While dipping fruit in a honey or sugar glaze does add some calories, it is a great way to add flavor and prolong storage time. The easiest way to create healthy tasty snacks using fruit is with a dehydrator. Once you learn how to dehydrate pineapple – adding a light honey glaze – you need never be without a great fruity snack.
Dehydrating Pineapple Chips at Home
Dried pineapple is an excellent snack to keep on hand. It stores well and will last for months in the freezer.
Full of dietary fiber, snacking on dehydrated pineapple can help support a healthy digestive tract and help you feel full between meals.
However, when fruit is dehydrated, the water is removed but the sugars remain. For this reason, your dried pineapple should be viewed as an energy booster or small snack and consumed in moderation.
How many calories will this sugar add to your finished dried pineapple treat? Well, that depends in part on how much honey you leave on the fruit. For this reason, brushing a thin layer on each piece of fruit results in less calories than dipping.
When choosing your fresh pineapple for dehydrating, be sure to get a ripe one – but one that is still firm. A mushy piece of fruit will not work well. It will also be more difficult to peel, core and slice.
Honey as Dried Fruit Pretreatment
Honey is one of those marvelous pantry staples. When honey is stored properly, it never spoils – it lasts forever.
In addition to being a sweet treat, honey is used in recipes in combination with or instead of regular sugar.
When choosing a type of honey to use for pretreatment of fruit for dehydration, variety doesn’t really matter. Of course, we always recommend buying raw honey straight from the beekeeper when possible.
1. The first step involves preparing the pineapple. This involves cutting off the top, peeling, cutting out the eyes and coring your piece of fruit. This can be a juicy adventure so protect your counter.
2. Use a sharp knife or a mandolin slicer (which is wonderful) to slice the pineapple into uniform thick slices. This helps insure even drying.
3. Place pineapple slices on dehydrator tray in a single layer. Brush each side of the slice with a light coating of honey.
Some recipes suggest, creating a water soak using 1 cup of honey to 3 cups of hot water. Once stirred well, the fruit is soaked for a few minutes – then removed and allowed to drain.
In making these dehydrated pineapple slices, we chose to brush on a small amount of honey rather than using the soak method. When making honey dried apple rings in the dehydrator – I use the soak method.
4. Dehydrate until pineapple is firm and dry. The time required depends on many factors including the model of your hydrator, weather conditions and fruit thickness.
Storing Dried Pineapple Slices
After allowing the dried pineapple to cool, store in an air-tight container. Clear mason jars (with wide mouths) are wonderful storage containers for dried fruit.
Inside a glass jar, moisture condensation should not be a problem if you have dried the pineapple sufficiently.
However, If you are concerned about mold or the product absorbing moisture – pop a few packets of food grade silica gel (link in recipe card) in there.
If you plan to consume it within a few days, a jar on the counter is fine. It also stores in the refrigerator for several weeks or freeze it for months of storage. If you want to add some
Honestly, I also like to use vacuum seal bags for my bulk food storage. They are easier to stack in the pantry and I can open them and transfer to a jar if desired.
Learning how to dehydrate pineapple is a great way to store fruit for future use. The shelf life is long and it does not take up a lot of room in the freezer or pantry.
But, you don’t have to worry as honey has a very long shelf life in its natural state. Perhaps, these Honey Caramel Apples would be a great snack for another day!
Another great idea using honey for food preservation is making honey blueberry syrup. Its a yummy topping for pancakes and waffles. And a great way to use up the blueberry harvest.
This healthy honey lime fruit salad is another way to use up fresh fruit – don’t let it go to waste.
Dehydrated Pineapple Recipe
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- 1 piece pineapple ripe
- 1/2 cup Honey
- 1 pkg Food Grade Silica Gel (Optional)
- Choose the PineappleSelect a nice pineapple of medium size. If it is still very green, let it ripen for a few days. However, do not wait too long – over-ripe pineapples will be more acidic.
- Off With Its Head!The first thing to do is to “behead” your pineapple. Hopefully, the top is still mostly green with a few dried ends of the foliage. This is a good sign.
- Remove Peeling from SidesPineapples can be a rather frustrating food to peel. They are a bit rough and lack the smooth peel of an apple. Use a knife to slice off the outer covering. Several cuts from top to bottom are required.You will see some brown spots left (eyes). Use your knife to cut the brown away – it is okay if you have to cut into the pineapple a bit. That is normal.
- Remove CoreThe center of a pineapple is the core. This area of the fruit is woody and not as flavorful. It is common to discard the core.Some cooks use a pineapple corer. That is great if you have one on hand but a knife will work just as well. Slice the whole thing into pieces and then cut off the core.
- Slicing Uniform PiecesUsing your knife (or a slicer) cut all of the pineapple into slices of near uniform thickness. If using a mandolin slicer take care to avoid cutting yourself. Cut resistant gloves are a good kitchen accessory to have.
- Absorb Excess MoistureLay pineapple slices on a flat surface with a paper towel underneath. Use another paper towel to blot off any excess juice on top of the slices. You don’t have to do this but I think it is worthwhile.
- Brush Honey on one SideUse a silicone brush to apply a light coat of honey to the top side of each pineapple slice.
- Repeat for other sideFlip fruit over and place on dehydrator trays. Apply another light coat of honey to this side.
- Dehydrate for 16 HoursDehydrate pineapple until firm and dry. It may be slightly sticky but there should be no wetness. Normally this takes approximately 16 hours at 135°F.
- Remove from DehydratorWhen pineapple is dry and firm, remove from dehydrator and allow it to cool.