Preserving The Harvest: Dehydrating Potatoes

by Tammy Taylor

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I’ve been on a dehydrating kick this year & I love it. Recently I acquired a large quantity of potatoes and went on a mission to figure out how to preserve them all.  In the past I have preserved potatoes by cooking, mashing and freezing them so this time I think I’ll try dehydrating them.  I know that potatoes will turn black if they are not cooked before they’re dehydrated so I washed the potatoes and then pricked the skin in several places on each potato, then stacked them tightly in my black enameled covered pan.

Dehydrating Potatoes. You can buy a huge bag of potatoes dirt cheap, how do you preserve them before they all go bad? Dehydrate them! See how we did it. #TaylorMadeHomestead


I covered the pot with the lid and placed it into my *solar oven.  After closing & latching the oven door I pointed the reflectors at the sun, readjusting the oven about once an hour to help it track the sun and keep the interior temps consistent.  We had intermittent high-level cloudiness on this day so the temps only held to around 250.  I didn’t want the potatoes to be too soft so I brought them in when I began to see steam collecting on the inside glass of the oven (about 3 hours.)

sun-oven-coupon-299

It’s easier to process the potatoes for dehydration when they’re cold.  So I spread out the hot cooked whole potatoes on my counter to cool.  After they were cool I stacked them in a bowl and refrigerated them overnight.  The next morning I pulled the cold potatoes out of the fridge and began to grate them.  I don’t mind a few skins on my potatoes so I didn’t try to peel them first as many people do. I simply started grating and the skins pulled away from the potatoes as I grated, leaving me holding only the skin when the potato was fully grated.

Dehydrating Potatoes. You can buy a huge bag of potatoes dirt cheap, how do you preserve them before they all go bad? Dehydrate them! See how we did it. #TaylorMadeHomestead

Since there were so many potatoes I placed them on two large sided baking trays lined with parchment paper and tried to dehydrate them in the oven.  But the oven allowed the moisture to remain and the potatoes didn’t dry fast enough and they soured.  Epic fail – the whole mess went to the *tumbling composter.

Dehydrating Potatoes. You can buy a huge bag of potatoes dirt cheap, how do you preserve them before they all go bad? Dehydrate them! See how we did it. #TaylorMadeHomestead

Hummmm… How else can I do this?  Well there was still quite a heat wave going on here in Texas so why not take advantage of mother nature’s torture free heat?  I repeated the whole process but this time I covered the potatoes with cheesecloth & placed the trays on the picnic table to dry.  That hot Texas sun removed the moisture quickly! I stirred the grated potatoes a couple of times and they dried beautifully.  Now that I have an *Excalibur Dehydrator I can complete this dehydrating process more easily in the future.  YEA!

Dehydrating Potatoes. You can buy a huge bag of potatoes dirt cheap, how do you preserve them before they all go bad? Dehydrate them! See how we did it. #TaylorMadeHomestead

All in all I cooked, grated and dehydrated about 15 pounds of potatoes. I love how they dehydrate down to a very small volume.  They’re pretty stored in glass jars in my pantry!

Dehydrating Potatoes. You can buy a huge bag of potatoes dirt cheap, how do you preserve them before they all go bad? Dehydrate them! See how we did it. #TaylorMadeHomestead

I’ll use these potatoes as hash browns of course but we also like shredded potatoes in our breakfast burritos along with the eggs.  Next I’m going to repeat the procedure but cut the cooked potatoes into small cubes.  Those cubes can be dropped still dehydrated right into our winter simmering soups to rehydrate as the soup cooks!

Potatoes are fun to grow in your garden or oftentimes you can find super-large bags of potatoes dirt cheap. Do you wonder what you’ll do with them all before they go bad? Question answered!

~TMH~

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46 thoughts on “Preserving The Harvest: Dehydrating Potatoes

  1. Helen at the Lazy Gastronome

    I never thought about dehydrating potatoes. Do you just re-hydrate with water?? Thanks for sharing on the What’s for Dinner link up!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Homestead Post author

      Yep, add a little boiling water and cover them up & let them rehydrate until they’re plump again. Then I like to either make them into hash browns or spoon them as-is into our breakfast burritos along with the egg & cheese. They take up so little space in my pantry this way too. ~TMH~

      Reply
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  5. Erlene

    Taylor thanks for sharing this. We usually use all our potatoes, but every once in a great while I’ll have a bag or two that sits and this is a great way to use them before they go bad. It’s cooling off in SoCal, so I might have to try it during the hot summer months.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      We’re like you Erlene, I usually focus on the fresh produce first so it doesn’t go to waste so we don’t often have potatoes I worry about. But sometimes they start to get away from you and you just can’t stand to eat potatoes every night until they’re gone! LOL ~TMR~

      Reply
  6. Misty Nicole Overstreet-Roberts (The Lady Prefers To Save)

    What a great tip! Hello, my name is Misty, from The LadyPrefers2Save at http://theladypreferstosave.com, and I’m one of the new co-hosts for the Merry Monday Linky Party! I wanted to write and thank you for linking up to this weeks Merry Monday party, as well as to let you know that your post will be linked to the Merry Monday Pinterest board, as well my social media accounts. I would love to have you also stop by my blog as well! Thanks for linking up at the Merry Monday’s Linky Party this week, and I hope to see you linking up next week as well. Have an awesome week!

