Basically, all you need for dehydrating is a sharp knife and cutting board, a rack on which to air dry your food, and some food items!

Dehydrating is very easy and very forgiving.  even a novice can do a wonderful job without worrying about spoiled food. 

Since the dawn of time, that’s the way people dehydrated food.  If it was meat, they might have a smoky fire to keep insects and predators away, and perhaps impart a nice, smoky flavor. Fruits and veggies might simply be laid out on rocks or branches in the sun. 

But today we have wonderful ways of dealing with insects, sanitation, temperature control, etc.

I will be going over various types of equipment that will make your dehydrating experience more satisfying and enjoyable.

Types of Equipment You may Need:

 Bare Minimum:

  • Sharp knife, preferably a chef’s knife
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Cutting board
  • Measuring cups
  • Dehydrator – very basic, no need for anything fancy, but it does need the following:
    • Thermostat
    • Blower
  • Storage minimums
    • Zip freezer bags or jars
    • Dark cabinet/box to store dried food
    • Permanent marker to label food packages

Nice if you have the resources:

  • mandolin slicer
  • meat slicer
  • graters
  • zester or micro planer
  • food processor
  • food portion scoopers
  • kitchen timer
  • vacuum pack machine /bags
  • oxygen packets
  • 5 gallon buckets /containers for storing quantities of food

 Be Sure to Check Our pages on specific equipment for instructions and tips:


  1. I just ran across your site and I am looking for best way to store this stuff. And how brittle do you let the stuff get. I am concerned with moisture content and sealing the storage jar. What do you do? Thanks.

    1. Some things will not get brittle. If there is a high sugar content (most fruits) they will tend to be leathery rather than brittle.

      Other things, like onions, will be very brittle. You can crush them in your fingers. Well actually, Vidalias have a high sugar content, so they will tend to be more leathery.

      Basically, it's a matter of experience. I have found that most people's problems come from bagging their food before it is completely cooled to room temperature. Moistuire cpndenses on the inside of the bag when the food is still warm.

      There is a guide put out by the University of Utah. See my post on TESTING FOR DRYNESS.

      Over time you will become experienced in determining whether or not a food item is dry. When you think it's ready, bend a piece in your fingers. Does it snap or flex? Take a taste of the food. Begin to taste and touch samples and you will begin to understand whether or not it's ready.

      When in doubt, let it dry a few more hours or overnight or even another day. It won't hurt it.