Over the past few years, a massive portion of the population have become more appreciative of their health and wellbeing. With obesity linked diseases on the rise, consumers across the nation are becoming more informed with healthy foods, as a way to combat these complications. A healthy diet can quell many common ailments, including diabetes. Although there are many exceptional ways to overcome this problem, switching to dehydrated foods is undoubtedly one of the most effective. In order to embrace this healthier lifestyle, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with the process of dehydrating food.
In this regard, you have two options. You can built a DIY food dehydrator or you can buy a food dehydrator. Although each option is acceptable, purchasing the best food dehydrator is immensely more convenient. Within this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about food dehydrators. You’ll also find comprehensive food dehydrator reviews for each of the market’s top models.
- 1 What Is A Food Dehydrator
- 2 Best Food Dehydrator Reviews
- 3 What Is Food Dehydration?
- 4 How To Dehydrate Food Properly
- 5 How To Know When The Food Is Dry
- 6 Storing Dehydrated Foods
- 7 How Long Will It Take To Dehydrate My Foods?
- 8 Exploring The Benefits Of The Best Food Dehydrator
- 9 What Is The Best Food Dehydrator?
- 10 What To Look For In A Food Dehydrator
- 11 Different Types of Food Dehydrators
- 12 Food Dehydrator Recipes
What Is A Food Dehydrator
First and foremost, it is essential to familiarize yourself with the basics. An electric food dehydrator is a machine, which is used to drain the juices and moisture from various foods. The device is frequently referred to as an array of different terms, including dehydrator machine and beef jerky maker. It is sometimes misspelled as a food dehidrator. Regardless of which phrase you decide to utilize, all of these machines serve the same purpose and will provide you with healthier, longer lasting foods. More of the most notable benefits associated with the meat dehydrator will be explored in more depth a little later on.
Best Food Dehydrator Reviews
Excalibur 9-Tray Clear Door Stainless Steel Dehydrator D900CDSHD Review
Are you looking for a stainless steel dehydrator? The majority of experts agree that stainless steel models are capable of lasting extensively longer than units, which are crafted from other materials. When you combine the stainless steel construction with the quality consistently delivered from Excalibur, you’ve got an unmatched dehydrator in the D900CDSHD Stainless Steel Dehydrator. The product offers an abundance of benefits, which will provide you with plenty of space and convenience. First, the product, which is made in the United States, measures in at 12.5 by 17 by 19 inches. This guarantees that is offers plenty of capacity, yet is easy to store away, when not in use.
- Very spacious
- Perfect for professionals
- Adjustable thermostat and timer
- Stainless steel
- 10-year limited warranty
The unit is equipped with 9 large trays and a total of 15 square foot of drying space. It is also equipped with a 26-hour timer, which offers hands-free operation. The unit utilizes a 7-inch fan to evenly disperse the heat and features an adjustable thermostat. Temperatures offered range from 105 to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The unit is a little heavier than the others. It weighs in at 40 pounds, but is still light enough for a single individual to carry. All in all, the Excalibur D900CDSHD is built to last and it will undoubtedly do that! Explore out comprehensive review for further details.
Excalibur Dehydrator 9-Tray Clear Door w/Timer Review
There is no doubt that the Excalibur Food Dehydrator is one of the best in the business. The company’s innovative shelf-style dehydrator offers immense convenience and plenty of food space. This is especially true, when it comes to their 9-Tray Clear Door dehydrator. It is equipped with an adjustable thermostat, which offers temperatures from 95 to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. For added convenience, the product is manufactured in the United States! The unit offers 15 feet of drying space, which should be more than sufficient for the majority of individuals.
- 15 feet of capacity
- Adjustable thermostat and 26-hour time
- 10-year warranty
- Clear door and 9 trays
The door, which is clear, is crafted from a polycarbonate material. This makes it incredibly durable and ensures you can always see what is going on inside. The unit comes with a 26 hour time, so you can switch it on, set it and forget about it. Once you’ve returned the following day, your foods will be thoroughly dried. One of the most astounding aspects of all is the unit’s lengthy 10-year warranty! With this type of reassurance, this dehydrator is tremendously difficult to parallel and very few do. It could very well be the best food dehydrator for jerky! Check out our more extensive review today for more information.
