How To Make Sun-Dried Tomatoes In Air Fryer( A Flavorful DIY Guide)

Originally posted on 17 August 2023 @ 14:15

How To Make Sun-Dried Tomatoes In Air Fryer

Drying fresh tomatoes into intensely flavorful sun-dried tomatoes is easier than ever with an air fryer. This countertop appliance uses a heating element and fan to dehydrate tomato slices right in your kitchen rapidly.

In just 4-6 hours, you can make batches of crispy, flavor-packed sun-dried tomatoes to enjoy year-round.

The Benefits of Using an Air Fryer

An air fryer has several advantages over traditional outdoor sun drying:

  • You can dry tomatoes any time of year, regardless of weather—no need to wait for perfect sunny conditions.
  • The drying time is much faster – usually 4-6 hours instead of 1-2 days outside.
  • You have precise control over temperature and drying conditions. This gives consistent results. 
  • Tomatoes dried indoors won’t collect dirt, bugs, or other contaminants. 
  • The hot circulated air of the air fryer caramelizes the natural sugars in the tomatoes, enhancing their flavor.

How an Air Fryer Works to Dry Tomatoes 

Air fryers are small but powerful convection ovens. A heating element rapidly heats the air inside the appliance while a fan circulates it around the food.

This constant flow of hot air quickly removes moisture from tomato slices, drying them evenly in hours instead of days.

Ingredients You’ll Need

 Plum tomatoes or Roma: Their low moisture content makes them perfect for drying whole.

Cherry or grape tomatoes: Cut these small tomatoes in half before drying.

Olive or avocado oil: Lightly coats tomatoes and helps carry flavor. 

Salt and seasonings (optional): Salt adds moisture while boosting flavor. Garlic, onion, and Italian seasoning also taste great.

Cooling racks: Let air circulate under tomatoes as they dry.

Prepping Tomatoes for the Air Fryer 

Proper prep is key for evenly dried tomatoes:

1. Wash tomatoes and remove stems and blemishes. Pat is very dry.

2. Slice tomatoes 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Thinner slices will dry faster. 

3. Toss slices with 1-2 Tbsp oil in a bowl. Add any salt or seasonings. Mix well to coat.

4. Arrange slices in a single layer on racks, without overlapping.

Air Frying for Perfectly Dried Tomatoes

1. Preheat the air fryer to 150°F  This low temp prevents case hardening. 

2. Place racks of tomatoes in the fryer. Don’t overload!

3. Air fry at 150°F for 3-4 hours. Shake racks occasionally for even drying. 

4. Check tomatoes and flip at the halfway point. Fry longer if needed.

5. Tomatoes are done when shriveled but still a little pliable. Let cool completely before storing.

Storing and Using Your Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Cool tomatoes then pack into airtight containers and cover with olive oil.  Refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Freeze for 6-8 months if not using right away. Thaw before using.

Chop and add to portions of pasta, pizzas, sandwiches, salads, and antipasto.

Rehydrate in warm water for 10 minutes first when substituting for fresh tomatoes. 

Puree into tomato paste after rehydrating.


What tomatoes work best?

Plum and Roma’s tomatoes are ideal since they have low moisture and fewer seeds. Cherry or grape tomatoes also work when cut in half. Avoid juicy beefsteak tomatoes.

How long do air-frying tomatoes take?

Expect drying times of 3-6 hours at 150°F. Drying is complete when tomatoes are shriveled but still a little pliable. Time varies based on your air fryer model.

Should tomatoes be blanched first? 

Blanching is optional. It helps loosen skin but is not required when air frying.

What temperature should I use?

150°F is the best temperature for drying tomatoes gradually without cooking them. Up to 170°F can also work. Higher temps risk cooking the tomatoes too fast.

Should tomatoes be soaked after drying?

Yes, soaking in oil or water rehydrates them and extends their shelf life. Refrigerate after soaking to prevent over-drying.

How long do they last?

Properly stored sun-dried tomatoes last 3-4 weeks refrigerated or 6-8 months frozen.

What are good ways to use them?

Rehydrate first when substituting for fresh tomatoes. Otherwise add to pizzas, kinds of pasta, sandwiches, salads, and antipasto. Puree into tomato paste.

Can I use my oven instead? 

You can dry tomatoes at 150°F in the oven but it takes much longer, up to 12 hours. The air fryer dries them faster by circulating air directly around them.


Drying tomatoes in an air fryer lets you easily make flavor-packed sun-dried tomatoes at home in just 4-6 hours. Simply slice tomatoes, coat them with oil and seasonings, and air fry at a low 150°F, shaking occasionally, until shriveled but still pliable.

Allow to cool fully before storing in oil in the fridge or freezer. Enjoy intense tomato flavor anytime by using sun-dried tomatoes in your favorite recipes or as a flavor-packed snack.

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