Whether it’s to preserve your bulk fruit purchase for later or to create a healthy dried fruit snack, fruit dehydrators are a great way to eat healthily and save on groceries along the way. They’re also easy to use and lots of fun to get creative with.
Since the fruits’ flavours become more concentrated, dried fruit is more tasty to snack on. It also weighs much less than its fresh counterpart, making it convenient for taking on camping trips, bike rides, or hikes. You won’t have to worry about it spoiling, as its moisture has been removed completely.
If you’re looking for a fruit dehydrator machine, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve scoured the top models to come up with a list of the best fruit dehydrators in Canada.
In this article
The Best Fruit Dehydrators of 2023
Here are our reviews of the best fruit dehydrators in Canada this year:
Why we like it:
- Easy to use with simple controls
- Large capacity 6 trays
- Operates quietly
- Useful safety features
The Cosori Food Dehydrator is one of the best fruit dehydrators out there. With its stainless steel design and see-through glass door, the machine is sleeker than most and allows you to peek in on the dehydration process. It’s also quite easy to use, thanks to its intuitive digital touch interface. In fact, all you really have to worry about is setting the correct temperature and timer. The timer can be set for up to 48 hours, while the thermostat ranges from 95 to 165 °F.
In terms of capacity, the Cosori dehydrator comes with 6 stainless steel trays that make for a total drying area of 6.5 square feet. It also comes with a mesh screen for dehydrating smaller fruit and a fruit roll sheet. With 600 watts of power and a rear fan, the dehydrator is powerful and efficient. Despite its power, it operates rather quietly with a decibel level of 48.
We also appreciate the Cosori dehydrator’s integrated safety features. For example, it has an auto shut-off function that will shut the machine off as soon as its timer ends. If the machine overheats, overheat protection will kick in and shut the machine off immediately.
Why we like it:
- Easy to use with digital display
- Large capacity of 7 trays
- Operates quietly
- Overheat protection
The Magic Mill Food Dehydrator is another excellent dehydrator for drying fruit. With 7 stainless steel trays included, the machine boasts a large capacity. It’s made from matte black-coated stainless steel and has a see-through glass door that allows you to monitor the dehydration process.
Compared to the Cosori above, the Magic Mill has a few additional settings, including a Keep Warm function and a Fast/Raw function. Its timer can be set for 24 hours in 30-minute increments. When the time is up, the Keep Warm setting will keep your dried fruit warm until removed. The Fast setting is useful for drying fruit quicker at a higher temperature, while the Raw setting dries fruit over a longer period of time at a lower temperature.
In terms of performance, the Magic Mill boasts 600 watts of power. Its unique airflow circulation technology ensures that heat is evenly distributed for a perfectly dehydrated end result. Despite its power, the machine operates impressively quietly. The machine comes with two mesh trays for small fruit, two trays for fruit rolls, and a pair of silicone mitts for handling the hot trays.
Overall, the Magic Mill is comparable to the Cosori, but offers a larger capacity and a useful LED display. It also comes with some extra add-ons. The only downside is that it’s on the pricier side, costing $340 at the time of publishing this article.
Why we like it:
- Powerful & efficient
- Heats up in just 10 minutes
- Expandable to up to 12 trays
- Retains more nutrients due to opaque design
The Nesco Snackmaster Pro is another simple but effective food dehydrator that’s great for drying fruit. While it comes with 5 trays, it can be expanded to up to 12 trays. This makes it a great choice for dehydrating large amounts of fruit at once. With 600 watts of power and a top-mounted fan to circulate heat, it dehydrates fruit quicker than most. The machine also preheats in just 10 minutes, which is quicker than most. It comes with 2 fruit roll sheets and 2 mesh sheets for smaller fruit.
While the machine doesn’t have a see-through window to peek in on the dehydrating process, Nesco advertises this as an advantage as it helps prevent nutrient loss due to light exposure. We fact-checked this, and they’re not wrong, light exposure does indeed lead to nutrient loss in fruit, especially in terms of antioxidant and vitamin C content.
In terms of functionality, the Nesco is very simple, with just a thermostat to worry about setting. The thermostat can easily be adjusted between 95 and 160 °F by turning a knob. You’ll need to set an external timer, but who doesn’t have access to a timer nowadays?
Why we like it:
- Simple yet effective
- Overheat protection
- Operates very quietly
If the stainless steel Cosori food dehydrator is beyond your budget, this budget-friendly fruit dehydrator may be just what you need. With 350 watts of power, it’s not as powerful as its big sister above, but it will still dehydrate your fruit to perfection. Its lower power wattage also means that it operates more quietly, with a decibel level of just 47.