Excalibur 3926TB Food Dehydrator Review
Some consumers are looking for the best dehydrator they can purchase and don’t mind splurging to get it. If you fit into this category, you will definitely want to take the time to explore the Excalibur 3926TB. The dehydrator is spacious, versatile and incredibly convenient. Despite being a little more costly, most consumers will agree that it is well worth the increase price! The unit comes with 9-trays, so you can dehydrate an abundance of food, at once. In all, you’ll be able to enjoy 15 square feet of drying space. The product is also equipped with a built-in on/off switch and a very helpful adjustable time. This feature will guarantee that your foods are perfectly dried.
- 15 square feet of drying space
- 9 trays, adjustable thermostat and timer
- 10-year warranty
The unit’s flexible poly-screen will guarantee that your foods never stick! One of the most amazing aspects of all is the unit’s extensive 10-year limited warranty! This guarantees that it’ll last you for many years to come. Truthfully, it is difficult to complain about the Excalibur 3926TB Dehydrator. It is spacious, convenient and more than capable of satisfying nearly all consumers. Exploring our longer review is imperative!
Nesco SnackMaster Pro Food Dehydrator FD-75a Review
When taking the time to explore the market’s best dehydrators, you will definitely find Nesco near the top of the list. The company has been in the game for an extensive period of time and they’ve managed to maintain a reputable reputation. Their Snackmaster Pro Food Dehydrator is incredibly well rounded, yet exceptionally affordable. To help ensure that you’ll be able to perfectly dehydrate all of your favorite morsels, the unit is equipped with an adjustable thermostat. The temperature can be adjusted from 95 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Adjustable thermostat
- 1-year warranty
- Versatile and good for various foods
The unit is incredibly compact and measures in at approximately 13 by 13 by 10 inches. This makes it very easy to store the unit away, once you’ve finished using it. If you’re interested in drying fruits, vegetables and jerky, this product cannot be ignored. The Nesco Dehydrator is an exceptional value and will provide you with a lifetime’s supply of dehydrated foods! Be sure to check out our comprehensive Nesco dehydrator reviews today to learn more about this item. You will not be disappointed.
Nesco FD-1040 1000-watt Gardenmaster Food Dehydrator
When scouring through Nesco Food Dehydrator reviews, it will be difficult to ignore the FD-1040. This one is a little more costly than the previous Nesco, but it offers many added features. First and foremost, the unit can be expanded to 20 trays! With this type of capacity, you will never run out of space for all of your favorite foods. The unit is stackable, which may give a concern, but each tray is capable of holding a significant amount of food. The unit comes with a programmable digital dimer and delivers 1,000 watts of drying power. The patented Converga-Flow Air Flow guarantees that all of the foods will be dried, at an even pace.
- 1,000 watts of power
- 2,400 RPM Fan
- Adjustable thermostat
- Can use up to 20 trays, with additional purchases
- 1-year warranty
The Nesco FD-1040 Gardenmaster Food Dehydrator is equipped with an adjustable temperature control. This guarantees that it’ll work excellently for whatever foods you wish to dry. It comes with four trays, a Clean-A-Screen and a Fruit Roll Sheet, which is more than enough to get your started. It utilizes a 2,400 RPM fan and offers temperatures from 90 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit. The overall weight of the unit is less than 9 pounds! You won’t have any problems moving it about or storing it away. The unit is backed up by a 1-year limited warranty, which offers a little peace of mind.
Nesco American Harvest FD-61WHC Snackmaster Express Food Dehydrator Review
When attempting to enjoy your favorite food dehydrator recipes, you’ll first need a suitable dehydrator. There are numerous options on the market and finding the best one for your particular situation will be anything, but easy. Of course, there are some models, which are suitable for everyone, and the Nesco American Harvest FD-61WHC definitely fits into that category. This is an all-in-one kit, which is designed with a top mounted fan. It is capable of drying almost anything, including vegetables, fruits and jerky. For added value, the unit comes with its own jerky gun, as well as a fruit roll sheet, clean-a-screen and a handy dehydrator recipe guide. It also includes 5 trays.
- 500 watts of power
- BPA plastic
- 1-year warranty
- Comes with various accessories
The unit utilizes 500 watts of power, which is more than enough to perfectly and evenly dry all of your foods. For added peace of mind, the plastic is BPA Free! It weighs less than 9 pounds, so it’ll be easy to store and even easier to move about. The unit is covered by a handy 1-year limited warranty. All in all, the FD-61WHC is an excellent value and it’d be a massive mistake to ignore it. For pros, cons and to learn about the unit in greater detail, you will want to explore our lengthier review.
