Two Easy Snacks To Make In Your Solar Food Dryer

A solar food dryer is one of the best things you can buy if you're someone who likes making your own snacks. These units capture and concentrate the sun's heat in order to dehydrate various foods in the fresh, outdoor air. They don't require any electricity or gas to function, which makes them very earth-friendly. Once you have a solar food dryer set up, though, what should you make first? Here are two beginner snack "recipes" to get you started.

Cinnamon Apple Slices

Dehydrated apples are an excellent snack because they're high in fiber and full of natural sweetness. Cinnamon gives them even more flavor and is loaded with healthy antioxidants.

To make dehydrated cinnamon apple slices in your solar dehydrator, start by slicing apples to about 1/8 inch thickness. This is easiest with a mandolin slicer. Leave the peels on! Sprinkle the slices with a small amount of cinnamon, and spread them out on the food dryer's screen.

Place your screen back in the solar food dryer. Let the apples sit in there for about 6 hours, and then check on them. They should be shriveled and almost fully dried. Turn them over, and let them dehydrate for another 1 - 2 hours. If it's a cooler day, they may need a bit longer.

Spicy Dried Sweet Potatoes

If you like potato chips but hate how unhealthy they are, then this is the perfect solar-dried snack for you to make! Sweet potatoes are far more nutrient-dense than white potatoes, and when you dehydrate them in the sun, they get crisp and crunchy. You can season them however you like, although these instructions call for a spicy blend.

Start by peeling your sweet potatoes. Then, slice them as thinly as possible. Aim for 1/16 of an inch, if possible. A mandolin slicer can help with this. Do three medium sweet potatoes at a time. Combine 1/2 teaspoon each of salt, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Toss the sweet potato slices in this mixture.

Spread the sweet potato slices out in your solar dehydrator. Then, leave them to sit for about 4 hours. Check them to see how dry they feel. If they are showing hints of crispiness around the edges, turn them over. Otherwise, leave them for another hour or two. After flipping, let the sweet potato slices dehydrate for another 4 hours or until they're crispy enough to make a snapping noise when you break them in half.

So, there you have it: two easy, healthy snacks to make in your new solar food dryer! You're going to love this outdoor appliance.