The Top Sous-Vide Precision Cookers

The Top Sous-Vide Precision Cookers

By Jordan Maxwell

January 25, 2021

Start cooking like the pros with a sous-vide precision cooker. Known as a cooking technique that employs precise temperature control to deliver restaurant-quality results, you can cook like a Michelin-star chef this holiday season. If you’re a foodie and a “professional” home cook, chances are you’ve used an instant pot and other classic techniques to make all of your favourite recipes so why not take it to the next level with a sous-vide machine?

The cooking method has increased in popularity over the last few years and if word of mouth has finally reached your doorstep, we’ll walk you through the ins and outs in this guide. Delivering consistency, taste, waste reduction and flexibility, you can learn more about enhancing your home cooking skills; has you covered.

1. Editor's Pick: Anova Culinary AN400-US00 Nano Sous Vide Precision Cooker

  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Temperature range: 0˚- 92˚C (32˚-197˚F)
  • Cooks up to 3,000 hours

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Launched in June 2018, the Anova Precision Sous-Vide Cooker is one of the premier models on the market. The nano is a smaller, quieter model that is perfect if you're new to sous vide or looking for an additional cooker to add to your arsenal. With this model, all you have to do is attach the cooker to your pot, add water and drop in desired food in a sealed bag or glass jar. It can be remotely controlled with your phone, allowing you to escape from the kitchen while you cook.

All you have to do is download the Anova app to monitor, adjust or control the device from your iPhone and Android smart device. It also provides you cooking notifications while you're out of the kitchen so you'll know when your food is ready. The precision cooker's Bluetooth connection allows you to control the device up to 30 feet away.

2. VPCOK Sous Vide Cooker with Sous Vide Cookbook

  • Temperature range: 0-99.5℃ (0-211.1℉)
  • Dimensions: 42.2 x 15.4 x 10.8 cm
  • Comes with cookbook and warranty

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This VPCOK sous-vide machine has two settings: one for temperature and one for time. It’s fairly easy to use and based on your needs, you can customize and preset your cooking options. It cooks with vacuum microtherm bags and brings your meat to a slow boil that will keep more nutrients and flavour in your food. With its patented water circulation system, it allows for 360 degrees water circulation that transfers heat efficiently and evenly. All you have to do is put the ingredients into a vacuum bag, exhaust the air and seal it. You can fix the sous-vide to a container and then set the cooking temperature and time. Once it's done, you can also sear it in a skillet or a barbecue machine to roast.

3. Instant Pot Accu Slim Sous Vide Immersion Circulator

  • Cooking time range: 10 minutes to 72 hours
  • Temperature ranges from 104˚F-195˚F/40˚C-90˚C
  • 12V DC motor

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Creating quality dishes that will test your home-cooking abilities, the Instant Pot sous-vide machine will take your meals to the next level. It’s one of the quieter machines on the market and clamps securely on a 6-or 8-quart inner of your Instant Pot (if you own one) but don't worry! It can be used with or without an Instant Pot as well. Great for meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, vegetables, and fruits, this model is a cheaper option that doesn’t sacrifice quality and versatility.

4. Breville Joule Sous Vide

  • Features 1100 watts of power
  • Dimensions: 27.9 x 4.7 x 4.7 cm
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity

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The Breville Joule sous-vide machine is one of the smallest, sleekest sous-vide tools as it's just 11 inches tall and 1.1 lbs. The Wi-fi and Bluetooth-enabled machine may be pricier than the other options but it’s certainly worth it. It’s one of the more powerful tools that heats water faster than any other immersion circulator or precision cooker. It holds the temperature with fairly accurately and can be controlled through an app. What’s great about this model as well is that it works with Amazon Alexa so you can control your eggs, desserts and steak dishes from afar. It also comes with a thorough cookbook with 100 easy-to-use cooking guides, custom developed for the Joule community by in-house chefs.

