To make dehydrated cantaloupe, remove the seeds and rind from the fruit and chop it into even slices. Lay the slices on dehydrator trays and dry them in a food dehydrator at 135°F for 18-20 hours.
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Should You Dry Cantaloupe in a Food Dehydrator?
The best way to dry cantaloupe is by using a quality food dehydrator, such as a Nesco or Excalibur dehydrator. Food dehydrators operate at a consistent, low temperature and safely remove moisture to dehydrate fruit evenly.
Follow the steps below to dry cantaloupe in a dehydrator:
- Select ripe cantaloupe for dehydrating.
- Cut your cantaloupe in half using a sharp knife. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds.
- Remove the rind from the fresh cantaloupe and discard it.
- Chop the cantaloupe flesh into thin, even pieces.
- Lay the cantaloupe slices on food dehydrator trays in a single layer, ensuring they don’t overlap and there is space for air to circulate between them.
- Place the dehydrator trays in the food dehydrator. Set the temperature to 135 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Dehydrate the cantaloupe for 18-20 hours. Check on the progress every few hours and flip the pieces periodically to promote even drying.
- Once the cantaloupe is completely dry, remove it from the dehydrator and allow it to cool to room temperature.
- Transfer the dehydrated cantaloupe into airtight containers. Store the containers in a cool, dry place away from direct light for long-term storage.
How to Make Dried Cantaloupe Chips
Dried cantaloupe chips are a delicious healthy snack and great for taking on backpacking trips.
- Take fresh cantaloupe and cut it in half. Remove the seeds and the rind.
- Using a sharp knife or mandoline, cut the cantaloupe flesh into thin, half-inch-thick slices.
- Lay the melon slices on a dehydrator tray and dehydrate at 135°F for 18-20 hours.
- When done, the chips should be crispy and snap when broken in half.
- Season the chips with Kosher salt and spices or sprinkle with sugar if desired.
- Store cantaloupe chips in airtight bags Mason jars and keep the containers in a cool, dry place until ready to use.
Are Cantaloupes Good for Dehydrating?
Cantaloupes are one of the best fruits for dehydrating. They are easy to prepare and don’t require blanching. However, cantaloupe does have a high water content (about 89%) which means it takes several hours to dehydrate.
Dried melons can be used to make healthy snacks such as trail mix or tropical granola. Cantaloupe can also be pureed and used to make homemade fruit leather.
What Does Dried Cantaloupe Taste Like?
Dried cantaloupe is sweet and retains the flavor of fresh melon but with a slightly higher sugar content.
Like other dried fruit, it is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside – similar to beef jerky.
What Temperature is Best for Dehydrating Cantaloupe?
The best temperature for dehydrating cantaloupe is 135°F. If using an oven, set the oven to the lowest possible temperature setting (usually between 150°F and 170°F).
What are the Benefits of Dehydrating Cantaloupe?
The main benefit of dehydrating cantaloupe is its longer shelf life. Melons such as honeydew melons, watermelons, and cantaloupes are quite large.
Making dehydrated fruit keeps large melons from going to waste and preserves them so they can be enjoyed throughout the year.
Dried cantaloupe also retains all of the health benefits of fresh cantaloupe and is full of fiber, potassium, and vitamin C.
What is the Best Way to Store Dehydrated Cantaloupe?
The best way to store dehydrated cantaloupe is to keep it in an airtight container. Store containers of dried cantaloupe away from direct sunlight, excess heat, and moisture to extend their shelf life.
What is the Shelf-Life of Dehydrated Cantaloupe?
If stored properly, dehydrated cantaloupe has a shelf life of 6 to 12 months. If stored in vacuum-sealed bags in a freezer, the shelf life can be extended to two years.