Are you fond of snacks from sliced apples to bananas, dried strawberries, apricots, and mushrooms, etc.? A preference for dried mangoes, raisins, or jerky beef? But if you spend a lot of money in grocery stores buying these delicacies, isn’t it an expensive deal? Yes! So if I say you can now prepare your favorite dried food products, even at an affordable price, at the convenience of your home, how do you feel? Thanks to the Food Dehydrator Machines, which allow you to do it with ease.
I am sure that I would like to have a great range of useful kitchen appliances in your kitchen for someone who loves cooking. There are several modern kitchen appliances, such as microwaves, toaster ovens, air fryers, hand mixers, and blenders, etc., saving you a lot of time and effort.
One of the best countertop appliances that suck the moisture out of the food and helps to preserve it easily is Food Dehydrators. It is suitable for drying vegetables, nuts, fruits, herbs, meats, fish, etc. Now, get in on it more profoundly.
What is a Food Dehydrator?
Dried foods are one of everyone’s favorites. And dehydrating food means, by drying techniques, preserving food products.
Food dehydrators are small-sized machines that turn fruits, vegetables, herbs, seeds, and even meats into completely dehydrated versions for drying. It not only preserves them this way but also improves their flavor profile.
To do the entire process of drying, these devices combine the strength of heat and airflow. Food dehydrators help you make simple snacks, such as beef jerky, potato chips without oil, and a lot more. The food dehydrators allow you to dry up various herbs such as basils, estragon, lemon balm, and mints, etc, and spices to easily shape excellent seasonings, even if you are fond of seasoning on your snacks.
Top-Rated Food Dehydrators Reviewed
Dehydrator Spot is here to make it easier for you to make this decision and give you enough details to help you make the right choice when it comes to choosing the best dehydrator for food. Here are our top 10 selections:
NESCO FD-75A, Snackmaster Pro Food Dehydrator
If you’re on a budget but would like to snack on a variety of dried foods, you may want to use this food dryer. With a top-mounted fan, it has a vertical flow design, so you can make stuff like fruit or veggie chips and rolls.
Air Flow: Vertical
Temp Range (°F): 95-160
- Despite a 600 w heating fan working with a thermostat, this lightweight unit is quiet.
- Included in this dryer are four sheets and five trays in total. Two are with a mesh, and two are without, so a number of foods can be dried by consumers. Strong papers, for example, are suitable for drying purees into rolls. The versatile screens, by comparison, fit well with herbs. This model can also be extended in height to up to 12 trays.
- In order to spend less time tinkering and turning trays around this food, the dehydrator has an air flow design.
- From 95 ° F to 160 ° F, the adjustable thermostat has seven different settings written above it.
- For different foods, there is also temperature information. All in all, the Nesco FD-75A is a great herbal, vegetable, and fruit drying machine, and comes with a food dehydrator recipe guide.
Excalibur 9-Tray Electric Food Dehydrator
What this model provides should be looked at by larger households that need a lot of dehydrated items. It comes with a hefty price tag, but provides an impressive 15sq feet of space. Like other food dryers, it’s also not completely automatic, but it has decent temperature controls to help you out.
Air Flow: Horizontal
Temp Range (°F): 95-155
- The first thing about this model you’ll note is its size and weight. It’s 19 x 17 x 12.5 and a whopping 22 pounds, but in order to use it, you’ll have to sacrifice some counter-top real estate.
- Since this is a food dehydrator for horizontal flow, the fan and the heating element are in the back.
- This food drying system has nine plastic trays and fine white sheets of the mesh when it comes to shelving. You may dry larger pieces of food that way, as well as smaller slices or herbs. With so many slots available for trays, by putting in less than the limit, you can get more height if appropriate.
- Near the back of this machine, users have a dial and cheat-sheet available to set a drying temperature. The dial goes from 95 ° F to 155 ° F, making the Excalibur 2900ECB ideal for drying a large amount of food, from herbs to jerky. For making leather, it also has a fruit roll tray.
MAGIC MILL Electric Countertop Food Dehydrator
Those that don’t mind paying extra will be more than pleased with this model for a decent food dehydrator. For outstanding performance, it blends stackable trays with a horizontal flow feature. As an additional convenience, you even get a few features that save time and promote the whole process.
Air Flow: Horizontal
Temp Range (°F): 95-158
- A 400w rear-mounted fan that operates with enhanced airflow technology is at the heart of this dehydrator for food.
- This design avoids overheating and also ensures drying so that shelves do not need to be rotated.
- The adjustable thermostat, timer, and auto shut off function can be used by those who want to set and forget.
- For temperatures ranging from 95 ° F to 158 ° F that run for up to 19.5 hours, users can program presets.
