A food dehydrator can be used for a lot of different purposes. You can use it to dry fruits and vegetables, but you get a bit more creative and use this multi-tasking tool to do things that go beyond your kitchen. In this post, you will learn about the uses of a food dehydrator.
Table of Contents
- 1 Food dehydrator benefits
- 2 Soak and dry nuts
- 3 Make sprouted flour
- 4 Make yogurt
- 5 Make your jerky
- 6 Make your Natto
- 7 Proof Your Sourdough
- 8 Make fruit leather
- 9 Make Tempeh
- 10 Dry your hats and gloves
- 11 Make treats for your dog
- 12 Rejuvenate stale chips
- 13 Use it as a humidifier
- 14 Preserve herbs and flowers
- 15 DIY kiln
- 16 Make herbal teas
- 17 Paper making
- 18 Prepare camping meals
- 19 Cassette tape salvage
- 20 Make fire starters
Food dehydrator benefits
There are many benefits of using a food dehydrator. When a food item is dehydrated, it still contains almost the same nutritional properties. The process of dehydration inhibits the growth of bacteria and other microforms.
Preservation is perhaps the main benefit of the process of dehydration. When you are dehydrating a food item, make sure that it is dried properly. If you keep dehydrated food in a moisture-proof jar, the food will last for months. You have to store it in a cold and dark place.
Food dehydration is not something new. The practice can be traced back to Biblical times. Dehydrated foods are still considered living foods, because they are uncooked.
The process is convenient and cost-effective. If you go to a store, you will find that dried foods are pricey. By using a food dehydrator, you can extend the shelf life of your favorite fruits and other food items.
Soak and dry nuts
You may need to soak and dry nuts for various purposes, and a food dehydrator can make this task easy and fun. By soaking and drying almonds and walnuts, you can reduce enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid in them. There is a great way to soak them. Leave them overnight in salt water. When drying them, make sure the temperature is not higher than 150°F.
Make sprouted flour
You can use a food dehydrator to make sprouted flour. When drying sprouted grain kernels, make sure the temperature is low. After drying, grind them into flour. There are many tutorials and instructions that can help you do it.
But it is not necessary to follow those instructions. A good thing about food dehydrators is that you can use them even if you do not have any prior experience.
This is one of the notable food dehydrator uses. If you have a yogurt maker, you know what this tool can actually do. You can use a yogurt maker to do only one task: making yogurt. You will not have to use this almost useless tool if you have a food dehydrator.
No matter how big or small jars you have, a cube-shaped dehydrator will help you do the job. Your yogurt will be set properly if you set the temperature at around 110°F.
Make your jerky
You can use a food dehydrator to make jerky. The process is easy. A food dehydrator has a plastic or metal tray, and you can place tofu or sliced meat on the tray. You should use an unbleached parchment paper or non-stick sheet when you are using ground meat.
Make your Natto
Fermented soybeans are used to make this traditional Japanese food. The food is high in nutrition values, thanks to its high concentration of beneficial bacteria, protein, and vitamin K2. Make sure the temperature is around 100°F when Natto is being fermented. The process of fermentation can take up to 24 hours.
A food dehydrator can make the process a lot easier for you, because this tool is designed for these types of tasks. A simple Google search can help you learn how to make Natto.
Proof Your Sourdough
You can use a food dehydrator to keep a sourdough starter warm in cold winter months. You have to set the temperature at 75°-80°F to get the job done. Your dehydrator thermometer may or may not be set at such a low temperature.
If this is the case, you will get the expected results if you simply remove the door of your dehydrator. A hand-held thermometer can be used to check the temperature. Make sure the sourdough starter is not overheated.
Make fruit leather
Yes, you can use your food dehydrator to make fruit leather. The process is simple. You can easily remove the fruit leather by using a non-stick sheet. Making fruit leather is among the most notable food dehydrator uses.
Excalibur’s paraflexx sheets can serve the purpose very well. Alternatively, you can use unbleached parchment paper. Go to any grocery store and you will find this paper.
Fermented soybeans are used to make this traditional Indonesian food. Tempeh is good for help because it has vitamins, fiber and protein. You have to set the temperature at 86°-88°F and keep the cake mixture for 24 to 48 hours. You can easily incubate Tempeh if you just have a food dehydrator.
Dry your hats and gloves
Snow makes winter months more joyful, but if have fun in the snow, you often have to deal with the problem of wet hats and gloves. Believe it or not, you can use your food dehydrator to dry them.
