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Home freeze dryers are becoming more popular of late, and they are very cool machines. There are generally two categories of people interested in a home freeze dryer: Those interested in preserving leftovers, garden surplus or novelty uses like freeze dried ice cream, and other similar applications and those interested in building their own supply of long term, emergency food storage. The comparison chart below only addresses the emergency food application.

Does a do-it-yourself home freeze dryer make sense to build your own supply of emergency food? We hope the comparison chart below addresses some of the questions you might not have fully considered:


Compare: Home Freeze Dryer Or Pre-Packaged Freeze Dried Foods?

  Home Freeze Dryer
Ready-to-Use Freeze Dried Foods
Coolness Scale Having the ability to preserve leftovers, garden surplus or your own favorite recipes is a very cool! It’s a great solution for those with severe allergies, unusual dietary restrictions or just want to eat a certain way. Really, exceptionally, amazingly boring. Buy, store, and forget until you need it.
Capacity Unlimited! One cycle will take an average of 30 hours to complete. A typical cycle can make enough to fill 1 to 2 #10 cans. On average, a year supply of food for 1 person will be about 215 #10 cans of food. Purchase the amount of food that you want. It arrives ready to store and/or prepare.
Emergency Prep There is work to be done before you can say you have a decent amount of food to consider yourself prepared. Make sure to dedicate plenty of time to dry and package food for emergency use. Additionally, understand how to rehydrate the different types of food you are drying for storage. Legacy emergency food arrives complete and ready to use. Just need to have water and a backup solution to boil it in a power outage situation. Otherwise, prepare like any other meal at home.
Ingredients Matter If you are concerned about ingredients whether you have special dietary issues, allergies or want to continue to eat a certain way a freeze dryer assures you know what goes into your emergency storage because you selected everything by hand and processed it yourself. Legacy Emergency Food Products are manufactured at a 200,000 sq. ft., state of the art facility that is regularly inspected by the FDA, and maintains certifications for Organic, Gluten Free, Natural, Non-GMO, ISO 9001, food allergy and other stringent quality control standards.
Space/weight Requirements A medium machine measures approximately 18” W x 21.25 D” x 28.5”H and weighs approx. 112-130 lbs., based on the model. Additional space required for final packaged food. Storage space needed will depend on how much food you order. Our premium bucket measures 13.25”H x 12.75” W x 16.25” D. We recommend stacking no more than 3 high.
Storage Conditions All food will need to be stored in a cool, dry, temperature-controlled place. All food will need to be stored in a cool, dry, temperature-controlled place.
Noise Level Most freeze dryers run at between 60 and 70 decibels continuously. By way of comparison, a household vacuum cleaner runs at about 70 decibels. 0 decibels. It just sits there quietly.
Re-Hydrating? Some freeze-dried foods are easy to re-hydrate or like fruits, can be eaten in the freeze-dried state. However, Other foods might be a challenge to re-hydrate. You can't simply boil a pizza, or lasagna or other types of food. Even with a steamer, it may be a real challenge to bring some dishes back to full hydration without some dry or crunchy spots. Many rehydrating techniques call for using an oven to add water and steam your meals back to normal, which would be virtually impossible to do in the event of the power grid shutting down. Ensure you know the best way to hydrate the food you are drying and storing. Our meals are all designed to be re-hydrated by only boiling water. Legacy meals contain a blend of mostly freeze-dried ingredients with some added dehydrated ingredients. This way, each meal hydrates correctly, and ensures all the various ingredients are done to intended texture at the same time.
Hassle Factor The purchase of the freeze dryer is the easy part. Purchasing the food, preparing the food and the time and energy need for the actual freeze-drying time for each cycle can be labor intensive. You also need to consider once the cycle is complete, you will need to package your food, clean up the mess, and perform a partial oil change or other routine maintenance required between each cycle.

If you are planning on building your own supply of emergency food, it would be easy to assume you could spend hundreds of hours in prep, clean up and maintenance.
Easy to prepare freeze-dried food storage meals are hassle FREE! Just buy what you want, and it comes ready to store away.
$$$$$ There are many models of home freeze dryers available, most options come in a price range of $3,000 to $11,000. In addition, most require other accessories, like an external pump, oil changes, supplies to package and of course the cost to run the machine and dry the food. And lastly, you need to purchase the food itself. Financing available for the machines. Choose how much food you want and that’s it. Financing, subscriptions, volume discounts available.
Maintenance & Repairs Most units require some sort of maintenance like an oil and filter change, defrosting or other maintenance between every cycle. If part repairs are needed, consider the additional cost. None- just peek in on it every now and again to make sure all looks well.
Power Usage At peak, the freeze dryer draws about 16 amps, but on average about 9-11 amps. (990-1210 watts) of power per hour. A dedicated 20-amp circuit is recommended. Freeze dryers can cost up to $3.00 PER DAY in electricity. If you use it continuously to build up a supply of emergency food, you could add almost $1000 per year in additional electricity costs. $0.00
It requires no electricity to create and only a fuel source (like a wood fire or camp stove) to boil water to turn it into a delicious meal, in an emergency. Otherwise, prepare like any other meal at home.
Other Supplies Needed You will need containers (mylar bags, or #10 cans), sealing equipment, oxygen absorbers, dehumidifiers, nitrogen flushing equipment, storage containers & more. Also consider any maintenance needs such as oil changes or equipment repair and various methods needed for rehydration. Back up way to boil water and water, spoon, bowl, napkin, and a healthy appetite.
Conclusions There are very good reasons why a home freeze dryer is a good idea for some families. We aren't saying don't buy a home freeze dryer. We are just saying if your primary purpose is getting one to make your own year supply of emergency food, ensure you do your research and understand what is involved so it does not end up being a very expensive dust magnet. The hidden expenses and hassles are worth noting and considering. A professionally prepared and packaged supply of emergency food is far cheaper and vastly more convenient than the Do-It-Yourself approach. If you are interested in getting more food storage, click here to see why Legacy Food Storage is the best value in emergency food. Or give us a call and our A+ non-commissioned representatives are here to help answer any questions you have.
"I keep eating these meals and can't stop. My kids love them too. They taste great so we use them often. We need to store them, since that is what they are for"
"I ordered samples from all the food storage companies out there and Legacy Premium was by far the best. Legacy emergency food tastes amazing and the deals are way better!"
Melissa A.
"Everything tastes great and is very easy to make. Seems like this would be the perfect food to have in a crisis."
"I would recommend this food to anyone who needs food storage. Everything has tasted pretty good and the buckets stack nicely."