How to Dry Dill

I started growing dill in my garden recently, and oh is it lovely (and easier than I thought!). 

We use a lot of dill in this house, so I needed to learn how to preserve it for use throughout the year. 

I researched how to dry dill, did it successfully, and I’ve never looked back!

Here’s how to do it…

How to Dehydrate Dill

First, prep the fresh dill sprigs by washing them thoroughly. Remove moisture by placing the sprigs on paper towels or using a salad spinner. Separate the leaves and seeds. Next, put a parchment paper on the dehydrator tray. Place the dill sprigs evenly scattered on it.

Set the dehydrator’s heat temperature to around 95 degrees Fahrenheit. The drying process should take somewhere between four to six hours. 

Check back within or after this period, and see whether the sprigs have been dried and crumbly.

If you wish to powder your dried dill, you can process it in a food blender for about one to two minutes. Then, transfer it into a dry, sterilized glass container with an airtight lid. 

How to Dry Dill Without a Dehydrator

If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can dry dill the natural way. The process is simple and straightforward, and you don’t need any kitchen tools, except a large bowl.

All you have to do is to hang the dill sprigs upside down in bundles in a safe, dry area in your home. Leave the bundles for about one to two weeks, then check on the dill’s texture after this period. 

You can tell when it has dried enough if the texture turns crispy and if it crumbles in your hands. Once ready, transfer the dried dill sprigs into a large bowl, then grind them thoroughly.

Transfer to a glass jar with a tight-sealing lid to store. While you have to wait for as long as 14 days, this method is still a great option since it is energy efficient and sustainable. 

How to Dry Dill Weed in the Oven

Using the oven for drying dill is a quick method. Here’s how to dry fresh dill in the oven: First, gather the necessary ingredients and kitchen tools.

Then, you’ll need, of course, prepped fresh dill, wax paper or parchment paper, baking sheet, oven and airtight glass containers.

Preheat the oven to around 225 degrees Fahrenheit to 270 degrees Fahrenheit, or you can keep in mind the basic rule of thumb to set the oven in its lowest temperature setting so that the leaves can dry completely without burning. 

Place the wax paper or parchment paper on the baking sheet. Then, place the dill evenly scattered on it. Leave it in the oven for around 25 minutes, checking every 5 to 10 minutes.

Once dry and crumbles easily, take it out from the oven and allow to cool. Grind the leaves finely and transfer to a glass container with an airtight lid. 

Can You Dry Dill in the Microwave?

Yes, it’s possible! Put the prepped dill leaves on a microwave-safe oven, evenly scattered. Then place a paper towel over the plate.

Put the plate into the microwave and turn up the temperature setting to high heat. The process should take around 30 seconds. Yup, it’s that quick and easy! Continue for another 30 seconds if the dill isn’t dry enough and ready for grinding. 

What if You Just Want to Dry It Out a Little? 

Quick drying dill to simply dry it out a little is also okay if that’s your personal preference.

However, if you wish to improve the herb’s longevity and lock-in its flavor, it is important to completely and thoroughly follow the right process on how to dry out dill. 

How to Dry Dill Seeds

Is this process any different?

The process of drying dill seeds is similar to drying dill leaves, only that you are intentionally gathering the seeds instead of the leaves. One of the best methods to do this is to air dry them.

First, gather dill in bunches, then tie the stems together. Lightly bundle the bunches for good air circulation. Get some paper bags and punch holes on them on the side.

Use these paper bags to cover your dill bunches. These will also catch the seeds as they dry and fall out. 

How to Use Dried Dill 

Dried dill is best used in quick and fuss-free recipes. It adds a unique and interesting flavor profile in seafood dishes, especially salmon and tuna salads.

You can also use it in chicken dishes, eggs, potatoes, meats, carrots, spinach, beets, dips and marinades. Dill seeds, on the other hand, can be added to soups, bread and some veggie dishes. 

If you wish to use it with other herbs and spices, it’s best paired with basil, parsley, garlic and paprika. 

Other Ways to Preserve Fresh Dill 

Aside from drying you can also try other methods of preserving fresh dill such as freezing and making dill vinegar. If you’re intending to use it in canned recipes, freezing the leaves and the flower heads will give your dish a more impactful dill flavor. 

Freeze It 

After prepping the dill sprigs, hang them upside down like what you’d do in the air drying method. However, don’t let the leaves turn dry and crumbly. Just do this to get rid of excess moisture. Another way to do this is to place the dill sprigs on moisture-wicking cloth or paper towels. Once done, transfer them into an airtight freezer-grade container. Store it in the coldest part of your freezer. 

Make Dill Vinegar

Dill vinegar would make a strong, acidic dip best paired with fried and grilled dishes especially seafood and meats. To start, chop up some of the dill leaves then crush them with a spoon on a mixing bowl. Next, heat a cup of vinegar in a saucepan. Do not boil. Just let it warm. Add in the whole dill sprigs into the warm vinegar, allowing them to soak it up. 

Then, separate the sprigs from the vinegar. Pour the vinegar over the crushed dill leaves, and mix thoroughly. Transfer the mixture into a bottle using a funnel and through two layers of cheesecloth. 

How to Store Dried Dill Weed

Dried dill weed retains its best quality for as long as two to three years. To maximize this longevity, storing it properly is crucial.

After drying, you’ll need to transfer it into a glass jar sealed with an airtight lid. Store it inside a cool, dry, dark cupboard away from direct heat or sunlight. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use dry dill for pickles?

If you don’t have fresh dill or don’t want to use one, you can use one tablespoon dried dill as a substitute for every ¼ cup fresh dill sprigs. 

Is dried dill as good as fresh?

Yes, dried dill and fresh dill sprigs can both enhance the flavor of a dish on equal levels. However, since drying changes the level of pungency of the herb, you will need to adjust your measurements when substituting fresh with dried and vice versa. For example, you will need to use more fresh dill when using it as a substitute for the dried version to achieve the exact flavor that the recipe is going for. 

How long does dried dill last?

As mentioned already, around two to three years when stored properly. 

How do you dry dill in a paper bag?

Cut several large holes on the bottom sides of small brown paper bags. Wrap them over the dill sprigs and gather them with rubber bands. Hang the bundles upside down in a safe, dry place with good air circulation for around 14 days. 

How much dried dill equals a head of dill?

One tablespoon dried dill equals three heads dill or ¼ teaspoon for every four-inch dill sprig. 

How do dry dill and fresh dill differ?

Dried dill won’t add any moisture to your dish as compared to the fresh variant. Also dried dill packs a stronger flavor than the fresh one. 

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