9 Best Food Dehydrators Reviewed For 2020

    Last Updated on

    Our Top Choice...

    Key Features

    • check
      It has 9 trays, 15 square feet of drying space
    • check
      Its exclusive patented Parallex Horizontal Airflow system
    • check
      No food or tray rotation needed
    • 10 year warranty

    Fresh FruitsThere is no better way to make the foods you love, last longer than dehydrating. Dehydrating foods had been a preservation method for a very long time. The process allows you to store foods without the risk of contamination from bacteria.

    Not sure what foods you might want to dehydrate? Well let’s start with the obvious, jerky is the perfect way to make meat last a long time. Then there are dried fruits and veggies, and even herbs from your garden can be dehydrated. 

    Dehydrating foods is the great way to create a portable and healthy snack, while also preserving the taste and nutritional benefits of foods. Food dehydrators have become the go-to method for drying and preserving foods. 

    They are generally simple to use, and the speed up the process of dehydrating meats, fruits, veggies and herbs. For the cook that wants to get the most from their grocery list, a dehydrator is a must for cutting down on waste, especially fruits and veggies.

    We’ve looked at a number of dehydrators on the market, and have created a list of our nine favorites. By far our favorite is the Excalibur 3926TB  9-Tray Electric food dehydrator. It has great options and makes dehydrating foods easy.

    For the complete product list, please continue reading...


      Top 9 Best Food Dehydrators (2020 Reviews)

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 600
    • Material: Plastic
    • Temperature range: 105° to 165°F
    • Dimensions: 19 x 17 x 12.5 inches
    • Programmable timer: Yes for up to 26 hours
    • Number of trays: 9
    • Accessories: Flexible plastic mesh inserts included

    If you’re looking for the best of the best, when it comes to food dehydrators, than an Excalibur dehydrator, is the one for you. These food dehydrators are reliable, highly functional and simple to use. All you have to do is fill the trays with food, and set the timer.

    This is a big dehydrator. With 9 trays, there is plenty of space to dehydrate a variety of foods in less time than with smaller dehydrators. And while we love the fact that tons of food fit in this dehydrator, it can be a beast to store, so if you’re investing in this great dehydrator, make sure you have plenty of storage room.

    With a temperature range of 105°F and 165°F, you can dehydrate a variety of foods, ranging from delicate herbs to jerky. This dehydrator doesn’t go as low as some other models, so you’ll want to adjust the drying time to compensate.

    This dehydrator features a large, back mounted, 7-inch fan. This fan provides plenty of airflow that is distributed evenly through the unit. This means that you don’t have to worry about unevenly dried foods, or the pain of moving trays around to get even drying.

    The 9 nine trays stack easily and provide you with plenty of space to keep foods separated, which is important for even drying.

    The trays and mesh inserts are designed to make clean-up easy with this dehydrator. All of the trays dishwasher safe, and the flexible mesh inserts, while not dishwasher safe, allow you to easily dump dried foods into containers, and clean up with just a quick wipe down. The interior of this dehydrator cleans up easily with a washcloth.

    Wrapping up

    In short, if being able to dehydrate large amounts of food is a high priority for you, the Excalibur 3926TB 9-Tray Electric Food Dehydrator is the clear winner.

    Pros

    The simplicity of the controls
    9 BPA free drying trays with flexible mesh inserts
    Large amount of cooking area
    Stress-Free 10 year warranty

    Cons

    The noise level is high
    Takes up a bit of room on the counter

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 600
    • Material: Stainless steel
    • Temperature range: 95º-165ºF
    • Dimensions: 13.4 x 17.8 x 12.4 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes, in 30-minute increments for up to 48 hrs.
    • Number of trays: 6
    • Accessories: 1 Mesh Screen, 1 Fruit Roll Sheet, 1 Manual, 50 Recipes

    Not as large as our previous model, the COSORI food dehydrator is a great option, despite the smaller size. With 6 drying trays, this dehydrator still provides plenty of space for drying a variety of foods. And with a sleek design, this dehydrator will look great on your countertop.

