The easiest and quickest method of dehydrating food is to use a dehydrator.
The most energy efficient way is to sun or air dry. Air or sun drying works best if you live in a dry climate with lots of hot days.
I don't have any experience drying items in the oven. It seems to me that it would be very inefficient.
Actual drying time will vary according to the size of pieces, temperatures and even humidity. Here are some approximate times for dehydrating food in a dehydrator.
|Type of Food||How to Prepare||Approximate Drying Time||Notes|
|Dehydrating Tomatoes||Slice tomatoes 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Peeling is optional, I never do.||6 - 12 hours at 145 degrees||These can be crumbled or even ground in a blender to make tomato powder.|
|How to Dry Cherry Tomatoes||Wash and remove stem. Slice in half and lay on trays cut side up. Salting or seasoning is optional.||at 145 degrees.||Very tasty!
These will dry more leathery not as crisp. They also take much longer than regular tomatoes.
|Dehydrating Sweet Potatoes||Peel and slice sweet potatoes 1/4 inch thick. Blanch 3 minutes.||4-10 hours at 125 degrees.||I tried to make these for snacking on... like the zucchini chips. I did not care for them as a snack.|
|How to Dry Peppers||Remove tops and seed peppers. Slice or dice and lay out on trays.||5-12 hours at 125 degrees.||Don't forget to wear gloves when handling hot peppers. Leave the seeds if you want hot. Dried red peppers can be ground to make chili powder.|
|How to Dry Carrots||Peel or scrub. Dice or slice 1/4 inch. Blanch 3 to 4 minutes.||6-12 hours at 125 degrees.||If you dry these diced, be sure and stir the carrots occasionally during drying. This prevents them from sticking together and will encourage more even drying.|
|Drying Green beans||Snap beans into 1 inch pieces. Blanch 4 to 6 minutes. Spread on trays.||6-12 hours at 125 degrees.||Very easy to dry.|
|Dehydrating Zucchini||Dice or slice into 1/4 inch pieces.||5-10 hours at 125 degrees.||
Use diced dried zucchini in soups and casseroles.Add seasoning salt to slices before drying to make zucchini chips.
|Dehydrating Corn||Blanch and slice corn from the cob.||12-14 hours at 120 degrees.||
Use dried corn in soups and casseroles. Chew on it just as it is for a snack attack.
How to use dehydrated foods.
I have attempted to share safe preserving methods. However, I make no promises. You alone are responsible for your health. Be aware of current safety recommendations.
See my Full Disclaimer here.