I love to make homemade food and to try to eat healthy, but I just love food in general. The desire to want to eat healthy doesn't always out weight the desire to just eat food. Things like chips are really hard to cut out of my diet completely. I have always wanted to try out homemade fruit and veggie chips using a dehydrator because I could make them without all the additives that make them not weight watcher friendly. Magic Mill has supplied me with their Six Tray Food Dehydrator with Digital Control at a deeply discounted price. I have received no compensation for this review and all opinions expressed are strictly my own.
I was so excited to try out the dehydrator that I didn't even plan out what I was going to put in it first. I grabbed some strawberries out of the fridge, sliced them in half and threw them in. I think I had them in the dehydrator for about seven hours. They weren't completely dried out at that time, but I ate them any way. They were really yummy and I couldn't wait any longer. I should have put them in at the highest temperature because I left them too thick. The second item I tried was bananas. I nearly filled the dehydrator with very thinly sliced bananas. I left them in the dehydrator for nine hours at the highest temperature. I have been eating them for five days now. They satisfy that need to eat something crunchy and since there's nothing on them, they are a zero point weight watchers snack for me. They were extremely easy to make and have kept very well in a tupperware container.
The Magic Mill Dehydrator comes with six stainless steel racks and six plastic mesh nonstick trays. You could put things directly on the stainless steel racks, but if you use the mesh, clean up will be easier and you won't tear the food. Using the mesh actually has helped me to determine when my food is completely dehydrated. If the food it still sticking to the mesh, I know I need to leave it in there longer. When it is peeling off of the tray, it is easier to get off of it and normally the food is completely dehydrated. I have made strawberries, bananas, a variety of peppers, and apples in it. I intended to try potatoes, but my potatoes weren't any good by the time I got to try them. The bananas took nine hours to be done and I have been eating them for an entire week. With the peppers, I finally figured out the best way to cut them them so they were a uniform thickness. They only took four and a half hours to dehydrate. Finally the apples only took seven hours to completely dehydrate and taste AMAZING.
It comes with a clear door so you can see inside to check on the food. It has a digital display with eight different preset temperatures, though I find using the highest temperature of 158° the most effective. You can the time on it in 30 minute increments, but there's no harm in setting a higher time only to turn it off when the food is done. It has 360° air flow from the fan in the back and the one in the top. Perhaps the most impressive part though is that it never gets too hot to touch. The back is a metal panel yet I was able to put my bare hand on it after it had been running for several hours. THAT certainly makes a mom happy. There's no chance one of my kids will walk by it, touch it, and then get burned. It is completely safe.
I am completely in love with this. I can't wait to try out more items. The box for it advertises making nuts, yogurt, muffins, fruits, jerky, pet treats, crackers, granola, meat, herbs, potpurri, desserts, trail mix, vegetables, poutlry, rising doughs, and dried flowers. With a list like that, I kind of expected there to be a cook book with it. That's my only complaint. There was no cookbook. It does tell you that dehydrating times and temperatures vary based on the thickness of what is in it and how many tray are filled. However, it has just been a guessing game for e to figure out how long to cook anything in it. Other than that, I love it!