From making your own beef jerky to drying fruit, vegetables, yoghurt, pasta, and even pet food, it may be time you considered buying an at home food dehydrator. Though sometimes seen as a niche item for health foodies, they're incredibly easy to use and could end up saving you a lot of money and food waste.
Our buying guide will help you to find the right food dryer for your kitchen, alongside our 8 favourites available on Amazon. Comparing the best dehydrators in the UK, read on for our top tips, reviews and recommendations! Moreover, we have partnered with chef Ryan Yen for reviewing and fact-checking the article to deliver you the best information.
Ryan is a trained chef with experience in several restaurants (with various kitchen supplies across the restaurant experience) and hotels, he also attended le cordon bleu to further his training in cuisine and patisserie and focus on creating simple and delicious dishes. Ryan is now formally working as a chef tutor.
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Ryan is a trained chef with experience in several restaurants (with various kitchen supplies across the restaurant experience) and hotels.
He also attended le cordon bleu to further his training in cuisine and patisserie and focus on creating simple and delicious dishes. Ryan is now formally working as a chef tutor.
A larger range in temperature offers more controlled dehydrating, and most food dehydrators can come in anywhere between 30-90 °C. Cheaper dehydrators can have a smaller temperature range, but be aware that meat should be heated above around 71 °C (either by boiling before or during dehydration) to safely make jerky.
The appliances offering higher levels of control over results have settings for smaller temperature intervals. However, bear in mind that more specific intervals can be fussier to programme.
The more basic food dehydrators simply have an on-off switch, which requires you to start and stop the drying process manually. These models are generally cheaper but try to look for a dehydrator that can at least turn itself off when done.
It's common for a quality dehydrator to have a timer that ranges from 0-24 hours, which can be programmed in one-hour intervals. This is handy for drying overnight or when you're out of the house, eliminating the risk of over-drying!
The number of trays can vary and, depending on the model, you may not need to use all the trays at one time. A food dehydrator with 4 - 5 trays is a good choice for infrequent use. For example, if you are looking to make dried fruit for lunch boxes, or preserve herbs from your garden.
Larger models that contain 9 or 10 trays provide more available space for drying. If space is not an issue, these can be used for drying food in bulk or preparing large batches at one time.
When totalling up the cost of a food dehydrator, you'll need to consider more than just the price of the appliance itself. Food dehydrators will often need to run for hours at a time, which is why you should factor in the energy output and rating when making your final decision.
While the final running cost will depend on your energy supplier, as a rule of thumb, you should look for a dehydrator that runs under 1000 watts. For smaller appliances, a 250 watt output will suffice, but be aware that the lower the output the less efficient the dehydrator may be.
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Mega Jerky Automatic Dehydrator
Eight Shelves for Fruit, Vegetables, Herbs and Fish
8 Tray Food Dehydrator
Energy Saving Dehydrator With a Wide Temperature Range
Savana 9 Tray Dehydrator
Customisable Modes for Those Serious About Food Drying
5 Tier Food Fruit Dehydrator
A Brilliant Option for Compact Kitchens
6 Tray Food Dehydrator
Commercial-Grade Dehydrator for a Wide Range of Dried Food
Virtually Silent With Well-Designed Trays
10 Tray Food Dehydrator
A Plastic-Free, High-Capacity Appliance
Laptronix 5 Tray Mini Food Dehydrator
An Easy-to Use Dehydrator for Beginners
When it comes to looks, this sleek offering from Klarstein is our favourite, but it's not just a pretty face. It boasts eight shelves, temperature control from 35-80 °C and a circulation system creating a totally uniform heat.
You can dry all kinds of fruits, vegetables, meat, fish and herbs perfectly in record time. A truly sturdy and polished machine, it will look great on your counter and its large pull-down glass door will make it easy to check your food.
Now here is a food dehydrator with a lot of range. With a wider temperature range from 30-90℃ adjustable to 5-degree increments, it also has energy-saving capabilities and is extremely quiet.
There are so many benefits to this one! All parts including the trays are made from 304 stainless steel instead of plastic, making it longer-lasting and naturally BPA-free. You can also set the drying time from 0-24 hours using the LED smart panel. Super savvy!
A high-rated dehydrator, BioChef's 9-tray model is fully customisable to all your needs. Featuring an adjustable thermostat from 35-70ºC, 3 preset drying modes and a digital display with timer, you can easily control the preparation process.
There are even several non-stick and mesh sheets included, ideal for use with small items like nuts or wet ingredients. This model is large in size and a bit of an investment, but it's incredibly worth it for what you can do with it, and comes with a 3 year UK warranty.
This neat little gadget from HOMCOM is perfect for kitchens with less counter space. With five trays and an easy temperature dial that goes from 40-70 ℃, it's a great bargain at under £50.
This food dehydrator also has the option to easily remove trays if you don't need all of them, making it even more compact. Suitable for fruits, vegetables, meat, and fish, it can also be used to dry flowers and even pet food! Brilliant.
This is an excellent dehydrator that uses horizontal currents of air to preserve practically any food. With an adjustable temperature from 35-65 °C and six trays, you can dry a whole range of fruits, vegetables, herbs and even pasta!
It does its job well in retaining the natural flavour and nutritional properties of your food, and at a reasonable price too. On the downside, it can take quite a long time and automatically shuts off after 20 hours.
Things work a little differently with this dehydrator from Misterchef. It doesn't have a specific temperature range so you can't have quite as much control, but using the five trays, it functions by putting smaller foods in a low position and larger foods in a higher position for best results.
It also comes with a two-year warranty and a recipe book to provide inspiration. However, the best thing about this machine is that it's super quiet!
Although the most expensive option on our list, this model does, in fact, offer a great array of features. Made entirely of stainless steel, it's completely BPA-free for the purest, healthiest result. Its ten trays are easy to see through the tempered glass door, and are completely dishwasher safe!
Drying time can be set every 30 minutes from 0-24 hours and the temperature can be set every 5 ℃ from 30-90 ℃. This excellent appliance is so convenient and fun to use, but you'll need a large budget and a bigger kitchen to make this work.
If you're new to food dehydration, the Laptronix from Allied UK may be just what you are looking for. Compact whilst still having five trays, it's suitable for all the usual fruits, vegetables, herbs, meats, bread and even yoghurt!
The Laptronix uses a flow-drying system using low levels of heat (35-70 °C) with an easy-to-use temperature control dial. It's a great starter kit at less than £30, however, it may not last as long as others on our list.
There are endless possibilities when it comes to dehydrating fruit, herbs, vegetables and meat – which we're sure you'll have fun experimenting with – but here are a few easy classics to get you started!
Written and researched by Melanie McPhail
No. 1: Klarstein｜Mega Jerky Automatic Dehydrator
No. 2: Kwasyo ｜8 Tray Food Dehydrator
No. 3: BioChef｜Savana 9 Tray Dehydrator
No. 4: HOMCOM｜5 Tier Food Fruit Dehydrator
No. 5: SousVideTools ｜6 Tray Food Dehydrator
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