State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600528
1. Distribute fruits on trays in a single layer.
Cheesecloth may be spread over the slats for drying small
pieces. Different kinds of fruits may be dried at the same
time. Strong-smelling fruits should be dried separately.
2. Preheat the dehydrator to between 140-150 degrees
3. Place an accurate, easily read thermometer on the
4. After the trays are placed in the dehydrator, the
temperature will drop. Bring the temperature up to 140
degrees Fahrenheit to complete the drying.
5. Examine the fruits from time to time (1 1/2 - 2-hour
intervals, depending on the fruit.) To get uniform drying,
rotate the trays; if necessary, turn the product.
6. At the start of the drying process there is little
danger of scorching, but when nearly dry, the fruits scorch
easily. Even slight scorching destroys the flavor and may
lower the nutritive value, so be careful not to allow the
temperature to rise above 140 degrees Fahrenheit, especially
during the latter stage of drying.
7. Be sure to place the dehydrator in a well-
ventilated room, so that the water vapor will be
8. The time for drying varies according to type of fruit,
size of pieces and load on the tray. The time at 140
degrees Fahrenheit usually ranges from 6 to 16 hours.
9. Be sure to cool the material before testing for
10. After food has finished drying, and dehydrator has
cooled, trays may be cleaned with hot, soapy water, then
rinsed, and dried.