For a healthier snack on the go, make these dried fruits at home today.
When it comes to healthy snacking, we all know the hard truths:
- it isn’t always easy,
- it isn’t always interesting, and
- the Fruit Roll-Up you had at morning tea doesn’t actually count as fruit.
But does this mean we should pack it all in and reach for the nearest pack of Twisties? (Which isn’t conveniently hidden in your top drawer, right?)
Well, no… sorry. Instead, we can try new ways to enjoy the healthy staples.
Take dried fruits, for example. Dried fruits are super simple to make at home and are a healthier alternative to many snacks you find on supermarket shelves, including even store-bought dried fruits.
Ever wondered how to dry fruit? It’s easy; all you need is fruit and a great food dehydrator.
Is dried fruit healthy?
Of course, you should always discuss your specific dietary needs with your healthcare professional.
Just like fresh fruit, dried fruit is rich in fibre, vitamins and minerals. However, when you remove the water content from fresh fruit in your food dehydrator, its nutrients and kilojoules become concentrated.
What this means is if we compared the same amount (weight wise) of dried fruit and fresh fruit, we would find that the dried fruit contains more sugar and kilojoules. This is simply a matter of size; for example, one fresh apricot may weigh the same as a handful of dried apricots, but each of the dried apricots has a similar kilojoule count to that of the one fresh apricot.
So, while dried fruits can be a great healthy snack, you have to watch your serving sizes. It’s easy to mistakenly consume high amounts of kilojoules without realising it.
If you’re eating store-bought dried fruits, you will also have to watch that they don’t contain any added sugar.
Fortunately, you won’t have to worry about that when you’re making your own dried fruits in a food dehydrator!
Here’s how to dry fruit at home.
How to dry fruit
Drying fruit in a food dehydrator is super simple. All you need is your fruit of choice, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and a food dehydrator.
The following method works for the following popular dried fruit varieties:
- Dried banana/banana chips
- Dried pears/pear chips
- Dried apples
- Dried strawberries
- Dried mango
Simply follow these steps:
- Peel your fruit if you wouldn’t typically eat the skins fresh (you can keep them on if you do, but be sure to wash the skins)
- Cut your fruit; the thicker the slice, the chewier the dehydrated piece will be
- Spritz your fruit pieces with lemon juice to prevent them from going brown
- Place your fruit pieces in your food dehydrator, ensuring that no pieces overlap
- If you’re dehydrating different fruits at the same time, make sure you keep the same fruits on the same rack, as different fruits dehydrate at different rates.
You should be able to check your food dehydrator’s manual for recommended times and temperatures, as they will vary depending on your food dehydrator. But don’t be afraid to experiment!
Have you used your food dehydrator to dry fruits? Leave a comment below! Or, browse our range of commercial and domestic food dehydrators now.