Dehydrate Mandarin Oranges At Home
So why dehydrate mandarin oranges at home?
Well, they are the best snack and full of flavor and you can eat them like candy. But they aren’t candy. They are just dried fruit with no sugar added and packed full of nutrients and fiber. I love dried fruit but these dehydrated mandarin oranges have quickly escalated to a favorite!
My in-laws sent us a lot of dried fruit from Meduri World Delights for Christmas last year – organic bing cherries, apricots, blueberries, and mandarin oranges. And I loved it all!!!
The dried cherries and apricots reminded me of being a kid in Iran and eating lavashak, which is the Persian version of a fruit leather roll up. Then I tried the dried mandarin oranges. I didn’t think it would be an OMG moment! But it was! I have never tasted anything so good. They were amazing.
And when I looked up the nutritional information, it turns out that dehydrated mandarin segments might not actually have the same Vitamin C content as fresh mandarin oranges. But I’m totally okay with that because they do contain a good amount of natural folate, which is good for me. Plus they are naturally gluten and dairy free.
Dehydration at Home
One really useful kitchen tool is the dehydrator. Over the years we used it to make chicken jerky for the dogs or to dehydrate herbs. So I thought why not try to make my own dehydrated mandarin oranges at home.
It did take a bit of work to do this. We started with three pounds of organic mandarin oranges and then had to cut and segment them up. I didn’t wash them but did have to wash my hands several times during the process.
It is very tedious to peel the mandarin oranges. I took a small knife and lightly cut the top part of every orange so that I could peel it. Then I just sat down in front of the TV and peeled, segmented, pulled off the white pith.
It was much easier to sit in front of the TV instead of standing in the kitchen. And it was a good project while we watched the March madness basketball tournaments.
Once that is complete, gently toss the orange segments in a generous amount of lemon juice to keep them from turning brown during the dehydration process. I didn’t measure, but just made sure there was enough lemon juice to cover the segments.
Then we dehydrated the segments.
For the first round, I used three pounds and filled all the shelves of the dehydrator but not the bottom. And dried them for about 15 hours.
It takes about 13 – 15 hours to really get them dehydrated. So that you can store them in a tin or bag with a pretty good shelf life.
We tried it again with five pounds of oranges. And the second time we went through the process, we had mandarin segments that didn’t fully dehydrate because they were on the bottom of the dehydrator and I only dehydrated for 13 hours.
But we just ate those up on the spot because they were awesome. Because they were juicy and only slightly dehydrated, you don’t want to keep them with the dried ones. But you could probably keep them in the fridge for a few days.
And I just stored the dehydrated mandarin orange segments in the tins we had left over from our Christmas dried fruit. So good! So three pounds of oranges results in seven ounces of dried fruit.
Dehydrated Mandarin Oranges
Make one of the best homemade snacks possible by dehydrating mandarin orange segments and home!
- 3 pounds organic mandarin oranges
- lemon juice
Take a small knife and lightly cut the top part of every orange in order to peel off the skin it by hand. Peel, segment, and pull off the white pith.
Gently toss the organge segments in a generous amount of lemon juice.
Place the segments on the trays of the dehydrator. Dehydrate for 13-15 hours.
Place the dehydrated madarin oranges in a airtight container or plastic bag for storage.