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#1 Dehydrators – Why and What I Recommend

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The dehydrator is a staple piece of equipment in the raw kitchen, also known as the raw oven. It will open up a whole new world to you allowing you to create raw breads, crackers, cookies, cakes, dried veggies and fruits, trail mixes, and so much more. I have been using the Excalibur dehydrator since 2008. I own seven of them (all functioning). So as you can see, for me to buy seven of them, I must be convinced by their performance. Let me break it down and share why I am such a fan.

**Since writing this post, I have tested another dehydrator that is similar to the Excalibur. It’s called the Samson Silent Dehydrator. I highly recommend this model as well. You can read about it (here).

In simple terms, the way a dehydrator is designed to work is very simple. Typically they are box-shaped with a small motor and fan unit and when turned on, they circulate an even flow of warm air over the foods which allows the product to evaporate moisture content. Removing the moisture from foods allows foods to be preserved properly without spoilage and harmful bacterial growth. But let’s dive into a couple of features that I find important.

Drying Capacity

I love the box cavity. It allows me to remove trays and slide in bowls for warming purposes. I have also used my dehydrator to hang roses in to dry them. They come in 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, and 42 trays. All of mine are the 9 tray machines. I don’t recommend anything less unless your space is limited. For example, the 5 tray unit has an 8 square foot capacity, and the 9 tray has a 15 square foot capacity. If you are going to invest the time and energy to make dehydrated foods, make the most of it! Even if you are single, you can dehydrate and store foods, thus building up some delicious raw snacks for the future.


They come with or without timers. I have both types. For most of my recipes, I start at 145 degrees (F), then an hour later, I reduce the temperature to 115 degrees (F). By starting at a higher temperature, it speeds up the drying process. You can read more about that (here). Having a timer can help remind you to turn the temperature down.

The Motor

The fan, heating element, and thermostat are located behind the dehydrator trays. Cool air is drawn in, heated, and distributed evenly over each tray. This design helps the food dry faster, retain more nutrients, each tray dries evenly, and it doesn’t require tray rotation. Ordinary dehydrators produce constant, unchanging heat which can cause “case hardening.” Case hardening is a dry surface with moisture trapped inside, creating a perfect environment for yeast, mold, and bacteria growth.


Excalibur’s adjustable thermostat allows you to take advantage of Hyperwave™ Fluctuation (changing heat through the drying cycle) for faster, better, safer dried foods. As the temperature fluctuates up, the surface moisture evaporates. Then, as the temperature fluctuates down, the internal moisture moves to the drier surface. The food temperature stays low enough to keep the enzymes active, and the air temperature gets high enough to dry food fast, overcoming yeast, mold, bacteria growth, and spoilage.


I am not endorsed by Excalibur by any means. Hands down, I recommend this machine based on ten years of experience of owning and using them. 

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My Recommendations:

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Thank you for your support! amie sue 

6 thoughts on “#1 Dehydrators – Why and What I Recommend

  1. Kathi says:

    Hi, I just recently purchased the stainless steel Samson 6 tray. It’s big enough for my needs. I LOVE it. Thanks for reviewing Samson last June. That’s when I started thinking about making a change from the 30 year old 10 tray I have loved and used. It still works well…just louder..I was wondering what that double shelf was that you had two dehydrators on in the email you sent out. Where did you buy it?

  2. Kathi says:

    Thanks for the information. It looks very sturdy and it’s a good looking unit…reasonably priced.

  3. Gayle says:

    Hi AmieSue, I am considering getting a stainless steel Excalibur to replace my plastic one that got banged up when
    we moved and now seems to run hot too. Is that the one you would recommend still?

    • amie-sue says:

      Good day Gayle,

      Oh, what a bummer. Sorry, your machine got beat up in the move. I am still enjoying my stainless Samson. I don’t have the stainless Excalibur but I stand by their product name too! I hope everything is going well. blessings, amie sue

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