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Easy Salt & Vinegar Cucumber Chips – Baked or Dehydrated

Easy Salt & Vinegar Cucumber Chips – Baked or Dehydrated
Home » Low Carb Lifestyle » Low Carb Snacks » Cucumber chips

It’s often hard to satisfy the craving for salty, crunchy snacks on a low-carb diet (or any diet actually).

This easy step-by-step process shows you how to make salt and vinegar veggie chips (using cucumbers in the recipe) in a dehydrator or your oven set at low.

Dish of salt and vinegar cucumber chips dried in dehydrator
Dish of salt and vinegar cucumber chips dried in a dehydrator

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Dehydrator vs Oven-Baked:

The dehydrator is just a low-temperature oven that circulates the air throughout so that the food dries evenly from top to bottom and side to side (similar to a convection oven).

The idea is to “slowly” remove moisture from foods, and crisp the food rather than “cook” it.

The advantage of a dehydrator is that it is easier to get consistency and you don’t have to worry about burning the cucumber slices or having the edges turn brown like in an oven.

Did you know? You can easily moderate the exact temperature better in a dehydrator than in the oven. I dry most everything at 135 degrees F in my dehydrator, which seems to be the sweet spot for crispy dried produce.

Nesco Gardenmaster dehydrator
Nesco Gardenmaster dehydrator

The downside of a dehydrator vs the oven is time and potential cost. It takes around 12 hours to dry chips in a dehydrator, compared to 3-4 hours in the oven.

That means thinking ahead a bit when using a dehydrator. You don’t want to get up at 3 am to turn it off. Like I did!

This will vary of course, based on how thick you slice things, and how much water is in the produce.

Tip: I prefer the dehydrator because of the higher level of control over the final product. Time and cost are the main downsides. But, you can often find good used dehydrators on local marketplace apps.

The Best Dehydrator for Vegetables?

My favorite dehydrator is American Harvest (aka Nesco brand, American Harvest). I have 4 of them now as we dry chile peppers and tomatoes on the farm to use in our various recipes, such as homemade chili oil salsa.

Ingredients for making Mexican chile oil.
Ingredients for making Mexican chile oil.

Some dehydrators are not as expensive, however. Many of the inexpensive ones work fine but they have limited temperature settings or they may not be flexible in the amount of trays you can add.

So, if you choose a less expensive one, just make sure it has a temperature setting that you can control and think about how many trays you might want in the future.

The only one I would NOT recommend is one by Ivation. Mine broke after limited use and their customer service was abysmal.

Using a Mandolin vs a Knife:

One of the keys to successful salt and vinegar cucumber chips is the consistency of the thickness.

If you are extremely talented with a knife, you may be able to get consistent, thin slices. I am not that skilled with a knife so I use a mandolin.

The thickness of the slices will determine how long to dry the chips and how crispy they will become.

Tip: A good mandolin allows you to set the thickness of the slices and is much quicker than a knife (once you get the hang of it). The disadvantage is the cost.

There are many brands of mandolins, and some are very inexpensive. I like the mandolin by French de Buyer Mandolin (photo below) because of the range of control you have over the thickness or thinness of the slices.

French mandolin from de Buyer (with cucumber slices)
French mandolin from de Buyer (with cucumber slices)

I also like it due to safety. It has legs which make it stable on the countertop and a knob that keeps your fingers away from the very sharp blades.

If you already have a knife and don’t want another kitchen tool, just make sure your knife is very sharp and keep your fingers away when slicing things thinly.

Other Low-Carb Snacks to Make in Dehydrator:

Once you get a little practice drying food, the preservation world opens up. You can dry fruit, vegetables, and even meat.

I grow and dry chile peppers and make my own spices including chile pepper salt, which keep for a year and are much better than store-bought spices.

Red peppers, salt, garlic and basil leaves in a mortar and pestle
Grind together dried chile peppers, salt, garlic, fresh basil leaves

My daughter loves to dry vegetables. One of her favorites is dried beet chips.

Beet chips dried in a dehydrator, on an orange plate.
Dried beet chips

Try your hand with fruit roll-ups, jerky, or dried berries. It’s a great way to make use of the food you grow yourself or pick up at the farmers’ market.

