Food dehydrators save families money in the long run while enabling users to create foods and snacks void of harmful preservatives. The idea of owning a food dehydrator and preserving foods naturally has become increasingly popular in recent years, as individuals grew more concerned about maintaining personal health. There is an abundance of devices on the market. However, looking for a few specific factors makes finding the ideal dehydrator less of a challenge.
Size – Dehydrators come in a variety of sizes that hold anywhere from four to 10 trays. If planning on preserving large quantities of food, select a larger model that holds the maximum number of trays.
Box/shelf versus stackable – Some dehydrators are designed in a box configuration in which you simply slide trays in and out. Other versions stack one tray atop another. Box versions tend to circulate the dry heat more evenly while being better at maintaining a constant temperature.
Power – The devices range in the amount of power they emit and use from 125 to 1,000 watts. More powerful dehydrators get the job done more efficiently and quickly. The dehydrators are also better equipped to maintain heat temperatures.
Accessories – The majority of units come with instruction manuals. Some additionally offer recipe booklets. Other extras include automatic timers, digital thermometers and readouts plus interior lighting. Certain models might also come packaged with jerky-making guns, non-stick mats and other non-essentials.
The name Chefman has long been associated with quality small kitchen appliances. Their dehydrator is no exception. The Chefman Dehydrator Professional Multi-TierPreserver was designed to be an affordable device with plenty of space to preserve large quantities of food. The unit measures 14 inches x 17 inches x 18 inches. However, it weighs only 13.5 pounds, which provides ample interior dehydrating space while remaining portable when needed.
The dehydrator comes with nine 13-inch x 12-inch trays made from BPA-free plastic. The unit also comes with a protective food tray and a drip pan. All the trays easily slide in and out of the Chefman, which makes clean-up a breeze. Use as many or as few trays as needed.
The front of the unit features a transparent glass door which slides up, down and is completely removable for tray insertion or removal. The clear glass also enables users to easily view the progress of drying foods without having to open the door and allow heat to escape. The removable door combined with complete access to the interior also enables ease of cleaning.
The Chefman uses electricity to produce the heat needed for dehydrating. The rear of the unit features a fan in the center of the device, which ensures heated air circulates 360 degrees, which adequately travels throughout the interior of the dehydrator without the need to rearrange the trays. The box/shelf styled dehydrator also features an exhaust fan on the top of the unit, which eliminates excessive heat and moisture.
The professional food dehydrator also has 600 watts of power, which is sufficient to dry all types of meats in addition to having the ability to process fruits, vegetables and herbs. The device is also designed to function without emitting a great deal of noise, which enables you to run the unit during the night without sacrificing sleep or causing disruption during the day.
The top front of the unit boasts a digital readout with simple touch settings to preset temperatures and drying times. The control panel features one-touch buttons to turn the unit on/off, set the temperature and the drying time. You can also increase or decrease the settings using the + and – buttons. The internal thermometer adjusts from 95 degrees to 158 degrees Fahrenheit. The automatic timer runs up to 19.5 hours before turning the unit off. The variable temperature and timer settings make it easier to adjust the dehydration process for specific types of foods.
For the sake of convenience, the Chefman dehydrator is also equipped with nine computerized preset temperature settings. You need simply use one of the preset readings for the type of food you desire to preserve. This feature is wonderful when first getting used to operating the dehydrator.