Discover the art of 23 Dehydrated Food Recipes and unlock a world of versatile foods to dehydrate perfect for backpacking trips and every pantry needs essentials. Learn how to dehydrate food, dehydrate vegetables and fruits, create essential dehydrated foods, store dehydrated food, and even prepare whole meals that can be conveniently stored and rehydrated with boiling water, all using a food dehydrator.
Types of Food To Dry
Drying your food is a great way not only for preservation. Drying food is excellent for eating healthier, saving money, filling up your pantry, adding granolas or trail mix, packing for school lunches, or using it as backpacking food.
Explore our guide to dehydrating food, learn how to dehydrate, what gadgets to use and what you can make from your dry food. Get the whole collection of dehydrated food recipes you can preserve for months. Transform your harvest into chips, candies, powders, desserts, and much more, all gluten-free, low-carb, keto, grain-free and perfect for people with diabetes.
Using a dehydrator for your recipes is a simple way to transform vegetables into chips and cheese into crisps. Seeds into raw bread crackers. Herbs to seasonings or whole meals into a fully prepared light meal that lasts longer when needed.
A dehydrator saves lots of hassle, and everything is done with a button switch.
Starting with dehydrated low carb vegetables, our most popular crunchy zucchini chips are a snack the whole family loves. Kids who never touched zucchinis before eat those chips as it is the only food in the universe.
After so much popularity, I have even transformed them for adults, and our smoked paprika zucchini chips are perfect for nibbling with your evening drink.
After making our fruit roll-ups, I experimented and dehydrated more low carb fruits. The roll-ups I have made quite a few times are always eaten within a few days. But I had no idea how our dehydrated strawberries would be even more popular.
And I got hooked when I made a strawberry powder out of them and used it on our cake.
And when I had an excess amount of seeds in my pantry, I transformed them into crispy raw seed crackers bread.
All of this uses only a dehydrator. I got a simple dehydrator I bought in a shop for 15 euros. Nothing fancy, but I got the perfect healthy food choices.
And now you can explore it all with me.
Dehydrated Food Recipes
Whatever dehydrated food recipe you pick, I assure you that you are doing yourself and your family a great favor by transforming your healthy food into a nutritious snack, chips, or candies.
Not only will you save a considerable amount of money buying freeze-dried food, but you will also transform your family and kids into health-conscious individuals.
Benefits of Dehydrating Food
Dehydrating food is one of the oldest ways to preserve and offers several benefits, including extended shelf life, reduced food waste, and enhanced portability for on-the-go snacking, dehydrated backpacking meals and outdoor adventures. By removing a substantial amount of water in the food, dry items become lightweight, nutrient-dense, and retain their flavors, making them a convenient and nutritious addition to any kitchen or travel pack.
Dehydrated food is not only healthy but because it retains all of its vitamins and nutritional values, dry food can be considered on the same scale with regards to nutrition as fresh food is.
Different Methods of Food Dehydrating
There are various ways you can dehydrate your food. Some options vary depending on the food. Generally, any food can be dehydrated using one of the following processes.
- Sun Drying your food – leaving your food in a shaded garden when summer weather allows. It is a great choice, but only some have perfect summer weather all year round.
- Oven Drying – as we all have an oven, this is the method everyone can use. Simply drying your food at the lowest temperature for hours transforms your slices into perfect crunchy bites. The disadvantage is that you must watch your drying process as sometimes the food can burn quickly.
- Air Frying – air frying your food into dehydrated chips is one of the newest options I have yet to experiment with. One negative is that air fryers do not hold so much food, so you can only dehydrate a small amount.
- Using a Dehydrator – drying your food in a dehydrator is the best and safest method. You do not have to watch your food for burning; it retains all of its nutrition.
What Is a Dehydrator?
A dehydrator is generally a kitchen gadget that works the same way as an oven on a much smaller scale.
The dehydrator is usually much smaller than the oven and can be placed on your kitchen counter when in need and stored in your pantry for the rest of the time.
Why Use Dehydrator?
The dehydrator is not only great for preserving your harvested food but also gives you the option to prepare snacks that retain nutrients.
You can, of course, freeze your produce. You can make jams, preserving the old way by cooking and canning, but dehydrating brings you to a new level of storing.
A great plus in using a dehydrator is that your freezer will get more space as you can store all the food in your pantry for months.
What Food Dehydrator Is the Best?
There are various types of dehydrators out in the market to choose from.
They vary in size and big-time prices as well.