Presto Dehydrator 06301 Dehydro Digital Electric Food Review
If you’ve found some delicious dehydrator recipes that you wish to try out, you’ll need to equip yourself with a suitable dehydrator. The Presto Food Dehydrator 06301 could very well fill that void. The unique system is innovative, incredibly affordable and more than sufficient for the majority of consumers. First and foremost, this dehydrator comes with six trays and can be expanded up to 12 trays. This offers plenty of space for all of your fruits, vegetables, jerky and other edibles. For added peace of mind, the plastics, which interact with the foods, are all BPA free!
- 750 watts of power
- Adjustable thermostat
- 1-year warranty
- Can be used with 12 trays, with additional purchases
The Presto Dehydro Dehydrator utilizes 750 watts of power to get your foods thoroughly dried in a rapid manner. This unit comes with a digital thermostat and a timer for added convenience and flexibility. The available temperatures range from 90 to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The bottom of the unit contains a fan, which delivers consistent and even airflow to each of the interior trays. For added reassurance, this unit is covered by a 1-year limited warranty. For more pros, cons and further specifications, you need to check out our longer review.
Waring Pro DHR30 Professional Dehydrator Review
If you’re looking for an affordable, yet convenient, food dehydrator, you will definitely want to check out the Waring Pro DHR30. This professional food dehydrator is capable of providing you with everything you will ever need to enjoy delicious dehydrated foods. The unit is equipped with a new fan system, which is capable of promoting better air flow. It is perfectly suited for beef jerky, herbs and dried fruits. The unit comes with a fruit roll-up sheet and 5 stackable trays. These trays interlock for added convenience.
- 620 watts of power
- Comes with 5 stackable trays
- Adjustable thermostat
- 1-year warranty
The Waring Pro DHR30 comes with an adjustable time, which offers four unique settings, including fan only, low, medium and high. This makes use even easier, since you’ll never have to try to choose an exact temperature. This dehydrator weighs 9.6 pounds, which is slightly heavier, but nothing to complain about. It utilizes 620 watts of power, so all of your foods can be dried quickly and evenly. The unit comes with a 1-year warranty on defects and workmanship. Be sure to check out our more thorough guide for further details.
What Is Food Dehydration?
In simple terms, food dehydration is a technique, which extracts the moisture from the food. Whether you’re dehydrating fruit, vegetables or meats, the process will work similarly. The process can be exceptionally advantageous, because it can prevent the growth of microorganisms and put a half to decay. This will make the food last for an incredibly lengthier period of time.
How To Dehydrate Food Properly
If you’re interested in consuming dehydrated vegetables or jerky, you will need to fully familiarize yourself with the appropriate process for doing so. The process may vary slightly depending on the food dryer that you have selected. If you’re opted for a homemade food dehydrator, the process will be significantly difficult. The good news is that utilizing a raw food dehydrator or any other type of dehydrator will not be overly complicated. Take note that foods can be dehydrated in a variety of different ways and these will be listed below for your consideration.
- Using a commercial food dehydrator
- Use your conventional oven
- Leave the food sitting in direct sunlight
If you’re looking for a cheap food dehydrator, you shouldn’t buy anything at all. Check the weather in your area and arrange for the food to sit outside on an excessively hot day. Of course, there are various food dehydrators for sale and the majority of them won’t break the bank.
How To Know When The Food Is Dry
As someone, who is new to food dehydrating, you will need to experiment with the process extensively, before mastering it. Many will have difficultly identifying the moment, when the food has completely dried. Over drying the food is always a possibility. If you wish to check the progress of your jerky dehydrator, you should switch it off and allow the foods to cool. Once the food has cooled, you will want to examine its consistency. Refer to the information below to determine how to proceed.
- If the food is still sticky and moist, it needs to be dried longer.
- If the food is brittle and brown, it has been dried for too long.
- Foods that have been completely dried will be pliable and leathery.
Once you’ve successfully dried the food, you will need to store it properly, in order to achieve the maximum shelf life.
