I love mangoes, but I don’t love preparing them. The large pit in mangoes makes it challenging to cut them without wasting at least some of the delicious fruit! Frozen mangoes takes care of that challenge, since there is no pit to deal with. Dehydrating frozen mangoes is a great way to add this sweet treat to your prepper pantry any time of year.
Preparing Frozen Mangoes for Dehydrating
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In spite of the fact that much of the prep work is done when you start with frozen, instead of fresh mangoes, there is a bit of work you need to do before tossing the frozen mangoes into the dehydrator.
Follow the easy steps below to get your frozen mangoes ready to dehydrate.
Break up Chunks of Frozen Mangoes
When you open your package of frozen mangoes, you may find that some of the pieces of mango have frozen together. This happens if the mangoes slightly thaw and then refreeze.
If you find any frozen clumps of mango pieces, break them apart. You can generally separate the pieces of mango using just your hands. If that doesn’t work, give them a good whack on a hard surface such as a counter. If all else fails, put them in the microwave for 30 seconds to a minute. That should thaw them enough so it’s easy to separate them by hand.
Cut Large Pieces of the Mango into Smaller Pieces
Even after you break the pieces of frozen mango apart, you may find that the individual mango pieces may still be quite large.
Attempting to dehydrate large pieces of frozen mango can lead to disaster. Not only can large pieces take forever to dehydrate, if they are too large, they may not dehydrate properly at all.
The problem with attempting to dehydrate pieces of fruit that are too large is that the outside may dry and become hard before the inside has a chance to dry. If the outside dries completely while the inside still has a lot of moisture, the hard outside may keep the inside from dehydrating properly. You may think that your mangoes are dry only to find later that they have molded while in storage.
To avoid that, cut your pieces of frozen mango into 1/4″ slices or 1/2″ pieces before putting them on the dehydrator tray.
Place the Frozen Mango on Dehydrator Trays
As you cut the frozen mango into smaller pieces, place them on your dehydrator trays. Space them apart, so that there is ample room for the warm air in the dehydrator to circulate.
In the image above, you can see that I have quite a bit of space between the pieces of frozen mango. You don’t need to leave that much space between the pieces. The main thing you’ll want to avoid is overlapping any of the pieces.
If you have a ton of frozen mango to dehydrate, go ahead and put the mango pieces closer together. As soon as they start shrinking during the dehydration process. spread the pieces apart.
Start by Dehydrating the Frozen Mangoes at 145 Degrees Fahrenheit
I typically dehydrate fruit, including mangoes, at 125 degrees Fahrenheit. But when working with frozen fruit, I set the temperature on my dehydrator at 145 degrees Fahrenheit for the first hour.
The purpose of starting with a higher temperature when dehydrating frozen fruit such as frozen mangoes is to thaw the fruit. Some people recommend using the higher temperature for two hours, but I’ve found that one hour is sufficient.
Don’t be tempted to keep the temperature at 145 degrees for too long. While it’s true that fruit dehydrates faster at a higher temperature, dehydrating at too high of a temperature can result in case hardening.
Case hardening is when the outside dries too fast, and gets hard. The hardness keeps the inside from dehydrating properly. So, unless you want to end up with moldy mangoes in your prepper pantry, don’t overdo using the higher dehydrating temperature for too long.
Pro tip: The photos you see in this article are of my Cosori Premium Stainless Steel Dehydrator (Amazon). It has a timer, which I find handy, because I don’t have to worry about remembering to turn down the temperature. When using my Nesco dehydrator (Amazon), I set a timer on my phone to remind me to turn the temperature down.
Frozen Mangoes after 1 Hour in the Dehydrator
After dehydrating frozen mangoes at 145 degrees Fahrenheit, the mangoes had completely thawed, and were just a bit dry around the edges. This is why I only use the higher temperature for an hour; dehydrating at 145 degrees Fahrenheit for more than an hour would potentially dry the outside too fast.
Reduce the Dehydrator Temperature to 125 Degrees
After checking the mangoes one hour in, I put the previously frozen mangoes back into the dehydrator and reduced the temperature to 125 degrees Fahrenheit.
This time I set the timer on my Cosori dehydrator (Amazon) for three hours.
Note: I didn’t expect the mangoes to completely dehydrate in four hours. I just wanted to check frequently so I could show you what to expect along the way when dehydrating mangoes. 🙂
Frozen Mangoes After 4 Total Hours in the Dehydrator
After four total hours in the dehydrator, the mangoes were very dry around the edges. The outer layer felt dry to the touch, but the mangoes were still very soft and squishy. They were a long way from being completely dehydrated.
Frozen Mangoes After 7 Total Hours in the Dehydrator
I popped the mangoes back into the dehydrator for an additional three hours, still at 125 degrees. By this point, the thin pieces were completely dry.
The thicker pieces were about 80% dry at this point. They’re getting close, but since I wanted to make sure that the mangoes were completely dehydrated before putting them into food storage, I put them back into the dehydrator.
Frozen Mangoes After 11 Total Hours in the Dehydrator
After 11 hours, the pieces of previously frozen mango were very dry. They were still soft and flexible, but they were not at all sticky, and when I tore a piece apart, I couldn’t feel any moisture.
Even though I couldn’t feel any moisture, to be on the safe side, I decided to leave in the dehydrator for an additional two hours.
Frozen Mangoes after 13 Hours in the Dehydrator
After dehydrating the frozen mangoes for 13 hours, I was 100% convinced they were completely dehydrated. You can see in the image above that they had darkened some.
They still tasted great, and due to the extra time in the dehydrator, I was 100% convinced they were completely dehydrated, and could be safely put away into long term food storage.
Here are a few of my favorite dehydrating tools and resources.
- Cosori Dehydrator – this is the dehydrator I used in this article. Get it here, on Amazon.
- I also use and love my Nesco Dehydrator. You can get it on Amazon, or Pleasant Hill Grain.
- The Ultimate Dehydrator Cookbook by Tammy Gangloff – available here on Amazon. If you only buy one dehydrator book, this is the one I recommend.
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