Seasoning your food properly is one of the quickest ways to level up your cooking. Whether you're seasoning a paprika fried egg or adding a finishing sprinkle of flaky salt to a batch of warm cinnamon spiced chocolate chunk cookies, storing your salt in one of these easy-to-open salt cellars within arms reach on the counter will make doing that a breeze.
Why You Need a Salt Cellar
A salt cellar (sometimes called a "salt pig" or "salt keeper" or just "that container I keep my salt in") is a handy way of keeping salt within reach while you're cooking.
Unlike salt shakers which are designed for sprinkling table salt, salt cellars allow you to quickly pinch salt with your fingertips to season your food while you're cooking.
Being able to physically feel the salt grains as you season makes it much easier to salt your food precisely. No more wondering if the salt is coming out of the shaker only to realize it has been and you've definitely just added too much!
Salt shakers also aren't designed for coarser kosher salt, like the Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt beloved by chefs for how easy it is to pinch and how quickly it dissolves. To keep a coarser cooking and baking salt on hand, you'll want a salt cellar.
Keep the salt shaker on the table — salt cellars are for the kitchen.
The Right Way to Store Salt
Keeping salt away from moisture is the most important thing to keep in mind when storing salt. The best salt containers aren't porous, won't absorb water or moisture from the air, and will keep the salt inside clean and dry.
- Good salt cellars are made from: Dense, sturdy woods like acacia wood, ash wood, or olive wood, lightweight sturdy bamboo, glazed stoneware, ceramics, porcelain, and glass.
- You don't want salt cellars made from: Terra cotta, steel, copper, or other metals.
How much salt should you keep out on the counter? It depends on how often you cook and how quickly you go through your salt. If you don't cook often, a half cup container will be just fine and won't need to be refilled often. If you cook more often, a salt keeper than can hold three quarters of a cup to one cup of salt is probably a better choice.
What to Look For in a Salt Keeper
The best salt keepers:
- Have a lid to keep the salt protected while not in use.
- Are easy to open one handed.
- Take up a small amount of counter space
- Have a lid that is built in or attached to the base, so it doesn't get misplaced.
- Have a wide enough mouth to fit your thumb and three fingers to get a satisfying pinch of salt.
Most of the salt cellars I've included on this list have swivel or flip tops that can be opened one handed. The swivel lids are nice in particular because if you get any salt on the rim of the basin, the lid pushes it all inside when you swing it closed.
Some salt keepers, called salt pigs, have an open-mouthed design. They're great if you aren't keeping your salt near anything that might splash, or if you cook A LOT and go through your salt pretty quickly.
I didn't include any salt pigs on this list because I don't think they're very practical. Despite the curved top to keep dust out, the open mouth won't prevent splashing oil from a skillet, water from straining pasta, or raw chicken juice (yuck!) from flying into the opening by mistake.
Without further ado, let's get to the salt cellars.
1. This round Ashwood salt keeper with a swivel lid and magnetic closure.
This round swivel lid salt keeper is crafted from a light colored ashwood and has a magnetic closure so you can open it one hand and keep it in place when not in use.
2. This two-piece stamped stoneware salt cellar, which is less than $10.
A cream colored stoneware salt cellar with the world SALT engraved on the front. The flat lid is easy to remove, and the whole salt cellar is dishwasher safe.
(Target also sells a matching pepper cellar!)
3. This elegant dark marble salt cellar which has a swivel lid and magnetic closure.
A chic marble salt cellar with a swivel lid that magnets shut, but keeps it easy to open one handed. The only downside? It's not dishwasher safe. But you rarely need to wash these, anyway.
Note: Marble is heavier than wood, so if you prefer a lightweight salt cellar, marble may not be for you.
4. This roll-top domed salt cellar with stainless steel lid.
This round white salt cellar has a brilliantly designed domed stainless steel roll-top cover. It's super easy to flip open with one hand for all your salt pinching needs.
If you've got a sci-fi themed or retro kitchen aesthetic, this will fit right in!
5. This unique striped ceramic salt box that can sit on your counter or hang on the wall.
This small green and white square salt box has a hinged lid that flips up. It was crafted by Gmundner Kerami, a centuries-old Austrian manufacturer specializing in ceramic kitchenware.
Keep it on your counter by the stove or hang it on the wall within arm's reach using the hole at the top.
6. These multi-purpose 10 ounce Weck canning jars.
When it comes to salt cellars, salt keepers, or salt containers, you don't always need to buy something specifically designed for salt.
