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How to Dehydrate Blackberries & Make Blackberry Powder

Dehydrate blackberries and extend the harvest season. Save them for snacking, adding to tea or drinks, or to make blackberry powder! Here’s how:

Blackberry powder made from fresh dried blackberries

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Berries are in peak season during the spring and summer, and one berry that we love the flavor of is blackberries! So when berry season arrives, we stock up!

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Four days later, we would toss out. We could never eat what our heart said we wanted quickly enough. The berries would grow beards faster than we could eat them, and out they’d go.

Then, I learned to dehydrate blackberries. And when we weren’t quite happy with the way they tasted as a snack, I experimented with powdering them.

That’s when it all came together!

Benefits of Blackberries

According to the USDA blackberries are:

  • Rich in Vitamins C & K
  • Are a great source of manganese, and boosts other minerals like copper, magnesium, and zinc
  • Provide up to 21% of your dietary fiber
  • Are a good source of folates and niacin

So don’t let these little juice bursts of flavor go to waste — let’s walk through the process to learn

Jar of blackberry powder spilled on a table top alongside some fresh blackberries

How to Dehydrate Blackberries

Preparing Blackberries

Soak blackberries –  in a 1:3 water to the vinegar solution. I let them soak for five minutes or so to be sure the vinegar gets a chance to really work.

Fresh blackberries in a vinegar water bath before dehydrating

Rinse blackberries – Rinse the berries in cool water, thoroughly. Be sure to pick out any blackberries that may already have been compromised or any bits you don’t want in your container or dehydrator trays.

Dehydrate Blackberries

1. Lay blackberries out on dehydrator trays

I use an Excalibur dehydrator, but any dehydrator that has temperature controls will work for you. Be sure they don’t touch to give them plenty of space to allow good airflow.

Fresh blackberries on an Excalibur Dehydrator tray

2. Dry Blackberries at 135F / 57C

Set your dehydrator to 135F and prepare to dry for approximately 18-30 hours. It will depend on the plumpness of your blackberries (I tend to cut really big ones down in half), and the humidity levels of your home. This batch took about 28-29 hours for me at 135F.

After 10 hours, my blackberries had begun to look more like raspberries!

Blckberries drying in an Excalibur Dehydrator

Hitting the 22-hour mark, this is what they begin looking like:

Dehydrated blackberries on an Excalibur Dehydrator tray

3. Dryness Test

I always ensure that the piece of fruit, herb, or any product I dehydrate is fully cooled before checking for doneness. Many items will firm up even more as they cool down, so I don’t want to check and assume they aren’t ready simply because they react differently when warm.

Your dehydrated blackberries will shatter and sound like crinkling paper when you rub them between your fingertips.

Dehydrated blackberries crushed in the hand to know when they are done.

4. Condition

Please don’t miss this step. It’s the best way to ensure that your foods don’t mold while in storage.

Place blackberries in an airtight container a little larger than you need. Shake it once a day to look for sticking, clumping, or sticking to the jar. If there is, put it back into the dehydrator.

Learn more about conditioning in this post about conditioning dehydrated foods.

5. Store

Store in an airtight container for twelve to eighteen months.

Can I Over Dehydrate Blackberries?

You can never over-dry blackberries, but you can burn them, so be sure not to set them too high as I did recently, and lose a whole batch of blackberries. I wasn’t paying attention, and the smaller blackberries just dried into little rocks that were not useful.

Once dry, and if you are stopping at this point, be sure to condition your blackberries before storing for long-term.

Alternative Way – Puree

Alternatively, you can blend your blackberries up (fresh or frozen), strain that liquid to remove the seeds), then pour your blackberry slurry onto fruit leather trays and dry the fruit leather. It will take much less time, and still give you a great base to start from for the powdering process below.

You might also like: How to Make Homemade Green Powder

How to Store

Because the fruit is fragile, I recommend storing in airtight containers with moisture absorbers included. If you want to store long term, you could add an oxygen absorber equal to the size container you’re using. Or you can vacuum seal (see my video here on how to do this). We stored them in smaller mason jars that we could rotate through.

Foodsaver Vacuum sealer and vacuum sealed blackberries

However, we have found, over time, that we just don’t like them anymore. So this is what we do with them instead:

How to Make Blackberry Powder

Now that you’ve learned how to dehydrate blackberries, it’s time to take the next step!

Once your blackberries are completely dry, allow them to rest for a little while. They can cool off to room temperature and you can double-check that they are fully dehydrated.

Mound of dehydrated blackberry powder with fresh blackberries on top

Crush your blackberries

I crush by hand, then run the bits through a fine-mesh strainer. This process is a bit more tedious than using a machine, but sometimes I just like the process.

Place blackberries in a zip-top bag, use a protected surface, and pound the blackberries with a meat tenderizer (but a hammer or mallet will work, too.), or use a rolling pin. Just remember, you want to protect your wood surface or wood rolling pin because blackberry seeds can cause damage with that much force. That’s why I prefer something metal and hard.