The process is simple. You just have to place your wet hats and gloves on the tray of your food dehydrator. It can be a cheaper alternative to a dryer. You have to be careful when setting the temperature. Make sure it is not set too high.
Make treats for your dog
Your pet dog is a part of your family. You may need to change the diet of your furry friend for many reasons. All pet foods are not cheap. Some of them, such as those based on sweet potatoes, can be expensive.
Here is good news for you: your food dehydrator can be used to make dog treats. You can do it very easily. Just place sliced sweet potato on the tray and witness the magic. For a lover of dogs, it is one of the most amazing food dehydrator uses.
Rejuvenate stale chips
It can be very disappointing to bite into stale chips and crackers. Chips and crackers are stale when they are soggy. The good news is, you can use your food dehydrator to rejuvenate stale chips.
You can do it very easily. Just put stale chips and crackers in your dehydrator and see the magic happen. But remember, a food dehydrator can not bring moldy or rotten food back to life. So your expectations should be realistic.
Use it as a humidifier
For many people, dry air can be a cause of irritation. These people find that purchasing a humidifier is a simple solution to this problem. What most people do not know is that a food dehydrator can be used as a humidifier. A dehydrator dehydrates food products by sucking moisture out of them.
To use it as a humidifier, you just need to put a bowl of water into the machine. Within minutes, the tool will distribute the water into the room. If you find dry air irritating, it can be one of the most amazing food dehydrator uses for you.
Preserve herbs and flowers
You may need to dry herbs and flowers for various purposes. Some people dry flowers to commemorate special occasions. Herbs are dried for medicinal uses. When you attend a wedding ceremony or a special party, you can collect flowers and dry them to make the moments memorable.
Using a food dehydrator is one of the most convenient ways to preserve herbs and flowers. If you are interested in capturing the moment, you will love this use of your food dehydrator.
Anyone who has worked with mud and clay knows how hard it is to dry those creations in the open air. Air will make them crack or split. But no hobbyist wants to invest in a kiln, because it can be pricey.
Luckily, you can use your food dehydrator as a kiln to dry water-based clays. This is one of the most amazing food dehydrator uses. The procedure is almost intuitive. You just need to put the piece inside your food dehydrator the piece will harden within a very short span of time.
Make herbal teas
It is not hard at all to steep herbs in water. But what about getting the right herbs to make herbal teas? No matter how prepared you are, you will find it a bit hard. For a better flavor, you can use your food dehydrator to dehydrate herbs.
This is also a great way to preserve herbs throughout the year. With this tool, you can easily dry herbs with medicinal benefits and use them to make herbal teas. If you are an enthusiast of different types of teas, you will find that it is one of the best food dehydrator uses.
Believe it or not, you can rely on your food dehydrator for your craft projects. Put dried flowers and recycled junk main into a blender and make paper pulp. You can make sheets by draining the pulp and spreading it thinly over the screens. To dry that paper, you can use your dehydrator.
Prepare camping meals
Making backpacking meals is another interesting use of a food dehydrator. If there are leftovers from dinners, do not throw them away. Rather dehydrate them and keep your dehydrated food items in your freezer.
Rest assured that the dehydrated foods will be edible for at least 3 months. You will find it easier to dehydrate your meals if there is no meat in them. But that does not mean that you can not dehydrate meat.
Cassette tape salvage
This is an unusual use of your food dehydrator. It has nothing to do with your gustatory pleasures. You may find it hard to believe, but you can really use a food dehydrator to restore your old cassette tapes. If the oxide coating comes off of the tape, you simply need to “bake” the tape.
This is one of the least known food dehydrator uses. To get the job done, make sure the temperature of your dehydrator is set at 130-140 degrees Fahrenheit. To get desired results, bake them for at least 7 hours.
Make fire starters
In some situations, a fire starter can make your life a lot easier. If you go camping regularly, you know how convenient a fire starter can be. You can buy a fire starter from a local store. But if budget is an issue for you, the price may not seem attractive.
In such a case, you can use your food dehydrator to make some fire starters by simply drying some pieces of orange peel. The skins of citrus fruits get crispy when the skins are properly dehydrated. And if you have some experience with a dehydrator, you know how easy it is to dehydrate orange peel.
We have discussed some food dehydrator uses, and most of these uses are pretty common. There is no doubt that you can use your food dehydrator in many different ways. You can do many other things with a food dehydrator, because it is a multi-tasking tool.