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Dehydrating Tips

The Excalibur is the finest dehydrator made. It is the ONLY machine with the unique Parallexx™ Horizontal Airflow Drying System. Hundreds of thousands of gardeners, outdoors enthusiasts, sportsmen, health-minded folks, and families say, "We love the Excalibur!"

An Excellent Value Because It's So Versatile!
Dried fruits, vegetables, and jerky are JUST the beginning!

Your Excalibur 3000 Series Dehydrator ...

Preserves Fruits & Vegetables Quickly & Easily!

Unlike canning or freezing, Excalibur is quick and easy. There's no hot water, no extensive preparation. Just cut, dry and bag your harvest. Dried and bagged produce takes little space, needs no electricity, and keeps just about forever!

Dries Fish & Meats in Just 4-6 Hours!

Now preserving meats is easy. You can turn virtually any meat into tasty and nutritious jerky in very short order. It keeps indefinitely and is a great "pocketful of protein." Take advantage of bulk purchase sale prices for large cuts of meat. And, consider seasonal sales, usually before holidays, too. For example, purchase large turkeys when they are only 39¢ a pound for good turkey-jerky eating for months to come.

Whips up treats that'll put your baker out of business

DOUBLE-FLAVOR your baked goods and you'll never go back to store-bought goodies. Add sparkle to "ordinary" muffins with dried cherry chunks instead of raisins; swirl raspberry fruit powder into the batter. Muffins, cakes, and breads come alive with dried fruit chunks and natural fruit powders.

Makes fun and flavorful fruit rolls that are GOOD for you!

Commercial fruit rolls contains tons of sugar and chemicals. Switch your kids to all-natural, 100% fruit rolls. Go wild: blueberry/grape... strawberry/kiwi. They'll LOVE 'em!


Provides your own high-production YOGURT FACTORY!

Love yogurt? Tired of paying 89 ¢ for an 8 oz. container? Make your own fruit-delicious yogurt in the Excalibur - a QUART for 89 ¢ !


Ideal for home crafts, too!

Because you can remove trays, the Excalibur allows you to dry BIG items like natural flowers, whole apples, dough-art creations, and many other craft projects. Gentle, controllable heat lets you dry delicate things perfectly.


Saves Money on Your Food Bills!

Make your own dried fruits and vegetables for 90% less than store prices. That's right! Produce your own delicious dried foods that would cost $3 in the store for just 30¢. Throughout our web site, we have cost comparisons on home dried vs. commercial products, cost comparisons to other preserving methods, and dollar saving tips for using your Excalibur dehydrator. Click on our Site Map for more details on these.

Eliminates Preservatives & Additives!

Because you dry it all yourself, you know EXACTLY what's in the food you're preserving for your family. The beauty of drying is you do it WITHOUT artificial chemicals and preservatives.

Eliminates Excess Salt & Fillers, too!

Many commercial food products contain tremendous amounts of salt. Sometimes a small serving contains 1/3 of the total recommended daily intake. If you have sodium related health issues, an Excalibur will allow you to enjoy foods that you thought you had to give up tasting again. Fillers are inexpensive and are often used to "bulk up" commercial products. Gives the illusion that you're getting more of the more expensive ingredients. Not for the squeamish, but did you know there are acceptable levels of contaminates in commercial products?

Lets you say "NO More Junk Food!"

Many of our top customers chose the Excalibur because they have special dietary restrictions. It encourages HEALTHY, low-fat, low-sugar alternatives to junk foods and snacks without resorting to artificial sweeteners, chemical fat blockers and salt substitutes.

Reach for a bowl of flavorful vegetable chips or roasted pumpkin seeds. When the snack urge hits, bite into your custom blended granola bars, naturally sweet fruit slices and roll ups. But that's not all! Add fruit powders and dried fruit chunks to your low-fat muffins, breads, and cakes. We'll bet that you won't miss those saturated fats and refined sugars!

Excalibur ~ More Dehydrating Tips and Techniques

The list below is a collection of tips and techniques to help you get the most from your Excalibur dehydrator. People usually think of dehydrators in conjunction with simply drying food for future use. In addition to operational tips, we've included here a variety of other uses. With the versatility of Excalibur's removable trays, these uses may spark additional ideas unique to your circumstances.

Catch Drips with ParaFlexx™ Sheets

Put a ParaFlexx™ sheet under your Poly-screen tray liner, to catch drips, if you're drying foods with a lot of moisture content. Even though, your Excalibur is easy to clean, using ParaFlexx™ sheets in this manner will make clean up even easier!
When you're drying jerky, place a ParaFlexx™ sheet on an Excalibur tray. Top with a sheet of white (no dyes) paper towel. Then, cover this with a Poly-screen sheet. This combination will help in absorbing fat extruded during the drying process. When your jerky is almost dry, lift the Poly-screen and remove the paper towel and Paraflexx sheet. This will enhance air circulation during the final drying stages.

