Review: NESCO FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator

If you want a food dehydrator that will impress you with its powerful performance and won’t cost you an arm and a leg, the Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator is a great choice. This mid-range dehydrator is ideal for beginners and experts alike, as it is fully expandable. In case this is your first dehydrator, you can be rest assured that it will serve you well—even as your needs grow and evolve.

Let’s take a look at some key features, as well as pros and cons of the Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator, so you can determine whether this machine is the right match for you.

NESCO FD-1018A Key Features

  • A quiet motor with 1,000 watts of drying power
  • Patented Converga-Flow drying system for better and faster results
  • Opaque Vita-Save exterior blocks light and retains nutrients in food

The NESCO FD-1018A food dehydrator is equipped with a powerful 2,400 RPM motor that boasts a silent performance without compromising on the speed. Fast and efficient, this budget-friendly kitchen appliance will dry your food quicker than other models on the market, all the while retaining essential nutrients. How is that possible? The 1,000 watts of drying power in this dehydrator is paired with a specially designed 4 1/2-inch fan and an adjustable thermostat for a consistent and versatile performance. Additionally, the Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator features the Converga Flow system of drying that evenly dehydrates food on all trays and doesn’t take long to do it. The hot air is forced from the bottom of the device, up over the trays and converges at the center, ensuring that every piece of food you put into the machine is dried with superior results.

While some users prefer transparent trays so they can monitor the process, the opaque exterior of this food dehydrator serves another important purpose. By blocking the light, the opaque Vita-Save exterior ensures that the maximum amount of vitamins and nutrients remain in the food while it’s being dried. So, stock up healthy snacks for winter, camping, or any other excursion you may be planning.

NESCO FD-1018A Pros

  • Comes with 8 trays, 8 fruit roll sheets, and 8 mesh screens
  • Can be expanded to up to 30 trays
  • Adjustable thermostat
  • Easy to clean
  • No flavor transfer
  • Bonus gift: Recipe book and jerky spice pack with cure

Whether you’re looking for a gift for a dehydrating pro or want to try your hand at drying food for the first time, this model will work for you. The versatility of the Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator is one of its strongest suits! Not only that, it’s easy to use, thanks to the manual and recipe book that come with the device to ensure that you always get fantastic results with this dehydrator. The thermometer can be adjusted from 95°-160°F, so you can count on this device to perfectly dry out everything from fine herbs to tough jerky. Speaking of jerky, you will also get a NESCO Original Jerky Spice pack with cure to make sure you can start making perfect beef jerky from the moment you unpack this dehydrator. Between the dehydrator’s powerful performance, original spices, and a tried-and-true recipe, there’s no way you won’t nail it on your first try.

In addition to making jerky in your food dehydrator, you can use it to dry fruits, veggies, herbs, and everything else you can think of. So, whether you want to conserve the harvest surplus or make healthy snacks for your family, Nesco FD-1018A has you covered. The 8 trays that come with the gadget can be used for dehydrating a variety of foods, and you’ll get 8 clear-a-screens (mesh trays), and 8 fruit roll-up trays as well. The mesh trays are great for drying herbs or finer foods, and the solid roll-up trays are for fruit (or veggie) purees, which can be dehydrated into yummy leathers.

Once you’re done with drying all of these delicacies, you’ll be delighted to find out that the trays in the Nesco FD-1018A are very easy to clean. Just pop them in the dishwasher or wash manually with warm water and detergent—that’s it, no fuss, no fancy cleaners.

NESCO FD-1018A Cons

  • No clear exterior
  • Takes up a lot of space

Even with the initial 8 trays, the Nesco FD-1018A can take up a lot of cupboard space, a pain point, especially if you have a small kitchen. Not to mention if you decide to expand the trays—with up to 30 trays stacked one on another, this gadget can tower everything else in your kitchen (we mean that quite literally!). If you have limited space, take a look at some of the more compact models, such as the Nesco FD-75A Snackmaster.

While the opaque exterior does have its merits, some users prefer to be able to check their food without taking out the tray. With the non-transparent tray sides, you won’t be able to monitor the process—but you can rely on the superior air circulation system to get the job done without the need to check up on it ever so often.

The Verdict

The Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster Dehydrator offers great value for money. Customizable, reliable, and, above all, powerful, this food dehydrator will surpass your expectations. The solid motor and Nesco’s patented drying technologies will provide you a superior experience, and the high-quality materials ensure you’ll get to enjoy this device for years to come.

Owing to its versatile features and the ability to expand to up to 30 trays, this nifty gadget can be an ideal gift for your loved one (or yourself). To boot, the ease of use, paired with consistently good results this dehydrator offers, it is a great option for dehydrating beginners and experts, both alike.

  • Performance - 7.6/10
  • Ease of Use - 7.5/10
  • Design - 6.9/10
  • Features - 7.7/10

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