    This dehydrator is easy to use, and comes with a detailed user’s manual that includes simple instructions and recipes for making healthy snacks and treats. The easy to set timer provides a 48-hour maximum drying time and 30-minute timer increments so you can create the perfect drying program for a variety of foods.

    This is a really quite dehydrator and can be set to run at night without disturbing your sleep. The temperature range of 95°F to 165°F, allows you to dehydrate everything from herbs to jerky. And the trays are dishwasher safe, so clean up is quick and easy

    Pros

    Easy to set up, program and operate
    Stainless steel looks good on counter
    Very low noise
    Simple cleanup- dishwasher safe trays

    Cons

    Could use a few more fruit leather trays

    3. Best for Beginners - Chefman Food Dehydrator Machine

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 480
    • Material: Plastic
    • Temperature range: 95º F to 158º F
    • Dimensions: 13.6 x 17.5 x 12.4 inches
    • Programmable timer: Yes up to 19.5 hours
    • Number of trays: 6
    • Accessories: 1 fruit roll mesh tray and 1 drip tray

    The Chefman Digital Food Dehydrator is the perfect dehydrator for beginners. It is easy to use, and has 14 preset temperature and timer controls for error free dehydrating.

    With 6, large adjustable trays, this dehydrator has plenty of space for any foods that you want to dry.  This dehydrator has a temperature range of 95°F to165°F, allowing you the option to dry delicate foods like herbs or safely dry meats at higher temperatures. 

    You can even make your own yogurt or dried pasta in this dehydrator!

    Pros

    Ease of Use.  Simple and precise programming
    Durable and safe to use
    The window to check on food

    Cons

    Door is delicate
    Longer cook times

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 750
    • Material: Plastic
    • Temperature range: 90 to 165 degree F
    • Dimensions: 14.5 x 15 x 7.25 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes up to 48 hours
    • Number of trays: 6
    • Accessories: two fruit roll sheets, two nonstick mesh screens trays

    The Presto food dehydrator is our pick for the best stackable dehydrator. With ample capacity for plenty of foods, this dehydrator also has a small footprint for easy storage in cabinets or on the counter-top. 

    This dehydrator features a bottom fan, which is great for providing consistent and even airflow, for the best drying results, without having to move trays. The Presto dehydrator also features a broad temperature range (90°-165°F) for versatile food options.

    The six drying trays, two fruit roll sheets and mesh screens are all dishwasher safe, so once you’re done dehydrating your tasty treats, clean- up is quick and simple.

    Pros

    Easy to program
    Small footprint on counter
    It's even heat circulation due to fan location
    Versatile. Expands up to 12 trays

    Cons

    A tad too noisy

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 480
    • Material: Plastic, Stainless steel
    • Temperature range: 95º F to 158º F
    • Dimensions: 15 x 13.5 x 19 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes, 1 hour up to 19.5 hours
    • Number of trays: 6
    • Accessories: 2 plastic fine mesh trays, 2 non stick trays, 1 set oven mitts

    If you are looking for a high quality food dehydrator that takes you to the next level in food drying, then the Magic Mill food dehydrator is your answer. This dehydrator leaves behind the plastic trays and uses durable, heavy-duty stainless steel. Each tray comes with a fine mesh tray that holds even tiny herbs and seeds. 

    The stackable trays are adjustable so you can fit foods of all sizes. And the rear mounted fan provides even airflow distribution for consistent drying results, throughout the dehydrator. This is a larger dehydrator so it’s perfect for home gardeners, or for the fruit and veggie lover that doesn’t want good food to go to waste. 

    This dehydrator has a temperature range of 95°F to158°F, and an easy to set programmable timer, which is perfect for drying all of your favorite herbs, fruits and veggies. It may not be the best option if you are looking for a dehydrator for making jerky, since the high temperature is not quite enough for safe meat handling.

