Learn to Make Healthy and Delicious Fruit Leathers

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How to Make Fruit Leather

What’s fruity, chewy, rollable, and full of that flavor punch? Fruit Leather! Read on to learn how to make fruit leather.

The Healthy Fruit Leather

I’m not talking about those processed, cut-out rolls of food coloring and sugar. I’m talking about the easy peasy homemade ones! Read “How to Make Fruit Leather” and you will be a pro in no time. Your kids and friends will think you are a superhero for actually making something so delicious and good for them.

I’m going to show you how to make Cranberry Rhubarb fruit leather. That doesn’t mean you only have to make fruit leathers with the fruits I choose. You get to make these out of anything you want, that’s the fun part! Get creative, and use the fruits your family likes best!

Whole Food Ingredients

Since the fruit is being concentrated down, it is a healthy choice to choose organic. You don’t want a fruit leather filled with pesticides. Personally, I use the “clean 15” rule when choosing organic vs. conventional.

As far as honey goes, the amount you use will depend on your taste buds and the fruit you choose. Since I used cranberries and rhubarb, I used the whole 4 Tbsp of honey. Usually, I only add 2 Tbsp if I use sweeter fruit. The lemon juice will give any fruit flavor a pop! If your fruit is not watery, then you should add a few tablespoons just so the pan doesn’t burn. These are also GAPS friendly, so nobody is missing out!

Make Fruit Leather with The Perfect Chewiness

There are many different recipes on how to make fruit leather, but when I tried them, most would turn out too thin. We like the fruit leathers nice and chewy at my house, so I found a way that works every time! By cooking the fruit down you are concentrating the flavor and taking out some water. The honey gives it that nice soft chew for little mouths. I switch up the fruit every time depending on what is in season. Have fun, and enjoy!

Here are some fun flavors my family has enjoyed!

  • apple cinnamon
  • mango pineapple
  • strawberry
  • fruit punch
  • blueberry orange
  • raspberry banana
  • watermelon kiwi mango
  • cherry cranberry

Fruit Leather

How to Make Fruit Leather 1

How to Make Fruit Leather

5 from 1 vote

What’s fruity, chewy, rollable, and full of that flavor punch? Fruit Leather! Read on to learn how to make fruit leather.

Prep Time
5 minutes
Active Time
10 minutes
Total Time
15 minutes
Servings
1 pound
Course
Snack
Cuisine
American

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rhubarb
  • 1 cup cranberries
  • 2-4 Tbsp raw honey
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2-4 Tbsp water as needed

Instructions

  1. Measure and cut 3 cups of fruit total (your choice). Fresh or defrosted frozen fruit is great.
  2. Add the fruit, honey, lemon juice, and water (if needed) to your pan. Cover with a lid. Cook on low until the fruit is released in juices and combined together. Let it cook down until thickened.
  3. Allow the fruit to cool. Add the cooked fruit to your blender or food processor and blend until very smooth.
  4. Spread the thick puree onto a dehydrator sheet lined with Silpat or parchment paper (14" x 14"). It should be spread on thick. Use a spatula to get a nice even surface (important, so it dries evenly!).
  5. Dehydrate at 135° (140° is ok for the oven, see more oven specific instructions below). Takes 6-11 hours depending on the method, thickness, and fruit of your fruit leather. Sometimes one section will dry faster, so turn the tray occasionally to help keep the drying even. (Buy Excalibur dehydrators here)
  6. Carefully peel fruit leather off the sheet and cut into 12 strips. Roll in parchment paper strips and seal the end with a staple (an easy and simple way to keep it together, as tape does not stick to parchment paper). Enjoy your chewy fruit leather! Yum 🙂

Notes

Oven directions: Use a baking sheet and line with a Silpat or parchment paper. Spread the thick puree onto the sheet. Use a spatula to even it out.

You will know it is done when it is tacky, but not sticky. The fruit leather should not be hard. Peel back the edges and if it does not stick, it is probably done. Some fruits turn out more "leathery" or chewy than others. Just experiment to find your favorite combination.

Nutrition:

Calories: 228kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 2g | Sodium: 13mg | Potassium: 787mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 41g | Vitamin A: 310IU | Vitamin C: 38.6mg | Calcium: 210mg | Iron: 0.8mg
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Do you know how to make fruit leather? Share your favorite flavor with us!

About Caroline

Please welcome Caroline Lunger of Gutsy. She loves creating recipes that are GAPS–friendly for her family and readers. She is currently on the GAPS diet to heal her gut and multiple chemical sensitivities. Caroline is an 18-year-old Gusty girl. 🙂 Stop by her website and check out her yummy, good-for-your-tummy GAPS recipes!

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Comments

  1. April says

    Thank you.
    I tried making fruit leathers a few times and dehydrated then too long. Thank you for the great instructions. How long will they keep for? Should the be refrigerated?

  2. Carrie @ Natural Gumption says

    I wish I could get behind this, but the natural sugars get intensified and the stickiness gets into grooves of teeth and cavities form 🙁 I have seen so many cavities come from dried fruit and gummy vitamins…..too bad vegetable leather doesn’t seem appealing:) Great article and really well written, but as an oral health coach that deals with cavities day in and day out the subject matter kills it for me.

    • Matt Jabs says

      I won’t be eating these either Carrie, but I think it’s a great option for mom’s already serving less healthy options looking for something better, and homemade.

  3. Deena says

    This sounds wonderful! How long will they keep and do they need to be refrigerated?

    Thanks for all your wonderful ideas. I have a folder on my computer that I keep all these great DIY recipes in. 🙂

    • caroline says

      I just store mine in ball jars for many months, some even for 4 months! since they are dry, they have a longer shelf life. They never last this long though 🙂 Enjoy!

  4. Laura Amann says

    Hi-
    What temperature do you set the oven at and do you have any idea how long it takes in an oven?

    Thanks.

  5. Jess says

    My kids LOVE fruit leather, but sometimes it’s hard to find ones that I love (no corn syrup, etc.) reasonably priced. I have a bag full of apples that I’m supposed to be making apple sauce with, I’m thinking they just found a new purpose. I can’t wait to try these!

      • Jess says

        Just wanted to update that I made the apple cinnamon yesterday and it’s AWESOME! My oven doesn’t go low enough, so I overcooked it a bit. Okay it was partly the oven and partly me, I didn’t spread it very evenly. Trial and error…I’ll borrow my mom’s dehydrator for my next attempt.

  6. Jessica says

    Wow, I cannot wait to try these! Growing up I loved fruit roll ups but now I try my best to keep processed foods out of my house. I love that you can make so many variations and not feel bad about eating them.