review

How to Capture the Flavors of Summer: Foodsaver Product Review

Β Summer is just around the corner, which means… locally grown fruits and vegetables! And Farmers’ Market baskets (or CFA baskets). I’ve ordered my first round of locally grown vegetables this year, so every week I’ll get about 10 varieties of vegetables. I think we might just have carrots coming out of our ears with 10 types of vegetables a week for two people, so I need to start thinking about ways to store them.

Another storage concern I’ve been thinking about is where to keep our meat cuts. If you’re into sustainable meat eating, perhaps you too have considered purchasing a whole cow/pig/lamb/other directly from a local and reliable farmer to prevent waste and be reassured the animal was treated and slaughtered humanely. The downside: finding enough room in the freezer.

I was starting to wonder how I was going to do all these wonderful food-related things without renting out a box freezer, when I was contacted by Foodsaver who wanted to know if I would be willing to do a product review. Why, certainly! Their vacuum sealer may help with my storage dilemma.

Foodsaver is a product from Jarden Consumer Solutions, and is the leading vacuum sealing system on the market. I wanted to see if it truly lived up to its reputation, and give you the scoop if its worth the investment.

Foodsaver Premium 2-in-1

Pros:

The machine is sleek and relatively compact- the minimal design and chrome finish makes it a beautiful appliance to keep on your kitchen counter-top.

The instructions are simple and easy to use. I struggled at first with actually making a seal (as the machine only removed the air at first), but after inquiring and re-reading the instructions, I realized I hadn’t pressed the “seal” button. Oops! But aside from that hiccup, it was a breeze in terms of usability.

This machine has two ways of removing the air from your packaged food- there is a wide base sealer, which works really well for the seal roll where you make your own bags. There is also a hand-held device that works very well with the zipper seal bags. The bags are reusable and can be re-sealed many times.

The vacuum seal truly does extend the life of your foods, both in the freezer and in the fridge. The reason it works: by removing the air, they also remove the ability for any bacteria to survive. No bacteria= no rot. Easy concept, right? It’ll take something that would last for a couple days (like, fresh spinach), and give you an extra week or two to use it up. For me, this was a huge benefit and saved the rush of using up produce that is about to go bad.

Cons:

The size of meat or vegetables you want to seal are limited due to the size of the machine. Basically, anything bigger than 12 inches you will have to either cut in half or find another way to preserve it. The bags are generous in size, but this is something to consider, especially if you have ordered a rather large cut of meat (such as a cow leg or something).

I did find it hard to get a proper seal with the hand-held vacuum device. I found the nozzle end to be too hard and narrow. If the opening was perhaps a softer plastic, to allow a bit of flexibility, that would greatly improve the overall ease with which the machine would be used.

Keep little fingers away! The machine does use heat to create the seal, which means it can get quite hot in the sealing area. You wouldn’t want curious fingers to get a surprise!

The machine is somewhat noisy when it is operating. Luckily, it doesn’t last more than a couple seconds, depending on the size of item you’re working with.

Verdict:

The Food Saver is definitely going to help me preserve my summer loot, allowing me to eat locally well into the fall and winter. Despite the small inconveniences I mentioned above, for me the benefits far out-weigh the costs.

The Foodsaver costs about $240.00, and comes with an initial pack of seal bags and a seal roll. This machine could save you a lot of money- especially if you find yourself throwing out meat or vegetables due to freezer burn or another storage issue. This machine is particularly helpful for those with large families, or those who prefer to cook many individual meals for those nights when cooking just isn’t an option. The bags are re-usable which is nice, and you can also order additional ones if you are running out.

Did you guys find this review helpful? Do you like product reviews, or do you come by for the recipes? Please let me know by mentioning in the comments or emailing me. I’d love to hear from you! All reach-outs will receive a great big internet hug πŸ™‚

Happy preserving!

Disclaimer: My compensation to conduct this review was the Foodsaver machine. All opinions and experiences expressed in this blog post are entirely my own.