No one else will think of this one, a truly unique gift for pet lovers... make your own healthy dog treats.
We all know someone who loves their dog more than people. If you want to find a unique gift for pet lovers that no one else will think of start here with our food dehydrators. Sound boring? It definitely won't be for them when they are making their own healthy dog treats. Or how about buying one for yourself and giving the treats as a gift! Either way they will love it.
Pet lovers love to know exactly what their doggy treats are made of. With unhealthy treats everywhere at the moment and overseas companies taking over some of our own Australian brands what is in the doggy bag may not be such a treat.
There are many news items at the moment suggesting that here are some dangerous dog treats on the market that should be avoided at all costs. Some that can result in serious injury and even death. Beef jerky in particular. If you choose a unique gift for pet lovers from our a food dehydrator range they can make delicious and healthy beef jerky and other treats for their furry best friend at home in their own kitchen.
See more of our delicious food dehydrator recipes for people and pups.
Not just for pets
Food Dehydrators are perfect
Going bananas for bananas in your food dehydrator!
Why do we go bananas for bananas? The Australian Banana page says "peel good, feel good". Bananas have bone strengthening magnesium, folate for a healthy mind and Vitamin B6 for that feel good energy. Dehydrate bananas in your BioChef Food Dehydrator for healthy snacks that last the distance.
How to make banana chips in your food dehydrator
Slightly brown-flecked bananas will have the sweetest, most concentrated flavour when dried.
Peel the bananas. Slice bananas into 1/4-inch or 3/8-inch chips.
Dip each banana slice into the lemon juice. This lessens browning of the banana chips and adds a bit of vitamin C back into the banana.
Shake off the extra lemon juice and lay the banana slice on the dehydrator tray. Leave enough space between banana slices on the tray to allow sufficient air flow for drying.
Fill the available dehydrator trays with banana slices. Put the trays into the dehydrator and set initial temperature to 65 degrees Celcius or 150 degrees Fahrenheit and dry at that temperature for the first two hours.
Turn the temperature down to 55 degrees Celcius or 130 degrees Fahrenheit after two hours. From here it will take another six hours for bananas to fully dry.
Half way through, stop the food dehydrator and flip over all the banana slices. The slices are easy to peel off the dehydrator tray when they are warm, and turning ensures dryness.
Test for dryness. If the banana chips are leathery to crisp, they are done.
Cool the banana chips for a few hours in the food dehydrator before removing them. Pack dried chips into plastic bags, or vacuum
Compare food dehydrators in Australia with our handy Food Dehydrator Comparison tables. Below we outline the features and benefits of each dehydrator, making it easier for you to make the right choice.
Compare BioChef, Excalibur & Sedona Dehydrators
A food dehydrator is an electric appliance which uses both air and heat to remove the moisture or water content from foods. Water is what makes food spoil or go bad and without water, bacteria and mould can't grow. Bacteria, yeasts and molds need the water in the food to grow, and drying effectively prevents them from surviving in the food. Usually a fan and a heating element are used to create the dehydration environment.
Drying food using sun and wind to prevent spoilage has been practiced since ancient times, and was the earliest form of food preservation - it helped our ancestors through droughts and famines. Fortunately, today's technology has made this process much easier and more effective, with modern day dehydrators regulating the temperature for even and consistent drying.
Read on to discover the top 10 reasons why so many people are using dehydrators to dry their foods, today!
1. Dehydrated foods taste great
Using a food dehydrator to remove moisture from food items such as fruits, vegetables and meats, creates naturally concentrated, rich and delicious tasting food.
Not only that, but when making food yourself, you know the quality and freshness of the produce you are using - unlike when eating dehydrated foods purchased from the grocery store.
2. Reduce food waste and extend shelf life
Never waste food again with a food dehydrator. Using your leftover fruits and vegetables in a food dehydrator will extend their shelf life for up to 2 years! Yes, that's right - 2 years!
Below are just a few ways you can reduce food waste by preserving food with a dehydrator and keeping your pantry stocked year round whilst
Make your own! Try these easy and (much) healthier snack recipes using a food dehydrator.
Snacks can easily be one of our biggest and unknown over-indulgences, with most snacks packed with hidden refined sugar, preservatives and colouring. Making your own snacks will not only save money but you can control exactly what goes into them, meaning the end result is much more wholesome and nourishing. Take a look at our dehydrator snack recipes below:
Click ahead to view the dehydrator snack recipes here...
Beetroot & Sweet Potato Chips
Mixed Berry Fruit Rollup
Apricot & Coconut Fruit Rollup
Activated Muesli Bars
Gluten & Dairy Free Bread
Dried not fried! Use your favourite vegetables to create healthy chips.
- 1 large sweet potato (yam)
- 3 whole beetroots
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 2 tbsp of oil (coconut or olive)
- Rock salt to season
1. Thinly slice sweet potato and beetroot, ideally into 3mm slices. The thicker the chips, the longer drying time they will require.
