Have you got some extra frozen fruit in your fridge just lying there and waiting for you to consume it? You can always dehydrate fruit and enjoy your favorite fruit as a healthy snack all year long without ruining the quality and taste. Many may not know this but dried, or dehydrated fruits have the same nutrient content as fresh fruit. The former contains the nutrients in a more condensed form. Studies have proved that dehydrated fruits are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and polyphenols.
What is Dehydration of Fruit?
How Long Does It Take To Dehydrate Fruit?
How Do I Dehydrate Frozen Fruit?
Freezing fruit is a great way to store and preserve it for later use. But some people don’t like the taste or texture when defrosting, and it often ends up as fruit waste. Dehydrating fruit is like taking fruit preservation to the next level. Before we start the process, here is what you will need:
- A Dehydrator: A dehydrator is a simple machine that has been designed to dry the fruit inside out by removing the moisture.
- Frozen Fruit
- A time slot of 12 hours
Follow these simple and quick steps to dehydrate the frozen fruit:
- Get your favorite frozen fruit from the supermarket nearby, or take it out of your freezer.
- Empty the pack on the kitchen counter and ensure all the pieces are of uniform sizes.
- If you see a big chunk of fruit pieces frozen together, slam them on the counter with a little force to separate. If you have whole fruit frozen, cut it into uniform bite sizes. This is a very important step as it will lead to uniform dehydration of every fruit piece.
- Put all the fruit pieces into a strainer and rinse them gently to remove any residues or, in other words, to thaw them.
- Leave the fruit pieces in the strainer for up to 10 minutes to drain properly.
- Plug in the dehydrator and set it at 120 to 130 F.
- Lay the fruit evenly on the dehydration tray. Make sure that the fruit pieces are evenly placed on the tray and not stacked above each other or overcrowded.
- Check once after 6 hours to see the progress.
- After 9 hours, check them again. Your fruit pieces are perfectly dehydrated if it is exhibiting the following characteristics:
- Wrinkled skin
- Shrunk size
- Transfer the dehydrated fruit pieces to a zip lock bag and enjoy the snack on the go.
Can You Use Frozen Strawberries to Dehydrate?
Yes, you can use frozen strawberries to dehydrate. Frozen, dehydrated strawberries are quite a flavorsome and healthy snack. However, you have to take extra care while dehydrating frozen strawberries. Do not wait for them to defrost, as they will become mushy and almost impossible to cut into equal slices. It’s recommended to use frozen strawberries and cut them in frozen form. You may also find the pre-cut frozen strawberries from the supermarket and use them to dehydrate.
Pro Tip: Sprinkle sugar on the strawberry slices before dehydrating and enjoy a more piquant snack.
Strawberries take up to 8 hours to dehydrate if all the pieces are uniform. If the slices are not uniform, it might take between 6 to 10 hours for all the pieces to dehydrate. The best part is you can use the dehydrated strawberries for up to one year if only you can resist them for that long.
What are Some of the Benefits of Dehydrated Fruit?
Dehydrated fruits are not a snack for your road trip or free-time munching. Instead, they have some long-term effects on health. Here are the potential health benefits of the dehydrated fruits:
Part of Food Items: Dehydrated fruits are a part of several food items, such as fruit leather. Fruit chips are another popular healthy snack made from dehydrated fruits such as bananas, kale, and apple chips. When dehydrated, oranges, lemons, and lime can be used in powdered forms as an additive to alcoholic beverages, teas, and baked items.
Better Digestion: Dehydrated fruit has 3.5 times more fiber than fresh fruit. Munching on this fiber-rich improves your digestion and prevents problems related to digestion like diarrhea, constipation, and hemorrhoids. Studies have shown that consuming fiber-rich foods helps in reducing the risk of colorectal cancer.
Improved Energy Levels: Dehydrated fruits are dense in calories, energy, and sugar content which is why they boost energy, unlike other snacks. Moreover, studies have shown that the nutrients present in the dehydrated fruits are absorbed readily by our bodies which helps us feel energized and improves our energy levels in the longer run.
Reduced Risk of Food Borne Disease: Dehydrated fruits reduce the risk of diseases that arise from food contamination. Organisms responsible for food contamination are bacteria, mold, and yeast that thrive best in water. When the water is removed from the fruits, the microorganisms have no chance to survive. Hence, the fruits can be preserved for many years in dehydrated form.
Popularly Dehydrated Fruits:
The most commonly dehydrated fruits are:
Dehydration is an ages-old practice of fruit preservation. Dehydrated fruits have high nutrient content and come with several health benefits like improved digestion, energy levels, and better nutrition.