On the trail, dehydrated strawberries make an excellent highlight ingredient to breakfast cereals both hot and cold. Thin slices re-hydrate quickly, and work well in instant oatmeal, particularly when added to the water before heating.
Strawberries are sweet and acidic enough that they do not require pre-treatment before dehydration. However, if they need to be stored for long periods outside of the refrigerator or freezer, a sulfite dip will help to slow oxidation.
How to dehydrate strawberries
- Rinse the strawberries under cool water.
- Remove the tops, and then chop into halves (or smaller slices for larger strawberries).
- Strawberries will drip juices when they are drying, and this can be avoided by placing the cut side facing up. Placing a solid plastic sheet at the base of the dehydrator to catch the drippings will make for easier clean-up. The cut sides of the drying strawberries can also stick to the plastic food dehydrator trays, so it is advisable to use food-safe nylon or polypropylene mesh to prevent sticking.
- Dehydrate the strawberries for about 8-10 hours. The berries will be fully dried when they are leathery, slightly pliable in the thick sections, and a little crunchy around the thin edges.
- Store dried strawberries in vacuum-sealed bags or Ziploc freezer bags in the refrigerator or freezer until you are ready to eat them.