|1. Harvest Right Small||2. Harvest Right Medium||3. Harvest Right Medium|
Freeze drying is one of the most common methods used to preserve food items and retain their color, nutrition and flavor for as long as 25 years.
Although this method used to be primarily used in the commercial market for making canned foods, you can now use a home freeze dryer for household use also. If you are a garden owner, you can use gear such as these appliances to preserve your garden produce for long.
If you are planning to purchase the best freeze dryer out there, then you should preferably determine the pros and cons of the various brands and models available in the market.
Given below is a list of top 7 best freeze dryers that can help you in preserving a lot of your food and organic materials for a long time. We will also inform you about a few factors you must consider while selecting one, along with some other useful information.
Top 7 Best Freezer Dryers 2020
1. Harvest Right Small Freeze Dryer with Oil Pump
This small size freeze dryer from Harvest Right is a very useful appliance used for food preservation. Freeze drying food can undoubtedly be an excellent way for saving on your food waste and also saves on your budget for groceries. It is empowered with the expert technology of large and commercial freeze dryers right to your convenience at home.
The parts which are put together to manufacture this equipment include a small freeze dryer, an efficient vacuum pump and its oil, trays made of stainless steel, oil filters, an extensive guide to freeze drying, along with mylar bags, impulse sealer and oxygen absorbers.
The size of this appliance is small, and thus it is easy to be used and stored. There is plenty of room inside this appliance for making your creations. This appliance has the magical power of converting fresh food into edible products, which can be stored and consumed until 25 years.
- Facilitates in buying food in bulk at low cost and preserve it for a long time
- Helpful in creating healthy and hygienic freeze dried sauces, meals, snacks and desserts
- No need to use any preservatives
- Can keep freeze dried food fresh and nutritious for several years safely
- Can preserve 1-1.5 gallons of food in a single batch
- Three years limited warranty
- Available in medium and large sizes also
- Takes as long as 9 hours for a final dry cycle, which seems quite long as compared to other appliances available in the market
- Requires oil changes and replacement at regular periods of time, which seems to be a burden to some consumers
2. Harvest Right Medium Size Pharmaceutical Freeze Dryer
This medium size Pharmaceutical Freeze Dryer from Harvest Right is a perfect appliance for freeze drying concentrates, oils, herbs, extracts, resins, remedies, medicines, flowers, dairy starters, cultures, taxidermy and several other organics.
This appliance also efficiently removes the moisture from the organic compounds and plants when they are in a frozen state. This helps in locking the freshness of the plants and herbs for long.
The process of freeze drying by this machine preserves the overall nutritional content, appearance and potency of the products for several years, just like they had when they were in their fresh state.
- Automatic management of the freeze drying procedure
- Optimum vacuum pressure inside the machine
- Preserves the potency and freshness of every item processed inside the machine
- Empowered with a patented technology
- Keeps the processed items fresh without any chance of microbial or mold growth
- Robust and durable body due to stainless steel construction
- Total of seven trays
- 6.5 square feet of tray space
- Optimum utilization per cycle
- Maximum efficiency
- 3 years limited warranty
- Oil pump needs maintenance at a regular intervals of time
- A bit costlier than other similar products
3. Harvest Right Medium Size Freeze Dryer
This medium size freeze dryer from Harvest Right is an efficient freeze dryer that works similar to industrial level equipment, but the appliance is designed for the common home users when it comes to the size, user-friendliness, capacity and affordability.
The freeze drying procedure of this machine produces excellent results on most of the foods, including poultry, meat, eggs, vegetables, fruits, desserts, leftovers, complete meals and dairy products like ice-cream, milk, cheese, yogurt etc.
There are four trays of stainless steel in this machine, and it can hold up to 10 pounds of food in one go for freeze drying. However, the total capacity fairly depends on the kind of food that is being processed, as the level of air and liquid in different foods varies.
The overall time required for freeze drying of the foods also depends on the thickness, liquid content and temperature of the concerned food to be treated.
For example, when you freeze dry one pound of ground beef, it gives out 2 cups of water. Whereas, when you opt to freeze dry a pound of fresh okra, it will give out 4 ½ cups of water.
One great feature of this appliance is that when you opt to freeze dry different foods in the appliance in one go, there is no chance of mixing the flavors.