Storing Dehydrated Foods
In order to extend the shelf life of the foods, you will need to store them properly. Light, humidity and air can all be detrimental to the dried foods. Therefore, you will need to do your best to store the foods in airtight containers. These containers should be stored in a cool, dry location. If you wish to keep the foods stored for a lengthier period of time, it is highly recommended that you vacuum pack them. Doing so will help to extend the shelf life extensively. Refreezing or refrigerating can help to double, if not triple, the shelf life!
How Long Will It Take To Dehydrate My Foods?
Again, if you’re new to food dehydration, you’ll likely have tons of questions. One of these will likely question how long it’ll take for the foods to be completely dehydrated. The answer varies wildly based on a number of different factors. These will be listed below for your consideration.
- The specific food that you’re dehydrating
- The quantity of foods
- Your dehydrator of choice
Obviously, an industrial food dehydrator will accomplish the task much quicker than one that is designed for household use. Referring to our dehydrator reviews can help you determine the specifics.
Exploring The Benefits Of The Best Food Dehydrator
Now that you’ve made it thus far, you’re likely interested in learning why so many people are investing in the best food dehydrators. The benefits are enormous and these machines can provide you with enormously nutritious foods. The benefits will be explored below for your consideration.
Nutritional Value – Over the course of many years, the beneficial properties of cooked foods have been brought into question. Many studies have revealed that cooking the foods can strip out their nutrients. Through dehydration, it is possible for the foods to retain their helpful nutrients.
Store For Longer – Many utilize a vegetable, meat and fruit dehydrator as a way to increase the shelf life of their foods. As mentioned above, foods that have been completely dried can be stored for an extensive period of time. Dehydrated vegetables and fruits can sometimes be stored for several months, after proper dehydration. If you’re a prepper, a food dehydrator is certainly a necessity.
Storing Easier – When foods are dehydrated, they’re also shrunk to some degree. This will make them significantly easier to store away. If you have a packed refrigerator, drying the foods can alleviate some of the pressure.
Easier Portion Control – Many people utilize dehydrated fruits and other foods, as a way to lose weight. Not only are the foods healthier, but also you’ll be able to control your portions much easier. Simply toss a few pieces of beef jerky or some hydrated vegetables in a baggy and you’ll be well on your way.
Easier Access To Healthy Beverages – If you also own a juicer or blender, you may wish to opt for a healthy smoothie. Once your fruits and vegetables have been dehydrated, you will be able to crush them up much easier, so making an incredibly healthy smoother will be tremendously easier.
Economical Value – One of the most notable benefits of all is the economic benefit. By completely drying your foods, you will be able make them last for a lengthier period of time and you can even preserve bulk quantities more easily. These foods can be eaten at a later time and can help you avoid spending extra on your groceries.
What Is The Best Food Dehydrator?
When it boils down to it, you should realize that the best dehydrator for one individual might not be the best for another. Instead, each individual is different and their particular preferences and desires will ultimately vary. Some will want a large food dehydrator, while others will only concern themselves with affordability. With this in mind, you will want to consider the factors below, when attempting to find the best food dehydrator for your own particular needs.
- How much food do you wish to dehydrate at once?
- How much are you willing to spend?
- Do you mind waiting for the dehydration process to conclude?
- Do you want extreme convenience, or are you willing to get your hands dirty?
- What types of foods do you plan on dehydrating?
- Are you familiar with food dehydrators?
- How much space do you have available?
- How much reassurance do you desire?
By learning about your specific desires, you will have a much easier time making the right choice for your particular situation. Be sure to know exactly what you want, before moving forward.
What To Look For In A Food Dehydrator
Now that you’ve come this far, you know all about the food dehydrator and you know exactly what you need and want. Now, it is time to learn how to evaluate the various dehydrators. Below, you will learn everything you need to know to purchase the best food dehydrator for the money!
Price and Budget – First and foremost, you will want to take the time to analyze the product’s price. There is often a misconception that more costly dehydrators will always be better. Although this is sometimes true, it isn’t always the case. Instead, you will need to maintain your focus on the other aspects and refuse to allow the price to cloud your judgment. As long as the dehydrator fits your budget, you’ll be fine!
