Use these tips on dehydrating food from Blain’s Farm & Fleet.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive alternative to canning or freezing produce, try dehydrating food. With the right food dehydrator, you can easily preserve fruits, vegetables and even make jerky. With the help of Blain’s Farm & Fleet, learn how to dehydrate food.
Tips for Dehydrating Food
Choose the best food dehydrator – Dehydrators have different features and designs that can work well for some food, and not as well for others. A food dehydrator with an adjustable thermostat is great if you plan on dehydrating different types of food. Some come with stackable trays, while others have pull-out trays. To find the right food dehydrator for your needs, read through our blog article on which questions to ask to find the best one.
Buy the right food – In order to properly dehydrate your food, it needs to be of good quality. Avoid bruised or damaged fruits and vegetables. Ripe fruits and veggies that are in season will taste better, just like with canning or freezing.
Keep food uniform – For the best results, keep the thickness and size of your cut up fruits and vegetables consistent. Smaller foods will take less time to dehydrate, so the smaller the better if you’re shooting for efficiency. Also evenly space the foods to evenly dehydrate them. If you’re making jerky, make the strips even with the jerky gun.
Tips for Storing Dehydrated Food
If you don’t plan on eating the dried food right away, there are some storage tips you should follow to safely store your food.
Use the right containers – A vacuum sealer seals out any air, keeping your dehydrated food perfectly sealed. It keeps moisture from getting back in. You can also use dry, clean home canning jars. Make sure the food is cooled completely before you store it. Store food in portions that can be used all at once.
Store food in the right place – Dehydrated food should be stored in a cool, dark and dry area. Higher temperatures mean a shorter shelf life. Dehydrated food should be used within six to 12 months to get the best quality. Check the dried food for any signs of moisture. If the food has reabsorbed moisture but isn’t spoiled, it should be used immediately. You can also re-dry and repackage it. If the food is moldy, properly dispose of it.