- Auto sensors that stop the process of free-drying when the food is ready
- Alerts the user with a beep
- Oil pump included
- Available in four different colors
- Running time may go as long as 24 hours, depending on the food you are freeze drying
- Heavy weight makes it difficult to move
- Vacuum pump is a separate unit that requires extra space to be placed
- Certain foods with thick skin and excess moisture, like cherry tomatoes, blueberries and grapes, cannot be freeze dried by this appliance
4. Harvest Right Large Size Freeze Dryer
All you need to do is to press the “Start” button, and the freeze drying process of the concerned food will continue on its own. On completion of the same, you would be notified with a “beep” sound.
This is a piece of pretty useful equipment, and experts say that the cost of operating this appliance would be around $1 per day. If you use this appliance daily, then it has a potential of saving food worth $3000 in a year for an average family.
The best part is that nearly any food can be freeze dried with this machine, and it is very useful in preserving the large amounts of leftovers on a daily basis, for instance after a home party.
The food that is freeze dried with this appliance will preserve 97% of the natural nutrition in the food, and these processed foods can be stored for up to 25 years.
- Can freeze dry almost every food item
- No technical skills required for operation
- A large amount of food up to 4 gallons can be freeze dried and preserved every 24 hours
- Several optional add-ons, like an extra set of large trays, 1-gallor mylar bags etc. can be bought
- Available in three different colors
- Can freeze dry 2-3.5 gallons of food per batch
- 3 years limited warranty
- Pretty large in size, due to which ti can’t be moved very often
- The vacuum pump is a separate unit and occupies extra floor space beside the machine
5. Harvest Right Small Size Pharmaceutical Freeze Dryer
This is a premium freeze dryer that is built with a patented technology to keep the products fresh and also preserve the overall potency, shape, color and nutrition of any edible organic material. This appliance is largely useful in the freeze drying of the several oils, herbs, medicines, pharmaceuticals, remedies and compounds.
There is a built-in intelligence which automatically as well as perfectly manages the overall freeze drying procedure.
The best part is that its in-built intelligence automatically adjusts the ideal drying temperature and vacuum pressure, depending on the material that is kept inside for freeze drying. This facilitates the overall freshness and potency of the foods which are freeze dried in this appliance.
There are 5 trays in this freeze dryer. Its dimension is such that it can be comfortably placed either on a cart, countertop or table.
- Works on patented built-in-intelligence technology
- Very user-friendly operation
- Can freeze dry good amounts of herbs and organic materials
- Large batch capacities of the appliance help in saving time and power
- The capacity is double than that of a standard small freeze dryer
- Easy to maintain, as you just need to filter and replace the oil in the vacuum oil pump
- 3 liters of ice capacity
- 3 years limited warranty
- A little expensive than other small size freeze dryers
6. Harvest Right Medium Size Scientific Freeze Dryer
This medium size freeze dryer from Harvest Right would be a perfect addition to any laboratory. This appliance is completely customized and can be useful in various purposes. You can have several manageable profiles in this appliance, which offers the facility of switching on or off the power once it attains the condensing unit.
This appliance is equipped with an efficient and oil-free vacuum pump along with controlled, ascending temperature, and its time setting features make this appliance all the more desirable. This is a 4-tray dryer that is of the size of a tabletop unit. It also has the facility of touch-screen and full-color display.
The facility of 4-liter ice condensing capacity is very useful. There are certain advanced features like the log of the temperature and pressure during all parts of the freeze dry cycle. The ongoing display of the real-time temperature and pressure is very useful for scientists working in the lab.
- Capacity of freeze drying up to 2 gallons of materials at a time
- Full-color display and touch screen
- Controllable rate of freeze drying
- Shelf heaters can be activated in order to automatically control the sublimation rate
- Real-time log of temperature and pressure displayed on the screen
- Can be connected to the PC via an ethernet cable in order to communicate the data
- Conducts very fast freeze drying
- Very user-friendly
- Oil-free vacuum pump that saves you from frequent oil changes
- Low user maintenance
- 3 years limited warranty
- Priced at a little costlier side
- Emits a large amount of heat during its operation at times
7. Harvest Right Large Size Scientific Freeze Dryer
This appliance is an efficient freeze dryer that works on patented technology and keeps the freeze dried products fresh and preserves the overall color, potency, nutrition & shape of any organic material.
