Everything You Need To Know About Food Dehydrator

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What is a Food Dehydrator?​

A food dehydrator is a little kitchen equipment that is used for drying or dehydrating food.

With a built-in fan and low heat, this appliance makes use of light flow of hot air to reduce the quantity of water seen in vegetables, fruits, meats, and other foods. As soon as the water is removed from the food,  it will no longer spoil as quickly as it should and is impenetrable to different types of bacteria that would otherwise grow.

In addition to the above,  a food that has been well dehydrated will maintain most of its original nutritional value. Dehydrating food allows you to maintain all the vitamins and nutrients your food has plus it is even way more convenient to store and carry about.

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What can you dehydrate?

Your dehydrator for food can be used for nearly any fresh food, but some foods dehydrate better than others. Here are some lists:

  • Fruits: apples, pears, apricots, cherries, peaches, bananas, blueberries
  • Vegetables: beans, mushrooms, peas, tomatoes, onions, carrots.
  • Meat and fish: chicken, or turkey; cured meats; sliced meats;  fresh fish; beef jerky, ground beef.
  • Nuts seeds: walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia, pecans, almonds.
  • Sprouted grains: rice, amaranth, quinoa, barley, buckwheat.
  • Herbs: hyssop, oregano, lemon, fennel, basil, mint, parsley, dill,  balm.

All the above foods can be dehydrated with a food dehydrator.

How To Choose A Food Dehydrator

A dehydrator for food will cost you from $25 to hundreds of dollars depending on the several features you want. The major features to look out for in a dehydrator for food are a fan for even and equal heat distribution then multiple temperature setting to dry the different kinds of food properly. 

If you want to make a lot of food, then a dehydrator for food with more surface area should be the target because of the amount of time dehydrating food takes (from 4 to 15 hours ).

Square trays tend to hold more than the round ones with cut-outs in the middle.

A timer can come in handy as it gives you the opportunity to leave the house without being scared of over-drying while dehydrating food though not an important feature.

If you are unsure of what you want, you can begin your search with the cheaper models. If you’re lucky,  you could get a dehydrator for food at a thrift store!

Nonstick sheets or parchment paper are necessary for drying soups, fruits leather, and sauces. Some brands of food dehydrator sell specific sheets that suit their trays.

Dehydrating food is a good and fun way to preserve food for the future. It is a cost-effective way to get your fresh food ready for storage.

There are several reasons why dehydrating food play great rule as replacement of sneak; it is easy, safe, fun and cheaper than buying packaged sneak or dehydrated food. More so, dehydrating food makes it more nutritious, delicious, lightweight and does not take up a lot of space.

Different Brands Of Food Dehydrator

There are many dehydrators for food out there in the market to choose from that will suit your needs. Here are some of the best brands,

1.  The Excalibur:

This is arguably one of the best dehydrators for dehydrating food. It has digital controls for ease of use and gives a convenient temperature control that allows your food to be processed how you want them to be. It also has a built-in patented hyper-wave fluctuation which allows your food to dry from inside out and not the other way.

 

2.L’EQUIP FilterPro:

This is a light but durable food dehydrator that can stay comfortably on the counter yet small enough to fit into a cupboard when not in use. This dehydrator for food comes in a beautiful silver color that can match with your other appliances. It uses about 500 watts so it won’t use up much electricity when left on overnight or for a long time.

 

3.Magic Mill:

This dehydrator for food has everything you need to make different protein foods. It has 3 types of dishwash safe tray that makes cleaning easily. Digital thermostat and adjustable timer, automatic shut off when timer done. 

4. Waring Pro:

This food dehydrator comes with 5 interlocking and stackable round trays to fill up such that you’ll have enough space to make an apple or banana chips with the dehydrator. The dehydrator for food has a 620-watt motor that is strong enough to dry thick food products with small power needs. There is a suction-cup foot on the machine that keeps it in place, even when liquid spills on the counter near it while dehydrating food.

Tips For Dehydrating Food

Here are some basic tips for dehydrating food that you should be aware of.

  • Always ensure  the temperature is right

    The time and temperature needed for dehydrating food will vary depending on the kind of food dehydrator you buy also and the kind of food you want to dehydrate. The general temperature and time guideline is usually pasted on the dehydrator for food label or written inside the instruction manual with suggested times required.

  • Don't try to dry foods quicker

    There is no need to worry about over-drying your foods. If need be you can dry them longer than necessary but it's not advisable to increase the temperature setting of your food dehydrator just to dry the foods faster. This will only seal the outside,  leaving the moisture inside and that will cause your food to spoil before you even get the chance to enjoy it.

  • Ensure foods are 95% dehydrated

    If you want your food to be properly stored, then it should be at least 95 percent dehydrated. If the food still feels sticky, soft or spongy then put it back in the dehydrator for food for some extra time. The food should be crunchy, hard or breakable to be done. Air conditioning, breeze or high door humidity can alter the required time needed for dehydrating food. The ideal place for dehydrating food is a warm, dey, free -from-air-vents location. 

  • Be prepared

    Before you start dehydrating food, ensure all your foods are thoroughly washed with a vegetable anti-bacterial cleaner. Put on gloves to prevent skin oil from getting to the food. Per boil all low acid vegetables for about 10 minutes before dehydrating.  When steamed, pat them dry before putting them the food dehydrator. Spray apples and bananas with lemon juice to stop browning.

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