Whether I’m adding basil leaves to tomato sauce or a few sprigs of rosemary to roasted chicken, fresh herbs are a must whenever I’m cooking. I try to use them up within a week so they don’t spoil in the fridge, but I’m often still left with extra herbs that I feel bad tossing out. Luckily, a simple hack I found for drying herbs in the air fryer means they won’t go to waste, and I can enjoy them even longer.
How do you make dried herbs?
Home cook Heather Neff shared a trick for dehydrating herbs in an air fryer on her Adventures in Everyday Cooking YouTube channel. First, she turned on her air fryer’s dehydrate feature. (Don’t have an air fryer? You can also use an oven preheated to 125 degrees Fahrenheit, or your microwave!)
For this hack, Neff used sage, rosemary, and thyme. But this works on other herbs too, including parsley, mint, and basil. (Just remember to rinse and dry the herbs beforehand!) Neff gently picks the sage leaves from the stem and evenly spreads them on an air fryer rack. For the rosemary and thyme, she left the stems on and spread them out on a separate rack to keep the smaller leaves intact.
Afterwards, she placed both racks in the air fryer and let the dehydration process start. She checked on the herbs after an hour to make sure they didn’t burn. Two and a half hours later, the herbs were dried out and smaller in size, which are signs they’re ready to take out. She let the herbs cool for five minutes, then crumbled the leaves into tiny mason jars. This makes them easier to sprinkle into dishes or grab a pinch when needed.
See Neff try out this method for drying herbs in the air fryer below:
Dried herbs are best stored in sealed mason jars or plastic bags and used within a year. This allows you to save some extra cash by not having to buy them at the store. Plus, you can use the dried herbs in a variety of ways, from sprinkling them on top of scrambled eggs to mixing a pinch of them into comforting soup. They also make healthy alternative to salt for adding a flavorful boost to any meal.
I’ll definitely be putting my handy air fryer to good use with this trick!