Nutrition Information for Salami


Salami is a cured sausage and popular lunch meat, falling in the larger category of salumi, which includes capicola, mortadella, pancetta, prosciutto and pepperoni. Traditionally, salami is made from pork, but beef, poultry and even venison are sometimes used to make this sausage. The meat is mixed with fat (which gives the salami its marbled appearance), spices, herbs and salt; nitrite and a starter culture are added as well. The mixture ferments for a short period of time and then it is stuffed into a casing and hung up to cure. Salami's savory flavor is due in large part to its high fat and sodium content.


  • Salami is a calorically dense and high-fat food. One slice of hard salami is considered one serving, as opposed to three slices of low-fat lunch meats like turkey.


  • Each slice of the average hard salami has around 80 calories, 50 of which come from fat. The average grocery store pack of salami will contain eight to 12 slices, or approximately 1,000 calories. Although low-fat salami is harder to find, many companies do offer a "light" version of this lunch meat, which can run as low as 48 calories for a two-slice serving.


  • One slice of salami contains 7 to 8 grams of fat, 3 of which are saturated; each serving constitutes 11 percent of the recommended daily allowance for fats and 13 percent of the recommended amount for saturated fats. Light salami contains only 3 to 4 grams of fat, and some versions contain no saturated fat at all. However, many other lunch meats are lower in fat or can be found in fat-free versions. For example, a serving of sliced turkey usually has no more than 1 gram of fat and sliced ham no more than 2 grams.


  • Salami is extremely high in sodium, with each serving containing more than 400 milligrams, or 17 percent of the daily value. This means that the average sandwich made with salami could contain more than 100 percent of the recommended amount of sodium in a person's daily diet. And as many American processed foods contain a large amount of sodium, eating salami almost ensures that a consumer will exceed their daily value of sodium.

Sodium Nitrite

  • Most processed meats are made with sodium nitrite---sausage, hot dogs, bacon, pepperoni---which, in the case of salami, adds the distinctive tangy taste and keeps the meat reddish and visually appealing. However, sodium nitrite has been questioned for its potential health risks and some clean-eating advocates link sodium nitrite directly to cancer and disease.


  • One serving of salami contains 25 milligrams of cholesterol, or 8 percent of the daily value; again, this is higher than the cholesterol content of most other lunch meats.

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