How To Dehydrate Fresh Pineapple

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how-to-dehydrate-pineapple

Dehydrated pineapple is one of my husbands favorite snacks, and my kids love it almost as much as he does. Homemade dehydrated pineapple is unlike the so-called “dried” pineapple you find in the store. Even though the store bought dried pineapple is dried a bit it has extra sugar and chemicals added to make it kind of chewy and over all kind of yucky. My mother hated “dried” pineapple until she tasted my dehydrated pineapple. Although I’ve done my fair share of canning pineapple (another great way to preserve it), dehydrating actually takes less time and the final product takes up a lot less space. It is also the prefect grab-and-go snack for kids. I really do try to follow that golden rule of food storage and store what we eat. I also rotate my food so it’s kind of a necessity……:)

Dehydrating pineapple is really easy! It’s one of the first things I learned how to dehydrate (remember, it’s my husband’s favorite) and once you’ve done it once or twice it’ll go fast. Depending on how many pineapples I have, I often ask my son to time me (yeah, my kids have cheap entertainment). I can cut/peel and slice 15 pineapple in about an hour.

How To Dehydrate Fresh Pineapple!

Here’s What I Do:

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First I find pineapple on sale. I found them last week for 99 cents. I let them sit out a few days to get nice and sweet – watch out here because even though they will be super sweet pineapples also get more acidic as they ripen. Since you are dehydrating and concentrating that sweetness and acid you could find yourself with an acid-burnt mouth, so don’t let them over ripen.

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They’ve all been beheaded! (evil laugh) Ok, yeah, I live in an all boy house and sometimes things rub off on me (I used to be girly…..*sigh*). The first thing you want to do is take off the top of the pineapples. I have an assembly line going, remember most of the time I’m being timed at this.

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 Then take off the bottom.

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Cut all of the sides taking off as much of the eyes as possible but not wasting too much of the flesh. Some people swear by a pineapple cutter. I’ve simply never had one and have heard they waste a lot of the flesh.

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For the eyes that are very deep take a knife and score the pineapple like I’ve done here. The eyes run diagonal on a pineapple and usually you can cut out more than one at once.

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 You can see here how I’ve made kind of a V shape and am about to lift the eyes out.

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 Here you can see the crevasse the was left after I’ve taken out a row of eyes.

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Split the pineapple in half. It’s really handy to have these cut resistant gloves since the pineapple is very slippery. Well, one might not be too bad but the juice from 20 pineapples make things slippery, but the gloves help for slicing too as you’ll see in a moment.

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 Now, you want to quarter the pineapple.

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Then cut off the hard center. I’ve heard the center is actually edible but I would imagine you’d be chewing for a long, long time. It’s got a woody texture.

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 Now, you’re ready to slice.

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I just have middle of the road mandolin slicer. I think this one is an OXO. I’ve had it for years (before I started dehydrating). When it wears out I might get something a little different with dehydrating in mind, but this one does the trick with pineapple and works fine. Here is when the cut resistant gloves really come in handy. The hand guard is basically worthless on this slicer. So the gloves allow you to cut down to the last slice.

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 I have the slicer set between 1/4″ and 3/8″

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 Load up your trays!

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Here is a fully loaded Excalibur dehydrator. I used to have a small round tray dehydrator that I used for years. The Excalibur is so much better and bigger!

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This is what the pineapple slices look like when they are done. They take 12-14 hours on the fruit setting. I take the slices out and put them in the freezer for two weeks to pasteurize them. Then I take them out and store them in a cool dry place.

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Of course one of my favorite ways to store dehydrated pineapple in a Mason jar. I use my FoodSaver to vacuum pack the jar. Supposedly, the pineapple will last 30 years or longer if the jar is stored in a cool, dry and dark place. I do not have any dehydrated pineapple that old but I’m sure it’s true. They’ve even found dehydrated food in Egyptian tombs, so we humans have been preserving food in this manner a very long time.

Step by Step directions for dehydrating fresh pineapple. Also included are few tips for cutting pineapple. Then I also give pointers for storing pineapple.
  • Bama Girl says:

    Great tutorial! Love your blog! Thanks for sharing! Blessings from Bama! I’m a JSU graduate, too! Education/Early Childhood.