How to choose a food dehydrator for your dehydrating recipes depends really on your budget, space in your kitchen, and how big a scale you are planning to go for.
Excalibur is the best brand of all dehydrators, but it is expensive and the biggest one on the market. My parents have it, and it’s great. They have a big house, so there is lots of space. They also have a big garden, and the dehydrator goes on a total blast when it comes to harvesting.
On the other hand, I bought a simple, no-name round shape dehydrator in a regular store. It is much easier to store as I do not have extra space, and it works perfectly as I only use it occasionally. It gets things done almost the same way.
So you must decide on all those aspects to buy the one that works for you.
What Are the Best Foods To Dehydrate?
There are many choices in deciding what foods you can dehydrate, from almost all veggies, fruits, and herbs to meats, fish, and pasta, to even a fully cooked meal.
Dehydrated Food for Backpacking
Great use of a dehydrator is when one plans to go backpacking.
You can prepare your food in advance, cook your meals, make pasta, sauces, soups, and more.
By dehydrating, you will not only preserve the food, but you are reducing the weight of the food to more than half, and carrying it in your bags will take up much less space.
How Dehydration Works Guide
Simple steps to follow when you plan to dehydrate your food.
The basics of dehydrating start with preparation.
- Wash and clean – Ensure all your food is thoroughly washed and dried and discharge any damaged or over-ripe pieces.
- Blanch – Some the vegetables, such as broccoli, can be blanched before dehydrating to retain their color. In that case, place it into the boiling water for 2 minutes and immediately add ice-cold water so that the vegetables will stop the cooking process.
- Cut your food into thin slices using a mandolin, vegetable slicer, or meat slicer. The thinner your food is sliced, the shorter it will take to dehydrate.
Regarding fruits, especially berries, try to cut them at least in half as some, like blueberries, take double the amount to dry when whole.
Fruits To Dehydrate
Dehydrated Fruit is one of the most fantastic snacks one can have. Apart from our recipes, there are many other options for dehydrating low-carb or keto fruits. All possible berries are a part of our lifestyle, and they can all be dehydrated into perfect crunchy chips or a snack.
You can make:
- Dried Blueberries
- Dried Tomatoes
- Red Currant
- Black Currant
- Wild berries
How To Dehydrate Fruits?
After you do the basics such as washing, cleaning, and drying your fruits, you should be in an excellent way of dehydrating them.
Cut your fruits into thin slices and place them one by one on dehydrator trays, ensuring they do not overlap.
Fill up all your plates, close the dehydrator and follow your dehydrator’s instructions.
Switch to approximately 70 Celsius or 160 Fahrenheit.
The dehydration time depends on what type of fruits you are dehydrating, how thick the slices are, how big the fruits are, and how many trays you will fill. I usually switch the timings for 5 to 7 hours and act accordingly.
Every 2 hours, try to switch the trays to ensure uniformity of dehydration.
Vegetables To Dehydrate
Almost all veggies are part of our lifestyle, so you can dehydrate anything you can imagine.
To give you a few examples of varieties of vegetables to dehydrate, you can make:
- Dried Mushrooms
- Dehydrated Onions
- Kale Chips Dehydrator
- Dried Green Beans
- Dehydrated Broccoli
- Butterhead Lettuce
- Brussel Sprout
- Alfalfa Sprouts
- Fresh Herbs
How To Dry Vegetables
You can apply the same procedure as drying fruits to drying your fresh or frozen vegetables.
The most important thing is to wash and dry your veggies thoroughly. Discharge any damaged or over-ripe pieces.
Some vegetables, such as broccoli, might need blanching or lemon juice to preserve the color and texture. You place them into the boiling water for 2 minutes and immediately into ice-cold water for vegetables to stop the cooking process.
Cut or slice your vegetables and ensure they are all fully dry to shorten the dehydrating process.
What To Make With Dried Vegetables?
One great idea is to use your dried vegetables as a meal seasoning.
You can grind them into powder and mix them to have a seasoning mixture for your soup.
We used a product called Vegeta when I was small, which we used for all of our cooking.
Since I have a dehydrator, I always dry my veggies, gently grind them, store them in a mason jar, and use them for anything I cook.
Dehydrating nuts is a chapter on its own.
Not sure if you have heard, but every type of nut you buy contains phytates, which block the absorption of vitamins and minerals we get from them.
The good news is that by soaking your nuts overnight, you can decrease the phytates in nuts to almost a minimum.
You must dehydrate your nuts later to return them to their original form.
