Can You Use Air Fryer to Dehydrate Fruits?

I have been looking around for healthy snacking options. Something I can relish in between meals without feeling guilty about burdening my body with junk. 

I asked my granny about snacking options. What she told me filled me with warm happiness- Dehydrated Fruit! 

My granny used to leave the fruits to dry outside under the sun.

Since most of us cannot afford the luxury of private open spaces in the city, I decided to find out if an air fryer can be used to dehydrate fruit.

Can You Use Air Fryer to Dehydrate Fruit? 

A short answer is Yes you can dehydrate fruit in the air fryer

However, there are some things you need to consider like the air fryer features, which function works best, the temperature setting, and the time it will take in the air fryer, etc. 

Allow me to give you a detailed explanation to make things easy.

Following this, you are going to be an expert and smarter (as you can store the dehydrated fruits for months in an airtight container). 

I hope you are drooling and motivated enough to proceed to the next step – dehydrating fruits using the air fryer.

How to Dehydrate Fruits in the Air Fryer 

An air fryer is an excellent appliance to dehydrate fruits. Here is how to go about doing it : 

Prepare the Fruit 

Choose the fruit you wish to dehydrate and wash it well. Remove all dirt and pesticide by soaking it for a while in the water. Rinse and pat dry. 

Remove the seeds and cut the fruit into thin slices (roughly about 1 cm).

The thinner the slice, the less time it will take to remove the water content. Make sure the thickness is uniform so all slices are cooked evenly at the same time.

If you want to add flavor, now is the time. Sprinkle nutmeg or cinnamon powder, sugar, or salt. 

You can also add the chopped slices to a bowl of lemon water (half a lemon to one cup of water) to prevent oxidation.

Let them soak for up to 15 minutes. Take them out and pat them dry. Our fruit is ready for air frying. 

I am now going to tell you two methods of dehydrating fruits in the air fryer 

  1. Dehydrating fruits in the air fryer using the Dehydrator function 
  2. Dehydrating fruits in the air fryer without the Dehydrator feature. 

Dehydrating Fruits Using the Dehydrator function in Air Fryer

Using the air fryer with a dehydrator function is the best method for dehydrating your fruits. 

Make sure the slices do not have water on them. Arrange them in a single layer and press the dehydrate function. 

In some air fryers like the Chefman, you have the option to select 375 degrees for 15 minutes or 140 degrees for 8 hours. 

An average default dehydrating temperature is set anywhere from 120-140 degrees Fahrenheit.  

The average time duration in the Dehydrator function is five to six hours. The time may increase or decrease depending on the moisture content of the fruit.

I would advise against dehydrating at high temperatures for a long duration. The fruit will turn out leathery. 

Dehydrating Fruits Without the Dehydrator Function Air Fryer

If you own an old air fryer that does not have a dehydrator function, don’t worry.

You can still dehydrate the fruits. However, make sure the air fryer has a lower temperature ( 120-140F). 

The dehydrating process takes time.

Set for the maximum allowed time duration in your air fryer and keep repeating until the fruit slices are dehydrated. It can take a couple of hours. 

You will have to keep switching the air fryer back on after the maximum allowed time has lapsed. 

If your air fryer gets heated up, stop for a while and then continue dehydrating at the lowest temperature range until done. 

Tips to Dehydrate Fruits in the Airfryer 

  • Never overlap the fruit slices. They will not end up dehydrating evenly. Place them on a single rack. 
  • If the fruit starts to turn brown on the edges while the middle remains plump, the temperature is not right. Always dehydrate at low temperatures for even results. 
  • There is some loss of nutrients when fruits are dehydrated at high temperatures. The secret to locking the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants is to dehydrate at low temperatures.
  • Keep checking every hour to make sure all’s well until the fruit reaches the right consistency. 
  • You can add some flavors to the fruit before dehydrating them by sprinkling sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, or lemon juice. 
  • You can also dehydrate meat slices and vegetables like onions, peas, cauliflower, carrots, etc. Use them to make soupy broths or bake casseroles. 
  • Store the dehydrated fruits in an airtight glass container for a long shelf life.

let me give you a quick insight into the advantages of dehydrating fruit for driving in some motivation. 

Advantages of Dehydrating Fruits 

Dehydrating food simply means drying up your food at low heat.

This method preserves the fruit slices (by removing the water content, bacteria and mold don’t have a place to grow), so you can have it instantly whenever you feel the craving for it. 

