Nesco is a well-known brand that offers decent quality dehydrators at affordable prices. Which model is best for you? Find all the answers you need in our Nesco Food Dehydrator Reviews and quick comparison chart below!
Table of Contents
Compare Nesco Food Dehydrators
To help you narrow it down, this comparison chart shows details and specifications of the 4 top Nesco dehydrator models. Below it you’ll find reviews with more information on these and some of the other Snackmaster and Gardenmaster models available.
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|Nesco FD-75A Snackmaster Pro||Nesco FD-1018A Gardenmaster||Nesco FD-37A Food & Jerky Dehydrator||Nesco FD-80A Food & Jerky Dehydrator|
|Bestseller||An "Amazon's Choice" Product||Bargain Model||Square Model|
|Weight||9 pounds||17 pounds||4.7 pounds||9.2 pounds|
|Warranty||1 yr limited||1 yr limited||1 yr limited||1 yr limited|
|Wattage||600 Watts||1,000 Watts||400 Watts||700 Watts|
|Dimensions||14 x 14 x 12 inches||17 x 15.5 x 14 inches||10 x 15 x 15 inches||10 x 16 x 16 inches|
|Fan Location||Top Mounted||Bottom Mounted||Top Mounted||Top Mounted|
|No. of Trays||5 Included|
Can expand up to 12
Can expand up to 30
Can expand up to 7
Can expand up to 8
|Adjustable Thermostat||Yes - 95° to 160°||Yes - 95° to 160°||No||Yes - 95° to 160°|
|Average Customer Rating||4.5||4.5||4.5||4.2|
|BPA Free Trays||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Extras Included||2 Clean-A-Screens™|
2 Fruit Roll Sheets
3 Packets jerky spice
8 Fruit Roll Sheets
1 Packet jerky spice
2 Packets jerky spice
|See Lowest Price on Amazon||Amazon|
NOTE: When figuring average consumer ratings we always look at every online source we can find. On Amazon we only consider reviews from verified purchasers.
Nesco Snackmaster Review
Model FD-75A is known as the “Snackmaster Pro” and has been one of the best selling food dehydrators on the market for years. It usually sells for around $60, making it Nesco’s middle-of-the-line dehydrator. For an in depth look at it, please see our Nesco Snackmaster Pro Food Dehydrator FD75-A Review.
While the FD-75A may be the most popular of its type, it isn’t the only Snackmaster. Two others worth noting are:
Nesco FD-60 Snackmaster Express
This older model is very similar to the Snackmaster Pro and usually sells for about the same price. The main difference is that it’s a 500 Watt unit, and it comes with 4 trays (instead of 5). Also, the only extras included are 1 fruit roll sheet and 2 packets of jerky spice.
Nesco FD-61WHC Snackmaster Encore
Also a 500 Watt unit, the Snackmaster Encore comes with 5 trays. It costs a little more than the other two models, but it includes more extras: 1 Jerky Gun with three tip attachments; 2 fruit roll sheets, 2 Clean-A-Screens™ and 5 packets of jerky seasoning.
Nesco Gardenmaster Review
The FD-1018A sells for just over $100, making it Nesco’s most expensive dehydrator. Some might feel that the higher price is justified by both its features and capacity.
This is a 1,000 Watt unit that can be expanded to a whopping 30 trays, giving you loads of extra drying room each time you run it. That could make it a good choice for gardeners at harvest time, those who make lots of jerky during hunting season, or anyone who takes advantage of bulk buying opportunities.
However, before you buy this model, consider what it will cost to expand to its full capacity. Extra trays usually cost about $20 for 2 (they are sold in pairs). It comes with 8 trays, so you’ll need to buy 22 trays to have the maximum of 30. Those 22 trays will cost you well over $200.
If you’re going to spend that much, I recommend you go take a look at the high end Excalibur models. Excalibur is the leading brand in food dehydrators and has an excellent reputation for both quality and service.
The other Gardenmaster model is:
Nesco FD-1040 Gardenmaster
This model is almost idential to the FD-1018A – same wattage, same features, virtually the same price. It can expand to a maximum of up to 20 trays, so it’s total capacity is somewhat smaller.
The big differences are that it comes with only 4 trays, and it only includes 1 fruit roll sheet, 1 Clean-A-Screen™, and a single sample of jerky seasoning. All things considered, it really doesn’t make sense that this model costs as much as the other Gardenmaster.
Nesco Food Dehydrator for Bargain Shoppers
This is the bottom of the line from Nesco, but that doesn’t mean it’s all bad. Just know what you’re getting.
This is a 400 Watt unit, which means it’s going to take longer to process foods. It may process even slower if you add more trays (it can accommodate a total of 7 trays).
Probably the biggest drawback of this model is that the temperature is not adjustable. Everything processes on high heat, and that may be fine for jerky and most fruits and vegetables. However, it will be a problem with delicate foods or for drying herbs or flowers. You may also experience problems with craft projects that will be damaged by higher heat.
The big plus for this model is that it sells for under $40. That might make it a good choice for you if you want to do a little experimenting. Maybe you aren’t sure if you’d really use a dehydrator. You could give this one a try to see if you’d like to invest in a better model that let’s you do a lot more. If not, then you haven’t wasted too much money.
Nesco’s Only Square Food Dehydrator
Some people just don’t like round dehydrators. If that’s you, then this Nesco is for you. It sells for under $75 and gives you a little extra capacity on each layer because the trays are square.
For even more capacity you can add another 4 trays to the 4 that it comes with. As mentioned above though, consider how that factors into the price. The square trays sell for about $25 for a set of 2. So 4 trays will cost you $50. That runs the price of your $75 food dehydrator (the original price) up to about $125.
That said, what you get for your money is a 700 Watt unit that has an adjustable thermostat. This model has been on the market for quite a few years now, and overall it has maintained a fairly high rating from over 2,000 happy owners.
If you prefer a square dehydrator and want to stay in a moderate price range, this Nesco model just might be the best choice for you.
Other Food Dehydrators To Consider
Needless to say, Nesco isn’t the only game in town! We’ve got all the details to help you decide which model is right for you. Here are some other options you may want to check out:
- Excalibur Dehydrators – If you’re serious about dehydrating, Excalibur is for you. The company has an excellent reputation for making quality dehydrators that offer all the best features.
- Cuisinart Food Dehydrator (formerly Waring Pro) – Waring Pro made a good dehydrator that was very popular for years. The company was bought by Cuisinart, so the dehydrator is the same, but the brand name on it has changed.