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Homemade Dehydrated Chicken

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Make Homemade Dehydrated Chicken in a dehydrator as a dry backpacking food snack for a camp. Turn shredded chicken breast recipe into chicken jerky and enjoy it as a part of backpacker dehydrated food.

Chicken Jerky close up.
Dehydrated Food

Use it as a chewy snack between meals, pack it into lunch boxes or add it into sups if needed.

Dry chicken makes a great addition as a pre-packed shelf-stable food for your hike, backpacking trip, camping, kids outdoor activity, or when you are just lazy to cook.

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Protein Snacks

Preparing a pure protein snack that tastes like real chips is out of this world. And our dehydrated chicken strips are just that.

The first time I tried it, I could not believe how delicious a pure protein could be. No need to fill up your tummy with protein powder shakes.

Just nibble on those super tasty chicken chips, and you will get your protein goal in no time.

As an excellent protein source, I love making farmers’ or curd cheese and using natural whey from it as a drink or for making a delicious whey root vegetable soup.

You can also give it a go with baking protein buns or brioche bread to get more protein.

But having a pure protein snack always on hand can not compare to any of this.

What Foods Can You Dehydrate in a Food Dehydrator?

Dehydrated meals are great if you plan to lightly pack for a trip. School lunches for your kids can be prepared in minutes if you have everything on hand.

They are great to have in your pantry like this dried garlic whenever you are missing fresh ingredients.

In the end, rehydrating takes just a few minutes.

There is so much you can dehydrate. Fruits, vegetables, herbs, meat, yogurt, milk, smoothies. The list is endless.

I started with vegetables first, and zucchini chips have become the most popular. Followed by some more vegetable choices such as cucumber chips, broccoli snacks, onions, and mushrooms.

Then came all the berries, such as strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries. I even made strawberry powder, which I use all the time.

As a snack, I went for raw crackers, pork rinds, chicharron, and fruit roll-ups.

And now we are concentrating on dehydrating some great protein. I consider dehydrating much more, so if you have any requests or ideas for me to try, let me know.

Why Would You Dehydrate a Chicken?

There are so many great reasons why you would make your chicken chips:

  1. Way of storing chicken for longer
  2. Trips where you need to prepare backpacking meals
  3. Camping
  4. Lunch boxes
  5. Having healthy munchies and protein always on hand
  6. Preserving your meat when you get a great deal and buy more, you can consume
  7. Make space in your freezer
  8. Great addition making chicken powder for your homemade seasoning

What Does Dehydrated Chicken Look Like?

By looking at the pictures I have attached, you can see what the dehydrated chicken looks like.

Of course, depending on how you cut it or the size and shape you will prepare your chicken before drying depends on how it will look dehydrated.

Lazy camping food chicken chips on a white plate.
Dried Chicken

What Kind of Chicken Can You Use?

The type of chicken or pieces you can dehydrate does not matter.

You can dehydrate even a whole chicken if it is properly cooked and cut into smaller pieces.

Can I Dehydrate Ground Chicken?

You can make dehydrated ground chicken, ground beef, or any other ground meat.

Turkey is similar like chicken.

A suggestion would be to place your chicken onto fruit leather trays or parchment paper covered dehydrator trays.

Place your cooked ground meat in a dehydrator and follow the instructions for dehydrating.

Can I Dry Chicken Strips?

If you prefer to slice your cooked chicken using a knife into strips, you can also make dry chicken strips.

Cook or bake your raw chicken strips and follow the drying process.

You can even dry a Kentucky fried chicken, which has been cooked with oil for your family if you prefer. It will just take a bit longer to dehydrate compared to shredded chicken.

Is Dehydrated Chicken Cooked?

Yes, dehydrated chicken needs to be cooked first and only then dehydrated. You can also use steamed chicken for drying.

I would not suggest dehydrating raw meat because of the salmonella issues, and by cooking, you kill bacteria.

The advantage is that you can eat it immediately or add it to your meals without needing to cook it further.

Dried Chicken in a wooden bowl.
Dehydrated Food Recipe

How Do You Dehydrate Chicken?

To dehydrate the chicken, it needs to be cooked first. I have got a great post on where you can cook your frozen chicken using an instant pot in 10 minutes.

After your chicken is cooked, you can use a dehydrator, oven, or air fryer to dehydrate it fully. 

Pressure Cooking Chicken Before Drying

As already mentioned, I have made a recipe using a pressure cooker. You can prepare your chicken further for use.

Of course, you can use canned chicken or pouched chicken, but fresh is fresh.

How To Make Chicken Jerky in a Dehydrator?

Making jerky with chicken is a great idea to further expand on your pure protein munchies.

You can cut raw chicken into thin strips and marinate to your liking. To process the jerky before drying, you can use the bbq method, smoking, air frying, or oven baking.

Once done, dehydrate the single pieces on dehydrating trays in your dehydrator until fully dry. Your pieces might be a bit chewier, but that is what some people love.

Dehydrating Cooked Chicken

Let us dive into the steps. I have also prepared a video instructions for those, who prefer more of a visual guidance. 

Kitchen gadgets needed:

  • Dehydrator

Ingredients needed:

  • Chicken
  • Salt and pepper

*Exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below.

STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS TO DRY CHICKEN IN A DEHYDRATOR 

First Step: Prepare Your Chicken

If you have frozen chicken, you can in 10 minutes pressure chicken into perfectly cooked pieces using Instant Pot or any home pressure cooker following my post.

Otherwise, use already cooked or steamed chicken.

I prefer breast meat, as it is easiest to shred and better for drying.

Check for any fat as that doesn’t dry well, doesn’t rehydrate well, and can go rancid after a while.