Bag of dehydrated blackberries with a meat tenderizer to pulverize them into powder

Run your crushed blackberries through a fine-mesh strainer (perhaps like this one). It took a while to work the blackberries through. You’ll be left with a few bits of seeds and some rough bits of the inner berry if it had a firm core.

Straining blackberry seeds from dehydrated blackberry powder in a mesh strainer

Using a coffee grinder:

On the other hand, you can crush the blackberries using a coffee grinder like the one I use. NOTE – I have changed coffee grinders. This one broke, and when I ordered a new one, the newer model was messy and didn’t hold in the powder as well. I’ve since switched to the Kitchen Aid Coffee Grinder for a much better grind for smaller jobs, and Nutri Ninja Bullet blender for larger jobs. Both are superior in grinding capabilities.

Blackberry powder in a Cuisinart Coffee Grinder

Just a note: I do not use a larger blender to do this work. Blackberry seeds are very hard, and I don’t want to damage my blender by nicking the blades or scratching the jar. I also don’t want to continue blending so much to get those big pieces that I ruin the powder by blending too much. So I choose to use the smaller coffee grinder that does an excellent job, even though I have to do it in smaller batches.

Straining blackberry seeds from dehydrated blackberry powder in a mesh strainer

Then run your ground pieces through the sifter / strainer. You want to be sure to get out all of the seed particles! Not only do they make your powder taste bitter, you just don’t want to mess with cracking a tooth!

A pile of freshly powdered dehydrated blackberries

What you are then left with is black gold!
TIP: You can place your powder back onto dehydrator trays lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat (see this post about how to create your own liquid dehydrator trays to help powder from blowing out), or simply into a bowl and run in your dehydrator at 115F to dry the powder. It helps ensure that whatever humidity your powder may have absorbed in the grinding process is fully removed before storage.

How to Store Blackberry Powder

Store fruit powders in air-tight containers.

I use these smaller containers that I rotate through to do things like yogurt additives

Blackberry powder and a jar of blackberry flavored yogurt with fresh and dehydrated blackberries

Yield

I have this graphic for converting Raspberries to Dehydrated Raspberries to Raspberry Powder – you can use it as a guide for Blackberries, too.

Dehydrated Raspberry Conversion Chart

How to Use Blackberry Powder

This powder is really versatile with lots of blackberry flavor without the harsh sugar taste you might get in other baking fruit powders. I can only imagine the powder sugar candy from my childhood!

Add to:

  • Yogurt
  • Oatmeal
  • Frosting/Icing
  • Homemade Pasta to color
  • Salad Dressing
  • Quickbreads, muffins, and PANCAKES!
  • Sprinkle on cupcakes as dusting
  • Ice cream
  • Rice Krispies Treats!

MORE IDEAS ON HOW TO USE FRUIT POWDERS

LEARN ABOUT DRYING FRUITS:

What Dehydrator Should I Use?

One that you’ll actually use is the answer!

I love my Excalibur Dehydrator. It does a ton of food and is a hard worker. However, it does take up a ton of counter space, which is at a premium for many. I also use a Cosori Dehydrator that I love because it’s so quiet and less expensive!

But any machine that has temperature controls and allows you to dehydrate is great to use.

►READ MORE: Tips for Buying Your First Dehydrator

Blackberry powder made from fresh dried blackberries

Dehydrate Blackberries & Make Blackberry Powder

How to dehydrate blackberries and make blackberry powder for use in baked goods, yogurt, and so much more!
Print PIN THIS! Rate
Course: Preserved Food
Cuisine: American
Diet: Vegetarian
Prep Time: 15 minutes
1 day
Total Time: 1 day 15 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 4kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • Blackberries

Instructions

Whole Blackberries

  • Wash blackberries
  • Place on dehydrator trays
  • Dry at 135°F / 57°C for 24-48 hours
  • Dry when they paper thin and crush easily

Pureed Blackberries

  • Wash
  • Blend in a blender or food processor into a puree
  • Put puree through a sieve or fine mesh strainer to remove seeds
  • Pour onto fruit leather sheets
  • Flip the leather over about halfway through the process.
  • Dry at 140°F for 6-8 hours until brittle

Powder

  • For Whole: Grind in a bullet blender, run through a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds, store.
  • For Puree: Grind in a bullet blender and store.

Video

Darcy’s Tips

Dried blackberries can be used in oatmeal or baked goods, but are not a great snack on their own.
Puree works best for doing blackberry powder since it cuts the drying time down significantly.
Condition: Place food into a large glass jar, shake once a day for a week to check for any signs of moisture buildup or sticking that isn’t released by an easy shake of the jar. If you find signs, put it back into the dehydrator to dry more. 
Storage: Store in an airtight container for up to two years in a dark, cool, dry place.
Condition the powder:
While not mandatory, it can be helpful to put your blackberry powder onto a lined cookie sheet (line it with parchment paper or a fruit leather sheet), put it into a warmed, but turned off oven. (preheat to it’s lowest temp, then turn it off). Leave it for about fifteen minutes, then pull it out, let it cool for five, and store. This helps with clumping. Store with a moisture absorber.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.25cups | Calories: 4kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0.1g | Fat: 0.04g | Saturated Fat: 0.003g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 0.1mg | Potassium: 15mg | Fiber: 0.5g | Sugar: 0.4g | Vitamin A: 19IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 0.1mg

Nutritional information is an estimation only. Nutrient information for dehydrated foods is based on fresh. Use 1/4 of the servicing size for the same nutrient information. Thus 1 Cup of fresh fruit has the same sugars as 1/4 dried.