- What’s more, there is a role which protects against overheating.
- Lastly, this model features a drip tray for faster clean-up.
Presto 06300 Dehydro Electric Food Dehydrator
Not everybody wants a food dryer from the top of the line that comes with a steep price tag. To join the world of dried foods, some individuals want a secure and inexpensive device. The Presto 06300 Electric is a good option for those people. It is a quick and easy system to clean, but it allows you to invest some extra time.
Air Flow: Vertical
Temp Range (°F): 156
- This model comes with a device that consists of four stacking trays that stack on each other.
- At the bottom, the heating part and fan provide steady airflow, so there is no need to rotate the trays. You can use the see-through cover to monitor development.
- The trays and lid are both dishwashers secure, so this food dehydrator is very practical.
- In total, there are four drying trays with the possibility of extending by accessories to up to eight.
Electric Food Dehydrator Machine
Many individuals who want to purchase a kitchen dehydrator will prefer one with a fair price tag. That’s why we’ve chosen in our food dryer reviews to include this model. It does not have all the characteristics of expensive units, but it gives the cash a lot of value.
Air Flow: Vertical
Temp Range (°F): 180
- This food dehydrator counter-top is compact and lightweight.
- It features a heating element and a fan in its base that helps maintain a constant airflow.
- This is a straight forward machine when it comes to commands. It only has an on/off switch, so it’s simple, but not very flexible.
- It can hit a top temperature of up to 180 ° F when you start using this meat and fruit dryer, so you’re going to have to keep an eye on your food.
Waring Pro DHR30 Professional Dehydrator
This is another model that lies right in the middle when it comes to price and characteristics. A little more temperature regulation over entry-level units is provided by this food dryer. For enhanced flexibility, it also comes with two styles of trays.
Air Flow: Vertical
Temp Range (°F): 110-175
- This kitchen dehydrator, along with a fan that provides good airflow, has a heating element on the rim.
- Waring has built a dial that has four settings in order to make this a simple-to-use unit. Fan only”, “low”, “medium and high” are these presets.” The low is about 110 °F, medium around 140 °F, and high around 175 °F, according to the manual. This ensures that you can dry veggies, fruits, and meat if you don’t know your temps.
- There’s also a strong tray included in this box for those who like making fruit leather. All in all, the Cuisinart DHR-20 is an outstanding jerky, roll, and vegetable food dryer.
L’EQUIP 528 6 Tray Food Dehydrator
The designers behind this food dryer have been working hard to combine features with great looks. The final result might not be optimal, but a lot of products can be managed by this machine. The L’Equip’s 528 is ideal for, among other things, herbs and flowers. It also comes with a handy beginners’ instructional and recipe book.
Air Flow: Horizontal
Temp Range (°F): 90-160
- This food dehydrator made in Korea is lightweight at 11 pounds but at 10 x 17 x 11.8′′ on the larger side.
- With the aid of a fan, the heat for drying comes from the bottom and gets forced up.
- You get six trays in total, with 12 being the max, with this jerky and fruit dryer. There is a fine mesh insert on each of the six shelves that prevent diced foods or herbs from falling through.
- There are two fruit leather sheets in the box on top of that.
Nesco Snackmaster Encore Food dehydrator
In our reviews, the second Nesco food dryer is another affordable model and comes with a couple of useful accessories and features. It can treat all types of vegetables and fruits in this way, as well as jerky. For light to moderate use, this is one more unit ideal.
Air Flow: Horizontal
Temp Range (°F): 95-155
- The heat source and fan are built into the lid on this food dehydrator.
- With a dial that also turns this appliance on you can monitor the drying temperature.
- The range available goes from 95°F to 160°F.
- Nesco has a temperature reminder written on the top for fast support.
- This model comes with five plastic trays as a stackable unit.
Hamilton Beach 32100A Digital Food Dehydrator
You get a lot of versatility with this food dryer for the cost of a single machine. Unlike other versions, this one has a stainless steel base and automated controls that are much more costly. It has enough room to accommodate a large range of items, but it doesn’t take up much space at the same time.
Air Flow: Vertical
Temp Range (°F): 100-160
- This food dehydrator has a heat feature in its robust metal base and fan. It comes with five stackable BPA-free plastic trays and a few accessories as well.
- For producing fruit rolls, there’s a solid sheet and a finer mesh sheet that’s perfect for herbs.
- You can program the digital panel located on the front of the base once you have placed everything inside and put on the cover. Users can set temperature in 5-degree increments, from 100 ° F to 160 ° F, and drying time with these controls (up to 48h).
- The automatic shut-off, which makes dehydrating food simpler, is another useful feature.
