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Dehydrator Shopping Guide
Dehydrators are a great tool for anyone wanting to store food, go camping, backpack through the wilderness, or explore new recipes.
These are some things you’ll want to consider when shopping for dehydrators:
Temperature controls: Having access to temperature controls with a dehydrator can be important, especially when you are working with fragile ingredients that may dry out quickly.
Air flow: The primary way that a dehydrator functions is circulating air around a heated container. This means that without consistent air flow you won’t be dehydrating any food at all.
Capacity: Before making your final dehydrator purchasing decision you may want to consider capacity and just how many items you plan to dehydrate at once. Some units will come with multiple shelves for spreading food items out while others may only have a single compartment.
Size: When you first begin to shop for dehydrators, you’ll notice that they come in all shapes and sizes. Depending on how often you plan to use your dehydrator and the amount of storage room you have, size could be an important determining factor.
So how do you choose the dehydrator that’s right for you? These are the questions consumers are asking when shopping for dehydrators.
What is the best food dehydrator?
The best food dehydrator will be a unit that gives the user options and is efficient in dehydrating many different kinds of foods and sauces. When you first set out to purchase a dehydrator you may have a great dog treat recipe in mind, but that doesn’t mean you’ll never want to experiment with dehydrating salsa or fruits for a camping trip. You’ll want to find a unit that is versatile, heavy-duty, sized to your kitchen and most importantly effective for any specific recipes you have in mind.
Is a dehydrator worth it?
If your goal is to dehydrate food for storage, pre-packing, or even for travel, a proper dehydrator is definitely worth the investment. Dried soups meant for backpacking or car camping can cost next to nothing when you can make them yourself with simple some vegetables and soup broth. Not much of a camper? Dehydrators can be used for so much more, such as creating tomato paste, crunchy snacks, treats for your pets, or even making your own baking flour. One thing that you may want to consider is just how often you’ll be using your dehydrator which may influence the quality of unit you’ll want to purchase.
What is a food dehydrator used for?
Since their invention, dehydrators have been used for a large variety of tasks including drying nuts and seeds, creating flour from wheat, making jerky, yogurt or even those delicious fruit leather snacks that you see at the grocery store. A dehydrator will allow you to experiment with a ton of new recipes that you may not have even known existed before. You can even regulate the amount of seasonings or spice you add to your dried nuts, seeds, and jerky if your goal is to reduce your sodium intake. One of the most popular uses for a dehydrator is preparing food for a long backpacking trip or camping trip where weight is a big concern. By removing all of the water weight from food, a dehydrator can allow you to carry much more nutrition than you otherwise would be able to.
What should I look for when buying a dehydrator?
There are a few specific items that you should initially look for when searching for a new dehydrator. One of the most important features is a built-in temperature controller and digital timer which will allow you to dehydrate different foods at different rates of speed and for varying amounts of time without having to worry about kitchen timers. Something else that is commonly overlooked is the style of trays that are included with the unit. While some trays are meant for meats and vegetables, there are specific trays with raised air vents that allow you to dehydrate sauces and liquids. If you plan on experimenting with your new dehydrator, you should definitely look at units that come with tray options.
Are plastic dehydrators safe?
Yes, they are! There are plenty of plastic dehydrators on the market that are constructed with food grade and heat tested plastic that will not affect the flavor of your food. If you’ve been concerned about using a plastic dehydrator there is no need to worry. However, if you plan to use your dehydrator regularly, you may want to opt for a sturdier metal version.
Once you’ve found a dehydrator that fits all of your personal needs, all that’s left to do is plug it in, load in your favorite food, and start dehydrating some delicious snacks and treats.
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