Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips

Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips

Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips – a delicious natural “candy” with incredible concentrated flavor! Brightly vibrant with surprising flavor, these are the hit of summer!


Watermelons always make me think of Grandpa Z. We shared a mutual love of watermelon, and I have many memories of enjoying it with him. I have photos of Grandpa Z sitting on the kitchen floor, holding our dachshund Hansel, with a huge watermelon in front of him.

We called his mom “Watermelon Grandma”. We had watermelon eating contests – to see who could “clean” their piece the fastest. We looked for the largest watermelons always, and often used the dachshund as a reference measure.

I love my dehydrator.

I have been wanting to dehydrate watermelon for years. I tried it in the oven once – didn’t work. So even though summer is on it’s way out (brr – SO cold here!!),Β I did find a watermelon, and I did make my first “fruit leather”.

Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips

This tastes amazing – natural watermelon flavor intensified. Chewy and pliable like it should be, it is easy to bite and mmm, too easy to eat the entire tray (uh oh – I’m sensing a theme).

So easy – I sliced a watermelon into uniform strips, about 6 inches long, almost 2 inches wide, 1/2 inch thick:

Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips

I also cut some of those strips into bite size squares. Those were my taste testers along the way.Β One thing this dehydrator will (hopefully?) eventually teach me? Patience. I have none! I keep peeking inside.

These took about 8 hours at 125 degrees.

I love this as much as I knew I would, and Thank You Baby Jesus I have the room in my kitchen for it.

Watermelon Candy Fruit Strips

Grandpa Z might not appreciate Talladega Nights or Ricky Bobby (though I suspect he would…), he would love these.

Do you share the love of watermelon? What should I dehydrate next (wrings hands)?




  1. Laura says

    Oh so so jealous!! Those would be the perfect snacks for school!!!! Enjoy them!!! I have to stop typing to wipe the drool off of my mouth they look so good!!!!

    • spabettie says

      thanks, Laura – I am enjoying… I was really excited as I was watching them… they turned out exactly as I hoped – it texture and taste!

  2. says

    This is a great idea for a way to not waste a giant watermelon when only one or two people are in your household. I neeeeeeeeeeeeed a dehydrator.

    • spabettie says

      it was really a gamble, you know? I had an idea of what I wanted it to look and taste like… and it did!! crazy, right? and I figured the dehydrator would be a big sticky mess inside, with all the WATER in the melon… it wasn’t… at all! I can’t wait for next summer and lots of watermelon!!

    • spabettie says

      YAY, you got one! when Jason and I were first dating we’d end our emails with VERY obscure movie quotes for the other to guess… I’m pretty sure I started it, it’s just kinda my thing. glad you got one! especially since you don’t like the watermelon πŸ˜‰

  3. says

    I am so envious of your dehydrator now πŸ˜€ Never thought anything would have left, after dehydrating watermelons since it’s water content is quite high. Mmm.. what about dehydrating pumpkins for a change? πŸ˜‰

    • spabettie says

      I know! I had an ideal outcome in my mind, how they would look and be flavored… if you cut them thick enough, but not TOO thick that they take days to finish, they are GOOD! hmmm… pumpkin… you’ve got me thinking!

    • spabettie says

      he would love these then… the flavors are concentrated and so intense! it’s like candy, really. πŸ˜€ and yes, in theory they would be great for Halloween… but I’m not sharing! πŸ˜‰

    • spabettie says

      thank you, Laura! it turned out exactly how I’ve been imagining it would… I want to go out today and see if there’s any more watermelons left in the store…

  4. says

    I am jealous of everyone who has a dehydrator lol. I’ve been dying to get one!!! I have one on my wedding registry but I have a feeling nobody is going to know what it is and won’t buy it. I’ll have to splurge some day soon.

    And hello!!! Watermelon strips! I die.

    • spabettie says

      Christina I just got mine, and LOVE it. I have wanted one for years. πŸ˜€ these watermelon strips are what I have been thinking of for SO long… they are SO good. Mmm… so sad it’s the end of watermelon season! I will definitely have something to look forward to next year!

      I hope someone DOES know what it is, and gets it for you!! there should be a priority listing on those things, you know? what you REALLY want to eh, I guess I’ll use this… πŸ˜‰

  5. says

    So. Cool. I love watermelon, and can imagine how delicious it would taste in strips like that.

