In the food dehydration process, water is removed from fresh fruits and veggies. So when you want to rehydrate your food, all you need to do is add the water back in. It’s that easy! Dehydrated foods are a great time saver when preparing just about anything—from soups, stews, casseroles, sauces, baked goods, even omelets.
Here are some quick and easy ways that you can rehydrate dried food to create flavorful meals in minutes. Not sure how much dried product you need to rehydrate for your recipe? Check out our handy Rehydration Chart that breaks down the yield of one cup of dried product for our dried vegetables, fruits, beans, and TVP products.
Add to Cooking
If you’re using dried food in a recipe that requires cooking, you don’t need to rehydrate the veggies prior to use—just add the dehydrated food directly to your recipe. Making corn chowder? Add dehydrated corn and diced potato directly into your soup stock and simmer until tender. Same goes for adding dried beans to chili or using TVP to make vegetarian stew. If you’re cooking dehydrated food in a liquid, it will naturally rehydrate, so all you have to do is measure out the correct amount and then add it to your recipe.
Add to Baking
Baking with dehydrated fruits and veggies works the same way. Want to make cinnamon apple muffins? Fold apple dices into your batter and bake per your recipe. The liquid in the batter will work to rehydrate the fruit so that it comes out perfectly. For a delicious pie or pastry filling, add 1 cup of water to 1 cup of fruit.
Simmer Until Tender
To rehydrate dehydrated veggies on your stovetop, add one-part veggies to two-parts water and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. You can even simmer veggies over a campfire or in a microwave. Campfire or microwave cooking times may vary, so start out simmering for 5 minutes, and then test and add additional time as needed until tender.
Soak vegetables in water for 20-30 minutes or until soft. Drain the water from your veggies and then add them to an oiled non-stick frying pan and sauté for the desired effect. As an example, a few dehydrated onions can be mixed with dehydrated diced potatoes for great homemade hash brown potatoes.
Dehydrated veggies can also be rehydrated by soaking them in water for one to two hours. This can be especially handy if you’re backpacking and want to soak your veggies while you hike so that they’ll be ready when you are. Pre-soaking makes the veggies cook faster, so you’ll save fuel. This method can also be useful during an emergency situation where you don’t have access to electricity.