Knowing how to dehydrate soup certainly adds a new dimension to those campfire dinners and even allows for healthier, lower cost alternatives to the standard commercial dried soup mixes used in many home kitchens. Avid campers and outdoor adventurers understand the need for lightweight, non perishable meals, and they also know that the cost and quality of many dehydrated mixes are far from homemade. Food dehydrators are commonly used for fruits, vegetables and meats, but also hold the potential for use in more hearty dishes such as soups or stews. How do you dehydrate your favorite soup recipe?
- Begin by preparing your favorite soup. Canned soup can be deyhydrated as well as homemade ones. If you are using canned soup, prepare as usual without adding additional water. If you are making a homemade soup, use less water in the recipe to yield a thicker puree consistency that will be faster and easier to dehydrate. Consider purchasing dried meat separately or dehydrating the meat separately for your soup to ensure that the food safety is maintained.
- Review the manufacturer’s instructions for your dehydrator. Read the manual for your dehydrator model and use the appropriate trays and accessories recommended for liquids.
- Add the prepared soup to the dehydrator trays. Using the appropriate trays, liners and accessories for your dehydrator, add the soup to the tray liners by spoonfuls. The soup should be dropped onto the trays in two to three inch diameter circles no more than 1/4 inches thick. The soup circles will dehydrate faster and be easier to re-hydrate at a later time.
- Add the trays of soup to the dehydrator and set the temperature according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Bear in mind that the drying time will depend on the initial water content of the soup and the diameter and thickness of the soup circles loaded into the dehydrator unit.
- Store the dried soup in airtight packaging until ready to use. Tightly-sealed storage containers or vaccum-sealed plastic bags work well to store the soup mix.
- Re-hydrate the soup by placing the soup disk into a bowl or large cup and adding boiling water until the soup has reached the desired texture and consistency. If you chose to leave out meat or grains such as pasta or rice, add these items before rehydrating and cook the soup until the add-ins are cooked through.
Home dehydrated soups offer an unlimited selection of flavor and options that can be modified to fit various dietary restrictions, tastes and budgets.