In terms of features, the Cosori essentially has the same features as its higher-end counterpart: a digital thermostat and a 48-hour timer. The timer can be adjusted in 30-minute increments, while its thermostat can be set between 95 and 165 °F. For peace of mind, the machine will automatically shut off if ever it overheats.
While the Cosori comes with 5 BPA-free trays, the machine can be expanded vertically to up to 7 trays. Extra dehydrator trays can easily be purchased on Amazon.
Overall, the Cosori is nothing fancy, but comes with everything you need to dehydrate fruit from home on a budget.
Is Dried Fruit Healthy?
People often wonder if dehydrated fruit is as healthy as fresh fruit. The answer really depends. While dried fruits won’t hydrate you, they still contain the vitamins, minerals, and fibre found in their fresh form. According to Anthony Komaroff, M.D. at Harvard Health, dried fruits actually contain more fibre and antioxidants than fresh fruit.
However, since dried fruit is much smaller than fresh fruit, people tend to consume more of it per serving. To give you an example, it’s not uncommon to eat 5 dried apricots in one sitting, but would you eat 5 fresh apricots in one sitting? While they may appear smaller, their calories and sugar content in dried fruit remain the same as in their fresh form. For that reason, it’s important not to overdo it when it comes to dried fruit. Be mindful of the quantity of fruit you’re eating, in regard to your total sugar intake for that day, but don’t overthink it either. At the end of the day, over-snacking on dried fruit is much healthier than snacking on candy.
How to Dry Fruit In the Oven?
While using a designated food dehydrator is the most efficient way to dry fruit, you can also dry fruit in the oven. To do so, all you’ll need is an electric oven, a tray, and some fruit. Here are the steps to frying fruit in the oven:
- Preheat the oven to around 200 °F.
- Rinse the fruit, dry them thoroughly, and slice them into equal-sized slices.
- Arrange the fruit on an oven tray in a single layer.
- Place the tray in the preheated oven for up to 8 hours, depending on the size and moisture content of the fruit.
- Flip the fruit every hour or so to ensure even dehydration.
- Once the fruit has completely dried, remove it from the oven, and allow it to cool for at least a full day.
If you want to enjoy a crispy dried fruit snack, it’s important not to skip step #6. Patience is key when it comes to making dried from at home. The fruit will be soft when it first comes out of the oven, but it’s the cooling process that allows it to crisp up.
How to Make Fruit Leather Roll-Ups?
Fruit roll-ups, also known as fruit leather, are a popular healthy snack for people of all ages. While most people associate them with the sugar-laden processed food they enjoyed as kids, you can actually make them quite easily at home, with just a few simple ingredients.
To make homemade fruit rolls, all you need is the fruit of your choice, some acidity to help preserve the colour of the fruit (such as lemon juice), and some additional sweetness if you desire (such as agave nectar).
Our favourite fruit leather roll-up recipe is made from a mix of strawberries and blueberries.
- 3 cups of fresh fruit (such as strawberries, mangoes or blueberries)
- 2 to 3 tbsp of agave nectar or maple syrup, based on preference
- 2 tbsp of citrus juice (lemon or lime juice is best)
Once you’ve collected your ingredients, add them to a food processor and blend the mixture until it’s as smooth as can be. Don’t be alarmed if you still see berry seeds in the mixture, this is completely normal.
It’s now time to dehydrate the blended fruit mixture. If you have a food dehydrator, spread the blended mixture onto the dehydrator trays (lined with parchment paper) and pop them in the dehydrator that’s preheated to around 140 °F.
If you don’t have a food dehydrator, you can simply use your oven at the same temperature. Be sure to line your baking trays with parchment paper, otherwise, you won’t be able to create the fruit roll-ups.
Dehydrate the blended fruit mixture in the oven for up to 6 hours, or in a food dehydrator machine as per model instructions. Food dehydrators are more efficient at dehydrating than ovens, so you can expect it to take around 3 hours depending on the model. You’ll know the fruit leather is ready when the mixture no longer feels tacky in the centre.
Once the mixture is dehydrated and has been cooled for several hours, it’s time to cut them into strips and roll them up. We recommend using scissors for this step.
How to Store Dried Fruit?
Dried fruit or fruit leather should be stored in an airtight container, such as a freezer container, vacuum-sealed bag, or mason jar. The dried fruit should then be placed in a dry and dark spot that’s not too warm, such as a pantry or cold room. For optimal storage conditions, the room shouldn’t be warmer than 15 °C.
If the fruit is dried correctly and stored in optimal conditions, dried fruit can last up to a year. If there’s any moisture remaining in the fruit, you can expect a shorter shelf life.