Zero Waste—Dehydrate Stale Baked Goods

Did you know you can re-purpose those pieces of bread, bagels, rolls, muffins, cakes, etc. into delicious foods to use in cooking and snacking?

At Casa Colleen we have an abundance of bread slices and ends sitting in bags piling up in the bread drawer and the freezer. Everything — from my homemade bread and rolls to bagels and baked goods like cupcakes, muffins, and banana bread — goes into the dehydrator when it becomes stale.

Baked goods typically go “bad” by either getting stale or by molding. “Getting stale” just means drying out a bit when drying isn’t wanted. Molding requires moisture and, of course, must be thrown out. But once you dry your bread (whole, cubed, or crumbled) it will keep mold from occurring. (Make sure you put your dehydrated goods into jars as soon as they cool to prevent moisture re-absorption.)

I make croutons, bread crumbs, and yummy snacks from all these items with my dehydrator. This is a considerable money savings and I am not wasting what I can no longer eat because it has gone stale.

Dehydrate sweet baked goods that have gone stale for snacks or to add to trail mixes, ice cream treats, and any dish where you want a bit of sweet crunchiness.  I also take bread cubes and flavor them with cinnamon sugar for a snack. We eat this right out of the dehydrator if I don’t get them into a bowl quick enough!

Bagel bites are delicious, but have you checked out the prices of a small bag lately? I throw down a few bagels onto my cutting board and slice them up. Into the dehydrator they go overnight. In the morning I have a gallon jar of bagel bites all ready for the big game day or the next movie night. We love cornbread and French Bread bites too.

Speaking of movie night, you can bring new life to moist potato chips, pita chips, crackers, or leftover popcorn by placing them in your food dehydrator so they become crisp again.

Seasoning can either be done before OR after dehydration. It is important, if done before dehydration, that you not use oils/butter so your result is kept from quickly going rancid. I like keeping both flavored and unflavored cubes and crumbs on-hand. Popular flavors in our home are Italian bread crumbs and the aforementioned cinnamon cubes.

Article on full procedure with recipes here.


Zero Waste-Stale Baked Goods

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