More Methods for Preserving Summer’s Produce:

Quick green tomato pickles: sliced and cubed.
Quick green tomato pickles: sliced and cubed.

Grow Your Own Cucumbers in a Container or Garden:

Did you know? You can easily grow cucumbers in a container (and of course in your garden). As a long-time gardener growing both ways, my post below can inspire you to try it yourself!

If you have never gardened, (or even if you have), growing vegetables in containers on your deck, balcony, or patio can be surprisingly fun, rewarding, and even meditative. You just may get hooked!

Balcony garden with container-grown vegetables.
Balcony vegetable garden
Check out our facebook group called Grow Your Own Food at Home. We talk about preserving food and it’s a great community!

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Salt and Vinegar Cucumber Chips

Dish of salt and vinegar cucumber chips dried in dehydrator
How to make low carb cucumber chips in dehydrator or in the oven.
4.73 from 113 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 29

Ingredients

  • 2 medium cucumbers
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 2 teaspoon vinegar apple cider vinegar or your favorite

Instructions
 

  • Slice cucumbers very thin, trying to get consistent thickness so they will dry evenly. Use a mandolin slicer if available for best results. If you don’t have a mandolin, use a very sharp knife.
    2 medium cucumbers
  • Pat cucumber slices dry with a paper towel to remove as much moisture as possible. Place cucumbers in fairly large bowl and add the rest of the ingredients. Toss together gently but thoroughly to combine.
    No need to let them soak in the brine, but don’t pat the brine ingredients off either. I used tongs to remove and place on dehydrator racks, letting the liquid drip off a bit.
    1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoon vinegar
  • For dehydrator: Place cucumber slices on trays and dry at 135°F for 12 hours or until they reach your desired crispiness (start checking them at 10 hours).
    For oven: Place slices on parchment lined baking tray. Dry at 175°F for 3-4 hours, checking every hour to ensure they don’t brown around the edges or burn. Turn them over half way through.
    Allow slices to cool before serving.

Video

Notes

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Nutrition

Calories: 29kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 1gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 389mgPotassium: 91mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 48IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 9mgIron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating




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scott

Saturday 26th of August 2023

How long do you keep the slices in the brine ?

Dorothy Stainbrook

Sunday 27th of August 2023

Good question Scott! We just left them in for a few minutes while getting the dehydrator ready. Pick them up with your fingers or tongs one by one to let the liquid drip off a bit and place them on the dehydrator rack. I changed the recipe directions to reflect this. Thank you for the question!

Kelli

Saturday 12th of August 2023

How thick do you slice the cucumbers? Could you give me a measurement please? Thank you. 😊

Dorothy Stainbrook

Sunday 13th of August 2023

I slice them 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. The thinner you slice them the quicker they will dry and the crisper they will be. Best……..

Lisa Myers

Friday 7th of July 2023

Can I overlap the cucumbers?

Dorothy Stainbrook

Saturday 8th of July 2023

I wouldn't. Cucumbers have a lot of water in them and the dehydrator needs to circulate the air around as much surface area of the cucumber as possible. You might end up with a cucumber chips that are only partially dried on the overlapping part which means they won't be as crisp and won't last as long.

Rick

Sunday 11th of September 2022

I found that if you peel the cucumber it removed the bitterness. Great tasting after

dorothy stainbrook

Sunday 11th of September 2022

Thank you for the tip! That would be especially important for older cucumbers with tougher skin.

Michelle

Tuesday 6th of September 2022

I used a 3rd of the oil called for. Still turned out great. Have Ranch flavored cukes in the dehydrator now. I’ve won Best of Show at the Georgia National Fair w/ my dried pineapple slices, banana chips, & salsa. Won blue ribbon w/ my dried kiwi. If you like the vinegar flavor- try halved cherry tomatoes w/ a couple drops of balsamic vinegar & a flake or two of pink Himalayan sea salt in each half- then dehydrate. My son took them backpacking- a big hit

dorothy stainbrook

Wednesday 7th of September 2022

Thank you so much for the informative comment. And congrats for the blue ribbon! I do love the vinegar flavor and I happen to have a lot of cherry tomatoes so I’m going to try your suggestion this week.

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