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Food Sealer Info Request

NilsNils Posts: 82
edited 12:52PM in EggHead Forum
Seen several folks write about using a vacuum sealer for saving grilled goodies.

We go through boxes of quart & gallon sized zip-locks around our house every year, so was looking into vacuum sealers, mostly for pre-packaging stuff for freezer storage.

Looking for anyone's comments on what models and/or features they liked, and just as important, did NOT like!

Thanks,
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Comments

  • Food Saver, Model 2490.
    Like: Works great, no more freezer burn, price of ~$130 at COSTCO.
    Don't like: The canisters that came with it don't hold a vacuum so tossed them in the trash, which is not enough of an issue not to buy it.
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  • reelgemreelgem Posts: 4,256
    I have the Foodsaver Professional and I'm very happy with it. I would think anything in their line is good.
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  • reelgemreelgem Posts: 4,256
    I have the Foodsaver Professional and I'm very happy with it. I would think anything in their line is good.
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  • StitchesStitches Posts: 102
    I have the foodsaver v2420. I love this thing it has more than paid for itself. Here's three of the features I really like the most. I really can't think of any dislikes.

    Built-in roll holder and cutter simplifies making custom sized bags

    Adjustable food settings allows you to change seal level for the type of food - moist or dry

    Hands-free operation — vacuums, seals and shuts off automatically with a single touch
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  • We have the model v3825 from Costco. This is the second one for us. Passed the first on to one of our sons who is still using it. Both models have worked flawlessly. This is one purchase I made that my wife actually approves of.
    Larry
    Aiken, SC. and
    Fancy Gap, Va.
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  • RRPRRP Posts: 14,962
    Echo the satisfaction with Food Saver brand. I have an older model 1050 - seems like there for a while they were changing numbers quarterly! Just like several other toys I'll NEVER be without one again. Really the cost is so little when you see how well it protects your raw foods, soups, and other make ahead items. Don't go cheap, but no need to bet the farm either.
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
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  • SundownSundown Posts: 2,894
    Echo all of the above. Although we have good luck with the canisters they seem to hold the vacuum quite well.
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  • RRPRRP Posts: 14,962
    here's some for instance pictures:

    These stuffed green peppers were made strictly to be Food Savered
    IMG_2635.jpg

    and they look like this frozen and protected:
    IMG_2479.jpg

    individual bags of homemade pizza sauce made then frozen in bulk for 6 months from now!
    IMG_2339.jpg

    what I do with extra anchovies after opening a tin
    IMG_2075.jpg

    and of course individual pint bags of homemade soup such as this ham & bean
    IMG_0961.jpg

    even discs of clear turkey soup!
    IMG_1172.jpg

    Here's another novel use - I make a special family tradition cookie at Christmas and mail several dozen to nieces. I control the compression just right and they get there safely and fresh!
    IMG_1416.jpg

    and lastly here's my hint for a sure fire way of filling Food Saver bags with soup so as to keep the walls clean during the initial 24 hour freezing before sealing...
    take a plastic glass and cut the bottom out. Insert it in the bag and pour away. I actually do this single handily nowadays.
    IMG_0958.jpg
    Ron
    Dunlap, IL
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  • Foodsaver makes lots of different models that have minor variations in appearance and features. Some are metal, some plastic. Some can be stored on edge, presumably reducing storage space.

    I use my model V2490 frequently in four ways:

    (1) freezer storage-raw foods (proteins, and blanched vegetables and fruits)
    (2) freezer storage-portioned sizes of cooked foods (e.g., homemade spaghetti sauce)
    (3) vacuum canister storage of dry goods
    (4) sous vide cooking

    Here's a recent sous vide short rib cook I did, just after sealing the bags:

    IMG_4708.jpg

    Cost of bags is a nontrivial expense. Roll bags that you custom-size (roll is stored inside the machine, you unspool just enough to fit your food) are handy. I find that I like the narrow bag rolls more than the wide; they seem to fit food better. Costco sells bag rolls at good prices.

    If bags aren't used to store proteins, FoodSaver says they can be reused. The trick is to allow enough extra room so that when you cut open the bag after first use, there's enough space left to seal it again, slightly smaller.

    A pulse feature is essential, to avoid sucking up liquids into the machine and to avoid crushing delicate items. If you're something that's fragile or has sharp edges that might pierce the bag, one strategy is to lay it in a tray within the bag and then vacuum seal. I like to hold bags with liquid over the edge of the counter, so that liquid is slower to be drawn into the machine and I can release the Pulse button when I see the liquid climbing up. The FoodSaver recommendation is to freeze liquids and put frozen-solid chunks in the bag before vacuuming, but this extra step can be a pain.

    I've never had a seal fail, even in sous vide cooking. The manual says the "wet" vs. "dry" seal setting makes a difference, but I don't notice it. If I remember, I use the wet to get the maximum strength seal, but it's not a big deal.

    I, too, found the canisters unreliable, and replaced 2 of the 3 in the first set. Replacement set is holding well so far. I wouldn't recommend getting the machine just for the canisters, but in my experience they improve storage life for things like barley, rice and brown sugar. If the canisters fail again I probably won't replace them. I have not tried the wine bottle and Mason jar accessories.

    Use a Sharpie to write on the bag what it is, how much of it there is, and when you stored it.
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