Bread Making Assistant

The perfect environment for raising bread exists right inside your Excalibur dehydrator. Remove the trays from the dehydrator, set the thermostat at 115ºF and allow the unit to preheat. Place a shallow pan of water on the bottom of the dehydrator. Insert a tray directly above the water and place the bowl of dough on the tray. Cover the dough with a cloth to keep it from drying out. Allow the dough one-half to one hour of time to rise. When it has risen, continue with preparation according to your recipe.

An Excalibur is the perfect assistant if you use a bread machine. Depending on the model, it takes 3 to 3½ (or more) hours to complete a single loaf of bread. During the same time, you can prepare dough for many loaves of bread. Let your bread machine do all of the hard work for the initial kneading. Use the dough setting and remove the dough before it starts the first rise. Place the dough into an oiled bowl, turn the dough over to oil the top, and cover tightly. Place in the refrigerator. (Or freezer*) Put your next batch of dough in your bread machine and repeat. When you have enough loaves for a baking session, place these in your Excalibur for the first rise. Punch down, when needed, based on your recipe. When ready, shape into loaves and bake as your recipe directs. Based on an estimate of 30 minutes for bread machine preparation, using an Excalibur will allow you to produce 4 loaves (or more) of bread fresh baked bread in the same 3 to 3½ hours your bread machine took to produce 1 loaf!

*Make dough by hand or using the dough cycle of your bread machine and store in the freezer. On baking day, remove from the freezer. Use your Excalibur to expedite the final preparation steps for baking."

Pasta Tips

No need for separate pasta racks! Place strips of freshly made pasta in single layers onto your drying trays. Dry for 2 to 4 hours at 135ºF. Store in airtight packages. Dry cooked pasta (smaller varieties work best) and break into bite size pieces, if applicable. Store in air tight containers. It re-hydrates in 2-3 minutes in boiling water. Add some cooked pasta to heat-and-eat microwave meals.

Powder some of your dried vegetables in a blender or food processor. Add the powder to your pasta recipe for a change of pace. Also adds another level of nutrition to your pasta in addition to being a tremendous flavor enhancer. Check some of the commercially prepared pasta for ideas. Then, experiment with amounts and combinations of vegetable powders according to your flavor preferences. You may elect to try basil and tomato, asparagus, beets, mushrooms, spinach, carrots, to name a few. For ease of combination, add your vegetable powder to your beaten eggs. Stir in the powder and let it sit for a few minutes, then continue with your recipe. Start out with 1 tablespoon of dried powder for each egg in your pasta recipe, then adjust according to your tastes. You may need more or less, depending on the intensity of the flavors of various vegetables.

Re-crisping Crackers and Other Foods

There is no need to throw away crackers, chips, cookies or cereal that have become stale. Re crisp those items by placing them in a single layer on the drying trays and drying them for 1 hour at 145ºF.

Drying Bread for Bread Crumbs

Put your extra breads of all types in your Excalibur to dry for making bread crumb recipes. Dry slices, burger buns, hotdog rolls, and other breads until they are crispy. Crumble by hand or process for a few seconds in your food processor. Store in air tight containers until needed. Add your favorite herbs and spices to create stuffing mixes for side dishes or poultry stuffing.

Drying Photographs

To dry photographs, treat and wash as usual. Shake or squeegee off the excess liquid and place on the drying trays. Dry until no wet spots remain. (Note: Dry only photographs that have been printed on resin-water stock. Other types will wrinkle unless pressed flat.)

Composting Aid

Use your Excalibur to assist in producing fine compost for your garden. During winter months many people have problems incorporating kitchen leftovers into their frozen compost pile. Dry those leftovers, instead! Dehydrate potato peelings, coffee grounds, and other non-fat organic kitchen wastes. Store the dried products in a covered container under your sink. No smell, no muss! When the weather permits, add the contents of your container to your compost bin.


When cold weather forces the thermostat higher and higher, the humidity in many homes becomes lower and lower. Humidity can drop so low that wooden furniture begins to shrink and nasal passages begin to suffer. Place a shallow pan of water in your Excalibur to provide another source of humidity for your home. Set the temperature to suit your needs. The higher the temperature, the faster the Excalibur will evaporate the water.

Air Freshener - Aroma Therapy

Many experienced with a dehydrator have noticed the delightful aroma that many drying projects perfume the air. This is a side benefit while those projects are drying. This benefit can be enhanced by using your Excalibur as an air freshener when it's not in use for other purposes. Add any combination of ingredients, wet or dry, to your dehydrator to achieve this goal.

