If using a food dehydrator for drying celery, blanch them first to help maintain their green color and flavor. Then, place the diced celery stalks on a dehydrator tray in a single layer. Place them in the food dehydrator with the temperature set to 135°F. The drying time ranges from 6 to 8 hours - celery is completely dried once it is brittle to the touch.
Celery has a unique flavor that can add an interesting twist to stews and soups, but it’s challenging to keep fresh! Dried celery is the answer to this problem.
You can store dried celery in your pantry for years, so you can enjoy the fresh taste of this nutritious and flavorful vegetable whenever you want.
Here are the best methods for drying celery, along with some creative dried celery recipe ideas to try!
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What is the Best Way to Dry Celery?
There are two main ways to dry celery. Since each method works differently, you should choose the one that works best for you.
How to Dehydrate Celery in a Food Dehydrator
To use a food dehydrator to dry your celery stalks, blanch them first to help maintain the color. Then, place them on the dehydrator tray in a single layer.
The recommended temperature for drying veggies in a dehydrator is 135°F. Celery is completely dry when it’s brittle. Drying time ranges from about 6 to 8 hours.
Bear in mind that celery shrinks a lot during the drying process. Using a mesh screen can help prevent the celery pieces from dropping through the dehydrator trays due to the significant shrinkage.
How to Dehydrate Celery in the Oven
If you don’t have a food dehydrator, dry your blanched celery in an oven. Arrange your celery pieces on parchment-lined baking trays, making sure the pieces do not touch each other.
Set your oven to its lowest setting and slightly open the door by propping it open with a spoon. Be mindful not to leave the oven unattended in the case of pets or small children in the home.
The average drying time is anywhere between 6 and 8 hours. Remove your celery pieces from the heat once they are crispy and thoroughly dried.
Store your dry celery in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. DIY dried celery will last for several years if properly stored.
How Does Drying Celery Affect the Flavor?
Dried celery is not as flavorful as fresh celery, but it is just as nutritious. Drying celery allows you to get the most out of an abundance of celery stalks and leaves. Drying prolongs the shelf-life of celery by slowing down the action of natural enzymes that make dehydrated food go bad.
Blanching celery before drying it will help preserve its flavor and color.
With an amazingly concentrated celery flavor, dehydrated celery is a flavorful ingredient for stews, soups, sauces, and other recipes. To get the same flavor as fresh celery, you would need to add more dried celery to your favorite recipe or rehydrate the dried celery in boiling water.
What Are the Benefits of Dehydrating Celery?
Aside from adding a special flavor to many dishes, dried celery offers many benefits:
- Celery is rich in phytonutrients that have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. These include vitamin C, manganese, and beta-carotene.
- Dehydrated celery is rich in vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, and folate.
- Dried celery contains enzymes and is low in calories.
- It is also a good source of potassium, calcium, potassium, sodium, and manganese, all of which are important for healthy eating.
Among the benefits of celery and celery salt are reported health benefits which may include the following:
- It contains pectin-based fibers that may help with indigestion.
- It may reduce the inflammation that’s associated with chronic disease.
- It may lower the risk of heart disorders.
- It may help boost fertility in men.
- The fiber in dried celery can help make you feel full without eating much food. Decreased calorie intake leads to weight loss.
Do You Have to Blanch Celery Before Drying It?
Before drying celery, you need to blanch it first. Blanching celery helps preserve its green color and flavor.
To blanch celery, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Slice the celery into small pieces and place them in the boiling water for one or two minutes. Place the celery pieces in a large bowl containing cold water to cool them down before draining.
Is it Better to Freeze or Dehydrate Celery?
Both freezing and dehydrating celery work equally well. Frozen celery is softer than dehydrated celery because it retains water, whereas dehydrated celery requires rehydration before using it.
Fortunately, dried celery is easy to rehydrate. It plumps up beautifully, and many people can’t tell the difference between dehydrated celery and frozen or store-bought celery. You can use both dehydrated and frozen celery in the same way.
How Long Does Dried Celery Last?
Properly stored, dehydrated celery will remain at peak freshness for 1–3 years.
What is the Best Way to Store Dried Celery?
Store your dried celery in air-tight glass jars, such as mason jars, in a cool, dark place. Label the glass jars with the date they were dried.
5 Recipe Ideas for Dried Celery
You can use dried celery in recipes in place of fresh celery. In stews and soups, you can add it straight into the cooking pot without rehydrating it first. In a chicken salad or similar recipe, you will need to rehydrate the dried celery before using it.
Here are some delicious dried celery recipe ideas to try:
Crunchy crudites are always a popular appetizer. This delicious recipe uses celery stalks, but you can also combine re-hydrated celery stalks with frozen cheddar cubes and grapes for a healthy mid-afternoon snack.
This tasty smoothie recipe is full of flavor and is so easy to make. It uses celery stalks, but you can substitute these with dried celery leaves to create the perfect kick-start to your day!
This tasty recipe uses both fresh celery stalks and celery leaves, but you can use dried celery as well.
You can prepare this simple and satisfying salad in minutes. It uses chopped celery stalks and leaves, but you can use dehydrated celery instead. The inclusion of dates and Parmesan takes this salad to a new level.
This simple dried celery recipe is simple to make and uses everyday ingredients to produce an amazingly creamy celery soup.