Making Dehydrated Cucumber and Zucchini Chips
By Eva Holmes, UMaine Extension Master Food Preserver Volunteer
If you are looking for a low-carb, low-calorie alternative to potato chips, give dehydrated cucumber and zucchini slices a try! I was very skeptical but now I find these hard to stop eating once I start.
- Cut a cucumber or two into thin slices. I use a food processor that makes 1/16th-inch slices. These come out very thin and almost translucent, like a potato chip. Your slices might be a little thicker using a mandoline slicer, box grater, or knife, but they will work too.
- Lay the slices in a single layer on a dehydrator tray or cookie sheet if you are using your oven.
- Use an olive oil mister to spritz the slices with a little oil or lightly brush some on. You might also try brushing or spritzing vinegar instead.
- Sprinkle lightly with salt or flavoring. I’ve had good luck with popcorn seasoning (I’m using buttermilk ranch). Garlic powder or smoked paprika might also be interesting. Whatever you use, a little goes a long way – the flavors will be concentrated once dried.
- Dry at 135 degrees F for 6-10 hours. The time will vary based on how thick your slices are.
- If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can make these in your oven using the lowest setting, usually 200 degrees. They will take about 2-3 hours but be sure to check regularly because they can go from done to burnt very quickly.
- When they are fully dry, pluck them off the racks and put them into an airtight container. Eat within 6 to 12 months.
Dehydrated zucchini is crunchier and easier to pop off the trays, but I prefer the flavor of cucumbers. Drying a mix of the two at once works just fine. Also, if you don’t feel like slicing cucumbers, try using a jar of dill pickle chips!