Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Summer's Bounty How to Make the Best of It!

an assortment of vegetables

Reviewing the Gardenmaster Food Dehydrator 

Summertime is here and the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables is upon us!  Let's review how to enjoy all of this goodness now and later too!   Food Dehydrators are not new, but they may be new to you!

If you are a gardener, I'm sure that your little (or big) plot is starting to show signs that there will be a good crop of some fruits and vegetables coming soon.  If you are anything like me, you can hardly wait for that first ripe tomato.  Everyday you go to the garden to see its growth.  Then it starts to turn red and the excitement is almost palpable.  Okay, I'm a little crazy for my fresh fruits and veggies.

Right now we are in the height of strawberry season, so you know where I will be.  Off to my closest "pick your own" patch to indulge in early summer sweetness.  After I have eaten my fill, made some jam and eaten some more, there will still be strawberries that I need to process somehow.

Now this is where my product review starts!  

Have you ever thought about buying a Food Dehydrator and drying the rest?  There are several ways that you can make the freshness of this seasons fruits and vegetables last through the year.  Making jams, jellies and chutneys are one way.  Preserving and canning is another. But wait, there is still the other option and that is to dry the goodness for use later!  Easy and quick too!  No more wasting your food dollars.
food dehydrator

We purchased a  Food Dehydrator a couple of years ago, when my other half decided to make his own beef jerky.  Yes, you can make your own beef jerky, but that is not what I do.

I use this dehydrator to keep all my herbs, tomatoes, carrots, peppers and all other manner of fruits and vegetables for my winter time cooking.  I get the same flavor as I would if I had just harvested my garden.  I can also take advantage of the farmer's markets and buy more fresh produce, both for use now and for dehydration and use for later.

drying parley and basil in a food dehydrator

These pictures show you how I just finished drying a whole bunch of parley and basil.  It took less than an hour and my parsley flakes are beautiful in color and smell.  The basil dried to a light brown, but the smell is incredible. I will use these throughout the fall and winter in my recipes.

No more buying fruit roll ups with their questionable ingredients.  Make your own and you will know exactly what is in that delicious dried fruit.  To make fruit roll ups you will need to purchase some non-stick sheets that fit into the dehydrator.  This will keep the fruit from falling through the grids in the different layers.  You can make different fruit bars all at the same time.  Fresh and flavorful with no additives and preservatives.  Just plain really good fruit!


Save money by letting less of your food dollars go to waste!

We in the West are known for our mishandling of our food dollars.  So much of what we buy ends up in the garbage, wasted and useless.  Don't let this be your story!

Preparing foods for dehydration is not a difficult task.  Just wash your veggies and fruits well, cut them up, place them into the trays and set it on!

Your fruits and veggies will be ready in a few hours depending on what you are drying. Beef jerky takes a little longer, but oh my is the taste ever delicious.  It has store bought beat hands down.

Food Dehydrator and Recipe Book included!

Don't be afraid to try new things.  This food dehydrator will have you saving all those fruits, vegetables and spices without thinking twice.  No more buying fresh herbs for a recipe and then throwing away the rest.  Dry it instead, so that next time you need it, it is there for you!  Once you get the hang of it, you will find that you will waste less and really enjoy the fresh taste of homemade!

The only Accessory you might need:

If you are making fruit roll ups, you will need the non-stick mats that fit right into the trays.  Because of the sugar content in fresh fruit, you will have a sticky mess without these sheets.  They are inexpensive and will help you make better use use of the dehydrator!
dehydrator tray

I hope I have given you something that you can work with and enjoy for many years to come.  Fresh food and flavors that are just out of this world, can be yours, with a little work!  Your family will enjoy the benefits and the healthy snacks that will be made right at home in your kitchen.  

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. Many years ago (and I do mean decades), my husbands aunt gave us a food dehydrator that I promptly stored away somewhere in the deep depths of my craft room. I wanted to dry flowers, fruits, etc for wreaths. Clearly, I wasted that wonderful gift! We also love cooking with fresh herbs and I also make jam, but I do not have a food dehydrator in my kitchen. For shame! For some odd reason it just never occurred to me to actually use a food dehydrator for its intended purpose. You have certainly sparked my interest though, and truly at the perfect time too. Our seasonal farmers market just reopened a few weeks ago.

    1. I never thought of using it for drying flowers, so thank you for that idea. I'm going to give it a try and see how it goes. As for the herbs and other garden goodies, this dehydrator is wonderful. Hope you try it out and see if you like it.

  2. My son loves to grow herbs of all kinds. I'll just bet he would love to have a food dehydrator to preserve his crop for use all throughout the year. Thanks for this review of a very useful product.

    1. My husband was driving me crazy, he would buy small packages of fresh herbs, use a few sprigs and then throw away the rest. Now we dry what we don't use! Less waste and bigger bang for our food dollars.

  3. A very interesting and timely review.

  4. Thank you Mary Beth! I know it (the dehydrator) has been used in our home for quite a while and it really does make a difference. The herbs and fruits we dry are so fresh tasting even after dehydration. I like the idea of the fruit roll ups. The purchased ones are okay, but with so many additives and preservatives. The ones you make yourself, are just fruit (unless you choose to add sugar or honey). But still no chemicals.

  5. Olivia, I’ve used a food dehydrator to dry some of the metal clay jewelry components I design before I fire them in the kiln, but I haven’t used my dehydrator for its intended purpose yet, lol! You’ve piqued my interest in trying it to actually dehydrate food. :)

    1. I'm glad to know that it has more uses than just for food dehydration! But yes, do try something different in there and see if you like the results.

  6. Olivia, wow I'm impressed - I've never tried this, not ever. Sounds fantastic though. Everything must taste soooo good. I wouldn't mind trying this now.

  7. I have long wanted a food dehydrator. My only hesitation was ensuring that I could find one compatible with my solar power system. Most electrical appliances that have heat elements do not work well with my source of electricity. I'll have to take a closer look at this product to see if my panels provide enough "juice" to power it. It is so smart to dehydrate fresh food and herbs this time of year. I would love to enjoy the bounty all year long. Thanks for your review of such an essential kitchen, and garden, item. Always appreciated.


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