I love dried fruit. All dried fruit. My favorite is strawberries, I can’t even explain how delicious and chewy they are. I can down a bag in no time. But coming up in a close second is dried apple rings. We’re not talking about apple chips here. These are the spongy, chewy, soft rings.
I had always just assumed that when you dehydrate fruit, it turns crispy. Oh my, how wrong I was. It totally depends on the thickness of the fruit you’re drying, which is why the strawberries turn out so chewy delicious. I know that dried fruit isn’t one of those things that should be eaten in abundance, but man it’s hard with these things. I usually make these apple rings about twice a month, because if I made them more often, I wouldn’t be able to control myself.
They are really easy to make. When I first started making them, we would sprinkle on some cinnamon, but I actually prefer them plain, the flavor of the apple with just a hint of sour from the lemon is just perfect. But in order to make this recipe crazy easy, you’ll need 2 extra tools. I’ll be the first to admit that I have very strong feelings about single-use tools in the kitchen. I really don’t like them. I’d prefer to have things that can be used for multiple purposes so I don’t have to buy as many things, but when I’m peeling and coring 2 dozen apples, there’s no way I want to hover over the trash can with a tiny veggie peeler.
Soooo, I bit the bullet and bought an apple peeler. I’m not talking about one of those things that does the peeling/coring/slicing all at one time. That would be cool and all, but I don’t want my apples sliced that thin. I’m talking about just a peeler and it turns a major task into a 2-minute step (you can watch the peeler in action on my Instagram account). And of course, the kids LOVE to watch me peel apples. Then I use my little apple corer, and in no time at all, I have this perfectly peeled, hollowed out little fruit just ready to be chopped up.
And a bonus for this recipe, you can use your homemade dried apple rings to make some super delicious Apple Pie Bites. That is, if you don’t eat them all first. I usually do.
Dried Apple Rings
- Sweet Apples Red Delicious has a strange texture when dried, they're not recommended
- 1-2 Lemons
- Fill a large bowl about half-full with cold water and and lemon juice. I usually just eyeball it, about 1 lemon per 5-6 cups of water should be fine.
- Peel and core your apples. Slice them into very thick slices, about ½-inch. I like to cut my slices in half so they are half-moons, since I can fit more on a dehydrator tray.
- Place the apples slices in the lemon water as you go to keep them from browning.
- When all the apples are sliced, remove them from the water and place them evenly on the dehydrator trays, close but not touching.
- Dehydrate at 135°F until they are spongy and dry to the touch, but not crispy. This usually takes between 10-14 hours, depending on how accurately you slice the apples and the type of dehydrator you have. Keep an eye on them after the 10-hour mark to make sure they don't dry out too much.
- Once they are done, immediately place them in an airtight container or bag to keep them from drying out. This step is important, it will soften them up a bit more over the next few hours.