Greens. It’s a hot topic. With good reason! Having greens in your home can help boost immunity, better skin, increased energy, improved digestion and it is high in fiber which can help aid in weight loss. So many good reasons to consume more greens.
Let’s be honest though, sometimes eating greens isn’t the tastiest meal. Sure, there are those who love the taste of eating greens and drinking the green drinks.
But I’ve found a better way.
You can dehydrate your own greens!! YES! It is so easy too.
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**NOTE: I’m not an expert. I’m just a mom learning and trying new things to help my family be the healthiest and happiest we can be.
To this, there are a few things you will need. I’m not talking about spending crazy amount of money on things but there are some essentials I believe you will need.
*I’ve heard of some people using their microwave or oven to dehydrate greens. However, my oven doesn’t go below 170 degrees Fahrenheit and microwaves, in my opinion, don’t heat evenly so I don’t even want to try. If you’re interested in trying one of those methods, please do your research.
This is the one I use and as of March 2023, it’s listed at $39.99. It works great and has dehydrated many things successfully for me. I wanted this one because it isn’t big and wasn’t expensive. I didn’t know if I’d like dehydrated food. But I now see that I will dehydrate food for a long time and I am already considering buying a second one so that I can have multiple things going at once.
I use our nutribullet. You’ll want something powerful enough to get the small flakes to make the powder. (more on that later.)
- Parchment paper
You will just need a small amount. I like to use the non-bleached ones.
- Mason Jar
Depending on how much you want to store will determine what size jar to use. I currently have mine in a pint jar. However, I’m planning to keep dehydrating my greens so that I will have a quart size jar full of greens. There are even the mini jars that I like to use for some of my spices.
And then of course, whatever greens you want to use. Even if you don’t grow your own greens, just go buy some! I bought a big container of organic spinach and after I dehydrated it and made it into powder, it was only 4 oz. Give or take.
Greens you can dehydrate.
You can dehydrate any green (as far as I’m aware) some will be better than others and some, like iceberg lettuce, just isn’t worth the hassle. Some of the ones I’m going to suggest I haven’t tried but are on my list to try the second I can get my hands on some. Come on Spring and growing season!
Here are some greens that I think are totally worth it to add in your powder to have in your home:
- Strawberry tops
- Collard Greens
- Swiss chard
- Carrot tops
- Beet tops
- Radish tops
- Turnip greens
How to make your own greens powder.
First, you are going to wash your greens. Even if it’s store bought and it says it’s ready to eat, just have it soak in bowl of cold water to help get any sand and anything you don’t want off. I soak mine for about 10 minutes and stir with my hand every minute or so.
Then you’ll dry them on a towel.
Line them on your dehydrator trays. It’s best if they don’t overlap, but that is time consuming. So, I just lay them out the best I can and get them going. After a few hours in the dehydrator (maybe 6-12 hours) I’ll go in and separate them more. They will be smaller and easier to fit evenly on the trays.
I don’t use any liners or anything under my greens unless for whatever reason, they are small and could fall through the more dehydrated they are.
I set my dehydrator to 95 degrees, the lowest number on my machine.
My greens take forever! I’ve done a few loads and it took on average, 36+ hours.
Greens are super delicate, and you don’t want to scorch them.
It’s a good idea to rotate your trays if your fan is on the bottom of your machine like mine is. If you have one with the fan on the back, there’s no need to rotate.
Once they are all dry and not soft anywhere, then you can put them into your blender. There’s no need to try and be delicate with them. They are going to be pulverized in the blender. I push them down to make room. (Just don’t over stuff the blender . . .) Blend them until they are a nice powder. You can leave them crushed up, it’s up to you. I just like mine in a powder.
Once it’s done in your blender, I cut my parchment paper to fit over a tray in my dehydrator. I put my newly powdered greens onto the parchment paper and back into my dehydrator. I let it go on the lowest setting again for about an hour. Just to be sure it’s all dry and there is no lingering moisture.
After that last hour, I turn off my dehydrator, pull the tray out and let it cool completely. Once it’s cool, I put it into my jar.
Now, this last step is important no matter what you dehydrate.
You need to condition your greens. Conditioning is just making sure all of the moisture is out and to reduce the risk of growing mold. If there is moisture, you will grow mold.
To condition your dehydrated food, set your jar on your counter. Each day check for any sign of moisture and then, if moisture free, shake the contents up. Set it aside and repeat for a week.
If there is moisture, put it back in the dehydrator and start the conditioning process all over again.
How to use powdered greens.
You can add it to water and drink it like you would other greens. You could even add another powder to improve the taste (otherwise it’ll taste like you’re drinking grass) such as powdered peaches or any other fruit.
What I like to do with mine is add just a little bit to my dinner dishes. Meatloaf? Yep, adding a tsp or up to a tablespoon of my greens to it. Spaghetti? Yep, adding some to that as well. Tacos? You got it.
Even if you need to slowly add the greens by adding just a little bit to the foods so your family doesn’t refuse to eat anymore, they will still be getting something. And more than they would if you hadn’t added any greens to the food.
Best of luck on your greens journey!
I can’t thank you enough for being here, in this space, with me and learning, and growing. It’s exciting!