    All of the trays that come with this dehydrator, including the mesh trays are removable and dishwasher safe, for easy, hassle free clean-up.

    Pros

    Plenty of trays for a variety of foods
    Dishwasher safe BPA free racks
    The rear-mounted fan is handy

    Cons

    Does not allow exact temp programming
    It has a slightly larger footprint on the counter

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 500
    • Material: Metal base and plastic trays
    • Temperature range: 100-160° F
    • Dimensions: 10.5 x 13 x 11 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes, 48 hour timer with auto shutoff
    • Number of trays: 5
    • Accessories: 1 fine-mesh sheet and 1solid sheet

    If you’re looking to try out a dehydrator, and want an option that is easy to use, has plenty of features, and isn’t too hard on the budget, then the Hamilton Beach food dehydrator is your answer. 

    This compact, value dehydrator comes from a trusted name in kitchen appliances, so you know that it will be easy to use, and long-lasting.

    This dehydrator features five, stacking trays that give you plenty of space to dehydrate a variety of foods. It has a compact footprint so it is easy to store and won’t take up a ton of space on your kitchen counters. 

    This dehydrator also comes with a solid, flexible insert for making homemade fruit rolls, which are a healthy snack alternative for your kids.

    The Hamilton Beach dehydrator has a constant airflow feature which provides ample drying without having to move trays around. The easy to program timer has a variety of program options, and a temperature range of 100°F to 160°F making it perfect for dehydrating fruits, veggies, herbs and even meats.

    Pros

    Easy to use and program
    A 48 hour timer gives plenty of time
    Versatile easy to clean trays

    Cons

    Less precise heat distribution
    It is a bit noisy for its size

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 280
    • Material: Plastic
    • Temperature range: 104 to 158 degrees F
    • Dimensions: 9.92 x 9.43 x 7.01 in
    • Programmable timer: No timer
    • Number of trays: 5
    • Accessories: No accessories included

    Just because you’re on a budget, doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be able to enjoy the benefits of a food dehydrator. The Commercial Chef compact dehydrator is a great option at a great price. 

    The small but spacious dehydrator stores easily, takes up minimal space on your countertop, but has more than enough room for what you need to dry.

    This dehydrator is simple to use, and has more basic controls than many of the other dehydrators we’ve looked at. Simply fill the dehydrator trays with food, turn the temperature knob, and you’re on your way to healthy, dried fruits and veggies. 

    The temperature range of this dehydrator is a bit narrower than others, so you’ll need to adjust drying times for foods like herbs and meats. However, for the money, you can’t beat the Commercial Chef when it comes to features, reliability and affordability.

    Pros

    Simple, easy to operate
    Lightweight but durable
    Great, affordable dehydrator for your first one

    Cons

    No timer
    No added accessories
    Small batch drying only

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 1000
    • Material: Plastic
    • Temperature range: 90°F - 160°F
    • Dimensions: 15.5 x 15.5 x 9.5 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes, 1 hour to 48 hours
    • Number of trays: 4
    • Accessories: 1 Fruit Roll Sheet, 1 Clean-A-Screen

    While the Gardenmaster food dehydrator only comes with 4 trays, it’s not limited by this feature. The Gardenmaster from Nesco is our pick for the most expandable dehydrator because you can easily purchase extra trays, and it holds up to a whopping 20 trays at one time. This dehydrator gives you the most flexibility of the ones we’ve reviewed, from the capacity standpoint.

    The top mounted fan provides good airflow and even drying. And with a temperature range of 90°F to160°F, there is plenty of opportunity to dry herbs to jerky, with ease.

