Drying mushrooms in a dehydrator is a fantastic way to save your mushrooms from spoiling. I think drying mushrooms is better than freezing them as you don’t compromise the flavor or the texture. They are easy to rehydrate later by just using some hot water. In addition, you don’t have to worry about freezer burn or freezer space. You can do this with any leftover mushrooms that you have, but do so before they start turning bad. Learning how to dry mushrooms is very easy, just follow these steps.
Preparing mushrooms for the food dehydrator
First, your mushrooms must be clean. Wash them gently in lukewarm water or brush them off. I prefer to do both. Then depending on the type of mushroom, take out and discard the stem. If you want them stems, skip this step. Lastly, thinly slice the mushrooms. The thinner the slices, the faster they will dry. I prefer 1/4″ slices or thinner. However, if you like thinker sliced mushrooms, feel free to slice them that way and remember to adjust the drying time.
If you are unsure how to clean and prepare mushrooms, just watch this quick video.
Dehydrating the mushrooms
Put your mushroom slices on the dehydrator trays. Try to make sure that is space between each piece and that they don’t touch. If they do touch, your drying might take longer or not be very successful, especially where pieces are touching. Set your dehydrator for 105-115 degrees Fareinheight. You individual dehydrator might have specific instructions and temperature setting recommendations for different fruits and vegetables. If it does, use the one they recommend. Thinner slices will take 4-6 hours and thicker ones can take up to 10 hours. Just check the slices each hour after 6 for the thicker slices to tell when they are done. When they are dry, they will be crispy, not rubbery. Store the slices in an airtight container.
How to rehydrate the dried mushrooms
To use dehydrated mushrooms, add them to a pot of boiling water. Don’t continue to boil the water, leave it off the heat for 20-30 minutes. Scoop the mushrooms out of the liquid. Keep the soaking liquid. The flavored liquid from rehydrating mushrooms is perfect in soup or used in making risotto. You may use the rehydrated mushrooms in exactly the same way that you would fresh mushrooms.
Other ways to use dried mushrooms
I like to put the dried mushrooms in a food processor and get a mushroom powder. It makes a great addition to beef stew or beef stroganoff. This is a wonderful option to keep the lovely mushroom flavor without the texture of appearance of mushrooms. If you have picky eaters like I do, I suggest trying this method.