Organic dried fruit is an excellent alternative to other sugary snacks. It provides a concentrated amount of nutrients, it’s easy to eat, and you can keep it with you throughout the day for a quick go to snack. However, it’s important to choose dried fruit that doesn’t have added sugars. When natural dried fruits are chosen, the sugar content, although natural, is high enough to satisfy even the most aggressive sweet tooth, so they’re the perfect alternative to candies, cookies and even ice cream.
Organic Dried Fruit Options
You can find just about any kind of fruit in a dried version. Some of the most popular are raisins, dates, figs, cranberries, currants and bananas. In addition to these popular fruits, there are many other excellent options such as mango, papaya, pineapple, apples, peaches and coconut. There really are no restrictions to the kind of fruit that can be consumed after it’s been dried. Most retain all of their nutrients and in fact, many get sweeter as they get drier.
Ideas for Incorporating Organic Dried Fruit
You can make a medley out of a number of different dried fruits to create a snack that’s perfect for people on the go or to pack in school lunches. For a hardier snack, consider mixing your favorite dried fruit with nuts, coconut flakes, granola and even chocolate chips to make a quick yet delicious trail mix. Use dried fruits in salads, mixed in pasta or in your favorite sweet recipes. In fact, dried fruit can replace part if not all of the sugar that’s called for in certain recipes like berry pies.
Dry Your Own Fruit at Home
You can make your own organic dried fruit at home simply by cutting them up and putting them into a dehydrator. The amount of time it takes for your fruit to dry is going to depend on the kind of fruit that you choose to use. Small berries will dry faster than whole prunes or dates for example.
If you don’t have a food dehydrator but the weather where you live happens to be warm and sunny, consider simply placing your fruit on a tray out in the sun for a day. The fruit should dry just fine, although some fruits might need to be put back out for a couple of days to finish the process.
Moderation Is Key
Although organic dried fruit is a healthier option than sugary sweets, they do contain a high amount of calories because once they’ve dried, they’re smaller and more concentrated than when they are fresh. This usually results in consuming more calories when eating the dried fruits compared to eating them when they’re fresh, so it’s important to be aware of how much dried fruit you are consuming.
A handful a day is plenty to gain the nutritional benefits and to satisfy most sweet cravings. Consuming more than this may require that you compensate for the calories in other areas of your diet.