Super Easy (and Frugal!) Oven Dried Strawberries are a great way to store berries throughout the year. A low oven temp and a few tips and tricks will keep you with a great strawberry supply throughout the year!
Today’s post is the second installment in our series “Frugal Experiments.” I call this series frugal experiments because I’m posting about frugal projects that I’m trying for the first time, so we’re essentially learning together. I can’t (and won’t) pretend to be an expert on something I’ve never done before, so whether it’s a success or a flop – you’ll see the results here in my Frugal Experiments series. Today’s Frugal Experiment is oven-dried strawberries!
🍽️ Why This Recipe Works
- Less Food Waste – If you have some strawberries and can’t eat them right away, this is a great technique to save yourself from wasting them.
- Tasty Treat – Put these in a Ziploc bag and take them with you in the car for a delicious snack. Or add them to a trail mix.
- Only 10 Minutes Prep – Pretty much all you need is ten minutes to prepare these, and the oven is going to take care of the rest.
I was a bit nervous to take this on since the closest I come to preserving food is freezer cooking. But, when I was able to price match a pound of strawberries for $0.99 (a total steal in my area), it gave me the extra push I needed to get this going.
Strawberries – I usually like to go to the U-pick fields to get strawberries straight from the farm, but when I found this price in the grocery store, I knew I couldn’t beat it. It wasn’t as fun as picking them, but my wallet thanked me!
Lemon Juice – You only need half of a tablespoon, but this will help the strawberries from discoloring as they dry
Step One: Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Wash and dry the strawberries thoroughly.
Step Two: Remove the leafy tops and slice them lengthwise.
Step Three: Place the sliced strawberries in a bowl and lightly toss with lemon juice. This prevents too much browning from occurring.
Step Four: Place them on a sheet pan and transfer into the oven. I needed two sheet pans for two pounds. If you’re doing this in bulk, I’d bank on one cookie sheet per pound of strawberries.
Lesson Learned: If you use a copper mat or Silpat when you dry, then you can slice the berries extremely thin. If you dry them straight on the sheet pan (like I did this time) then the super thin slices will be very hard to remove once they are dried.
Step Five: Dry them for approximately four hours. Set the kitchen timer in one hour increments and open the oven door for a minute to allow dry air to circulate in the oven, which is supposed to help with the drying process.
I also snapped a few pictures for you as a reference guide. I apologize for the photo quality – in my defense, it is impossible to take a good picture inside of an oven.
Here’s what the strawberries looked like at the one hour mark.
The two hour mark.
And the three hour mark.
I also flipped them at this point (and had a very hard time, thanks to neglecting to use a silpat or copper mat). There was a bit of scraping involved, and I wasn’t able to flip a few of the thinnest slices since they were now “one with the pan” – so those were goners.
And here they are at the final stage – the four hour mark.
💡 Expert Tips
Once I took the trays out of the oven, I noticed some of them were still quite sticky. The “worrier” in me caused me to furiously Google for the better part of an hour to make sure they were safe to store and consume. Everything I read said that a slightly sticky/chewy texture is fine.
If you don’t use a non-stick surface, then cut the strawberries into thicker slices. They will be easier to flip. But, the best tip is to use a non-stick surface.
Every oven is different, so please monitor yours if it dries faster or slower.
👩🍳 Recipe FAQs
You can do TONS of things with dried strawberries. Add them to your cereal, oatmeal, or in smoothies for a burst of flavor. Additionally, mix them with nuts and granola to make a trail mix, or add them to your own homemade granola bars. The options are endless.
They will last 1-2 years. How impressive is that? You just need to keep them in an airtight container and eat them as you wish.
No, it’s not necessary to refrigerate the dried strawberries. Simply keep them at room temperature in a storage container, and they will last a long time.
Tried this recipe? Please leave a star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page. You can also stay in touch with me through social media by following me on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook!
How to Dry Strawberries in the Oven
- 2 lbs Strawberries fresh
- ½ tbsp Lemon Juice
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees
- Wash and dry the strawberries
- Cut off the green, leafy tops of the strawberries and slice them lengthwise
- Place the slices in a bowl and mix with the lemon juice. This will minimize discoloring throughout the drying process.
- Lay the strawberries on a sheet pan with a little bit of space in between each one
- Dry them for approximately four hours. Open the oven for a minute every hour or so to allow the humid air to escape. They are done when they have shrunk in size and are thoroughly dry. Some may not be hard and crisp, but that is ok.
- Store the strawberries in a covered jar