Dehydrating peppers is an excellent way to preserve them. If you have grown more peppers than you can eat, you can dry them so you can use them later.
-Hanging and air drying -Using a food dehydrator -Putting it in an oven -Sun drying No matter what method of dehydration you use, you need to be careful when selecting and preparing your peppers.
Types of Chile Peppers that Dry Well
You can dry any type of pepper for food storage. Here are some common peppers that work well when dried:
- Poblano Chiles: Anchos are the dried version of poblano peppers and they are one of the most widely used chiles in Mexican cooking. They are deep red in color and have a mild, smoky heat flavor. Ancho chiles can be ground into chili powder using a spice grinder or rehydrated to use in red chile sauces.
- Cayenne Pepper: Cayenne peppers are the most common chile pepper used for crushed pepper flakes. After drying, cayenne peppers can be crushed into red pepper flakes, ground into cayenne chile powder, or rehydrated to use in recipes.
- Red Jalapeños: Chipotles are the smoked and dried version of red jalapeños. Red and green jalapeño chiles can also be dried without smoking. If you have a smoker follow this tutorial at Kevin is Cooking to infuse lots of smoky flavors, and then dry them for food storage. After drying, jalapeño peppers can be ground into powder or rehydrated to use in recipes.
- Paprika Chiles: Hot, sweet, smoked, plain, Hungarian, and Spanish paprika all taste distinctive depending on the types of peppers used.
- Smoked paprika is infused with a natural woody flavor before drying and grinding into powder. This gives it a strong smoky flavor that’s perfect for some savory dishes and dry rubs for grilled meats. After drying, paprika chiles can be ground into powder or rehydrated to use in recipes.
- Chile de Arbol: These bright red peppers have a nutty, earthy, and very spicy heat that is perfect for adding a spicy kick. They are a great ingredient for Mexican-inspired recipes and pickling brines. After drying, chile de arbol peppers can be ground in a coffee grinder or spice mill or rehydrated to use in recipes.
- Sweet Peppers: Sweet peppers of every size and color can be dried too. I like to dehydrate bell peppers in small-diced pieces. It makes it so easy to grab a handful and add it directly to soups and stews.
Step-by-Step Guide to Dehydrating Peppers in a Dehydrator
A food dehydrator is an appliance that removes moisture from vegetables like peppers so that you can keep them from spoiling. If you have a lot of peppers and can’t eat or give them all away, pickling them is a great way to preserve them.
There are a few different food dehydrators that you could use to dehydrate your peppers. Some examples are the electric-powered OSTBA Food Dehydrator Machine or the solar-powered KinoSol Eco-friendly Solar Food Dehydrator.
It takes about six hours to dry peppers in a dehydrator.
Peppers take 4-10 hours to dry in a food dehydrator, depending on thickness. Smaller peppers can dry out faster than larger pieces.
The peppers are dry when they become brittle and look dry.
Best Types of Peppers to Use When Using a Dehydrator
If you want bigger peppers, you might have to dehydrate them in a food dehydrator. The best way to dry Bell peppers and other bigger varieties is to use this process. Small peppers can also be dried using a food dehydrator.
Step-by-Step Instructional Guide to Drying Peppers in a Dehydrator
Using a food dehydrator, you will need to:
- Choose the best peppers for drying
- Prepare the peppers for drying
- Put it in the food dehydrator properly
Choose Your Pepper
It is best to choose fresh peppers when dehydrating them. If the fruit is rotting, you should throw it away or put it in a compost bin.
Don’t choose peppers that have softer skin or wrinkles. Although you can cook these peppers, it is not recommended to eat them raw or dehydrate them. If you are choosing from cut peppers, you should avoid those with white, moist bits along the cut side, as it may be a sign that the peppers are going bad.
Give Your Peppers a Bath
Wash the peppers you want to dehydrate thoroughly and dry them off completely.
Wash peppers under cool running water. When choosing larger peppers, be sure to check the crevices more carefully as this is where bacteria is more likely to be hiding.
Prepare the Peppers
Once the peppers are clean and dry, you will need to cut off the stems. Thinner peppers only need to be cut in half.
If your peppers are thicker, cut them into rings. If you cut the fruit into smaller slices, it will dehydrate faster.
You can dry your peppers in two ways: either by slicing them or by drying them whole. If you slice them, they will dehydrate quicker, but if you dry them whole, it will take longer.
Put the pepper pieces on your dehydrator’s tray. Make sure to space your food items evenly on the grill so that the heat will be distributed evenly.
Turn on your dehydrator and set the temperature to 135 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit (57 to 60 degrees Celsius). If your dehydrator has a recommended setting, use that.
Step-by-Step Guide to Dehydrating Peppers by Hanging Them
If you live in a dry climate with day temperatures that are higher than 85 degrees Fahrenheit, the easiest method to dry peppers is by air-drying them.
Step 1: Prepare the peppers
Choose thin-walled peppers for air-drying. If peppers are too thick, they won’t dry quickly enough and could start to grow mold.
The best fruit is freshly harvested with no insect damage or blemishes.
Step 2. Thread the peppers on the string
Thread a long needle with a long piece of thread, and string the peppers together through the stems. Make sure there is plenty of space in between the peppers for airflow.
Step 3: Hang the peppers to dry
It is best to dry your peppers in an area that has good airflow and is also sunny. This method of drying peppers can take up to four weeks, depending on the humidity in the air. Peppers are dried completely when brittle. Peppers that are completely dried should be stored in airtight containers and kept in a place where there is no sunlight.
Step-by-Step Guide to Dehydrating Peppers in an Oven
To dry peppers in an oven, set the temperature to low so that the peppers will not cook.
