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I was very fortunate this year to get two raspberry foraging trips.  I say fortunate because I really wasn’t planning either one.  With all the raspberries we scored, I knew I’d want to do more than just make up raspberry jam.  I made some raspberry sauce for treats, and I also had enough to dehydrate raspberries for later use.

When fall settles down into winter, I’ll start making granolas for winter breakfasts and one of our favorites is vanilla-raspberry.  There are also enough for snacks to take with us on our winter adventures.  And if any are left in the spring?  Well they make a good snack soaked in milk, or cooked into morning oatmeal.

I generally only make one batch of dehydrated raspberries a year because of how long they take.  Due to the amount I got this year, I was able to do a couple batches.  Thankfully, I have a 9 tray Excalibur dehydrator (which has 15 square feet of drying space) to get that them done is as large of a batch as I could.

Picking The Right Raspberries

I start by carefully picking my berries.  All the darker (almost purple) berries are better for another use.  The firm, brightly colored ones are the best candidates for drying.  I selectively only pick those that will keep their shape throughout the dehydration process.

Preparing Raspberries For Dehydration

Next I wash my raspberries in cold water, and then attempt to dry them as much as possible.  Drying can be hard because of all the middles of the raspberries.  I generally place raspberries in colanders and use a mixture of gentle shaking, tilting, and waiting to get as much of the water out as possible.

The next step takes some time.

I carefully place each and every raspberry on the dehydrator sheets up-side-down (so all the water drains out), making sure that none of them are touching.

Dehydrating Raspberries

Once every sheet is full and in the dehydrator, I put the door on and turn it on to the fruit setting (mine is 125 degrees).  My old food guides state to dehydrate raspberries at 95 degrees for 16-18 hours.  However, I find that on the fruit setting it still takes mine 18 hours (or more sometimes).  Perhaps this is because I am only picking the large firm ones.

Dehydrating raspberries takes awhile, but it shouldn't be intimidating. Here's how we dehydrate our raspberries and then how we use them the rest of the year.

Raspberries are done when they have no moisture left, and they are really light to pick-up.

Storing Dehydrated Raspberries

Don’t be surprised if you fill all 9 trays and when you are done you only have enough to fill a couple jars.  I was a little bummed my first time as well.  Now, I’m just glad I can get so many into such a small space.

I store my raspberries in quart or half-gallon mason jars.  (See how I seal them here.)  I like storing them in glass jars because I can take out just as much as I need for a batch or granola, cereal, or other recipe, and then seal the lid back on and put them right back into the pantry.


Now it’s your turn.  Tell me what ideas you have for using dehydrated raspberries.