  • Beverly says:

    My mother had one of those round dehydrators and we tried several times to make dried fruits but they never turned out well. It took too long or it ended up cooking the fruit instead of drying it out. I have always loved OXO products so I’ll take a look at their mandolin. I bought a cheap one and it’s true that you get what you pay for. What a piece of junk. I want a really good one but I don’t want to pay $200 or more for it. If/When you upgrade, let us know what you get. I’m going to get Jake to look into this dehydrator you use. Also, have you made jerky? I think that’s up there in my list of favorite junk foods next to chocolate cupcakes and chex mix.

  • Tracey says:

    I have dehydrated fresh and canned pineapples, but made the mistake of putting the dried pieces in a food saver bag, which compressed the pieces into one hard chunk that took a lot of muscle to get apart. I’ll have to look into vacuum packing jars.
    I have a question: I don’t understand the pasturizing method you are using after the pineapple pcs. are dried. I’m assuming you put them in some sort of bag in the freezer? Is this to kill any additional bacteria that might be on the pcs? Can you explain a bit more about that particular process, please? Thank you so much πŸ™‚

    • Jennifer says:

      When you dehydrate food you don’t heat the food to a high enough temperature to kill insect eggs or bacteria. Freezing the food in a deep freezer for several weeks takes care of the majority of problems that might arise from bugs and bacteria. It’s not 100% full proof some bacteria freezes just fine and will thaw out and still be active. Obviously the ancient Egyptians did not have freezers but they did live in a very dry climate which is helpful in dehydrating. Since I do not live in a dry climate and I have the freezer option available to me it’s just an extra precaution that I take. In addition I find the freezer continues to dry the food out just a bit and as a result I get food that is very similar to freeze dried.

      • Roseann says:

        Do you bag hem in the freezer if lay them on trays? What do you do when you take them out? Are they not wet?

        • Jennifer Osuch says:

          Hi Roseann,
          If they are thoroughly dehydrated (90% of the water removed) there is no problem with moisture. Yes, I just place them in a plastic bag and then place them in the freezer.

  • laura says:

    so you put the dehydrated pineapple in a freezer bag or already packed into mason jars and sealed…..prior to freezer ???

    • Jennifer says:

      You can do either. I don’t like to have a lot of glass in my freezer because my kids help me get things in and out of it. Our freezer is so packed that we stuff things in and so you can see how that might not work with glass. I have put dehydrated pineapple in the freezer packed in glass Mason jars before with no problem, so it’s possible. I just usually will pasteurize them in plastic bags then move them to the Mason jars because of my situation with my kids and a super packed freezer to minimize broken glass…….:)

  • Susan says:

    Wow – you not only have the same dehydrator I do, but the same mandolin and even the same cutting board. I’ll be dehydrating some of the bounty of our yard this afternoon.
    Aloha

    • Gman says:

      i have the same cutting board, dehydrator, mandolin and the same knives. Seriously!! Those are Shun knives I believe. I have the exact same style. Your countertop is different or I would swear you were in my house!! πŸ™‚

  • Julie Horn says:

    I am new to dehydrating. The booklet that came with my Cabelas 10 Tray Dehydrator does not give much information so I Google. I have a couple of questions if you wouldn’t mind answering:

    1. Pineapple is very juicy. Do you put the chips, slices, chunks, etc. directly onto the trays or would you line the trays with parchment to prevent the juice going everywhere? Or do you let them “drip dry” on a paper towel a while before putting them in the dehydrator?

    2. Do you pre-treat your pineapple pieces with a “fruit fresh” solution?

    3. At what temperature did you set your Excalibur dehydrator to achieve desired dryness in 12-14 hours?

    4. I have read you can mix fruits when drying. Do you want to mix only citrus fruits? Juiciest ones on the bottom? Any fruit will do? Do the smells of the fruits combine?

    Thanks for your time. I appreciate the help.

    Julie Horn

    • Jennifer says:

      Hi Julie,
      I love all those questions! It just so happens that I am working on a ecourse about how to dehydrate. The class will answer all those questions and more. I should have it ready soon!