Different Types – Remember that there are two main different types of dehydrators, stacking and shelf. Both are acceptable and they’ll both serve the same purpose perfectly. As the name suggests, the stacking dehydrators require you to stack the loaded trays on atop one another. The fans are generally mounted in the base or atop of the trays. The shelf model comes with pullout shelves. They’re slightly more convenient, since you can slide out the tray, load it up and slide it back in. Usually, the fan and heating components are positioned near the back of the unit. The different types will be explored in further detail below.
Imperative Components – If you wish to equip yourself with the best food dehydrator possible, you’ll want to obtain one with a fan and heating components, which are capable of evenly dispersing the heat across the tray. Some units are equipped with dual fans, but the majority will only have one and it’ll range in size from 4″ to 7″. Most units will utilizes 300 to 100 watts of power, in order to dehydrate your food.
Adjustable Thermostat – In all likelihood, you desire to to dehydrate a large variety of different edibles. Each food will be better served by a unique temperature, so an adjustable thermostat is a necessity. Below, you will find a list of temperatures, which are generally recommended for latest Excalibur Food Dehydrator.
|Meats and Fish|
Capacity – The size of your dehydrator will tell you a lot about it. It’ll also help you determine how much food it can hold at once. If you wish to dry a larger quantity of food, you will want to opt for a unit with a larger capacity. Avid dehydrators will want to opt for a unit with at least 10 square foot of capacity. Smaller units will generally offer 3 to 4 square feet. As long as the capacity satisfies your needs, you truly cannot go wrong.
Ease of Use – In all probability, you desire a unit, which will provide you with extreme convenience. If so, you will want one that offers easy access. When dehydrating, checking your progress and removing the foods, you will need to access the trays. Stackable dehydrators can be a little more complicated and time consuming, although slightly less costly. A shelf setup is recommended, if you want easy access and immense convenience.
Longevity – Some food dehydrators can be incredibly costly. Spending a little extra is entirely acceptable, as long as the unit is going to last for an extensive period of time. With this in mind, you will want to choose a unit, which is durably built. Many will agree that a stainless steel food dehydrator will serve your more extensively. Of course, the factor below can help to provide you with a little reassurance.
Warranty – When purchasing any type of home appliance, you should do your best to explore the manufacturer’s warranty. Although these products are designed to last, the future is uncertain and a curveball could be thrown your way, at anytime. Therefore, it is incredibly important to protect your investment with a lengthy warranty. In this area, you should feel free to spend extra to extend the warranty and enhance your peace of mind.
Different Types of Food Dehydrators
Above, you can see that there are two different types of commercial food dehydrators. Although there are many other varieties and variables, these are the most common. Both can serve the same purpose of drying out your foods, but they’ll do so in a unique manner. Below, you’ll learn about these different types, so you can find which is right for your specific situation.
Stackable Food Dehydrators – The stackable food dehydrator has a handful of benefits. With these units, the heater air is forced upwards and then dispersed across the trays. With this type of arrangement, you will never have to worry about rotating or spinning the trays, during the drying process. These units are incredibly versatile, since you can easily add and remove trays to accommodate your current load. The downfall of the stackable dehydrator is the fact that they’re difficult to utilize. If you wish to check one of the lower trays, you’ll need to remove all of those above it first.
Shelf Dehydrators – Both dehydrators are very similar. The shelf models are capable of dispersing the heat evenly, so you will never need to rotate the trays, during the dehydration process. The shape and size of the box will ultimately limit its capacity. This makes the smaller shelf dehydrators better for those that will only be drying small quantities of food. However, they convenience provided is enormous. With shelf models, you can easily access individual trays, if necessary.
All in all, both models are great and will serve their purpose perfectly. Just determine whether you want a bigger capacity or more convenience and make your decision accordingly.
Food Dehydrator Recipes
Although many people seem to be unaware of it, these are numerous recipes for dehydrated foods. They’re delicious, healthy and incredibly easy to prepare. In the near future, we will be adding a comprehensive database of dehydrator recipes, so you can pick your poison and enjoy your favorite foods. Be sure to check back frequently.
We’re happy to announce that our first free recipe eBook has been released. Be sure to download Foods That Dry on High right now!
Wrapping It Up
Whether you’re looking for a beef jerky dehydrator or another type of dehydrator, you should know precisely what you’re after before moving forward. By taking your time, analyzing your preferences and exploring your options, you will be able to make a much better decision for your individualistic situation. This will guarantee that your money has been better served and that you’ll be fully satisfied. We truly hope the information provided to you here has been helpful.