Why DIY fruit leather
Savvy moms carefully read snack-food ingredient labels because often there are often added sugars in those pre-packaged snack foods. When it comes to store-bought fruit leather, you want to be extra careful that you’re purchasing a snack with no sugar added. Fruit, of course, has its own natural sugars — but what you’re looking for is fruit leather with no extra sugar or corn syrup added, like from Stretch Island.
By making your own fruit leather, you can buy fruit in season, just use the one ingredient (the fruit!), and make it whenever you want. You’ll just need some parchment paper and a baking sheet. Or, you can also use an economical and easy dehydrator machine.
Two video how-to’s
The first video is how to make strawberry fruit leather in the oven. According to the University of Minnesota Extension Office, oven-based dehydrating requires a low, constant temperature of about 140 degrees F until the fruit is dried. (In the video, the recommendation is 160 degrees F, which may be too high and cook your fruit instead of drying it. So, you may need to experiment.)
The second video is for pineapple fruit leather, made in a countertop dehydrator. Dehydrating machines often will use less energy than a regular oven and can also give you more exact temperature control.