  • Mamaof2 says:

    I am new to dehydrating. I have read that mylar bags preserve the longest. Can I store in baggies until I get mylar bags then transfer? Also do I add an oxygen absorber to them? Lastly, after taking them from the freezer if I am able to transfer to mylar will there be added moisture from being frozen or can I just transfer from frozen state? TIA

    • Jennifer says:

      Yes, you can store dehydrated food in plastic baggies. However, I would not place an oxygen absorber in the the plastic bag. Although plastic bags provide some protection they are not air tight and essentially the oxygen absorber would soon reach it’s oxygen absorbing capacity. In other words, you would just be wasting your oxygen absorber. I let my dehydrated food come to room temperature before placing them in a Mylar bag.

      • ernest says:

        woow, thanks you for such work on dehydrating pineapple, i want to dry pineapple and papaya to sell on a large scale because there is alot of pineapple where live. so you any adivse for me or help?

  • denille campbell says:

    I ordered a new Excalibur dehydrator yesterday. I was surprised to find out that nice Pineapples are on sale for $1.00 each for the next week.

    Can I slice and freeze them before dehydrating, or will it destroy the cells too much??
    THANK YOU!

    • Jennifer says:

      Hi Denille, Frozen pineapple is fine to dehydrate as long as it is sliced thinly and uniformly. Depending on how ripe the pineapple is when you purchase it might be fine to just wait for the Excalibur, assuming shipping to your location is standard (in other words you don’t live in a remote location…..:)

  • Ma Palompo says:

    How much dehydrated pineapple does one fresh pineapple yield? Btw, love your idea of using a mandoline to slice πŸ™‚ Thank you so much!

    • Jennifer says:

      It just depends on how thick you slice your pineapple and how big your pineapple is to begin with. I can usually fill one tray in my Excalibur with one pineapple sometimes more if they are big.

  • cristy says:

    pineapple is in season in our place…i am challenged to try dehydrating but i don’t have the machine (pity on me….i live in the rural area). can u pls. suggest other alternatives. how about sun drying? tnx.

  • Faith says:

    I came across a mason jar of dehydrated pineapple that I forgot about ( 9 months), usually it doesn’t last. It had turned dark although it was stored in a dark spot in the home. I had dehydrated it in my Excalibur for at lease 14 hrs, it looked great and still sealed. Is it normal for it to change color after storing? Is it safe to eat?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Faith,
      It’s hard to tell without a picture. I’m going to say error on the side of caution and throw it out. There is a chance it could have retained some moisture and the darker color indicates mold.

  • Marty Chamberlain says:

    Hi,

    I am super new to this.. so new that the dehydrator is still in the box, I bought it today! I have a question.. I bought a square dehydrator, not an Excalibur. Anyway, the mesh squares are pretty large, 1cm square..I want to do garlic, but squares too large..I don’t have the fruit rollup trays, can I use parchment paper on the trays?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Marty,
      Great question! Yes, you can use parchment paper.

    • zella dennis says:

      I bought a roll of fiberglass screen (the kind to repair window screens) at a hardware store and cut it to fit the trays square and round this allows air to move and holds small pieces like herbs and are easy to clean and store.

      • Jennifer Osuch says:

        Hi Zella,
        Please be careful with items form the hardware store as they are not food grade and I worry about chemicals and other things leaching into food. I do not recommend using anything but food grade materials with you dehydrator!

  • Sue Haygarth says:

    I am in the UK and dehydrating in the home is not so common over here, but my husband bought me an Excalibur and an OXO mandolin for my 60th ! whoopee, so happy with these two.

    your Blog Jennifer has given me the confidence to dry some pineapple. So far I have done apples & pears ( probably like everyone?) and lemon slices and lime slices which I then ground down and froze as flavours for cakes, sauces etc

    I am really grateful for your freezing after drying advice. I wouldn’t have thought of that and would have believed that the freezer would add moisture back. What texture would you describe the slices when you are bottling them ?

    As I grow blueberries, strawberries and raspberries in my garden I am definitely going to dehydrate any excess – I may then grind some to produce more flavours I can use in my Macarons.

    oh and I love fruit leathers so will have a go at those too. the idea of a Dehydrating Course really appeals I must say

    thanks again !!

    sue

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Sue,

      I’m not sure what you mean by texture when I’m bottling them. If you’re asking me about the texture of dehydrated food as I’m putting them into long term storage, different foods have different textures but I always make sure that at least 90-95% of moisture is removed before I place them into storage.