This appliance is perfect for freeze drying medicines, oils, herbs, compounds, pharmaceuticals and remedies. This appliance is large-sized and has 8 trays that provide a total tray space of 10.25 sq. feet. This appliance has a capacity of six liters of ice.
This is one of the best freeze dryers that works with built-in intelligence, and it perfectly and automatically manages the overall freeze drying procedure.
One of its best features is that the drying temperature and vacuum pressure are maintained for every material and this preserves the overall potency and freshness of the products which are freeze dried.
The icing on the cake is that the maintenance is minimal for this appliance. All you need to do is to simply filter and replace the oil which hardly takes one to two minutes.
- Works on built-in intelligence technology that automatically controls the freeze drying procedure
- The products are dried without elevating the temperature
- Great for air and oxygen-sensitive drugs
- Freeze drying through this appliance keeps the flavor and smell of the products intact
- The freeze dried products can also be rehydrated very easily and quickly, as this procedure leaves very tiny microscopic pores
- 3 years limited warranty
- Certain stability issues associated with certain individual drugs
Factors To Look For When Buying The Best Freeze Dryer Machine
When you are planning to purchase a freeze dryer, you should necessarily check on the below parameters for making a wise buying decision:
1. Amount Of Food You Intend To Preserve At A Time
Most of the freeze dryers usually communicate the stats on the size of the vacuum chamber they have, and also the amount of food that can fit in it in a single batch. If you are planning on smaller batches of food or organic materials to be freeze dried, then you can certainly get away with a small dryer. But if you have a joint family or usually have a crowd to feed most of the times, then you should plan for a larger machine in which you can freeze dry bigger quantities of food in batches.
2. Space Availability In Your Home
Just like any other appliance like a refrigerator, washing machine, or air conditioner, a freeze dryer also occupies a considerable amount of space in your house. The vacuum chamber, control system and the pumps of the system also occupy major space along with the main unit.
There are a few machines available in smaller sizes, which fit on a countertop, but the larger ones are usually the size of a dishwasher. So, you need to choose the one as per the space available in your house.
3. Electricity Consumption
If your chosen model of the freeze dryer has a large pump and also other machinery, then it may take some serious power and add up to your electricity bills. For the larger models, you may require a dedicated electrical circuit as well. So, you need to necessarily check this parameter before choosing the model of the appliance.
These days, five star electrical appliances are available, which are designed in such a way that they consume minimal amount of electricity without compromising on performance. Find such appliances and get the best out of them without boosting your utility bills.
4. Repair And Maintenance
Most of the freeze dryers are of fairly low on repair and maintenance. They do not require frequent cleaning and inspections, and their critical parts also keep working well for long. However, they are equipped with a vacuum pump that requires oil changes, but only once in a while. Some of the freeze dryers can even be upgraded to have an oil-free pump, but that is certainly at a premium.
So, give attention to the repair and maintenance needs of the equipment before buying one.
5. Ease Of Use
Most of the freeze dryers have simple usage instructions. However, read the appliance’s instructions manual and ask the vendor how to use it before buying one.
Different brands and models of freeze dryers vary in price too. The more features you opt for, the more you will have to pay. So, find the one within your budget, but make sure that it has all the features you require in your equipment.
Benefits Of Having A Freeze Dryer At Home
There are several benefits of having the best freeze dryers at home, provided that it suits your lifestyle and requirements perfectly. Some of these top benefits are as follows.
- Freeze dryers are space-efficient appliances useful for preserving and storing food for the long term.
- Owning a freeze dryer at home would certainly inspire you for being more creative with various foods and also allow you to continue following a diet during a phase or period of crisis.
- A freeze dryer can be a useful appliance for the farmers and businesses or homesteaders who often produce a surplus.
- A freeze dryer always helps in preserving best quality of foods, herbs and other organic materials for a pretty long time.
- A freeze dryer can provide fresh and nutritious food to you, even if there are long power cuts in your locality, especially during extended periods of very long-term emergencies.
FAQs on Freezer Dryers
1. What Size Of Freeze Dryer Would Be Ideal For Me?
A small freeze dryer has a batch capacity of 1 gallon, and within a year you can easily freeze dry 200 batches, which means that you can freeze dry 200 gallons of food in a year.
