Dehydrating cabbage is a great way to preserve it for use in future soups, stews, and slaws.
You can even use dried cabbage as a healthier chip alternative. Recipe for that below!
But first, let’s look at a few different ways to dry cabbage. A dehydrator makes it easier, but you don’t have to have one!
How to Dehydrate Cabbage (Using a Dehydrator)
Cabbage can be dried in a dehydrator fairly easily. There isn’t much work involved either.
For most dehydrators, you can dehydrate an entire head of cabbage at a time. Make sure it’s fresh with no signs of going bad.
Start by removing the outer leaves as these tend to be tough and don’t dry well.
Don’t throw them away though, you can save them for other recipes!
Rinse the cabbage then slice into thin strips. The strips should be 1/8″ wide approximately.
Using the dehydrator trays, lay out the cabbage. It will overlap a little but try to aim for single layers as much as possible.
After placing the cabbage in the dehydrator, turn it on to 125-135 F or use the dehydrator instructions.
It will take anywhere from 7-11 hours for the cabbage to dry. You’ll know that it’s dried when it’s completely brittle to the touch.
For the best results, you may want to rotate the trays for even drying. After done, store in vacuum-sealed bags or mason jars for storage.
I have a pretty in-depth guide to storing cabbage you can check out if you’re interested. It also covers some long-term preservation methods!
If you don’t already have one, this is a really good dehydrator. It strikes a good balance between volume, reliability, and budget:
How to Dry Cabbage in the Oven
If you don’t have a dehydrator handy or want another option, you can always use your oven.
This is a great tip to have on hand if you don’t find that you dehydrate foods very often.
Similar to the previous method, you’ll also start by cutting up and cleaning the cabbage.
Use a baking sheet with some sort of lining such as parchment paper for the best results. Layer the cabbage on the pans in a single layer if possible.
Set your oven to 225 F or lower if you can. Place the pans in the oven and then check the cabbage every few hours.
It will take anywhere from 6-11 hours to finish drying.
If you don’t want to use your oven for that long, you can also use a toaster oven. You just won’t be able to make as much at one time (since toaster ovens are significantly smaller).
Make sure it’s on the lowest setting. You may even need to keep the door slightly open to allow moisture to escape.
Keep an eye on it as burning is more likely with toaster ovens.
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How to Sun Dry Cabbage
The most eco-friendly way to dry foods is by sun drying.
This is a method that’s been around for years and probably the earliest method of drying food.
Make sure that you have plenty of sunny weather and moderate heat for the best results.
The simplest method is to place your clean and chopped cabbage on cookie sheets and then place them in a warm area with full sun.
You may want to cover them with cheesecloth to prevent bugs from getting into them.
Or get a hanging solar dehydrator like this one with netting to keep the bugs out:
The drying time for this can be anywhere from 2-4 days so you’ll have to take them in at night.
If you want to speed up the process, you can make a solar oven which works with the same principles.
You’ll still have fruit on trays but the fruit will be placed with a glass cover to concentrate the sun and speed up the process.
Some people even place the pans of cabbage on their dashboard in a car and leave the windows slightly cracked for the moisture to escape.
Both of these methods are slightly faster and will speed up the process.
How to Rehydrate Cabbage
Now that you have your dehydrated cabbage, you may be wondering what to do with it.
Most people probably don’t want to eat dried cabbage as a snack although it can be mixed into a variety of dishes.
One of the easiest and best methods is to rehydrate it again. Cabbage rehydrates well and can be used in soups and other dishes.
If you’ve never rehydrated any fruits or vegetables before, the process is fairly simple:
The ratio of water to dried fruit or vegetable is going to vary based on the type of fruit or vegetable.
For cabbage, you should combine 1/4 cup of the dried cabbage with 1 cup of water or the same ratio for larger amounts of cabbage.
Bring the water and cabbage to a boil and then boil until the cabbage reaches a tender stage.
This will take about 15 minutes total. Stir while rehydrating. Then drain any excess water and season to taste.
If you plan to use the cabbage for salads or other colder colds, soak the cabbage in the same ratio but in cold water.
You may want to even add ice cubes for it to become crisp. Soak until soft and then drain the water.
You can then use this to make coleslaw or in other cold dishes.
How to Make Dehydrated Cabbage Chips
Nowadays, we’re making chips from all kinds of foods!
Cabbage is no different and a great option for a low-carb snack alternative.
Cabbage chips are firm and taste great when they’re seasoned well.
If you want to make your own, you’ll just need a head of cabbage along with parmesan cheese (optional), olive oil, and salt and pepper for flavor.
Set two wire racks on baking sheets and then tear the cabbage leaves into large pieces.
Aim for pieces that are approximately chip sized. Cut out the ribs because they’re tough (they won’t make a light, crunchy chip).
Toss the cabbage with the cheese and a small amount of oil and then season with salt and pepper.
Put the chips on a single layer on top of the wire racks where they can drain.
Set the oven to 250 F and then bake the chips until they are golden and crispy.
This should take about 30-40 minutes. Take the chips out of the oven and allow them to cool slightly.
You can then enjoy them as-is or pair them with one of your favorite dips.
Any uneaten chips can be stored in a water-proof container for a few days!
I’m a foodie that’s slightly obsessed with drying fruits, veggies, beans, and more – especially from my own garden! It started as a hobby but became a “must” when my family fell on hard times, and my dried food stash sustained us. Now I’m always experimenting with different techniques and recipes and sharing them here!