Apples to apples comparison: hydrated weight versus dehydrated weight: home-dried versus store-bought

In the interest of scientific research on what happens to apples when they are dehydrated, I conducted an experiment.

It was actually pure curiosity that prompted the study: the apples needed to dry anyway.

To proceed: 4 apples were cored and weighed before dehydration. The weights ranged from 7 ounces to 7.5 ounces. The apple slices were soaked for about 5-10 minutes in a mixture of lemon juice and water. This pretreatment helped maintain texture and nutrients, and prevent oxidation (the discoloration that occurs during the drying process).

Four dehydrating trays were used, with one apple per tray. This ensured a more accurate apple weight after dehydration. The trays were placed in the dehydrator in the order in which the apples were weighed.

  1. Tray 1: 7.25 ounces
  2. Tray 2: 7.50 ounces
  3. Tray 3: 7.00 ounces
  4. Tray 4: 7.50 ounces

The apples were dried at a temperature of 135 degrees for about 13 hours. After dehydration, each apple was reweighed. The trays were removed from the dehydrator in the order in which the apples were weighed the first time.

  1. Tray 1: 1.25 ounces *
  2. Tray 2: 1.25 ounces
  3. Tray 3: 1.00 ounces
  4. Tray 4: 1.25 ounces

* rounded to the nearest 25 ounces; the actual weight was slightly less

On average, each apple lost approximately 16.22% of its original weight, with a total loss of 16.24%. The 4 apples were divided into 9 small bags for easy packing in lunch boxes. They were stored in a crockery container until needed.

Total cost of apples at $ 1.99 per pound, cored: $ 3.64. The lemon juice added a negligible amount. Total cost of dried apples: $ 0.77 an ounce.

How does that compare to dried apples bought at the store?

There was only one brand to compare, surprising in such a large grocery chain. A 2.5-ounce bag of apple chips costs $ 1.99, or $ 0.80 per ounce, a total of $ 0.03 less than homemade ones.

Before exclaiming that saving is not worth dehydrating yourself, consider what you get for your money.

  1. Both the homemade and store-bought apples were of the Golden Delicious variety.
  2. The homemade apple chips consisted of apples pretreated with lemon juice and water.
  3. The store-bought apple chips consisted of apples; safflower, sunflower and / or canola oil; corn syrup; sugar; dextrose; citric acid; ascorbic acid; Malic acid; and natural flavor.

What’s in your lunch box?

Disclaimer: Because the subjects used in this study were very limited, any conclusions may be inapplicable to other situations. Results will vary, depending on the amount of juice left in the apples, the brands available to compare, and the price of apples in your area.

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