And I tell you, they taste much, much better. If you try it once, you will never eat store-bought nuts directly again.
Other Essential Dehydrated Food and Dehydrated Meals
Apart from dehydrating fruits, vegetables, and nuts, you can dehydrate various other foods.
As an example, you can make:
- Dried meat
- Herbs and spices
- Dehydrated marshmallows
- Dairy products
- Dry soup mix
- Raw bread crackers
- Beef jerky
- Fruit leather
- Sauces – especially for backpacking
- Cooked pasta
- Whole meals
How To Dehydrate Meat as Food Preservation?
Especially for storing or backpacking, dehydrating meat is a great way to buy it in bulk when fresh or at a great price and have it ready whenever needed.
One of the differences compared to other types of food is that the dehydration process should be made only after you have cooked or steamed your meat.
The exact process applies to all of your meat dehydration, be it pork, fish, beef, turkey, lean meat, or even ground beef.
Can You Dehydrate Grains?
Dehydrating grains can be challenging due to their high starch content and complex structure, making them less suitable for traditional food dehydrators. While some grains can be partially dried, it is generally recommended to store grains in their natural, unprocessed state or opt for alternative preservation methods.
How to Rehydrate Dried Food?
Place your dehydrated food into the warm water for 30 minutes, and you can use them further.
Conditioning Dried Food
I recommend conditioning your dried food before storing it for extended periods.
How to Condition and Store Dried Food?
Conditioning your dried food is a pretty easy task.
Fill your mason jar loosely and shake it every day for seven days. Check if any mold appears and discard those pieces.
After that, you can store your food in your pantry for up to 6 months and more.
Store all of your dried food in airtight containers conditioned beforehand.
What Is a Shelf Life of Dried Food?
Dried food can last in your pantry for years if thoroughly dried and properly stored. You can even add oxygen absorber packets into each container to help with long-term storage even more.
What Can I Make With Dehydrated Food?
After you dehydrate your food, you can use it even further.
Apart from snacking or adding them to your meals, you can powder them and use them as fruit powders or vegetable powders for various dishes.
An example is our strawberry powder, which is excellent for decorating cakes and gives you delicious flavor.
Herbs and vegetables, on the other side, can be transformed into seasonings you can use anytime you cook your meals.
Dehydrated Food Recipes
Discover a variety of tasty and nutritious dehydrated snacks that you can easily make at home.
Enjoy the satisfying crunch of cucumber chips and zucchini chips, or delve into the sweetness of dehydrated strawberries, blueberries, craisins and fruit roll-ups. Learn how to make strawberry powder or cranberry powder for adding flavor to your recipes. Explore unique treats like churro pork rinds and smoked paprika zucchini chips. Elevate your dishes with homemade onion powder, mushroom powder, and chicken powder. You can even find guidance on dehydrating raspberries and creating dehydrated broccoli, onions, mushrooms, and chicken. With recipes ranging from pork rinds in an air fryer to raw crackers bread, this collection has something for everyone. Don’t forget to try your hand at dehydrated radish chips and activated almonds for an extra special treat.
Enjoy the convenience and flavor of these dehydrated food recipes in your own kitchen.
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- 2 Cups of Fruits
- 2 Cups of Vegetables
- Prepare your fruits or vegetables. Wash and clean them entirely making sure all of the bad pieces are cut out.
- Depending on what exactly are you planing to make, cut your veggies and fruits into smaller pieces or slice into about quarter of an inch thick slices.
- I you are planing to season them, add into a mixing bowl and sprinkle with your favorite seasonings or seeds. Gently mix all making sure every piece is covered with your flavors.
- Layer one by one on a sigle sheets of dehydrator trays, making sure there is a space in between for the air to circulate. Close the lid and dehydrate for few hours depending on the type and size of your fruits and vegetables.
- Trays - make sure you alternate the trays during the dehydration process, making sure all of the fruits and vegetables gets dried equally.
- This post is a general information about dehydrating your produce. Each one of the 20 recipes mentioned, has got its own post with all the details, tips and tricks specifically for that recipe.
- Nutrition datas here are general as it always depends on what you are dehydrating.
- Amount - from approximately 2 cups of your goods, you will end up with about 1 cup of dehydrated goodies.
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Serving SizeHalf a Cup
Amount Per Serving Calories 40Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 0mgCarbohydrates 6gFiber 3gSugar 0gProtein 3g
Calculation is general, please refer to the individual recipe for presize detailed nutritions.
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