      • Elaine Albertson says:

        Good info, Jen…thanks. I have dried pineapple in my Excalibur, and have been overall happy with the results. 12-14 hours at 135F (Excal recommended) generally works for me (I live on a small island in Hawaii…not humid, really, but not dry either). I may, however, try pretreating with ascorbic next time as I saw some darkening on some product after a month or so (I vac pack individual servings) and thought perhaps that would help. Any thoughts?

        • Jennifer Osuch says:

          Hi Elaine,
          Pineapple is pretty acid already. Almost all dehydrated fruit will turn dark after it’s dehydrated to some degree. I would not worry about it at all in the case of pineapple.

          • Elaine Albertson says:

            True…thanks for the response. I think part of the issue may be I’m not letting it dry enough. I’ve had that issue with other items, including veggies etc. Because I live on Kauai Island in Hawaii, about 200m from the beach, it’s around 50-60% relative humidity most of the time. I’m working on new timing tables as I do each batch. I think many folks don’t realize the link between relative humidity and dry times. Thanks again. Nice work.

  • Carla says:

    Is it possible to use the oven as opposed to a dehydrator? If so, what would be the estimated drying time?

  • Noreen says:

    Can the dried pineapple be turned in powder like what you did to the tomatoes and pumpkin? Thanks πŸ™‚

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      I’ve never tried making a powder out of pineapple, it doesn’t last very long in my house. I have 3 boys and a husband who love it right out of the dehydrator. However, I don’t see why it would not work. If you try it let me know how it goes.

  • nita dresner says:

    What steps do you suggest to “Rehydrate” the pineapple? Thanks in advance.

  • Deb says:

    Hi,
    I just found your site and read the article on dehydrating pineapple. I see that you freeze for 2 weeks to pasteurize them. My question is, I have a vacuum sealer can I vacuum seal and then freeze them leaving them in the same bag. Or should I freeze them on a tray or loose in a zip-lock and then vacuum seal them?
    Thanks

  • Jeremy says:

    I did some dehydrated pineapple last weekend but I’m not sure I left it in long enough. I just stored it in a Ziplock bag because I knew we would be eating it this week but it seems really sticky. I used a Nesco Pro with 5 trays for about 14 hours. Should I have kept it in longer?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Jeremy,

      You could probably have left it in longer if you were storing it long term. Since you’re eating it now, it’s not a big deal.

  • T. Bui says:

    Hi, I have read all of the above comments, including yours regarding the acidity of the pineapple. I am still wondering though, how do you prevent pineapple from turning brown after being dried? I even soaked it in diluted lemon juice & it still does, only after a couple of weeks.
    BTW, you score the pineapple the way I was taught as a little girl, not too many people do that.

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi T.

      It sounds like the pineapple was not dried at a high enough temperature. From what you are saying it seems that there are some enzymes left in it to oxidize after a few weeks. Keep in mind that fruit will be darker once dried, and raw dried fruit (fruit dried under 118 degrees Fahrenheit) will oxidize because the enzymes are still alive in the food.

  • Kris says:

    Hello. Appreciate the great info. Brand new to dehydrating. I am going to make pineapple the first thing I dehydrate. I do not have a food saver. Can I just leave the pineapple in the freezer in ziploc freezer bags and take out when we want to eat it? May I use ziploc freezer bags or do I need to use mylar bags? Thanks, Kris

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Kris,
      Yes, you can leave it in the freezer if you like. Yes, you can use plastic bags, you don’t need to use Mylar.

  • Gary Penney says:

    I get the eyes out with an old fashioned potato peeler. Just use the end to lift the eyes without wasting any of the meat.

  • Kenneth says:

    Years ago I had a recipe to dehydrate pineapple with coconut and honey. It was fantastic tasting but I managed to loose the recipe some time ago and can’t remember the process. Not sure if the honey and coconut were done after the dehydrating. Any ideas?

  • rwg says:

    What are you using to cover the metal shelves of your dehydrator?
    Is it parchment or silicon?

  • Lora says:

    Hi. Approximately, how long will the dehydrated pineapple safely last without using the Foodsaver packing option and just storing in mason jar or airtight container once pasturized?

    • Jennifer Osuch says:

      Hi Lora,
      They will last a good long while. It all depends on how much moisture is in the air, how much heat they are exposed too and how much light.

  • Tracy Richardson says:

    My dehydrator has a temperature setting, not a preset. What temperature should I use for pineapple and for how long?

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