    Reply
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  8. Terri Presser

    Thanks for this great post, very interesting. I have never dehydrated potatoes. We are growing a heap here at the moment and I was thinking of canning mine, but might try drying some as well. If you have time I would love it if you would link up at Good Morning Mondays at Darling Downs Diaries. Blessings

    Reply
  9. Rachel

    I am glad you also said what didn’t work. I have dehydrated fruits and a few vegetables but never thought about potatoes. I didn’t know a solar oven even existed, lol. So much to learn. Thanks for linking up to Merry Monday!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Yeah Rachel, sometimes I have more than my fair share of epic fails. LOL Certainly don’t mind helping others steer clear of the same mistakes I’ve made. ~TMR~

      Reply
  10. Nicole@I

    I love potatoes in my breakfast burritos. Hubs is a real meat and potatoes kind of guy so we eat a lot of them. Thanks for sharing on #yuckstopshere! Please come share again next week!

    Reply
  11. Stella Lee (@Purfylle)

    What a great idea, they should keep for ever unless water or pests get in. You could add some flavours and have home made instant soup!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      That’s what I’m hoping for. I’ve rehydrated & made hash browns with them and also added rehydrated potatoes to our scrambled eggs for breakfast burritos. So far each way I’ve rehydrated and used them has been great. ~TMR~

      Reply
  12. karen

    I love the idea of dehydrating hash browns. I recently discovered that I can quickly make hash browns by putting chunks of potatoes and water in my Vitamix and giving it a couple of quick pulses, then draining them. I wonder if I then toss them in some boiling water for a couple of minutes that would cook them enough before I dehydrate them.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      The cooking process keeps the potatoes from turning dark as they’re being dehydrated. Since I was going to shred the cooked potatoes I experimented & cooked several batches of potatoes to different levels – I did notice the more I cooked them the lighter they were in color when they were fully dehydrated. Give it a try & see! ~TMR~

      Reply
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  15. Linda

    I tried to dehydrate raw potatoes and they turned black. How do you keep them from turning black. Cook them first?????

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Yes, in my post I mentioned that potatoes will turn black if they’re dehydrated while raw. I cooked the potatoes first and they turned out great. ~TMR~

      Reply
    2. Alison

      Yes, you must cook the whole potatoes or blanch cut but uncooked slices or cubes prior to dehydrating or the will go black. Dip the sliced or cubed pieces in boiling water or about 2-3 minutes remove, allow to drain and pat dry and then dehydrate.

      Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Ben, we’ve used them reconstituted and mixed in our scrambled eggs when making breakfast burritos and also made into hash browns – always delicious. I’m anxious for cold weather soups when I can try the cubed dehydrated potatoes in stew. So far though it’s been a screaming success! ~TMR~

      Reply
  16. Jessica Smith

    Wow I didn’t realize you could do this. Very good to know. Bummer that your first batch went bad, but genius idea using the hot sun! Great post.

    Reply
  17. Anna

    I love this! I have been wondering if there was some way you could dehydrate your own potatoes. Not just my own homegrown, but I like to get mine in 50 pound bags, and sometimes I don’t get them all used up and wish I could dehydrate them. I will certainly have to try this. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      OMGosh Anna – I was thinking the same thing. You often get some amazing deals on very large quantities of potatoes. With only 2 of us here in the home these days there’s no way we could eat them all fresh before they go bad. I’ll certainly be dehydrating more in the future. ~TMR~

      Reply
  18. janet pesaturo

    I too thought it was helpful that you described with didn’t work. Amazing to me that you can dry food out in the sun. It’s so humid here that you cannot do it unless there is an unusual stretch of dry weather. I do love the idea of drying in general, though. Dried foods take up so much less storage space. Haven’t done potatoes, but we use our dehydrator to dry a lot of tomatoes, and sometimes apples and blueberries. Thanks for sharing on Creative Home and Garden hop.

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Janet, I’ve certainly been on a dehydrating kick this year – I absolutely love the low storage requirements and the ease of using your produce even in the frigid months of winter ~TMR~

      Reply
  19. The Rural Economist

    I appreciate you including a fail. I have never thought about dehydrating potatoes, but I think I will give it a try. Thanks for sharing on Rural Wisdom and Know How.

    Reply
  20. Linda @ A La Carte

    I never would have thought of doing this but if you have a large harvest of potatoes this would be an awesome way to save them! Thanks for joining TTF!

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Thanks Linda, I’m really surprised I haven’t been doing this for years, but I promise you I’ll be doing it from now on. ~TMR~

      Reply
  21. Pat

    How long will these keep in jars? I’ve just started dehydrating some produce myself (I bought a dehydrator for $5 bucks @ yardsale) I didn’t get a book with it. So I catching information as I can and researching too. Hadn’t thought about potatoes! The Texas Heat sounds perfect for this sort of thing. Pat

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      Pat, this is my first round with dehydrating potatoes but I’ve read that your storage times vary greatly based on: How dry they are when you put them in the jars, whether or not you vacuum out the air (I didn’t, I’m using regular glass jars), etc. ~TMR~

      Reply
      1. Pat

        Thanks! I may give this a try if I catch potatoes on sale through the holidays. I dried some of our elephant garlic (grows HUGE and WILD) from our property. I dried it and then ground it up in the CHINOIS …pretty easily. I’ve used it in several dishes so far and it is stout each time I open the container. I must say– it gives me great pleasure to use garlic grown on our property, dried and crushed by me… I think my dehydrator paid for itself that day! 🙂 Pat

        Reply
    2. Shirley

      Try a search on line for your book. I’ll bet you will find one that you can download and or print out. I did that for a sewing machine book when I lost mine. They still sold it but way to expensive so my hubby down loaded and printed out the pages I needed!

      Reply
  22. Candy C.

    Interesting, I didn’t know that about them turning black or that they could sour. I really need to get my dehydrator out and try using it more often. 😉

    Reply
    1. Taylor-Made Ranch Post author

      I was pretty unpleasantly surprised to find they could sour so quickly too Candy. LOL. But I just started over & tried dehydrating them the other way it worked PERFECTLY! ~TMR~

      Reply

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