A medium freeze dryer has a batch capacity of 2 gallons and it can freeze dry 200 batches in a year. This means that you can easily freeze dry 400 gallons of food or organic materials with a medium freeze dryer in a year.
A large freeze dryer has a batch capacity of 3.5 gallons and it can also freeze dry 200 batches in a year. This means that you would be able to freeze dry 700 gallons of food or organic materials with a large freeze dryer.
This gives you a fair idea of the work capacities of the freeze dryers of different sizes. So, now you can easily determine your usage and proportionately make a buying decision.
2. What Are The Major Types Of Food Which I Can Freeze Dry?
You can successfully freeze dry a large variety of foods, herbs and organic materials. Almost every kind of vegetable, fruit and meat tastes wonderful after freeze drying. The major amongst these include apples, tomatoes, strawberries, bananas, green beans, peaches, spinach, potatoes, onions, pork, shrimp, turkey, beef, and even ice-cream.
Also, your favorite meals that contain meat can be freeze dried, like cheese macaroni, rice dishes, lasagna, chili, scrambled eggs, pasta sauces, etc. You will certainly find that it is a delight to experiment with various meals and foods in your freeze dryer.
3. How Does A Freeze Dryer Work?
The complete process of a freeze dryer is automatic. The step-by-step procedure is as follows:
The raw or cooked foods are placed in the freeze dryer, where they are frozen in a very low temperature ranging between -30 to -50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once the foods are frozen, the freeze dryer appliance would create a vacuum within the food chamber.
As the food is warmed gradually in the vacuum, the moisture or water content inside the food gradually evaporates out of the food substances.
When the food becomes optimally dry, the freeze dryer would notify automatically by a beep sound that the procedure is completed.
After this, you can remove the food from the freeze dryer and place it in proper vacuum-sealed containers which are oxygen and moisture proof. This can be a vacuum can or a mylar pouch which retains the freshness of the freeze dried food until opened.
When water is added in the freeze dried foods, these foods retain their original aroma, flavor, appearance and texture.
4. Would It Be Okay To Freeze Things Before They Are Placed In The Freeze Dryer?
Yes, it would be a great idea to place frozen products into your freeze dryer. Your machine will very well accept the pre-frozen foods and then cool them further to around -40 degrees Fahrenheit.
5. What Are The Components Which Are Used In A Freeze Dryer?
The freeze dryer unit and the superior-quality vacuum pump that is seated outside the main unit are the two components of a freeze dryer.
6. How Does A Scientific Freeze Dryer Work?
A scientific freeze dryer works in remarkably advanced technology and is a perfect addition to any scientific laboratory. The scientific freeze dryer can be completely customized with all the required processes.
There are several manageable profiles and each of them provides the right ability to automatically get the appliance powered on and off with the desired condensing unit, and also the vacuum pump in conjunction with the time settings and controlled temperature.
7. What Kind Of Maintenance Is Required For A Freeze Dryer Appliance?
The best freeze dryer unit requires minimal maintenance. However, there is a vacuum pump attached with the main unit that requires some level of maintenance, including includes adding and draining of oil at frequent intervals of time.
The freeze dryer’s vacuum pump is filled with a supply of oil initially. There are three cups of oil which a vacuum pump holds. This oil needs to be replaced at regular intervals in order to keep the freeze dryer working efficiently. This is a very simple procedure and can be done with least effort.
8. How Long Would The Freeze Dried Food Be In Its Best Condition?
The properly freeze dried food, if stored in proper vacuum containers, can last up to as long as 25 years.
Get The Best Freeze Dryers To Enjoy The Goodness Of Preserved Food For Years
Freeze drying of various foods is undoubtedly a great way of adding variety to what you eat, and you can considerably extend the shelf life of a large assortment of foods with this appliance. These are useful not only under normal circumstances, but also during an emergency or long-term crisis.
The freeze dried food retains the original flavor, texture and taste of the food when consumed. Also, it has been found that certain nutritional improvements also occur in certain foods after they are kept freeze dried for a long time. So, choose the best freeze dryer that perfectly suits your requirements, and enjoy all the benefits mentioned above.