A food dehydrator might be one of the most useful appliances you’ll ever own. This handy machine is more than just a way to preserve your produce. It’s also a healthier option for your family and can save you time and money!
With so many reasons to love dehydrated foods, it’s clear that a food dehydrator is an appliance worth having in your kitchen.
Enjoy These Everyday Benefits of Dehydrated Food
To highlight some of the most compelling benefits, we’ve collected 15 of the best reasons to buy a food dehydrator.
1. Reduce Food Waste & Extend Shelf Life
One of the best reasons to own a food dehydrator is the ability to preserve food that may have otherwise gone bad.
For example, say you bought a bunch of bananas and notice they you won’t be able to eat them all before they turn. Just take the extras and slice them & make dehydrated banana chips. Or what about that bag of kale in your refrigerator? Why not turn them into kale chips?
With a food dehydrator, you can easily increase the remaining shelf life of these foods from a few days to a few weeks.
2. Buy In Bulk Without Worrying About Spoilage
Buying food in bulk is a great way to save money, especially on more expensive items like meat. Stock up on sales or at the farmer’s market. Set aside what you can eat in a typical week, then dehydrate the rest.
3. Save Time During Meal Prep
Preparing raw vegetables for every meal can be time-consuming. Dehydrated foods rehydrate very easily, so using them in recipes is very easy.
Keep a ready supply of dehydrated carrots, onions, and celery for your next batch of soup. Use dehydrated fruits to liven up salads, yogurt, and desserts.
4. Create A Variety Of Easy To Carry Snacks
Dehydrated snacks are perfect for the frequent traveler. They are lightweight, portable, and convenient to have on hand. Dehydrating is a smart move whether you are backpacking, getting on an airplane, or having a few extra snacks on hand in the car.
If you follow a vegan or other special diet, dehydrating food is a great way to create healthy alternatives where you are sure of the ingredients in every bite.
5. Create Healthy Nutrient Dense Foods
When you dehydrate fruits and vegetables, you lock in all the vitamins and minerals. The low temperature of the food dehydrator keeps the same goodness as they had in their raw state.
Since the only element you remove is the water, you still enjoy all the benefits of eating whole foods, including all the nutrients and fiber.
6. Reduce Additives, Preservatives, and Chemicals
Many of the foods you purchase in the supermarket use chemicals as a method of preservation. Nitrates, Benzoates, Sorbates, and Sulfates are just a few of the chemicals used in bulk food preservation. And while the FDA has approved small amounts of these additives for human consumption, some (such as nitrates and BHT have been linked to ill health effects, including cancer.)
Most experts agree, eating more natural whole foods is better for your health. Preserving your own food will cut down on the chemicals you consume on a regular basis.
7. Save Money On Store-Bought Dehydrated Foods
Making your own snacks and dehydrated foods can also save you a ton of money. Packaged dehydrated snacks and food are fairly expensive.
Dehydrated apples are a great example. A 3-ounce package of apple chips will cost you a whopping $4-5 dollars. Each bag contains about three apples. These same three apples weigh about a pound when raw and will cost you about $1.3. That’s a savings of $3 for just 1 bag!
8. Enjoy Seasonal Flavors Year Round
With a food dehydrator, you can take advantage of the strawberry or blueberry season and have a ready reserve of berries well into the winter months. Make sundried tomatoes from your backyard tomatoes. Take advantage of the fall fruit harvest and make dehydrated peaches, pears, and plums.
9. Eat More Raw Whole Foods
If you want to try a raw food diet, it is much easier to do so when you aren’t constantly worried about what is in the refrigerator.
Many raw foods require preparation or cooking before eating, which can be time-consuming. With a dehydrator, you can have delicious ready-to-eat meals in less time. Dehydrating allows you to “keep it real” by eating a lot of raw fruits, veggies, and even meat.
10. Make Your Own Herb Blends.
If you grow your herbs in the garden, your can use your food dehydrator to make your own herbal teas. Create dried herb blends for flavoring soups, sauces, and stews.
While fresh herbs have a more robust flavor profile than dried, when you dry your own herbs, you will be surprised at how much better they taste compared to store-bought dried herbs.
11. Reduce Storage Space
Dehydrated food takes up just 1/6 of the space of their whole food counterpart. Instead of storing buckets of apples in your dry cellar, dehydrate them and make room for even more of the season’s harvest.
12. Help You Get More Protein
Jerky is super convenient, easy to make, and can be a good source of protein for meat lovers. With a food dehydrator, it is easy to prepare your own delicious beef jerky.
Create your own flavor combinations like a sweet brown sugar glaze, a spicy hot Jamaican jerk blend, or a mild tangy twist with mustard and vinegar combo. Your homemade jerky will stay fresh for up to 2 months if stored in airtight packaging.
13. Reduce the Risk of Food Poisoning From Aging Food
Dehydrating food is one of the safer ways to preserve it. According to WebMD, “Research shows that dehydrating food can reduce the risk from most common bacteria and possibly other disease-causing microorganisms.”
As food starts to go bad, mold begins to grow, which can result in illness if ingested. Since mold and bacteria need water to form, dehydrating the food prevents them from growing and keeps the harmful substances at bay.
14. Food Dehydrators Create a More Controlled Drying Process
You can dehydrate food in several other ways: in the oven, air drying, or using the sun. And while all these methods can be effective, they are subject to varying temperatures, humidity, and airflow fluctuations. This can result in your unevenly dried foods.
By using a food dehydrator, you have a controlled environment with even temperatures and consistent airflow. This results in food that is evenly dried, which will hold up better in long-term storage.
15. Simple to Operate
Food dehydrators are incredibly easy to use. You can even get the kids to help you. You simply place the prepared food items on the shelves, turn on the machine, and wait the required amount of time. Is any other appliance in your kitchen easier to use than that?
A food dehydrator is perfect for making healthy, tasty, and convenient snacks. It is also a great way to preserve your food. And it cuts down on chemicals in your food too, helping you have better health!
The benefits of a food dehydrator are many, so now the question is, what are you waiting for? Check out our favorites models and find the best food dehydrator for you & your family.