How to Dry Pears in a Dehydrator

  • 01 of 07

    What You Will Need

    Close up of pears on wooden circle
    Tom Merton/OJO Images/Getty Images

    A pear is one of the best fruits for dehydrating. Dried pears are a delicious snack and they are also wonderful sprinkled on salads and added to compotes.

    Here's how to dry pears so that you end up with the tastiest result possible as well as ensuring they are safely preserved for long-term storage at room temperature.

    Equipment and Ingredients for Dehydrating Pears

    • Pears
    • Water and lemon juice or vinegar (for acidulated water to prevent browning)
    • Bowl for water
    • Colander
    • Vegetable peeler
    • Knife
    • Pear...MORE corer (optional)
    • Food dehydrator
    • Jars for storage
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  • 02 of 07

    Choose the Right Pears for Drying

    Ripe pears. Leda Meredith

    Pears are best for dehydrating when they are ripe but not too soft. For example, with Bartlett pears (the best variety for drying), when they are turning yellow but still firm, they are at the perfect stage for drying. They get to that stage a day or two before they would be ideal for juicy fresh eating.

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  • 03 of 07

    Peel, Core and Slice the Pears

    Peeling pears before dehydrating them eliminates grittiness. Leda Meredith

    You will want to peel the pears before slicing them for drying. The gritty texture that pears sometimes have comes from tough cells called scleroids. Most of the scleroids are just under the skin, so peeling the pears before dehydrating them results in a better texture.

    • Peel whole pears with a vegetable peeler.
    • Cut into quarters and slice out the cores and stems. If you process a lot of pears, you may want to invest in a pear corer loop tool. It's a simple tool with an asymmetrical loop that...MORE is just the right size to lop out the core and then drag down the stem.
    • Cut the pear into 1/2-inch slices.

    Note: Other fruits, such as apples, do not have scleroid cells and do not need to be peeled before drying.

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  • 04 of 07

    Drop Pear Slices Into Acidulated Water

    Dropping pear slices into acidulated water before dehydrating minimizes browning. Leda Meredith

    As you slice the peeled pears, drop the pieces into acidulated water. This step minimizes browning while the pears dry.

    • Make the acidulated water by adding 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice per quart of water.
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  • 05 of 07

    Drain the Pear Slices

    Drain the pears after soaking in acidulated water. Leda Meredith

    When you are ready, to dehydrate the pear slices, drain them thoroughly in a colander and optionally blot them dry with a paper towel if they are very wet.

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  • 06 of 07

    Arrange Pear Slices on Dehydrator Trays

    Pears arranged on a dehydrator tray. Leda Meredith

    Arrange the drained pear slices in a single layer on dehydrator trays. Be sure to leave space for air circulation between the pear slices. None of the slices should be touching.

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  • 07 of 07

    Dry and Store the Pears

    Ripe pears. Leda Meredith
    • Place the trays of pears into the dehydrator. Dry between 130 F to 140 F (54 C to 60 C) until the pears are leathery with no moist spots (usually 8 to 10 hours).
    • Turn off the dehydrator and allow the pears to cool at room temperature for 10 minutes.
    • Store dried pears in tightly sealed glass jars away from direct light or heat.
    • Label your jars with the contents (Pears) and the date that you dried them. Then you can be sure to use the oldest first if you make additional batches.
    • Dried pears should...MORE have a shelf life of 6 months to 1 year.