  • Dry fresh evergreen branches
  • Dry a wet sponge containing a few drops of vanilla flavoring
  • Make your own scented candles and keep them in your dehydrator.

Save Money with Leftovers

If your family doesn't like leftovers, many of them can be dehydrated for future use. Dehydrate cooked meats to use later in rice dishes, tacos, camping stews, and soup mixes. Dehydrate cooked vegetables to be used for instant cup-of-soup mixes. Turn applesauce and other fruits into fruit roll ups.

When you have to purchase produce in fixed amounts, but don't need all of it for a recipe, dehydrate the leftovers. Good candidates for this are celery, bunches of parsley or other herbs, carrots, and vegetable tops when your recipe calls for the bottoms. Another candidate for this are bulk packages of all types of foodstuffs when unit pricing indicates those packages are the best bargain. When you open the container, use what you need for your immediate usage, then dehydrate the rest.

Improve Yard Sale Profits

There are numerous ways to increase the apparent value of items sold at yard sales when you enhance those items via your Excalibur. Some examples, just to get you started.

  • Turn that $1.00 vase into one that sells for $5.00 by adding some dried flowers and a bit of left-over ribbon.
  • Fill those decorative containers with dried food mixes, homemade popourri, dried apples, citrus fruit slices, and/or dough art creations. Even plain 'ol mason jars can command premium prices with dry roasted pumpkin seeds, spiced zucchini chips, or fruit leathers.
  • Even the more utilitarian items can be enhanced with dried seed pods, grasses, and such. Fill an old coffee percolator with a few stalks of ornamental grass and a beautiful blue dried hydrangea blossom.
  • Tie 3 of those miscellaneous cooking sized utensils together with a ribbon and add a bunch of sage or some dried hot peppers to create a kitchen decoration. This is a great way to turn a couple of those 10¢ wooden spoons into a $3-$4 item.
  • Let your imagination run free for a while and you may be surprised at how many of your yard sale items can be enhanced with items from your Excalibur.

Washing and Drying Trays

Excalibur dehydrator trays are dishwasher safe. However, you may prefer to wash them by hand. In that event, you'll find these tips to be useful.
Wash your trays and inserts, then place them in the Excalibur for drying. In just a few minutes your trays will be dried and stored away, too. If your sink is too small to wash the trays, purchase a plastic storage box just a little larger than your trays.

Fill with hot soapy water and use it as a dish pan. Store your ParaFlexx sheets in the storage box, between uses.

A vegetable scrub brush makes quick work of any bits of sticky fruit that may have stuck to Poly screen sheets. It only takes a couple of minutes soaking time in hot soapy water to release those bits.

An easy way to rinse flexible Poly screen sheets is to stack them in your sink. Use your sprayer to rinse all of them at the same time. Since the sheets are flexible, they should fit all except the very smallest kitchen sinks.

Kitchen Dryer

Use your Excalibur to dry a variety of items. For example, you can place small, hand-washed, clothing items in your dehydrator to dry them. Or, you can place children's wet gloves and mittens in the Excalibur when they come in from playing in the snow. An added bonus is that they will be warm and toasty when the children go outside again.

Toss your damp dish towel in for a quick drying when you finish the dishes. Did you know that a damp dish towel, hung inside the cabinet under your sink, dries slowly due to lack of air circulation? This provides extra time for bacteria, molds, and fungi to grow.

Speed up drying of many types of crafts projects by using your Excalibur. If your children are making paper mache projects, dry them in your dehydrator. Simply remove as many shelves as you need to make space for the project. Select drying times and temperatures according to the needs of the individual craft projects.


Top choice of the world's finest gourmet chefs!

Many gourmets own Excalibur Dehydrators. So do the finest culinary schools, including the prestigious Culinary Institute of America and the Living Light Culinary Arts Institute .

ONLY Excalibur has premium-quality features and performance that dries PRECISELY RIGHT for exotic entrees and desserts. From Oriental dishes, to Italian main courses, to Mexican spicy dishes, to lavish French desserts, to old-fashioned Southern home cooking, Excalibur's dehydrated ingredients boost the flavor of cuisine from around the world.

Besides gourmet chefs, hundreds of thousands of home top, dozens of notable organizations, major universities, hotels and institutions own Excalibur Dehydrators!

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) owns six Excaliburs
University of California at Davis and at Berkeley
Indiana University
Cornell University
University of Wisconsin
The Four Seasons Hotel
University of Utah
University of Birmingham (England)
Ann Wigmore Foundation (popularized "living foods")
Optimum Health Institute of San Diego
University of Glasgow
The Culinary Institute of America
and many, many more...
By now, you may be asking why you shouldn't use a round dehydrator that you saw on sale in the discount mall, down the street from you. Or you may have seen one of those infomercials and was tempted to order. But, before you do, take a look at our dehydrator comparisons.