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18 Comments

  1. If I dehydrate blackberries 0, how do I rehydrate them to use in pies?

    1. The same way you rehydrate anything else – soaking them in a little water until they’ve rehydrated as much as they will. They will not get as plump as before, so adjust accordingly.

  2. Darcy
    There is so much about turmeric being good for you. Just wondering have you dried some. I have been having fun dehydrating so many things. I made leek powder, mushroom powder and even made my son in law phenol powder, not sure how it went for him. Thank you so much for all your fabulous ideas. I can’t wait to try so many things.

  3. Can you dehydrate berries in the oven as well?

    1. You can, but they take much more care. If you have an oven with a dehdyrating feature, you’re good.

      However, if you have a conventional oven, you need to set the temp as low as it will go, test the temp, and make adjustments in your door to ensure that you aren’t cooking the berries, but simply drying them. You may need to prop the door open with a wooden spoon or another safe device, but please be mindful of young children or adults with mobility issues if you go that route.

  4. Avatar for Elżbieta Elżbieta says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! This the best in depth explanation/tutorial with added bonus of other “bush fruits”.
    I will definitely try it when my bushes come to fruition. .

  5. How much berry powder do you get from a pound of cane berries? This looks like a much better alternative to mixing jam in my Greek yogurt.

    1. You can look at the chart in the post and extrapolate from there, depending on how many berries are in your pound.

  6. I was excited to try making this blackberry powder as you mention it doesn’t require a $2K freeze dryer and that you can remove the seeds, which I can’t have. (All other recipes have you heat dry the berries to rocks then grind up the rocks, seeds and all, and powdered seeds are 10x worse for me!)
    However I’ve dried 18 trays now and no matter what I do they all just turn out unusable goo and rocks! (Not a big loss as the berries were free and I’ll vacuume seal & freeze the rocks for future juice making, just disappointed.)
    The berries are fresh, firm, clean, and thoroughly dried off. (Though I tried a tray of berries that weren’t washed and 1 that wasn’t dried off too. No difference.) The temp is correct (135f), but I’ve tried temps up to 200f just to be sure it’s not that. I’ve tried leaving the door open during drying for more air circulation and/or lower temp. I’ve tried taking them out at what looks like the right time, too early, and too late. I’ve tried using the dehydrator, oven, and toaster oven. I’ve tried drying a 2nd time after they cool. Tried both freezing them after drying and freezing them before drying. (Don’t freeze them before unless you want to dry puddles of juice.) Tried refrigerating them first. Tried warming them first. Tried different acid levels in the prewash. Tried bigger plumper berries and smaller seedier berries. Tried cutting them in half first (much worse!) Tried turning each berry over part way through drying… Nothing works! Heat always makes them turn to sticky mush then harden into cooked rocks.
    How do you get them to stay fluffy and crispy enough to crumble into powder without using a $2K freeze dryer?!?

    1. I’m really sorry you’re having trouble with your blackberries. I assure you I didn’t use a freeze dryer – I don’t own one. I wish I had a good answer for you. There are so many reasons why batches may not work –
      Temp too high (keep it low), the berries may not have been in season, thus low moisture; they have varying sugar levels which react to heat differently. I’ve had it happen with raspberries before, and it is really frustrating for it to happen.

      My only suggestion is to perhaps blend them and make a fruit leather and then powder the leather. I do that with watermelon and bananas and pumpkin – it may be easier for you with the blackberries.

  7. It didn’t worked for me 🙁
    My blackberries went to the mushy phase, to the rock solid phase, they didn’t shatter when I pressed them 🙁
    It’s a shame, I was really excited about the powder.
    I have a different dehydrator.

    1. Sorry that it didn’t work for you, Monica. You should try it again, though! I know they aren’t cheap – but try it again next year. Does your dehydrator have a temperature control?

  8. Hello, I was so excited to learn you could extract a powder from blackberries! My question is can this be done with blueberries?

    1. Not as easily – they would work better if they were freeze-dried instead of dehydrated. There is still about 10-20% moisture in fruits that are heavily moisture laden, like blueberries, and so your final powder may have a few gummy areas. You could remedy this by throwing the powder back into the dehydrator between sheets of parchment paper or liners to dry it out before storing. I think of blueberries like raisins when properly dried, and don’t find powdering them to be worth doing. But freeze-dried – works great.

  9. Avatar for Mandy Mascaro Mandy Mascaro says:

    I cannot wait to try this. My husband loves blackberries; but like you, I always end up throwing them out because the go before we can use them all. Thanks so much for this tip!

    1. You’re welcome! I’d love to know what you think after you try it!

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