2. Place slices into mixing bowl and toss with oil and paprika.
3. Dehydrate at 55°C for 8 hours. Adjust drying time depending on thickness of vegetable slices
4. Season with sea salt
Fruit roll ups - a healthy, cost saving and delicious alternative to store bought 'mystery treats'
Fruit roll ups are very easy to make with the horizontal style of BioChef Arizona or BioChef Savana Food Dehydrators . Combining yoghurt and fresh fruit (not frozen fruits) and naturally spiced or sweetened produces a high energy, nutritious snack food.
Use ripe or slightly overripe produce that blends and tastes good together. Here are a couple of ideas to try.
- strawberries and yoghurt
- bananas and pineapple with a sprinkle of cinnamon
- seasonal berries and peaches with a dash of honey
- mango with a small amount of fresh ginger
- apple and kiwifruit
Wash and remove any blemishes, stems or pits and peel the produce if desired. Puree the produce with or without some yogurt in a BioChef Blender until smooth.
Pour the mixture onto the sheets and place on the tray of your food dehydrator. When the fruit leather has dried, it will be a bit shiny and non-sticky to touch.
Allow it to cool and peel it from the tray. Roll into a tight cylindrical shape and store in an airtight container. You then have your own fruit roll ups at a fraction of the price and with the knowledge of exactly what is in them.
Strawberry and yoghurt roll-ups
Simply blend the following fresh ingredients:
- punnet of strawberries
- dollops of good quality yoghurt
Vitality 4 Life have a wide range of food dehydrators using the horizontal style which is superior for even drying of ingredients. The BioChef range has carefully developed a range which will fit
Dehydrating technology has taken a huge leap forward with the Savana Dehydrator which use two 300 watt fans to spread heat evenly, has a tempered glass door for easy viewing and plenty of drying space.
Here are some tips for easy dehydrating using the Savana Dehydrator:
- Try to slice or cut food all the same size so it will dry at approximately the same time. Make thin, flat cuts.
- Don’t slice food too thin. 6mm to 10mm thickness is perfect. Use a ceramic knife to further reduce oxidation.
- The larger the cut area, the faster and better the food dehydrates since moisture escapes best from a cut or broken surface.
- Thin stalked vegetables like green beans, asparagus or rhubarb should be cut in half the long way or with an extreme diagonal cut. Fruit should be sliced across the core. Place these cut side up on the tray.
- Small fruits like strawberries can be cut in half, while even smaller berries should either be cut in half or blanched slightly to break the skin.
- Waxy skinned fruits like cherries, grapes, plums and blueberries must have their skins poked or pitted and will take 1-2 days to dehydrate depending on their size.
- The peel of fruits and vegetables contain much of the nutritional value. It is better not to peel, if the dried food is to be eaten as a snack. If you are using apples in a pie or tomatoes for soup you will want to peel before dehydrating.
- Once food has been cut or sliced fill the drying trays by arranging slices in a single layer with a little space between slices.
- Some vegetables like beans, corn, peas and broccoli must be steam blanched before drying. Steam blanching may take from 30 – 90 seconds.
- Fruits that turn brown when exposed to air such as apples, peaches, bananas or pears can be dipped in
The Bio Chef Dehydrator is a versatile kitchen appliance, allowing you to create wholesome and healthy snacks, bread alternatives, meat jerky and much more.
Dried fruit and fruit leathers
By blending your favourite fruit combinations you can create real fruit roll ups or leathers, minus the sugar, sodium and preservatives commonly found in store bought fruit roll ups.
Healthy vegetable chips, crackers and snacks
Make you own healthy chips with dried vegetables simply by cutting up the produce adn drying for the appropriate time. Time guides are listed in the recipe book. You can dry pretty much anything but a few examples are beetroot, zucchini, sweet potato. A simple sprinkle of sea salt and this makes a wonderful snack. Another favourite recipe is to blend omega-3 rich Flax Seeds with water and seasonings, mould into flat cracker shapes and dehydrate.
Save money by making your own meat jerky
For those who eat meat, dehydrating it yourself will save you a significant amount of money as well as you knowing what ingredients are included. Meat or salmon can be infused with your preferred flavours and then dehydrated.
Dried flowers and craft
This unit can be used to dehydrating flowers much quicker than air drying and the colour will be brighter and last for longer.
How do I benefit from a food dehydrator?
- You’ll save money on food bills when you buy & dry foods in bulk.
- You’ll preserve & savor every fruit & garden vegetable you grow.
- You’ll preserve fish & meats FAST
- You’ll dry more easily, less expensively than canning or freezing.
- You’ll eliminate preservatives & additives in the food you eat.
- You’ll give your kids (yourself, too) healthy alternatives to junk food.
- You’ll dazzle your tastebuds with high-flavor foods (flavors intensify with drying)
- You’ll dehydrate a full load of food for minimal electricity
- You’ll dry home crafts, flowers, dough creations.
- You’ll make it pay for itself in no time.
- You’ll savor luxuries on a shoestring
- You’ll slash your food storage space - no pantry, no freezer necessary.
Take a look at our range of dehydrators here.