I’m sure that the majority of people have had a dehydrated orange at one point or another. It’s not too unusual to see them in trail mix, for example. But how many people know how they are made? If you’re like me, chances are slim (pun intended). I learned this summer that oranges could be dehydrated in a food dehydrator! All it will take is some time and patience, but once they’re done drying out, you’ll be left with a fantastic snack to enjoy on your next hike or picnic!
How to Dehydrate Oranges
Select oranges that are ripe and not too soft.
It would help if you looked for oranges that are fully colored and not too soft. Also, you want to make sure that they are ripe. Slightly under-ripe (or green) oranges will take longer to dehydrate and won’t taste as good when they’re done!
Cut the oranges in half, then peel off the skin.
You will need to cut the oranges in half and then peel off the skin. This may take a little bit of work, depending on how ripe your oranges are. But, if you’re lucky, the peels will come right off with little to no effort at all!
Slice into thin slices or cubes.
Once you’ve peeled the oranges, slice them into thin rounds or cubes. The smaller they are, the quicker they’ll dehydrate. I like cube-sized pieces because it’s easier to transport them in my bag and takes up less space!
You can apply a mandoline to slice them if you have one. Otherwise, a sharp knife will work just fine! I prefer to use an orange peeler so that the peels don’t get mushed up in my fruit slicer (if you’re using a mandoline like me)
Place on dehydrator trays.
After you have sliced the oranges, place them on a food dehydrator tray. This will allow the air to circulate and dry out all sides of your oranges at once! If you use a single-tray model, put an even amount of orange slices in each section. You want to make sure that they are not overlapping too much, or the air will not be able to get through.
Dehydrate for about 8-12 hours.
Depending on your food dehydrator and how ripe your oranges are, they should take between 8-12 hours to fully dry out on 135 F.
To tell if your oranges are adequately dehydrated, check them each hour to see if they are still damp or sticky. If your oranges are sticky, move the dehydrator tray up to 150 F for a few hours until it is completely dry!
Keep an eye on your food during the process to make sure they don’t get overdried.
Health Benefits of Oranges
Some of the best parts about dehydrated orange slices are the health benefits! They can help boost your immune system and even lower blood pressure. It’s a great snack to take on hikes in your lunch box or eat around the campfire with your friends!
- Protects your cells from damage and aging – rich in Vitamin C, which is necessary for normal growth and development.
- It helps your body make collagen which helps keep your skin, teeth, gums, and blood vessels healthy.
- Promotes healthy hair growth –oranges are great for those with dry or brittle hair.
- Protects against free radicals in your body – an antioxidant that can fight infections in the body.
- Boosts immune system – vitamin C helps keep your immune system healthy and strong!
- Improves blood circulation – rich in potassium, which can lower blood pressure.
Do Dehydrated Oranges Taste Good?
Dehydrated oranges taste really good! The only difference is the texture. Because they are dried, it makes them chewy like a dried fruit snack bar would be.
What Oranges Should I Use?
It would help if you found good oranges for this recipe. Florida navels, temple oranges, and Cara Caras are all excellent choices! Heirloom varieties will have more flavor, but you can use any orange that is in season!
How Long Do Dehydrated Oranges Last?
They should last for six months if stored in a cool, dry place. However, if they are kept in an airtight container with all of the air removed from it, the shelf life will be extended to one year.
Where to Buy Dehydrated Orange Slices
You can buy some dehydrated orange slices and other fruit slices at Amazon. However, the best place to get them is actually at a store specializing in gourmet foods or international foods. Many of these stores have all sorts of dried fruits, and they will recommend which ones are good for making homemade trail mix!
What to Do With Dehydrated Oranges
The things you can do with dehydrated oranges are endless! They’re an excellent addition to camping meals, hiking snacks, and just about any other outdoor adventure. You can even enjoy them around the house as a healthy treat for yourself or your kids when you’ve had a busy day and want something sweet and delicious. So, if you’re looking for some fresh new ideas on things to do with dehydrated oranges, here are some of my favorites.
Dehydrated oranges are excellent for snacking on the go! They’re delicious when mixed with other dried fruits (like apples and bananas) or even when added to your favorite granola mix. You can also keep them in a baggie and simply munch on them throughout the day as you need them. Kids love these too since they taste just like fresh oranges, and parents can feel good about letting their little ones snack on dehydrated fruit instead of candy or other unhealthy snacks!
You can munch right off the dehydrator tray while out hiking for an instant energy boost that’s healthy enough to eat on the trail! It’s so much more filling than a candy bar and takes up much less room in your pack. I feel great knowing that when I’m out hiking and feeling hungry, I have a delicious orange snack at my disposal to fill me up instead of something that will just make me crash later.
They’re also great mixed into any other camping meal – especially if you want some extra flavor in there! Instead of adding salt or sugar. You can even throw a few sliced oranges into your rice or quinoa while it’s cooking to give it a hint of tart sweetness as well.
String a dehydrated orange slice garland for your tree or to hang around the house. The sweet and tangy flavor is perfect at Christmas time, but they can also be used as a beautiful ornament during other times of the year!
The aroma of dried orange peels will bring you back to the holidays and family gatherings. Add them to other dried goods such as flowers, pine cones, and spices for a colorful bounty that makes your house feel like home.
How Do You Know When Dehydrated Orange Slices Are Spoiled?
The best way to tell if a bag of dehydrated orange slices is old or not is the smell! You’ll know right away if they are spoiled because they won’t have the citrusy aroma that fresh oranges do. Also, if you have bought them in bulk before, your nose will be able to detect a stale bag even quicker than it would a fresh one!
If you open up a bag and it smells rotten, do not use it. It’s hazardous for your health to be eating dehydrated orange slices that are spoiled.
You should check for mold on the dehydrated orange slices as well. If there is any on the outside of the bag or any visible mold in the fruit itself, don’t eat it!. If you have a bag that has gone bad and there is no mold on it, you can still tell if the dehydrated orange slices are about to go bad. The inside will look brownish in color or slightly yellowish. This would be a sign that the dehydrated orange slices are about to go bad. It is best to throw out any fruit with this discoloration as well.
Clean and Healthy Snack
This dehydrated orange snack is also perfect for your kid’s lunch box or just about any other outdoor activity that you’re taking part in. This recipe is easy to make, easy to store, and tastes great!
It’s a super easy and tasty way to use up some of the oranges in season. Hopefully, I’ve inspired you to give it a try for yourself! If so, let me know how yours turned out below or on Instagram! I’d love to hear about it and your favorite ways to use them.
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