- The lid on this device is transparent so that at least in the top tray, you can review progress at any time. Overall, in our opinion, Hamilton Beach 32100A is the best food dryer for the money.
Nesco JerkyXpress dehydrator
The final model is another affordable Nesco in our round-up. This is considered one of the top rated meat dehydrators, aimed for jerky lovers on a budget. To make the job easier, it has a few special accessories. Besides that it is a basic model that for beginners can be a good gift.
- Air Flow: Vertical
- Temp Range (°F): 160
- Trays: 4
- Wattage: 350
- Timer: No
- There are four round plastic trays in this dryer for food, each 13.5′′ wide.
- Then for smaller or diced items, there are two strong sheets for making fruit leather and two fine mesh covers.
- It comes with a gun with three tips to squeeze out minced meat and four packs of assorted seasonings, as this is a jerky making machine. You can also use the gun to create rolls with fruit or vegetable purees and jams.
- On the lid is the heating part, which makes it a vertical flow model that has a fan forcing down air.
- You’ll like this unit if you have limited room in your kitchen. It’s 14 x 8 x 14 ” in size and weighs just 5.5 lbs, so it’s easy to pass around.
- Unfortunately, this food dehydration system does not have any timers or knobs available; it has a fixed temperature of about 165 °. The Nesco FD-28JX, therefore, is perfect for making jerky and drying meat, but not so much for herbs.
Types of Dehydrators
Stacked Food Type
Stackable or vertical flow food dehydrators have a heating element on the bottom or top of the heating element (lid). These units are among the market’s most affordable, but they have their downsides.
The biggest drawback is that they do not disperse heat as uniformly as machines for boxes and shelves. Many versions of this sort have a ventilator that improves airflow issues. Users have to consult on their food with others more frequently and change trays on occasion.
For several fruits, vegetables and herbs, vertical flow dehydrators run well. Still, you will need to wait longer and have a more hands-on approach while making jerky. To get better and faster results, you need to put more work into flipping and moving trays around.
- Generally, they are rather inexpensive devices.
- They don’t take up much room on your kitchen counter with regard to height,
- It is possible to extend them. With additional racks, a lot of stackable units will work.
- They are not as good as horizontal flow models for spreading heat.
- They do better with fruits and vegetables than with meat.
Box And Shelf
Horizontal flow or dehydrators for shelving and boxes work just like your average oven. They have a heating source in the back and a ventilator that can be in front of the heater or at the end. They appear to be pricier than stackable models when it comes to price but offer better performance.
In fact, throughout the unit, they’re better at keeping an even temperature. This is what makes them a superior choice for drying and making jerky larger amounts of produce. Since the airflow is balanced, you don’t have to search as much on these machines. This makes it easier to use, especially if a timer is included.
In addition, trays usually do not need to be rotated, so you can start them up and leave them to work. Some units have an automated shut-off feature as well.
- They have a temperature that is evener and more powerful
- They are suitable for hard vegetables and different meats.
- Easier to use because they don’t have to be checked
- They can perform more complicated tasks.
- Much more costly than versions with stackable trays, they are
- The majority are big, too, so they need more room on your counter.
Food Dehydrator Buying Guide – Things to Consider
Nowadays, shopping for almost anything can simultaneously be a blessing and a curse. This is because, even among the food dehydrators, there is so much to choose from. There are many models and many features to consider, but to point you in the right direction, we will concentrate on some of the most important things.
Temperature and Air Flow
The most crucial aspect of every unit is to achieve a given temperature and keep up the airflow.
And though as a novice, you purchase a food dehydrator, you’ll most certainly want to try various stuff. For dehydrating taller or bulkier foods, such as herbs or spices, shelf style units have greater clearance. Stackable versions don’t have much space in each tray, but with more trays, they can extend.
Ease of Use
You should get a model that has a horizontal design and a fan included to eliminate the need for rotating trays every so often.
To spend less time cleaning, buy a model that has parts that are dishwasher safe.
Check the length of the warranty and return policy before purchasing something. Get a unit that has a warrant for at least one year.
It is much far easier to dehydrate your own foods than ready-made packaged foods. Without any added preservatives or garbage, it lets you make healthy and finger-licking snacks and foods. Having a food dehydrator at home makes it much simpler and more convenient for the food drying process than drying in the sun.
Hoping the blog covers all the information needed to get your favorite range of food dehydrators to be used at home. Well, the feedback for the top-rated models we have covered will definitely make your buying decision easier. So what are you going to wait for? To enjoy nutritious and tasty snacks, now choose your new food dehydrator!
- What Does A Food Dehydrator Do And How Does It Work?
- How to Use a Food Dehydrator for Dry Fruits and Vegetables