# NaCl and sour taste

This is a question from a 7th grade chemistry class.

Why does adding salt ($$\ce{NaCl}$$) to a cucumber soup makes it taste more sour?

My best guess is that the salt affects the dissociation levels of acids in the cucumbers - adding $$\ce{NaCl}$$ shifts the balance and more $$\ce{H+}$$ is being released, but I don't think thats the answer they are looking for. What affect does $$\ce{NaCl}$$ have on the sourness of food?

• Salting is for enhancing taste in general. Most likely related to ( perhaps your) taste sensing and biology than chemistry. – Alchimista Sep 23 '19 at 8:29
• That could be true, of course :) the question is from a 7th grade chemistry class - the teacher asked the studnets that assigment. Im not a chemist, but I work in medicine and I have no clue to be honest. – Mat Sep 23 '19 at 12:05
• Adding NaCl will not shift the proton equilibrium at all. But on the other hand, I don’t know whether the sour taste comes from excess protons. – Jan Sep 24 '19 at 2:16
• Note that taste is a subjective physiologic phenomena, influenced, but not determined by substance properties. While the activity of hydrogen ions may be affected by the salt presence, the acidity reporting taste sensors are affected much more. – Poutnik Feb 24 '20 at 11:10