Here at That Sweet Lyfe, we love freeze-dried candy so much we're more than happy to help you make your own! Many people opt for basic freezing or dehydrating treats at home because they are easier processes than freeze-drying, but with our step-by-step instructions, we should have you freeze-drying in no time!
3 Unique Things About Freeze-Drying
If you've never heard about freeze-drying before or want to know more about how it works, here are three interesting facts to know about the process:
Freeze-drying creates a new texture experience. No candy is ever the same. Because we freeze our candy at such extreme temperatures, every ingredient is preserved, resulting in the highest possible flavour retention. This also means that all the nutrition is retained when freeze-drying other foods, such as fruits and vegetables.
Freeze-dried food is beyond international - it's intergalactic! Astronauts have been taking freeze-dried food to space since the 1960s. It is so lightweight and portable that it is the best way to supply many people with sustenance for prolonged periods of time. Plus, unlike regular frozen food, no moisture is added in the process, so it retains all of its flavour and nutritional value.
Freeze-dried food typically lasts at least five years, but depending on the product you freeze, it can last for as long as 25 years! No other method of preserving foods lasts as long while preserving all of a food's nutrients and flavour.
What Candies Can be Freeze-Dried
So many types of candy can be freeze-dried it would be easier to tell you what can't be done. Any candy considered to be an oily product won't freeze dry. Chocolate chips, for instance, can't be freeze-dried. Because the process removes all the moisture from a product, in the case of chocolate chips, you'd have an oily mess once the moisture is removed.
Most other candies work out great. Skittles, Starburst and Laffy Taffy, are among some of our favourites. One exception to the no-chocolate rule is milk duds, which make a surprisingly great freeze-dried treat. Another sweet treat we love is freeze-dried ice cream.
We'll tell you, though, not all the candy we try turns out to be a winner. Some varieties definitely turn out better than others, but just like favourite ordinary candy, choosing a favourite freeze-dried candy is all about personal preference. We say, try it and see!
Dry Ice vs. Freeze Drying Machine
The easiest and most effective way to freeze-dry candy is with a freeze-dryer. Simply follow the instructions that come with your machine. If you don't have a fancy machine as we do, all is not lost. You can still freeze-dry from home using dry ice and a bit of careful patience. We'll be honest with you, dry ice is not the same process as our machine, but we think it's still your best option over other methods of preserving foods, such as dehydrating or straightforward freezing.
If you don't have a drying machine, grab some dry ice and follow these easy steps:
- Make sure the candy is in bite-size pieces
- Put the candy in a freezer bag
- Completely freeze the candy
- Put the freezer bag in a cooler with dry ice
- Do not close the cooler completely
- Remove after 48 hours, and enjoy!