    You should try making different kinds of fruit rolls, maybe with some unusual flavors, like using basil or chili or things like that. :)

    • spabettie says

      LISA!! you are SO going to love what I have in my dehydrator right now then!! πŸ˜‰ basil basil basil... πŸ˜‰

  6. says

    I would’ve never thought you could even dehydrate watermelon! It just seems like it’s so “watery” (<–duh) that I assumed it would dehydrate to nothing. Those fruit strips look so good. I'm weird about fruity flavored things when it's not the actual fruit in it's pure form. Orange, apple flavored things…yuck. Actual oranges & apples though…yum. Watermelon is one of the few flavors I can do outside of the real fruit. Although, this is kinda of the real fruit. I'm rambling…

    • spabettie says

      love when I inspire the rambling… πŸ˜‰ I know what you mean, I think? that the “flavored” things taste nothing like the real thing. that’s my beef, anyway. I think I cut the watermelon thick enough that there was something substantial there at the end – I was SO excited they turned out how I imagined all this time!! πŸ˜€

    • spabettie says

      haaa – glad you liked it. another hilarious movie we quote from a lot around here… Chip, I’m gonna come at you like a spider monkey! or… I like to picture Jesus in a tuxedo T-Shirt because it says I want to be formal, but I’m here to party. I love Cal. πŸ˜‰ I need to watch that movie again now.

    • spabettie says

      I know, I do too – LOVE watermelon! (and love that it reminds me of Grandpa Z – one of my all time favorite people). the dehydrated watermelon is TOO good. πŸ˜€

  7. Sarah says

    OMG. In the words of Paula Deen “make yo’ tongue fly outta yo’ mouth and smack yo’ brains out.” Dang, those look amazing. I wish I had a dehydrator so I could make those right now. E would be all over these.

    • spabettie says

      haa haa – good one, Sarah. Good ol’ Paula. πŸ˜€ I’ll have to make you & E some of these sometime… most likely next summer… πŸ˜‰

    • spabettie says

      I know… I really didn’t know what to expect. I had this grand idea in my head of these perfect strips of chewy goodness… and that’s what I got! πŸ˜€ If only all my ideas worked so well πŸ˜‰

      hope all is good, Sarah – I miss our emails too! πŸ˜€

  8. says

    omg why didnt I think of this during watermelon season.


    my big, dusty, hot box, i.e. my dehydrator, just re-earned it’s keep in my kitch if I can make these. and now i know why you were so in love w/ your dehyd via email :) I’d be too. PERFECT pics, too.

    • spabettie says

      yeah, I know SOME things can be done in the oven… but I actually tried to make these once, and it was a mess! I think the dehydrator is a good accessory for me to have πŸ˜€

  9. says

    What a great idea! I love watermelon flavored things, especially when the flavor comes from real watermelon!
    I’m always trying to think of new things to dehydrate….some other unexpecting fruit should be next!

    • spabettie says

      I know, I really didn’t know what to expect – I had an idea in my mind, and they turned out exactly like that – so good!

  10. spabettiemom says

    OOHHH….AAAHHHH…I think I NEED a dehydrator too!!! Watermelon; my absolute favorite….And wouldn’t it be cool just sit on the floor with Grandpa Z, Watermelon Grandma, Hansel and a few others I can think of like “Uncle Dudley”?..We would all laugh so hard we would wet our pants!!!!::)

  11. says

    Watermelon leathers were on my to-make list all summer and I never got around to it. Your recipe and photos proved how easy it is. I won’t let another year go by without giving it a try.


  12. says

    Genius! That’s not something I would have thought to dehydrate but I’m sort of drooling at the thought of how tasty that much be. I’m a big fan of dried mango, peaches, cranberries!

  13. says

    These look amazing. What dehydrator do you have? I have been coveting one for some time and with the holidays coming I want to be really specific with the hints I drop. :)

    • spabettie says

      hi Rivki! I have the Excalibur (can’t remember model # right now – I’m not at home). I love it – I researched all of them and have talked to friends who have them… this seemed like the best for many reasons – one of the big ones being the large flat surfaces, not like the round ones with a hole in the middle). πŸ˜€

  14. says

    Yummeee! I haven’t done actual watermelon strips before, will have to try. We make fruit leather or dry actual fruit like apples and mango. I know, not as exciting but still tasty good!

