Top Food Dehydrator: 5 Quick Tips Regarding Food Dehydrator

How to Choose The Top  Right Food Dehydrator

Rosewill Countertop Portable Electric Food Fruit Dehydrator Machine with Adjustable Thermostat, BPA-Free 5-Tray RHFD-15001

How to Choose The Right Food Dehydrator:

How to Choose a Food Dehydrator The characteristics and practicality listed below should be taken into consideration and contrasted with other products and items when assessing and appraising food dehydrator.

Evaluating food dehydrators from different manufacturers which may have the same characteristics, can be done using the cost of food drying for each square foot – this can be computed by dividing the total price with the total of the whole area used for drying – while taking into consideration the manufacturer, their status and some evaluations of the unit itself.

The assessment of food dehydrators from different companies that may have distinct characteristics, can be done using the same computation of the cost of drying for each square foot and then you should determine if the added elements will make up for the added expenses for each square foot.

* Overall Dehydrating or Drying Section – How big is the area used in dehydrating the food does your device have? The units used in the overall drying section are square feet and can be computed using the following formula:

1) Multiply the total number of trays used for dehydrating with the area covered by the trays, length multiplied to its width, and using inches its units.

2) Divide the result by 144 square inches (0.09 square meters).

For example: A dehydrator has a total of nine (9) trays for dehydrating at a width of 15 inches (38.1 cm), and a length of 15 inches (38.1 cm).

The total area for dehydrating is 14.1 square feet (1.31 square meters) (The 15-inch length is multiplied to 15-inch width, and then multiplied to the total number of trays, which is 9.

The total of 2,2025 is divided by 144 giving a quotient of 14.1) It is quite clear that the whole area for dehydrating the food will establish the volume of food that can be dried at a single time. 

The area that will use for drying the food should be big enough to accommodate the biggest volume of food items that you will dehydrate in one day. An unwritten rule would show that one square foot of dehydrating area should be allotted for every pound of food. But the size of the food as well as its water retention level will be a factor here.

* Flow of air – A food dehydrator uses heat and the flow of air in taking out the wetness of the food. The air in the dehydrator will flow upwards or from side to side across the food. The heat source and fan of dehydrators whose air flows from one side to another are positioned on one side.

The trays where the food items are placed are positioned like cabinet drawers. Since the horizontal flow of air will not mix up the different aromas of the food items, dehydrators with air flowing from side to side are ideal for a variety of foods items dehydrated at one time compared to dehydrators whose air flows upwards.

The juices that come from the food will also not drip into the heat source of the dehydrator facilitating the cleanup of the device. The heat source and fan of dehydrators whose air flows upwards are found at the bottom of the device.

The trays used for drying are piled up above the heat source. The heat that dries the food items will be different from the trays near the heat source to the topmost tray since the trays are piled above the heat source. It may be necessary to reposition the trays inside a dehydrator whose air flows upward while the drying process is ongoing for the dehydration to be effectively done on all food items stored in the different trays.

* Temperature regulator – The temperature of the dehydrator is regulated using a mechanism that increases or decreases the temperature of the dehydrator to keep the temperature at its preferred level.

The regulator will be able to do this by turning on the heating or cooling mechanism, whenever necessary, to keep the ideal temperature setting. The temperature regulator of the dehydrator should have a decent temperature range, normally from 85 degrees Fahrenheit (29.44 °C) up to 155 degrees Fahrenheit (68.33 °C), to allow its use for a wide variety and different volumes of food items.

If the regulating mechanism is absent in a dehydrator, the food will be dried using a steady and invariable temperature, however, there is the possibility that the heat in the dehydrator will also increase. When this happens, the hardening of food will occur or the food will have a dry exterior however, the interior will still be moist with micro-organisms still thriving inside.

* Power – The power that the food dehydrator utilizes determines its wattage, which is the same as in light bulbs. It is important to take into account the power of the food dehydrator when looking at the whole area for drying.

A good amount of power will be needed to dry the food if the dehydrator is big, and has a bigger number of drying trays. The power requirements of various dehydrators can be contrasted by looking at the power needed for every square foot of dehydration space.

All you need to do is to divide the power requirements of the dehydrator with the total area used for drying to get the power required for each square foot.

* Cost – Contrasting the price for every square foot of dehydrating area is a good way in evaluating various food dehydrators that have different areas for drying, dimensions powers, and prices. To compute this, divide the price of the food dehydrator with the total area used for drying.

How to Choose Food Dehydrator:

Sweet food dehydrated red blueberry
Sweet food dehydrated red blueberry

Choosing the right food dehydrator for you and your family all comes down to two main things: assessing your needs, and reading reviews.

You should start by asking yourself what kind of food you’re looking to dehydrate. Do you grow a lot of your fruit and vegetables? If so, drying them before they go moldy is a great idea, and one saves you money on buying dried food in store too.

If this is you then a standard food dehydrator will suit you, but you will need to decide based on the volume of fruit you want to dry. For instance, a five tray dehydrator will usually make around 1 lb (0.45 kilogram) of dried food, and this takes anywhere up for two days.

You should be able to work out whether you’ll need a larger dehydrator from this, but be aware that you can always purchase additional trays for your appliance to suit your needs as well.

Secondly, when you choose food dehydrator models you should consider how likely you are to be around it when it’s being used. If you’re likely to need to leave it running while you go to work, or travel then you will need a dehydrator with a timer. These may cost a little more, but it’s useful to be able to set the timer to the desired time (usually anywhere up to 26 hours) and leave it doing its job.

Most people find that the best dehydrators have fans in them, as these help to air convection to flow evenly through each tray. This prevents some trays from drying quicker than others, and the possibility of some pieces of food starting to cook. When you’re choosing food dehydrator appliances, it’s important to keep each of these factors in mind, as well as issues like ‘will it fit my kitchen decor?’ and ‘can I make fruit roll-ups in it?

Hopefully, this guide has gone some way to helping you learn how to choose the right food dehydrator. If you can’t decide where to start, then we recommend you check out our By Brand and By Type pages for more information.


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