List of Low-Sodium Foods

Erin Coleman, R.D., L.D.
Salt

Limiting your sodium intake is important for disease prevention, especially if you have high blood pressure or heart disease. The American Heart Association suggests trying to limit sodium to 1,500 milligrams daily but get no more than 2,400 milligrams per day. Choosing low-sodium foods, which the U.S. Food and Drug Administration describes as containing 140 milligrams or less per serving, will help you keep sodium intakes within dietary sodium guidelines.

Protein Foods

The following protein foods are low in sodium, and a perfect addition to any heart-healthy meal plan.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Lean beef

3 ounces

54 mg

Chicken breast

3 ounces

44 mg

Lamb

3 ounces

48 mg

Turkey

3 ounces

50 mg

Salmon

3 ounces

45 mg

Low-sodium turkey bacon

3 ounces

135 mg

Water packed tuna (without salt added)

3 ounces

42 mg

Egg white

1 large

55 mg

Egg yolk

1 large

8 mg

Whole egg

1 large

63 mg

Legumes

½ cup

3 mg

Tofu

½ cup

9 mg

Low-sodium nut butter

2 tablespoons

65 mg

Unsalted nuts

1 ounce

0 mg

Dairy Foods

Choosing the right dairy foods will help you steer clear of excessive sodium intakes.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Low-sodium cheese

1 ounce

6 mg

No salt added cottage cheese

½ cup

29 mg

Low-fat milk

1 cup

107 mg

Nonfat Greek yogurt

1 (6 ounce) container

61 mg

Sour cream

1 tablespoon

5 mg

Unsalted butter

1 tablespoon

2 mg

Frozen yogurt

½ cup

63 mg

Soy milk

1 cup

114 mg

Vegetables

Fresh and frozen veggies are low-sodium foods, while some canned vegetables are not.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Fresh or frozen vegetables

1 cup

1 to 10 mg

Salt-free canned veggies

1 cup

1 to 10 mg

Vegetable juice without salt added

1 cup

24 mg

Fruits

Fresh and frozen fruits are naturally low in sodium.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Fresh or frozen fruit

1 cup

1 to 10 mg

100-percent fruit juice

1 cup

1 to 10 mg

Grains

Picking whole grains in place of refined, processed grains is the key to keeping sodium intake within recommended limits.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Breakfast cereals

1 cup

139 mg

Brown rice

½ cup

4 mg

Quinoa

½ cup

6 mg

Oatmeal

1 packet

2 mg

Pasta without added salt

½ cup

1 mg

Wheat bread

1 slice

41 mg

Unsalted popcorn

1 cup

0 mg

Fat

Choose low-sodium, heart-healthy fats when possible.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Plant-based oils

1 teaspoon

0 mg

Mayonnaise

1 tablespoon

88 mg

Avocado

¼ cup

2 mg

Blue cheese salad dressing

1 tablespoon

96 mg

Ranch salad dressing

1 tablespoon

135 mg

Tub margarine

1 tablespoon

75 mg

Salted butter

1 tablespoon

91 mg

Unsalted butter

1 tablespoon

2 mg

Condiments

While some condiments are loaded with salt to enhance flavor, many fit in well with low-sodium diets.

Food

Serving Size

Sodium per Serving (milligrams)

Spices without salt

1 teaspoon

0 mg

Herbs

1 teaspoon

0 mg

Lemon juice

1 tablespoon

0 mg

Low-sodium ketchup

1 tablespoon

3 mg

Mustard

1 teaspoon

55 mg

Horseradish sauce

1 teaspoon

41 mg

Mrs. Dash (salt free)

1 teaspoon

0 mg

Jelly

1 tablespoon

6 mg

Tabasco sauce

1 teaspoon

10 mg

Chili sauce

1 teaspoon

4 mg

Pepper

1 teaspoon

0 mg

Low- vs. High-Sodium Packaged Foods

Choosing low-sodium versions of packaged foods can significantly lower daily sodium intakes. The following chart shows comparisons of low- vs. high-sodium packaged food options:

Regular Packaged Food

Low-Sodium Alternative

Serving Size

Sodium Content (in mg)

Spaghetti sauce

Low-sodium spaghetti sauce

½ cup

577 mg vs. 40 mg

Peanut butter

Low-sodium peanut butter

2 tablespoons

135 mg vs. 65 mg

Canned tuna

Very low-sodium tuna

2 ounces

140 mg vs. 35 mg

String cheese

Low-sodium cheese

1 piece

150 mg vs. 105 mg

Butter

Unsalted butter

1 tablespoon

90 mg vs. 0 mg

Regular crackers

Low-sodium crackers

6 crackers

170 mg vs. 50 mg

Ketchup

No-salt ketchup

1 tablespoon

160 mg vs. 5 mg

Popcorn

Unsalted (air-popped) popcorn

4 cups popped

290 mg vs. 0 mg

Why Go Low-Sodium?

While you body does need sodium daily to function properly, following a lower-sodium diet is an easy way to meet, but not exceed, daily sodium guidelines set by the American Heart Association. This means a lower risk for high blood pressure and heart disease for you.

List of Low-Sodium Foods