Wednesday, September 9, 2015

How to Dehydrate Zucchini

I like zucchini.

Husband does not.

That does not stop me from buying and cooking zucchini. I try to buy it in smaller quantities because I typically use zucchini to make myself a dairy free lunch on those days when Husband makes a hot and spicy food fiasco that my wimpy taste buds can’t handle. Everybody wins!

Sometimes during gardening season we end up with more zucchini than I can eat before it goes bad. That encourages me to preserve the summer squash for the winter months when zucchini is out of season and costs stupid money. I don’t have room in my small freezer a bunch of extra zucchini to freeze until the off season so I dehydrate it.

Pin this post for later!



Here’s how.

How to Make Dried Zucchini Chips

 

The instructions and recipe for dehydrating zucchini and making dried zucchini chips are the same. The only difference is when making dried zucchini chips most people skip blanching the sliced zucchini. Instead you brush the slices with olive oil (or the cooking oil of your choice) and sprinkle salt on the top of the slices before putting them in the dehydrator.
 
 I made my dried zucchini into zucchini flakes by breaking up the slices before I put them in my food storage container.


You will need:

Zucchini 

Food processor, knife and cutting board, or mandolin

Pot of water and a stove – to blanch the zucchini for straight forward dehydrating. If you want to make flavored zucchini chips you can skip this.

Olive oil or cooking oil of your choice – for flavored zucchini chips only.

Salt – for flavored zucchini chips only.

Dehydrator

The Saddest Dog in the World to Oversee Your Project and Cry Because She Didn’t Get to Eat Any Zucchini  


Don’t feel too bad for Lacey. She didn’t earn any zucchini but I made her a tray of dried carrot dog treats at the same time I was drying the zucchini. I’ll have the dried carrot dog treat recipe in a future post here. Follow me @condoblues on Instagram for more real time recipe and DIY project photos like this one!


Make it:

1. Wash and thinly slice the zucchini with the food processor, knife and cutting board, or mandolin. The thinner the slice, the better the vegetable will dry.

2. Choose your recipe adventure!

  • To Make Flavored Zucchini Chips: Brush both sides of the zucchini with the oil of your choice and season with the salt of your choice.

  • To Dehydrate Zucchini:  Add the zucchini slices to the pot of water on he stove and heat them until they start to simmer and remove the pot from the stove (called blanching.) The idea is to slightly heat the vegetable, not to cook it all the way. Blanching will encourage the zucchini to dehydrate more quickly and evenly. It is not crucial if you don’t blanch the zucchini (actually it is a small miracle I remember to do for this post.) although it might take a little longer for the zucchini to dehydrate completely.

3. Spread the zucchini evenly and in a single layer on your dehydrator trays. If the slices overlap, they may take longer to dry.

You can see at the top of the dehydrator tray some of the zucchini slices I blanched longer than I should.If you are wondering, I have a Nesco food dehydrator and I can’t recommend it enough! You can learn more about it here. (affiliate link for your convenience)

4. Dry the zucchini in the dehydrator at 140 degrees (F ) for 5 to 10 hours until all of the water is removed from the vegetables.


 
The darker zucchini flakes are from letting the zucchini actually start to cook because I left it on the stove too long when I was blanching. It will not hurt the flavor. It just looks a little different.

5. Store the dried zucchini in an air tight container.

Did you like this post? Get more like it by subscribing to the Lazy Budget Chef RSS feed or by subscribing to Lazy Budget Chef by email.

Disclosure: There are affiliate links in this post.