Low-sodium recipes

Randy Van Horn of Duluth adapted a recipe for buffalo wings that he found on the Internet to create this low-sodium version. He substituted Tabasco sauce for chili sauce and garlic powder for garlic salt. He also used low-sodium ketchup. To lower...

Randy Van Horn of Duluth adapted a recipe for buffalo wings that he found on the Internet to create this low-sodium version. He substituted Tabasco sauce for chili sauce and garlic powder for garlic salt. He also used low-sodium ketchup. To lower the fat content, he substituted canola oil for vegetable oil and used less.

Buffalo Wings

1/2 cup Heinz No Salt Added Tomato Ketchup

2 tablespoons Tabasco sauce

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce


2 teaspoons canola oil

4 teaspoons garlic powder

3 pounds Gold'n Plump chicken wings (which are not injected with sodium)

Mix all ingredients, except chicken, in a large bowl to make sauce. Remove half of sauce for basting and refrigerate. Add chicken to bowl with sauce and stir until chicken is coated. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, line a baking pan with foil and spray with cooking spray or spray the top of a broiling pan. Place chicken pieces in a single layer in the baking pan or broiling pan.

Broil for 12 minutes, 3 to 4 inches from typical broiler. Turn chicken over and brush with reserved sauce. Broil 8 to 10 minutes more, until sauce carmelizes, but before it burns. (The chicken also could be cooked on a grill).

Yield: 9 servings.

Sodium content: 131.2 milligrams per serving.



Substituting low-sodium ingredients and adjusting amounts, Van Horn transformed a cookbook recipe for ranch dressing into a low-sodium dressing that pairs nicely with his buffalo wings. It also can be used as salad dressing.

Ranch Dressing for Buffalo Wings

3 tablespoons seasoning mix* (see recipe below)

1 cup fat-free sour cream

1/2 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup skim milk

Mix ingredients together and refrigerate for several hours before serving.


Yield: 16 servings, 2 tablespoons each.

Sodium content: 33.2 milligrams per serving.

To make seasoning mix:

4 low-sodium soda crackers, crushed to powder

1/2 cup dry parsley flakes

1/2 tablespoon dry minced onion

1/2 tablespoon dill weed

2 tablespoon onion powder


2 tablespoons garlic powder

Van Horn wanted to create a tangy, creamy coleslaw. His experiments led him to this recipe, which has 52.5 milligrams of sodium in a half-cup serving, compared to 600 milligrams in typical deli coleslaw.


3 tablespoons Splenda sugar substitute

3 tablespoons distilled vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

1-1/2 teaspoons celery seed

1/3 cup light Miracle Whip


2/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt

3/4 cup celery, chopped

3/4 cup green pepper, chopped

1/2 cup onion, chopped

1 pound coleslaw vegetable mix

To make the dressing, combine Splenda, vinegar and olive oil in a small saucepan. Heat, stirring constantly, until Splenda is dissolved and mixture just begins to boil. Remove from heat and pour into medium bowl. Add celery seed, Miracle Whip and yogurt. Mix with a wire whisk until smooth.

Mix together chopped celery, green pepper, onion and coleslaw mix; stir in dressing. Refrigerate several hours before serving.

Yield: 19 servings.


Sodium content: 52.5 milligrams per 1/2-cup serving.


After Van Horn tasted a macaroni salad and liked it, he came up with his own low-sodium version. The dressing he makes for his low-sodium potato salad inspired the dressing for this salad.

Amish Macaroni Salad

8 ounces elbow macaroni

1/2 cup Splenda sugar substitute

1/4 cup skim milk

1/4 cup distilled vinegar

2 tablespoons flour

1 tablespoon Smart Balance margarine, melted (Van Horn uses this brand because it contains healthy Omega-3 fats, not trans-fats)

1/4 cup prepared yellow mustard

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 cup fat-free sour cream

1 teaspoon dill weed

1 teaspoon celery seed

6 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

1 cup celery, chopped

1 cup carrots, shredded

1 cup onion, chopped

Boil and drain macaroni. Combine Splenda, milk, vinegar, flour and margarine in a medium-size saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until Splenda is dissolved and flour has been incorporated into mixture, which will thicken. Transfer to big bowl; add mustards, sour cream, dill weed and celery seed. Blend thoroughly with wire whisk. Add remaining ingredients and cooked macaroni; mix to combine.

Yield: 16 servings.

Sodium content: 85.4 milligrams per 1/2-cup serving.


The lost recipe for a family potato salad prompted Van Horn to experiment with ingredients until he duplicated the taste in a low-sodium version.

Potato Salad

5 cups cooked Idaho medium-size potatoes (do not salt water)

1/2 cup light Miracle Whip

1/2 cup fat-free sour cream

1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard

3 tablespoons distilled vinegar

1 tablespoon Splenda sugar substitute

1 teaspoon dill weed

1/2 cup onion, chopped

3/4 cup celery, chopped

4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

Cut boiled potatoes into 3/4-inch cubes and let cool. Whisk together Miracle Whip, sour cream, mustard, vinegar, Splenda and dill to make dressing. Combine onion and celery and add dressing; stir with potatoes until well coated. Stir in eggs. Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours before serving (keep cool while serving).

Yield: 14 servings.

Sodium content: 72.2 milligrams per 1/2-cup serving.


Van Horn started with his barbecue sauce to create a recipe for barbecued baked beans. Baked beans are usually high in sodium, at least 500 milligrams per serving, but this one is less than 60 milligrams.

BBQ Baked Beans

2 cups dry great Northern beans

1/2 cup onion, chopped coarse

1 cup Heinz No Salt Added Tomato Ketchup

8-ounce can Hunts No Salt Added Tomato Sauce

6-ounce can Hunts No Salt Added Tomato Paste

1/4 cup cider vinegar

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon Cogen Liquid Smoke (sold at grocery stores)

Soak beans in medium pan or stockpot overnight. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer until beans are soft. Drain and rinse. Combine all ingredients in slow cooker and heat on high for 4 to 5 hours, stirring occasionally. Add water if mixture gets too thick and appears to be drying out.

Yield: 10 servings.

Sodium content: 54.8 milligrams per 1/2-cup serving.

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