Dehydrating Foods

I’m a huge fan of dehydrating food. I’ve dehydrated a lot of different things over the years. If squirrels weren’t so darned fast I’d probably have thrown a couple in my dehydrator by now! Dehydrating is a great way to preserve food but there are some things that just don’t dehydrate well.  

Foods to NOT Dehydrate

Foods High In Fat –

Foods that are high in fat don’t dehydrate well. They go rancid very quickly. You’re better off just eating most of them. Here is a partial list of high fat foods that you shouldn’t dehydrate.

Avocados

Butter *You are better off purchasing butter powder from a reputable company

Cheese *Cheese powder is also available

Non-lean meats

Nuts

Olives

 

Foods You Shouldn’t Dehydrate For Long Term Storage (without careful study of the proper procedures and storage techniques from a trusted source; like the manufacturer of your dehydrator)

Eggs *Unless you want them for scrambled eggs. They will not work for baking and cooking. Powdered eggs are available.

Fruit leathers *When you make fruit leathers (for short term storage) never use white table sugar as it can crystallize during dehydration.

Lean Meats *Although you can dehydrate lean meat it will not keep for long. You must remove all fat from the meat and even then it will go rancid quickly.

Foods That Need Special Care to Dehydrate

Leafy Greens – Steaming/blanching dark leafy greens before dehydrating aids in getting all the nutritional benefits of those foods.

Apples, Bananas and Pears – In order to prevent them from discoloring dip them in a little lemon juice first.

Mushrooms – To ensure light colored mushrooms you must be sure they are dry before dehydrating them. If you don’t want to wait for them to dry after rinsing you can still dehydrate them but they will appear a little darker than fresh mushrooms.

Blueberries – You need to crack the skin before dehydrating. I’ve heard of people who actually poke little holes in every berry but I don’t have the time, the patience, nor the eyesight to do that! Instead I boil a pot of water and put the blueberries in for about 10 seconds. I check a few and if the skins are cracked I drain the whole pot. I have an Excalibur dehydrator and it takes about 16 – 17 hours to dehydrate them at 135° to get them to the texture we like.

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