Here are some of the advantages : 

  • Dehydrated fruits retain the fruit’s nutritional value. It contains minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, essential fatty acids, and enzymes (the presence and quantity of nutrients depends on the fruit you choose) 
  • You don’t have to wash, cut, and peel every time. This is a boon especially in winter as we can keep our hands warm inside the gloves. 
  • Dehydrating saves you cash in the long run as you do not purchase the fruit at market prices. It also saves you traveling time and shopping time for fresh fruits.
  • You can eat the fruit during off seasons when only canned versions are available. It is the best alternative as canned fruits contain a high amount of sugar and other preservatives. 
  •  Because of their small size, they help to keep full and prevent you from overeating. 
  • Dehydrated fruits can be eaten solo or added to smoothies, cakes, muffins, salads, yogurt, granola, and oatmeal. You can also use them in teas and alcoholic beverages. 
  • As you are making them at home, you get to control the number of spices/flavors you wish to add like sodium, sugar, nutmeg, or oil. 
  • Dehydrated fruits can be powdered and added to give flavor to dishes or make a skin/face/hair mask. 
  • Use the dehydrated fruits as a garnish for cocktails. You could use an orange wheel, pineapple chunk, or float some strawberries. 
  • Nothing can beat fresh homemade banana/apple chips. You can have it crisp and fresh out of the Airfryer. 
  • Dehydrated fruits stay fresh longer compared to stored fresh fruits in the refrigerator. 
  • Dehydrating fruits helps to prevent the wastage of excess fruits. You can always dehydrate and store them for a rainy day. 
  • They are an excellent option for outdoor activities like camping and hiking.

What Fruits are Best Dehydrated in the Air Fryer? 

You can choose according to your taste, the Dehydrator function helps to dehydrate all sorts of fruits.

It just may take longer if the fruit has a lot of water content. Here are some that taste delicious when dehydrated : 

Apricots 

Apricots taste amazing dried up! Unlike other fruits, they turn chewy when dried up.

Apricots are full of nutrients like vitamin A, Vit C potassium, and antioxidants. 

Strawberries 

Strawberries take less time to dehydrate compared to other fruits. They taste like wild berries when dehydrated.

You can use them in almost all dessert recipes. 

Bananas

Banana chips are loved by all. The crispy texture of banana chips is worth all the effort.

Being a high source of potassium, these are instant energy boosters and taste great.  

Grapes 

Dehydrated grapes are a powerhouse of nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber. It is considered a superfood.

Not only does it help your muscles and bones, but it is also great for the skin.

You can add dehydrated grapes to smoothies, ice creams, yogurts, cakes, granolas, and other desserts. 

Best Air fryers for Dehydrating Fruit 

The best air fryer would be the one having a lot of space and multi-racks so you can dehydrate your fruit in one go. 

Here are a few I would recommend-

  • Kalorik Maxx is one Airfryer with a lot of racks and a lot of space (26 Quarts). 
  • Chefman 6.3 quart digital air fryer.  It costs only 108 dollars and has wide interiors with two rack trays. The plus point here is the excellent customer reviews on amazon.
  • Ninja AF101 air fryer. Although it is only 4 quarts, it is one of Amazon’s best sellers having the dehydrating function. It also has excellent customer reviews. 
  • Instant Vortex Plus 10 Quart Air Fryer. This is another bestseller having a large capacity (10 quarts) and two rack trays.
  • Power XL Air fryer Pro. This air fryer comes with a recipe book for dehydrating food. It has a 6-quart capacity and comes with three trays for dehydrating foods. 

Recipes for Dehydrating Fruit in the Air Fryer 

Here are three of my favorite recipes 

Banana Chips 

For this you will need:

  • Two bananas (ripe), sliced into thin slices 
  • Cinnamon powder (1 tsp) 

Arrange the fruit in a single layer. Make sure not to overlap the slices.

Press the Dehydrator button to set 375 degrees for 15 mins or 135 degrees for six hours. 

Check and continue cooking until you get a crisp consistency. Make sure to keep checking the Dehydrator tray. 

Apple Rings 

Peel and slice the apples into round shapes. Remove the core. Sprinkle nutmeg powder on top along with brown sugar. 

Place the apple rings in a single layer making sure not to overlap the apple slices.

Use the default dehydrator function to set 375 degrees for 15 mins. Keep checking and continue to cook until you get the desired consistency.

Dried Strawberries 

You can slice the strawberries into half or quarters depending on how you like them. I don’t like seasoning it and prefer to cook it as it is.

Arrange the strawberries in a single layer, making sure not to overlap the fruit.

Press the Dehydrator option and you can go overnight with this at 140° F for five hours, 135 degrees for six hours/ 375° F for 15 minutes.

I prefer the shorter time duration. Enjoy it as it is or use it in other food recipes. 

Final Words  

Now you know how fun it is to dehydrate fruits in the air fryer. All sorts of fruits can be dehydrated in the air fryer. The world is your playground. 

To dehydrate fruits, the air fryer must have a dehydrator function button or be able to operate at low settings of 135-145 degrees.

I have mentioned the best air fryers for dehydrating fruits as well. 

Grab some of your favorite fruits, follow the technique above and create magic in your kitchen. I wish you happy times eating the delicious savories without guilt. Cheers! 

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