Camping Food chicken jerky ingredients.
Backpacking meals

Second Step: Shred

Take out the excess liquid from your meat, as this depends significantly on how long does it takes to dehydrate.

On a cutting board, place your chicken breast and shred the chicken into smaller strips using a fork or your hand.

Hiking snacks shredding chicken.
Camping Food

Third Step: Layer

Place the chicken strips onto the dehydrator trays, ensuring they do not overlap.

Place onto a dehydrator, close the lid, and set the temperature setting to 70 degrees Celsius or 145 degrees to 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Dehydrate for 5 to 7 hours making sure you alternate the trays filled with chicken every few hours for thorough drying.

Once it’s done, store it until you are ready to use it or pack it for a trip.

Dehydrated Food Recipe placing chicken onto a trays.
Hiking snacks

Dried Chicken Tips & Tricks

  • Type of Chicken – best is full-cooked chicken, which is then shredded
  • Excess liquid – make sure an excess liquid is taken out after your cooking as it prolongs the drying process.
  • Fat – make sure all of the fat from the chicken is taken out

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

What To Serve With Dehydrated Chicken?

Dry chicken pieces are perfect as finger food appetizer entirely on their own. The right approach is to serve in the evening with a glass of wine or when you get unexpected guests.

There is also an idea where you can prepare a gorgeous charcuterie board with a few more keto snacks, such as:

Is It Ok To Use a Regular Oven To Dehydrate Chicken?

If you do not own a dehydrator, using an oven on the lowest setting is the best dehydrated option for your food, chicken included.

Make sure you check every 30 minutes to avoid burning.

Can I Dehydrate Chicken in an Air Fryer?

As some of the new Air Fryers have come up with a dehydrator function, you can also use an Air Fryer to dry your food.

How To Prepare Dehydrated Meals?

Once you have a few types of dehydrated vegetables and protein in your pantry, you can quickly assemble a perfect dehydrated meat and vegetable meal packages to use in the future.

Mix all the veggies, add some dry protein, seal and write a label with all the ingredients.

Once ready to use, add to the boiling water or chicken bouillon and let it cook for 10 to 15 minutes. All of the food will rehydrate, and you will be ready to eat a delicious meal in no time.

Hiking meals dried chicken on a plate.
Lazy camping food

How to Rehydrate Dried Food?

Simply placing your food into water for 10 minutes should revive a dehydrated chicken into the form of consuming or adding it to your meals.

Can Dehydrated Chicken Go Bad?

As long as your chicken is properly, fully dehydrated, and adequately stored, you should not have a problem with it going bad. In the end, it is fully cooked.

Storing Dehydrated Food

It is best to store your dehydrated food in a glass airtight container, Mason Jar, or any other sealable glass jar. Once closed, I would suggest conditioning them by checking and shaking the jar every day for the next seven days.

If all is great, your jars could be stored in your pantry for over a year.

How To Store Dehydrated Chicken?

The same steps as storing other dehydrated food go with keeping the chicken.

Filled glass jars must be conditioned for seven days and then stored properly in your Pantry in air-tight containers.

Can I Vacuum Seal It and Keep It in the Cupboard?

If you prefer vacuum sealing your dry food, you can also do that. It is a great idea, especially when you need a lightweight package for backpacking or camping.

Does Dehydrated Chicken Need To Be Refrigerated?

Not at all. Your dehydrated chicken does not need to be refrigerated. The pantry is your best storage point.

How Long Does Dehydrated Chicken Last?

If properly dehydrated, conditioned, and stored in air-tight containers or vacuum-sealed, your chicken should last for over a year.
The dehydrated food has long-term storage and is shelf stable, but I suggest using chicken within a year.

More Dehydrated Food Recipes

Pin For Later

Backpacking meals jerky on a white plate.
Chicken Jerky

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Chicken Jerky close up.

Homemade Dehydrated Chicken

Zuzana Paar
5 from 4 votes
Make Homemade Dehydrated Chicken in a dehydrator as a dry backpacking food snack for a camp. Turn shredded chicken breast recipe into chicken jerky and enjoy it as a part of backpacker dehydrated food.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 5 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine International
Servings 2 cups
Calories 515 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
 
 

Instructions
 

  • If you have frozen chicken, you can in 10 minutes pressure chicken into perfectly cooked pieces using Instant Pot or any home pressure cooker following my post.
  • On a cutting board, place your chicken breast and shred the chicken into smaller strips using a fork or your hand.
  • Place the chicken strips onto the dehydrator trays, ensuring they do not overlap. Place onto a dehydrator, close the lid, and set the temperature setting to 70 degrees Celsius or 145 degrees to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Dehydrate for 5 to 7 hours making sure you alternate the trays filled with chicken every few hours for thorough drying.

Video

Notes

  • Type of Chicken – best is full-cooked chicken, which is then shredded
  • Excess liquid – make sure an excess liquid is taken out after your cooking as it prolongs the drying process.
  • Fat – make sure all of the fat from the chicken is taken out

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5CupCalories: 515kcalProtein: 96gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 289mgSodium: 524mgPotassium: 1672mgVitamin A: 136IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 23mgIron: 2mg

Disclaimer

Please note that nutrient values are estimates only. Variations can occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of origin, preparation, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.

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By Zuzana Paar on May 21st, 2023
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About Zuzana Paar

Zuzana is the creative force behind this vibrant blog. With passion as a recipe developer, content creator, food writer, movie maker, and photographer, she poured her heart and soul into curating a space brimming with delightful keto and low carb recipes. Join her on this flavorful journey where quick, easy-to-make dishes take center stage, bringing joy and nourishment to your table.

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