When I go grocery shopping and walk past the snack aisle I am always shocked by how many different fruit roll-ups there are, not to mention the fruit snacks. Trust me, I understand how good they taste…like candy, but that us essentially what they are. Have you ever looked at how much sugar they add? My guess is that the manufacturers feel they have to add so much sugar because they are probably using fruit that isn’t truly ripe as the basis of their product.
I am so thankful that I have an Excalibur dehydrator. They are pricey, but I eased some of the hurt by buying a Factory Refurbished model ($199 vs. $299) which still has a 10 year warranty! I use my dehydrator a lot and have been using it a ton lately because there are such wonderful organic strawberries at my local farmer’s market.
Making fruit roll-ups couldn’t be easier. Simply wash the berries, remove the stems, place them in your Vitamix high speed blender (I squeezed in an orange for extra flavor, however doing so is not necessary), blend until smooth, sweeten if necessary (you can use dates, maple syrup, stevia, honey), and blend again to incorporate the sweetener.
Pour the mixture in batches on to your dehydrator trays lined with non-stick drying sheets, spread with an offset spatula (This tool is such a help…I first learned about this trick from Kristen Suzanne’s blog) as thin as you’d like making sure that it is evenly spread and there are no holes, and dehydrate at 125 until firm to the touch. I spread my roll-ups to about 1/8″ and they dehydrate within 3-4 hours. If you would like to keep the roll-ups “raw,” dehydrate at 115 degrees (it will take longer). You can also make the roll-ups thicker, it will just take longer to dehydrate.
Once you remove the roll-ups from the dehydrator, allow them to come to room temperature and carefully peel them from the non-stick sheet. Line the back of the roll-ups with parchment paper, cut them to size, and roll them up! I store my roll-ups in glass jars.
Recently I have used this method to make a ton of different flavors; mango, pineapple, apple cinnamon, and white peach. I was so pleasantly surprised by the pineapple fruit roll-ups…they were AMAZING!!! I can’t wait to make my next batch and have been dreaming-up all sorts of flavor combinations.
*TIP – try to keep the roll-up “batter” as thick as possible and do not add extra liquid if possible. You will find that certain fruits are less watery than others i.e. mangoes produce a thicker batter than apples do (the result is much more watery). Dehydrating time will change depending upon which fruit / fruit combo you use.
If you do not have a dehydrator, you can make the roll-ups in the oven by following Catherine McCord’s method on her blog, Weelicious (Click HERE).
Please note that I am a Vitamix affiliate…and I wholeheartedly endorse the use of their wonderful product.