Drying Apples for a Healthy Snack

Life for this college professor has been quite busy this week with blogging, scoring graduate work, attending meetings, book club, canning apples, apple butter, and making a few other delicious treats. I’m not complaining…I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Our recent trip to Haney’s Apple Orchard resulted in more than just apple butter. In my last blog post, I promised that I would share more of the delicious treats that we made from the beautiful sweet apples that our family picked. I’m excited to share with you how I turned one full bag of sweet and juicy fresh picked apples into delicious healthy dried apples.

apple two  dried apples

Ingredients and Tools

apples
lemon juice
water
cinnamon (optional)
oven or dehydrator
knife
parchment paper

1.) When I buy fruit, I prefer to buy organic fruit. I wash all fruit before I begin to ensure that it’s clean and free from garden pests and dust. I like to use Fit organic clean spray. It’s simple to use, inexpensive, and can purchased at Wal-Mart.

organic spray

2.) Next, you will need to peel and slice the apples and soak them in a lemon water bath mixture for eight to ten minutes. This helps prevent discoloring during the dehydration process. Remove the apples from the lemon bath and gently pat them dry with a clean paper towel.

There are several methods to dry fruit. I personally like to use an electric dehydrator. It’s quick, the cleanup is easy, and I can dry more apples at one time.

Dehydration Method

dehydrator

3.) Place the apple slices in the trays of the dehydrator. It’s okay to place them close. They can even touch. The apples will shrink as the they dry. If you are using a dehydrator follow the instructions that came with it for time and temperature. For example, my dehydrator instructions recommend apples to be dried at 135 degrees for 8 and a half to 9 hours. I love this dehydrator! I purchased it at a very reasonable price on Amazon. If you would like to purchase one, click on my Amazon link titled, A Few of My Favorites. Okay, back to dried apples. If you like your apples a little more crispy, you may leave them an additional thirty minutes. Also, for an even tastier treat, you may sprinkle the apple slices with cinnamon. This is one of my favorite sweet treats, and your house will smell wonderful while the apples are drying! Allow the apples to cool in the dehydrator. Remove when they are cool and store in zip lock bags. There is no need to refrigerate dried fruit. If you are planning to cook with the apples, you can vacuum seal them for a longer shelf life.

drying apples

almost dried

dried ready to cool

Oven Method

You can also dry apples in an oven. It’s fairly simple and works well.

1.) Wash, peel and slice apples. Soak them in a lemon juice bath.

2.) Line cookie sheets with parchment paper to prevent sticking. Set your oven temperature to 150-200 and bake the apples for one hour. Take the apples out of the oven and carefully turn the apples over. Bake them for an additional hour. If you like your apples a little crisper, you can bake them an additional thirty minutes. Check your apples frequently, as all ovens bake differently. Once you turn the oven off, leave the apples in the oven for an additional one to two hours. You may crack the door to your oven slightly while the apples are cooling. Allow the apples to cool completely in the oven and remove.

Both methods work really well and produce a wonderful sweet treat to snack on, or use in recipes such as apple stack cakes. That’s a recipe for another blog! I know your family will enjoy your fresh dried apples as much as mine does!

dried apples

Dried apples are a clean, healthy, and delicious treat

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