Homemade Dried Parmesan Cheese (Dehydrated)

When I was a child I thought ‘Parmesan cheese’ was something that came out of a tube as a dried powder.  Later in life I would discover the authentic product and swore off the powder.

Until I made it myself.

Homemade Dried Parmesan Cheese (Dehydrated) Parmesan February Cheese

I recently dehydrated some Parmesan cheese and turned it into powder to see what would happen.  The results? Surprisingly fantastic.  When you dehydrate something you remove water content and are left with the concentrated flavors.  In this case the flavors that remain are salty, savory and deeply cheesy.  It resembles the product from the tubes except the flavor is far more intense.

More than 80% of the weight was lost in the drying process.  120 grams of Parmesan was less than 20 grams of dried Parmesan (just more than a half cup).  Although the jar looks very modest, the flavors are so intense that a small amount goes a long way (and longer than the commercial product we used to buy).  We’ve used it with pasta, soup and sauces.

Homemade Dried Parmesan Cheese – Instructions

The process was simple.  I shaved pieces of cheese (with a vegetable peeler) and placed them in the dehydrator at 125 degrees.  The strips of cheese were better than grating the cheese as this prevented them from blowing all over.  I’ve learned this the hard way in the past.

The final product was completely dry within 8 hours but I continued for 4 additional hours.  To create the powder I froze the cheese morsels for 10 minutes (this makes them brittle) before blitzing them in a spice grinder.

The cheese should last for a long time in the fridge.  I would absolutely make this again (and will).

Comments

  1. I’m so thrilled to see this! I’ve often wondered about making my own parm powder. I think it will be awesome to use in some bread without having to compensate for the extra moisture. I will definitely be trying this!

  2. Wait, why haven’t you submitted this to PD?

  3. Thanks! Sometimes you want powdered cheese to sprinkle on things — hello pizza! — this is a great idea!

  4. That’s awesome! I’m one of those people that actually prefers the flavour of the former green tower parm cheese (hanging head in shame) but stopped buying it when we started on our Eat Local challenge a few summers ago. I recently bought some again when they changed their packaging because I read on Pinterest that the new shaker lids fit on a canning jar…and I could really use a few of those! LOL I will definitely give this experiment a try with some Thornloe parm and I will store it in a canning jar with a green shaker lid! ;-)

    • Hahahaha! You can have your jar and eat it too Shannon! Let us know what you think of it – it’s becoming a staple here. Neat idea re the shaker lids too…

  5. Hi! Just stumbled on your site while looking up oyster mushroom recipes. I don’t have a dehydrator – could this also be done in the oven? Thanks!

    • Hi Jenn,

      I’ve been traveling for work so a bit behind in comments. Some ovens will operate lower than 200 degrees but most will not. Ideal drying temperature is lower than 200. I’ve had mixed results air-drying them but need to set some time aside to learn to dry this way as it’s easy, traditional, and requires no equipment. :)

      Joel

  6. I have a lot of chevre frozen from the summer – I’m going to try drying some of that for sprinkles. Once thawed it’s pretty sharp and develops blue molds after a while (at least I’m friends with most of the molds in my kitchen – they’re everywhere due to cheesemaking!) This might be a nice way to use some of it up.

  7. Hi Joel,
    Just a few minutes ago, I was sitting on the sofa with my boxer Baby Rae and said: I want to dehydrate some parm cheese. Let’s go do a search. Off to the Kindle we went :) Your info popped up first, so…I see NO need to go any further than the kitchen to get started. Thanks! See ya tomorrow with the results.
    The Lord bless you and keep you and be gracious unto you,
    Vicki

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