One Simply Terrific Thing: Maldon Sea Salt Flakes

Maldon Sea Salt Flakes aren’t just a fancy salt; they’re a cooking essential and deserve a space in every home cook’s pantry.

What are sea salt flakes? Maldon sea salt spilled from a jar on a counter.
Sheela Prakash

Welcome to One Simply Terrific Thing, our ongoing series highlighting the small tools, kitchen goods, and ingredients that make life better!

I am someone who will add more items to my online shopping cart in order to get free shipping—which is exactly how a box of Maldon Sea Salt Flakes ($6 for an 8.5 ounce box) landed in my kitchen.

I was dubious about bringing another salt into my kitchen. Isn’t one enough? But my food friends had been singing the praises of Maldon for years, so I was curious what the fuss was all about.

Now I am so glad I added it to my cart, because I’ve joined them in the praise!

Finishing Salt vs Cooking Salt

Maldon’s flaky sea salt is a finishing salt, not a cooking salt—which is what distinguishes it from kosher salt, table salt, and other salts you may have in your pantry.

When you sprinkle salt all over chicken or vegetables before roasting, you do it with a cooking salt to season food while it cooks. But a finishing salt is used to season food at the end of cooking instead of at the beginning.

There are three reasons why Maldon is specifically a finishing salt.

  1. Its texture is wildly unique: Rather than evenly-sized granules, Maldon sea salt flakes are irregularly-shaped, pyramid-like crystals. Not only are they pretty to look at, they lend a lovely crunch to dishes.
  2. Their flavor isn’t all salt. In fact, it’s quite delicate and a bit briny.
  3. It’s sold in small quantities: The box of Maldon sea salt flakes is quite small, so it would be a waste to lose the crunch and flavor by dissolving it into soups or sauces.

How to Use Maldon Sea Salt Flakes in Your Cooking

There are endless ways to use Maldon sea salt flakes! Every night, I sprinkle a pinch on our basic green salad that graces the table, which always makes it a lot more interesting. Scrambled eggs usually get a sprinkle when they’re on my plate, too, as does avocado toast, simple seared steak or fish, and pretty much all sautéed veggies.

Where the real fun comes in, though, is dessert! Top your favorite chocolate chip cookies or brownies with a pinch before they head into the oven, or try a sprinkle on a bowl of your favorite pudding (chocolate or butterscotch are especially well-suited).

Since the salt crystals are large and you’re sprinkling the salt right on top, they won’t dissolve into your treat. Rather, you’ll be left with a lightly salty crunch that offsets the sweetness beautifully.