    • spabettie says

      I researched and talked to friends who have them – I chose mine (the Excalibur) for the quality, great reviews and that it is a big flat surface (not round with a hole in the middle).

  15. says

    what a GREAT idea! I would have never thought that those would work – so much moisture – I would think they would disappear….
    and yes – thank you baby jesus for room to store the little beast!

    • spabettie says

      I know, I was excited when the result was exactly as I hoped – in texture and flavor – they are SO delicious!

  16. says

    Watermelon is hands down the best thing I’ve ever put in my food dehydrator. It is like pure candy when it comes out! I don’t think I’ve ever made a batch of dehydrated watermelon last more than a few hours. :)
    BTW I freaking love your recipes. I am making the spinach cakes tonight. :)

    • spabettie says

      thank you, Lauren!! I hope you LOVE the spinach cakes as much as we do!! those watermelon strips are LONG GONE. and yes, that was my first immediate description… like candy!

  17. Caroline says

    I always thought dehydrators were 1) big 2) expensive and 3) only for people who eat a lot of beef jerky. Thanks to you, I’m realizing none of those things are true, and I’m going to ask for a dehydrator for Christmas. Have you tried making dog treats with it? My dogs love sweet potato chews and dehydrated chicken strips. Those things are expensive if you buy them pre-made but would cost practically nothing to make using a dehydrator.

    • spabettie says

      ooh, sweet potato chews! I bet Basil would be all over those! I have not tried any treats for him yet, but I will! well, dehydrators ARE kinda big… I am lucky to have enough room right now (my old kitchen? no way!). and the expense is relative, of course. again, there was a time in my life where it would be a TOO expensive luxury… then, like you said, if you really use it a lot and make things that you would normally pay a lot for, then it pays for itself pretty quickly. I love mine, I hope you get one for Christmas! πŸ˜€

    • spabettie says

      thank you, Vanessa, and thanks for sharing! I still think of looking for a recipe of mine you could photograph (if you’re still looking…) any type of food you’re looking for? πŸ˜€

  18. says

    Yum! It’s summer here now, so I am just eating watermelon by the wedge. I can’t stop snacking on it! I don’t have a dehydrator, alas! I am intrigued by how this will taste.

    • spabettie says

      Susan, it is almost like candy! the flavors are very concentrated and it’s a strong watermelon flavor! we LOVED it – because it’s still a natural flavor, you know? this was the one thing I had been thinking of for YEARS – saying as soon as I (finally!) got a dehydrator I would do this! luckily it turned out even better than I had imagined… πŸ˜€

  19. Carolina says

    can I tell you I LOVE YOU?? is that too much? too soon? πŸ˜‰ you are a genius with a juicer and a dehydrator!

  20. Theresa says

    My boyfriend and I have done honeydew and cantalope too. I really like citrus fruit; so pink and white grapefruit, mandarin oranges these all taste great and since they come sliced and canned too you dont have to wait for fresh. Peaches are fantastic and again if they aren’t in season you can wait for the canned fruit to go on sale. This is what I munch on when I’m watching tv no mess and I always carry some in my purse for a quick snack.

    • spabettie says

      I love citrus in the dehydrator! I have not tried other melon, cantaloupe would be a lot like watermelon, I bet, in that the flavor is really condensed and sweet!

    • spabettie says

      hi Allison, while I have not tried the oven, I know a friend has (yes, for this recipe), and have heard of many people using the oven as a dehydrator. my friend sets her oven to the lowest setting, and keeps the door open just slightly (not all the way open). I think the time is about the same – I would plan for several hours and keep checking them.

      please let me know if you try!

    • spabettie says

      hi Francine!! I saw packaged watermelon the other day… like the precut strips? it would make these VERY easy!! :)

  21. says

    This is so cool!!! I never thought to do this. I have a dehydrator and would love to try this! Has me thinking now…what can’t you dehydrate is more the question….hhmm πŸ˜‰

    • Kristina Sloggett says

      ha, my thoughts exactly Chrysta – when I first had my dehydrator I would look around the kitchen, hmm, will THIS work..? πŸ˜‰

      and these are SO good!


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