the pasteles with a sauce. Acid, a bit of sugar, and heat (as in peppers or cayenne) will all lower the sense you will get of the salt. Be sure not to salt (or at least seriously undersalt) the sauce!


If your recipe calls for it, the first thing to do is to leave the salt out of the boil water.

The next thing to do is to use the process of diffusion to your advantage as best you can... boil your pasteles in fresh water for at least 30 minutes allowing the water to absorb some of the salt out of the pasteles. Bring a second pot of water to a boil. Once the pastele water tastes salty, pour it off and fill the pot back up with fresh boiling water. Continue cooking for 30 minutes or until done.

The pasteles may still taste saltier than you prefer so prepare a sauce such as ajilimójili or
a chipotle-honey vinaigrette, leaving most or all of the salt out of the sauce.

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