From Bland to Bold

We are a sodium-overdosed people: here are five spices to use instead of salt

Chili powder tastes great in chili or as a taco-style meat flavoring. Also try adding it to meat rubs.

Smoked paprika adds a deep brown color to bread-crumb casserole toppings, barbecue rubs, or to seasoning blends for sauteing or searing any proteins. Also adds a great smoky flavor to marinades.

Lemon zest adds a lively taste to bread crumbs, breaded chicken tenders, and fish sticks, or to vegetables like eggplant or string beans. Also great in dressings and marinades, or with dry spices as a rub on broiled or baked seafood.

Dried oregano enhances the flavor of scampi sauces and combines well with lemon zest. Or add it to fajita seasonings along with chili powder, cumin, cayenne, and lemon zest.

Italian seasoning—a blend of thyme, oregano, and basil—is great for finishing off sauces such as stroganoff or gravies. Works well on baked, grilled, or sauteed proteins with lemon zest and a little oil. Or add it to lemon zest, juice, and olive oil to make dressings or marinade.