Sustainability made simple

How to Dry Orange Slices Sustainably

how to dry orange slices
Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / boaphotostudio

Learning how to dry orange slices is not only an effective way to prevent food waste, it can also add a natural touch to home decor. We’re going to show you a sustainable method.

Although dried orange slices are commonly associated with the festive season, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy them year-round. They make a great zero-waste decoration for your home, and can help you use up oranges that you might not get around to eating before they go moldy. Let’s take a look at how to dry orange slices. 

How to Dry Orange Slices: A Sustainable Method

Learn how to dry orange slices to help avoid food waste.
Learn how to dry orange slices to help avoid food waste.
(Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / FotoRieth)

For those who dry their own herbs, fruit and vegetables, or even meat, it may be worth investing in a dehydrator. They aren’t cheap, but they require much less energy than a conventional oven, and you can dehydrate many things at one time. 

If absolutely necessary, you can dry orange slices in the oven. However, oven-drying is an energy-intensive method, as it generally requires the oven to be on for several hours. If you do wish to use the oven, try and dry other items at the same time, like oregano or peppermint.

This method is similar to that of air drying flowers and herbs, and can be easily adjusted based on your requirements. 

Ingredients and Materials: 

  • 1 large orange
  • Sharp knife or mandolin 
  • Absorbent towel 
  • Twine or jute string
  • A cool and dry space 

How to Dry Orange Slices: 

  1. First, you’ll need to cut your orange into thin and even slices – the thinner they are, the quicker they dry. If you don’t have a mandolin, try your best to cut your orange slices as evenly as possible using a sharp knife. 
  2. Once your orange slices are sliced, pat them dry using a clean paper towel alternative to soak up as much moisture as possible. The less moisture the orange slices have on them, the quicker they will dry. 
  3. Run a piece of twine or jute cord through the tops of your orange slices, and hang them in a cool, dry place. 
  4. Leave them for approximately 1 week to allow them to fully dry out. If you leave them up longer than 1 week, your orange slices are more prone to warping.

Using Dried Orange Slices

Warm winter spices complement dried orange slices very well.
Warm winter spices complement dried orange slices very well.
(Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / ValeriaLu)

Now that you’ve learned how to dry orange slices, it’s time to put them to use! If you’re just going to use them for decoration, you can leave them on the string to use as a garland, or you can add individual ribbons to hang on your Christmas tree. 

Dried orange slices also work well in potpourri, or added to a large hurricane lamp with a candle or two to create a beautiful centrepiece. 

However, freshly dried orange slices can also be eaten, and make a great garnish for kombucha cocktails, on top of Swedish chocolate cake, or even on their own as a snack. If you know you want to consume your dried orange slices, you can even add a hint of sugar or spice to them before drying to give them an extra kick. 

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