    Pros

    Really easy to load and unload food
    1000 watts of power
    Expandable up to 20 trays
    Is made of BPA free plastic

    Cons

    Its louder than others
    Only comes with 4 trays

    Specifications:

    • Watts: 470
    • Material: BPA-Free Plastic Body & Stainless Steel Trays
    • Temperature range: 77 - 167 degree Fahrenheit
    • Dimensions: 17.5 x 12 x 14 in
    • Programmable timer: Yes, 1 hour to 99 hours, with 1-hour increments
    • Number of trays: 11
    • Accessories: 1 stainless steel drip tray/fruit leather tray, 1 air filter

    Our final offering for food dehydrators is the Tribest Sedona Express. It is our pick for those people that don’t mind spending extra cash for a quality product. If budget isn’t a factor for you, this 11-tray dehydrator is the perfect option for your kitchen. Made from stainless steel, this compact but spacious dehydrator provides plenty of capacity for all of your dehydrating needs.

    This dehydrator comes with the largest temperature range of all of the dehydrators we reviewed. It perfectly dries delicate herbs to perfection, but also makes great jerky, using the USDA recommendation for safe meat drying. 

    The easy to use control panel provides ample options for time and temperature, including pre-programed options, and sensor that protects against over-drying. This dehydrator is the only one we found that even has a light for easier viewing of your foods.

    Pros

    Stylish look and quiet operation
    A transparent glass door and internal LED light are clear and bright
    The compact design to fits in any kitchen
    The 10 Year Warranty is the best on the market

    Cons

    Some sticking on trays
    It is a bit pricey

    Final Verdict

    Excalibur 3926TB 9-Tray

    Dehydrators are a great way to make healthy snacks, and can help your family cut down on food waste. After testing and reviewing, our favorite food dehydrator is the Excalibur 3926TB 9-Tray Electric Food Dehydrator

    It’s easy to use, has plenty of capacity and provides even drying. Its programmable timer lets you dehydrate your favorite foods overnight or while you’re away from home. It’s a great appliance for your kitchen.

    If the Excalibur isn’t the right dehydrator for you, hopefully our handy buying suggestions, and other picks will lead you in the right direction. 

    That way, you’ll be making tasty jerky and healthy snacks for you and your family very soon. 

    Let us know if you have any questions or comments so we can help steer you in the right direction.


    How to Choose the Best Food Dehydrator

    If you’re in the market for a food dehydrator, we’ve put together a list of considerations for buying. These will make picking the best food dehydrator for your needs, a piece of cake.

    Size

    There are two size factors that you should consider. Total size and interior capacity. First we’ll discuss total size. When you’re shopping for a food dehydrator, think about the space you have in your kitchen and for storage. Don’t get a dehydrator that is so big that it won’t be easy to store or is too much to move around. Rectangular dehydrators are easier to store, and frankly have a larger dehydrator capacity.

    Capacity

    If you have the space, a larger capacity dehydrator will save you time. If you dehydrate lots of food, invest in a larger unit. However, if you only work in small batches, or have a tiny kitchen, a small unit will work great too.

    Programmable timer

    Sure, you can save some cash by purchasing the most basic dehydrator on the market. But we think it’s worth a little extra cash to buy one with a programmable timer. You can set it, and forget it, so to speak. Programmable timers allow you to avoid over drying your foods, and you can let them work when you’re sleeping or at work.

    Temperature range 

    Look for dehydrators that have a larger temperature range. A dehydrator that will go below 100 degrees Fahrenheit for delicate foods like herbs and a high temperature up to 160 degrees, for meats is our preference. This gives you more options for foods and more control. 

    Consistent drying

    Look for dehydrators that have good reviews for drying consistency. The most consistent models will have plenty of trays, so you can spread out your foods.

    Ease of use 

    Look for models that go together and come apart easily. Also, look for dehydrators that clean up easily. Ease of use also means that you don’t need a Ph.D. to program the thing. So look for intuitive and easy to use controls.

    Jerky

    Making jerky is a bit different than just drying fruits and veggies. Not all dehydrators are equipped to make jerky. If this is a priority for you, make sure that the model you select is capable of making jerky.