How To Fix a Dish That's Too Salty, Too Sweet or Too Spicy

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Whether your hand slipped or you misread the ingredients, adding too much salt, sugar or spice to a dish doesn't necessarily mean you have to throw it out and start over!

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Chef Curtis Stone has simple solutions for balancing out excess salt, sugar and heat — which he shared with one audience member who admits she tends to have a heavy hand when she cooks.

Q: "How do you fix a dish when you over sweeten, over salt or over spice it?"

— Rebecca, studio audience member

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A: Curtis suggests only putting half the amount of sugar, salt or spice that the recipe calls for to start. Then, taste it and add more as needed. It's harder to take seasonings out once they've been added to your dish, he admits. But it's not impossible to balance out the flavor.

What To Do When You Over-Sweeten
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If you over sweeten, you have a few different options, according to Curtis.

He suggests adding a squeeze of lemon or lime juice. "The acidity helps to balance it," he explains.

If you don't have either handy, you can also try yogurt, or you can add a fat like olive oil, the chef says.

"The other alternative is to put more volume into what you've made — so you can add more of whatever it is that you started with."

What To Do When You Over-Salt
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If you add too much salt, Curtis recommends using a splash of vinegar. This provides a counterbalancing punch of acid that will lessen the salty taste.

What To Do When You Over-Spice
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And in the event that you add too much spice, all you have to do is drizzle in a bit of honey to mellow out the heat.

SO much easier than starting from scratch!

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