The NESCO Snackmaster Pro is an inexpensive and easy to use dehydrator. The base of this machine is much easier to clean than its competitors. We do have some concerns about the trays, which are a bit flimsy and relatively difficult to clean. Despite these concerns, this machine is a great choice for those who want to ease into dehydrating with the option of expanding their activities. After all, it produces evenly dried, flavorful food on par with the top models.
NESCO Snackmaster Pro Review
Pros: Simplistic design, economic, adjustable capacity
Cons: Thin trays, no timer, difficult to check progress
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Snackmaster Pro was a contender for our Best Buy Award as it is inexpensive, easy to use and dries food with the best of them. We certainly like that the fan is on the top of the unit as it allows the base, which is where most of the mess ends up, to be washed as opposed to being wiped out. We also found the flexibility in the tray beds to be helpful when removing sticky foods.
Consistent and Accurate
Many dehydrator models suffer from inconsistent temperatures, and as a result, they have inconsistent food outcomes. The morsels will be unevenly dried, or worse, over-dried. This is not the case with the Snackmaster Pro. This machine has one of the more accurate thermostats that we've evaluated. We tested a number of different foods in these machines — bananas, apples, herbs, tomatoes, and beef. Most machines struggle with producing quality beef jerky. Not the Snackmaster. That's quite impressive considering the price point.
Ease of Use
The Snackmaster Pro has a simple design. Often simplicity is a good thing. However, when certain useful features are absent it can be a bit vexing. This is the case for the Pro. This machine lacks a timer, an on/ off switch, and a viewing window. In truth, most stacked dehydrators require the user to remove each tray for visual checks. However, the fan on top design makes this process a bit more awkward.
As a general rule stack dehydrators are easier to clean than their shelf-style counterparts. The stack models' trays are the body of the dehydrator. Accordingly, they break down into manageable parts that can be held over the trash or put into the sink. The difficulty in cleaning has more to do with the complexity of the tray itself. The Snackmaster Pro has a complex tray design — not good. Conversely, this model has all of its electronics housed in the lid. Thus, the messiest part of the machine (i.e. the bottom) can be thrown into the sink with the trays.
Given the extremely competitive price point of this dehydrator and the quality results it yields, we argue that its a value item. Sure, it lacks some standard features that may put some consumers off, but it has others that will outweigh them for the right person.
The NESCO Snackmaster Pro offers simplicity in design with consistent, quality results at a price that's hard to beat. However, the savings that this product offers comes at the cost of time. If you like spending time in the kitchen and want to keep some extra bucks in your wallet, then give this machine a whirl.
— Nick Miley and Michelle Powell