Sous-Vide FAQs

>Elevate your home-cooking skills with the help of a sous-vide precision cooker. It can help take your favourite meats and other meals to the next level. Yes, you might lose the experience of cooking but you’ll also gain the flavour and tenderness that you’ve been looking for. Check out some of the most frequently asked questions below.

What Is Sous-Vide?

Sous vide, which means “under vacuum” in French, refers to the method of vacuum-sealing food in a bag, then cooking it to a very precise temperature, basically in a water bath. This technique high-level result that are very difficult to attain through conventional cooking methods. All you have to do is:

  • Attach your sous-vide precision cooker to a pot of water and set the time and temperature according to the recipe or to your desired level.
  • Put your food in a sealable bag or vacuum-sealed bag and clip it to the side of your pot.
  • Finish it by searing, grilling or broiling the food to add a crispy, exterior layer.

Why Cook Sous-Vide?

Sous-vide allows you to retain the vitamins and minerals from within the food, but it naturally intensifies the food so that it’s more flavourful. It’s also healthier, more tender, juicy and tastier. When using traditional methods of cooking, you don’t have control over heat and temperature, which makes it hard to consistently cook great food. Unless you’re an expert at cooking your dish, the quality will fluctuate from time to time as food can get overcooked on the outside. The food can lose its flavour as a result, especially with a steak and you can end up with a dry and chewy texture.

The Benefits of Sous-Vide

Providing control over the temperature of your food, you can deliver some of the most tender meats you’ve ever enjoyed cooking through the sous-vide method. You can perfectly cook a steak or chicken from edge to edge and know that the consistency will be there. Through pan cooking, you’ll lose moisture from loss of volume and flipping the meat. Even when cooking fish such as salmon, the fish is more likely to overcook in the pan; same goes with eggs.

Types of Sous-Vide Machines

There have been a number of devices that have existed for decades. Whether it’s a water oven, precision cooker or a slow cooker, there are a lot of great options you can use to explore sous-vide cooking. Sous vide water ovens heat water, but unlike immersion circulators, they do not circulate the water. This can lead to inconsistencies in the food’s resulting texture.

Types of Sous-Vide Packaging

The type of packaging really does depend on the type of machine that you’ve purchased or are planning to purchase. Sealing foods can prevent evaporation and allows you to transfer energy from the water to the food. You can use:

  • Resealable bags or jars
  • Reusable silicone bags
  • Vacuum sealing bags
  • Canning jars (beans, grains, desserts, cakes and custards)

What Are Some of the Best Foods to Start With?

If you’re just starting out with this cooking method, there are a number of foods that you can start with. We recommend that you perfect the art of sous-vide, starting with:
  • Steaks
  • Chicken breasts
  • Eggs
  • Carrots
  • Pork chops
  • Pulled pork shoulder
  • Shrimp
  • Lobster
  • Legs of lamb
  • Ribs

Tips and Tricks with Sous-Vide Cooking

One of the best things about this sous-vide method is that there is very little prep involved. Most meats, fish and vegetables need basic seasoning such as salt and pepper but through sous-vide, you can also get creative and add more flavours and marinades. The most important thing is the packaging and how well you seal the bags. Also important is to do your best to master the time and the temperature. Selecting the right temperature is all about knowing your desired level of finish on meats and other foods.

Sous-vide foods must cook long enough to reach their target temperature. Most animal proteins have a four-hour cooking limit but don’t worry. Most machines come with specific guidelines for time and temperature for items such as like steak, chicken breasts, and hamburgers. Once completed, it’s recommended that you get a good sear in a hot cast iron skillet for meats like a steak. You can also broil or deep-fry certain meats and other foods too depending on your preferences. Lastly, not every sous-vide precision maker comes with a vacuum sealer or reusable bags so make sure that you’re prepared to buy them separately if need be.

Start Shopping Today!

Start making the perfect poached eggs for those eggs benny or take your chicken dishes up a notch. Whatever you’re making, sous-vide precision cooking is worth it if you don’t have a lot of time to prep your meals or stand by the oven cooking.

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