These 10 ounce glass Weck canning jars are a multi-purpose addition to any kitchen and will hold about 1 cup of salt.
You'll need to remove the clamps on either side every time you want to use the salt, so this approach to salt storage works best if you prefer to keep your salt open and uncovered the entire time you're cooking.
7. This wood and marble swivel lid salt cellar with an adorable built in salt spoon.
This acacia wood salt cellar combines rustic farmhouse vibes with a chic marble swivel top.
It doesn't have a magnetic closure, but does come with a tiny wooden salt spoon!
Being able to store the spoon completely inside the container is a nice touch — no little gaps for moisture to sneak in around the spoon!
8. This trio of wooden salt cellars which stack for easy storage.
There's a reason Rachael Ray's kitchenware line is so dang popular.
This stacking set of 3 acacia wood salt containers takes up little counter space but keeps your most used salts and seasonings within reach!
Note: This Rachael Ray set is the tallest salt cellar on the list, but also holds the most salt.
9. These OXO .2 Quart POP Top Containers for the OXO loyalists.
OXO's POP Top containers are beloved for a reason. The square design makes them incredibly space efficient, and the rubber gasket in the pop-top design creates an airtight seal.
These .2 quart POP Top containers hold about 6 fluid ounces of salt, which is about ¾ cups.
The POP Top lid design is easy to open one handed, and will be sure to keep your salt dry.
10. This swiveling three tier bamboo salt cellar for the truly salt obsessed.
This three-tier salt bamboo cellar features three swiveling salt containers with magnetic closures.
This three tier-swivel design is ideal if you want to be able to pick all three up at once or don't want to have to unstack your salt cellars every time you need a pinch of salt.
You also don't have to store salt in every container. Maybe you put salt in the large bottom container, but pepper in another, and whatever other spice you use often in the other.
11. This bamboo salt cellar with a unique carved lid design for less than $15.
This durable bamboo salt cellar has a magnetic closure and swivel lid. The tree carving pattern on top is so pretty and, if you look closely, the carving is made up of tiny animal shapes!
Note: This is the salt cellar I've had for years and I love it so much. It's a great size, lightweight, and the lid is easy to flip open.
12. These rectangular Japanese salt boxes with flip top lids in a range of colors.
These cute rectangular ceramic salt boxes by Zero Japan are made in Miro, Japan and is available in over 11 different colors! Perfect for color matching to any kitchen.
I love the generously sized handle on the back which makes them easy to hold and carry. And the hinged Japanese cypress wood lid is naturally water resistant and easy to open with the press of a thumb.
Dimensions: 3.5" H x 6" L x 3.4" W. Capacity: Though they look small, each ZERO JAPAN salt box can hold 2 cups of salt.
13. This glass and steel salt cellar with a hinged top lid.
This glass salt server has a stainless steel base and easy to open flip top hinged lid. It comes with a small metal salt serving spoon and looks as good by your stove as it does on the table.
I like the glass basin which means you always know how much salt you've got left!
Note: With more nooks and crannies on the outside and the glass/stainless steel design, this salt server may require more careful cleaning over time as it will show water and fingerprint stains.
14. This rustic mason-jar inspired two-piece ceramic salt keeper.
A rustic, farmhouse style ceramic salt cellar designed to resemble a mason jar.
Other than the OXO containers, this is the only salt cellar on the list with a rubber gasket inside the lid to keep it sealed, ensuring the lid stays in place and won't be knocked off.
15. This textured stoneware salt cellar with wooden lid and a matching spoon.
Mid-century modern design isn't going away any time soon and this chic white woven textured stoneware salt cellar with mango wood lid has a simple timeless design.
It comes with a cute little salt spoon, too!
Note: Because the lid has a little notch for the spoon, that means this container doesn't have a seamless seal to keep your salt dry, especially if you don't always have the spoon sticking out of it.
16. This vintage-style glass salt keeper which shows off exactly what's inside.
Available in 5 different colors, this glass salt cellar is a great way to display how much salt you've got left. And it just looks great, especially if you use colorful salts!
Made of durable, freezer and dishwasher safe glass, this is a great vintage-style salt cellar.
17. This gorgeous, sturdy olive wood salt cellar with swivel lid and magnetic closure.
With its dramatic wood grain swirls, olive wood marries the elegance of marble with rustic, homey, farmhouse vibes.
No two olive wood salt cellars will ever truly be alike, making this a unique, beautiful addition to your kitchen.