Help! We bought a dehydrator.

I need your advise!  We found a food dehydrator at the local thrift store for $8.00 (yes, only $8.00!).  We’ve been wanting one, but couldn’t bring it to myself to pay $60.00+ for a good one.  Well, now that we have one I find that I know nothing about them or what to do with them.  I am in need of some recipes or ideas. What have you dehydrated and had good luck with?  Anything you had horrible luck with you want to warn me about?  Any recipes you’d like to share? 

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6 thoughts on “Help! We bought a dehydrator.

  1. I’ve been playing with my dehydrator recently and after consulting a couple of books on the topic, it looks like meat needs to be as fat-free as possible before dehydrating, and do it at at 145 degrees. Vegetables cook at a lower temp, between 125 and 135. Wash your hands thoroughly before you check the food. Check the food every couple of hours- use your fingers to stir it & crumble the big bits. It’s done when it snaps &/or flakes, with no damp spots in the middle. After the food is dehydrated, let it sit for several hours minimum, so that whatever moisture is still in it can evenly distribute itself and the food can completely cool. Vacuum seal or store it in zip lock freezer bags. The less air in the package, the longer it will last. For maximum storage, keep it in the freezer or a cool, dark place. I can give you the names of several good books if you’re interested.

  2. We do apples and bananas all the time. I just slice them thinly, leaving the peel on the apples, and toss them in lemon juice before laying them out on the trays. If you have the solid trays you could also puree fruit and make fruit leather. Just be sure to lightly grease the tray before hand so it peels off easily. (I use coconut oil for that)

    We’ve also done cherries, blueberries, strawberries and mangos. I remember growing up my mom always did sliced tomatoes and zucchini to add in various casseroles and such. I don’t think either tasted very good on their own!

    Mine came with a booklet and in there are also recipes for beef jerky, but I’ve never actually tried it.

    • What a great idea! We did get a booklet but I haven’t got a chance to really look at it yet. Scott suggested we make dry soup mixes. Now I just have to figure out how to do that! We did have a plastic solid tray with it. Do you have a recipe for the fruit leather?

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