It can take up to 10 hours to dehydrate peppers in an oven. dehydrating peppers is a slow process, so be patient.
The time required to oven dry peppers varies depending on the type and size of the peppers, as well as the type of oven. It can take anywhere from 12 hours to as long as four days.
Best Types of Peppers to Use When Drying Peppers in an Oven
Any type of pepper can be dried in an oven. You might want to use smaller peppers for this project because they will dry faster than larger peppers.
Step-by-Step Instructional Guide to Drying Peppers in an Oven
Oven-drying peppers can be more work than using a food dehydrator. In addition to selecting and preparing the right peppers for oven drying, you will also need to prepare the baking tray and check the peppers at regular intervals.
Choose and Prepare Your Peppers
The best time to dry peppers in the oven is when they are newly harvested. Do not select peppers that have soft spots or are rotting. Wash your selected peppers under running water.
Use a kitchen towel to wipe the wet peppers and make sure they are dry. You can cut bigger peppers into equal-sized slices to help them dehydrate evenly.
Prepare the Baking Tray
You can either cover your baking tray with aluminum foil or baking paper, or you can use baking sheets.
Use the dull side of the aluminum foil when facing upwards. Ensure that your peppers are spread out on the baking tray so that there is enough space between each one. This will allow hot air to circulate properly.
Pre-Heat Your Oven and Bake
You’ll need to preheat your oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit (66 degrees Celsius) before you start baking. You may need to experiment with the temperature depending on the type of pepper you are drying and how thick the skin of that pepper is. Place the baking tray into the oven once it has reached the desired temperature. Do not close the oven door completely. Leave the door open a crack so that the moisture from the peppers can escape. Make sure to keep an eye on the oven temperature to prevent the pepper from burning.
Check on the Peppers Every 30 Minutes
Make sure to check on your peppers every half an hour to prevent them from burning. Keep an eye on your peppers while they dry, as they can burn easily.
Take out any pepper that has dried completely. Your pepper is ready to harvest when it is dry and brittle.
If the peppers are getting soft, brown, or black, then take them out and use them for something else since they are already cooked.
Step-by-Step Guide to Dehydrating Peppers Under the Sun
If you want to save money, the best way is to dry your peppers in the sun.
The amount of time it takes to dehydrate peppers using the sun depends on the type of pepper, the weather conditions, and the amount of sunlight exposure the peppers receive. For example, it can take anywhere from two to four days for habanero peppers to dehydrate using the sun, whereas it may only take one to two days for bell peppers.
peppers can take a long time to dry in the sun It can take two to three weeks for whole, thick peppers to dehydrate completely.
Best Types of Peppers to Use When Drying Peppers Using the Sun
Thin walled peppers are best for dehydrating in the sun. You can still use thicker peppers, but you will have to ensure long periods of uninterrupted sunlight for the best results. You can still use thicker peppers, but you will need to ensure that there are long periods of uninterrupted sunlight for the best results.
Step-by-Step Instructional Guide to Drying Peppers Using the Sun
So, how do you sun dry your peppers?
- Check the weather forecast. The amount of sunlight will be crucial for you to dehydrate peppers successfully.
You will want days of hot sun with no rain and low humidity. When looking for the place to put your garden, you should choose the spot that gets the most sunlight. A well-lit room with a table or flat surface can also suffice if you don’t have access to an outdoor space.
- Choose your peppers. As with any drying method, don’t use peppers that are soft or rotting. Rinse the peppers you want to use. When it comes to sun drying, you can cut the peppers in half if you want them to dry faster.
- Use a stone or stainless-steel tray. Lay the peppers on the tray and then cover them with a mesh, cheesecloth, or towel if you are drying them outside. The cover will protect your peppers from being snacked on by birds and other pests. Avoid using aluminum trays, as they may react negatively with the acids you find on the pepper.
Other Things You Should Remember When Storing Dehydrated Peppers
The National Center for Home Food Preservation say that, in general, dehydrated food has a shelf life of four to twelve months. What is the best way to keep your peppers from going bad?
- Make sure the peppers are cool before packing them away. High temperatures can cause sweating, which may provide enough moisture for mold to grow and raise the possibility of insect contamination.
- Aside from canning jars, you can also use Ziploc bags, freezer bags, or freezer containers. You may also want to consider vacuum packaging.
- Pack enough dehydrated peppers in a bag that’s good enough for single use. For instance, if a recipe calls for 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of dried peppers, put that much in a bag. Doing this will lessen the exposure of the peppers to air and moisture when you open the package. Air and humidity can degrade your dried peppers, making them easier to spoil.
- When moisture gets into your dried peppers, it’s not going to take too long before it spoils. If you catch a re-moistened pepper, and it’s not spoiled, use it immediately. You can also dehydrate it again.
- Putting the dried peppers inside a cabinet or your pantry is the best to avoid direct sunlight.
- You can put desiccant packets in the jar or Ziploc bags alongside your peppers to prevent them from getting moist.
- If the container or the peppers get wet, you can redry them.
- Keep dehydrated peppers in a cool, dark place, because higher temperatures can shorten their shelf life. The shelf life, according to how warm the dehydrated fruit gets, is as follows:
60 degrees Fahrenheit (15.6 degrees Celsius) 12 months
80 degrees Fahrenheit (26.7 degrees Celsius) Six months
General Tips When Dehydrating Peppers
To have an easier time drying your peppers, follow these tips:
- Be sure to wear gloves when you’re handling peppers. These fruits have juices and oils that can burn your skin.
- If you do make the mistake of handling peppers without gloves and it starts to burn your skin, there are several things that you can do to alleviate the burning. You can submerge the affected area in baking soda dissolved in water, milk, or yogurt, or wash your hands with vegetable oil or dish soap.