Master the technique of how to freeze-dry candy at home. Savor intensified flavors in long-lasting confections, perfect for snacking, camping and emergencies.
First: what is freeze drying? This is a preservation method that removes moisture from food, allowing it to last for many — up to 20 — years. Freeze-drying candy results in a crunchier, sweeter treat with intensified flavors and sometimes an altered texture and size. It works best with sugar-based candies rather than sugar-free or chocolate varieties.
Freeze-drying candy is a fun activity for families to explore a range of sweet treats. Enjoy the freeze-dried candies as-is or use them as dessert toppings for dishes like nice cream or vegan cool whip. Because of their extended shelf life, these candies are also perfect for camping trips or as part of a homemade trail mix. They only need to be stored at room temperature, making them easy to transport.
Freeze-dried candy can also be included in an emergency kit or go bag, providing high-energy, long-lasting food for those living in disaster-prone areas.
While professional freeze-drying machines offer the best results, they are costly, with prices starting at $2,000. Instead, we’ll show you how to freeze-dry candy at home using two affordable methods.
How to Freeze-Dry Candy Without a Machine
Choose from these two simple methods for how to freeze-dry candy without a machine:
1. Use Dry Ice
- Place candy in a compostable freezer bag (available on Amazon**).
- Without sealing the bags, put them in a large cooler.
- Cover with dry ice for 24 hours, using thermal gloves for protection. Ensure the day has zero humidity. Do not seal the cooler to prevent explosions. Dry ice can be found at most grocery stores.
- Open the bags and transfer the candy to a new reusable freezer bag. Store in a cool, dry place.
Safety tip: For safe handling of dry ice, follow the New York State Department of Health’s tips.
2. Use a Freezer
- Place candy on a baking tray and store it in the freezer for two to three weeks.
- Remove from the freezer and transfer to reusable freezer bags. Store in a cool, dry location.
Let a piece reach room temperature to test if the candy is ready. If it turns black or dark, it’s not ready yet. When properly freeze-dried, the color will remain unchanged.
Now that you’ve mastered how to freeze-dry candy, enhance your food preservation skills even further with our guide: How to Freeze Dry Fruit Without a Machine: Step-by-Step
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