Food & Drink

What vacuum sealer should I get?

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Moderator
May 28, 2012
10933 posts
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Saskatoon
iam_immigrant wrote: We plan on doing a variety of meals and don't want to eat the same thing 3x per day for days and days. With a young one in the family sometimes we don't always get to do stuff on our schedule so the cooked stuff may sit for a couple weeks.
I wouldn't bother vac sealing soup or stew...it's just as easy to use a ziploc bag and extract all the air. My one attempt to seal applesauce was an absolute failure, had to clean exploded sauce from the entire chamber. If you choose to go ahead anyway, you would need to chill it right down and use a much larger bag for the contents. Or freeze in blocks before hand and then seal in bags.

Did you buy the sealer yet? It's seriously one of my favourite purchases and I've wasted a lot less food because it no longer gets freezer burnt. A VacMaster is quite the investment but you spend less on bags in the long run (compared to FoodSaver).
Deal Guru
Sep 2, 2008
11286 posts
1339 upvotes
iam_immigrant wrote: We plan on doing a variety of meals and don't want to eat the same thing 3x per day for days and days. With a young one in the family sometimes we don't always get to do stuff on our schedule so the cooked stuff may sit for a couple weeks.
Oh I understand. Soups and stews will probably still be good 3-4 weeks later. Vac sealing soup is a bit tricky and messy as well. I use to vac seal 40 liters of soup at a time and freeze them (at a restaurant) If using in a couple weeks vac sealing would just be a waste of time and a lot of extra work. If it were me I'd portion them into smaller containers and tuck them away in the back of the fridge, much easier.

Soups, curries, stews...things like that last a long time in the fridge! Of course depends on whats in the exact one, cream based soups won't last as long...but vac sealing them won't help with that regard.
Deal Addict
Aug 11, 2006
1304 posts
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GTA
Mars2012 wrote: I wouldn't bother vac sealing soup or stew...it's just as easy to use a ziploc bag and extract all the air. My one attempt to seal applesauce was an absolute failure, had to clean exploded sauce from the entire chamber. If you choose to go ahead anyway, you would need to chill it right down and use a much larger bag for the contents. Or freeze in blocks before hand and then seal in bags.

Did you buy the sealer yet? It's seriously one of my favourite purchases and I've wasted a lot less food because it no longer gets freezer burnt. A VacMaster is quite the investment but you spend less on bags in the long run (compared to FoodSaver).

Got it already and tried a couple items already. Tried sealing half a tub of dip and learned a lesson already. Didn't push the dip all the way to the bottom and the bag 'ballooned' and a bit popped out of the top but thankfully it didn't explode. Pushed in all the way down then tried again and worked like charm!
I got this so I wouldn't have to use ziplock or any other type of bag.
slowtyper wrote: Oh I understand. Soups and stews will probably still be good 3-4 weeks later. Vac sealing soup is a bit tricky and messy as well. I use to vac seal 40 liters of soup at a time and freeze them (at a restaurant) If using in a couple weeks vac sealing would just be a waste of time and a lot of extra work. If it were me I'd portion them into smaller containers and tuck them away in the back of the fridge, much easier.

Soups, curries, stews...things like that last a long time in the fridge! Of course depends on whats in the exact one, cream based soups won't last as long...but vac sealing them won't help with that regard.

With a little one now our days are getting a bit hectic and some times our plans go sideways so the VacMaster is gonna help us save on food waste and make it easier to prepare meals.
Our goal is to make big batches of meals, be they soups, stews, pasta or anything, and fridge and/or freeze them. Will also buy meats and such in bulk when on sale and prep/marinate them in the fridge, again, to make it easier to prepare meals so we have more family time.

So my question earlier about the longevity of cooked meals in the fridge was just to gauge approximately the shelf life in the fridge and freezer.

I'm glad they also included 4 different sized bags to try so we kinda got a feel of what works for us and our meal portion/size.

Now on the the hunt for bags! Seems like Webstaurant is the cheapest considering exchange rate and shipping.
Moderator
May 28, 2012
10933 posts
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Saskatoon
^Can you keep us updated if you order these bags from Webstaurant? I'm interested in buying 1000 of the 10x13 and my Canadian source sells it for $119.99. Webstaurant sells it for $64USD, converted is $82 CDN, don't know how much duty would be involved.

About making things last in fridge and freezer...be really careful about wiping the area you seal. If there is any moisture at all, you won't get a proper seal. Sealing cheese and deli meat is one of the best uses. Don't bother sealing stuff that has sharp edges, i.e. jerky or dried fruit like pineapple.
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Aug 11, 2006
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Mars2012 wrote: ^Can you keep us updated if you order these bags from Webstaurant? I'm interested in buying 1000 of the 10x13 and my Canadian source sells it for $119.99. Webstaurant sells it for $64USD, converted is $82 CDN, don't know how much duty would be involved.

About making things last in fridge and freezer...be really careful about wiping the area you seal. If there is any moisture at all, you won't get a proper seal. Sealing cheese and deli meat is one of the best uses. Don't bother sealing stuff that has sharp edges, i.e. jerky or dried fruit like pineapple.

When doing the checkout shipping calculator it comes to $99usd, I'm in Ontario, which converts to $127 cad. After calculating buying 3 of the sizes I want including shipping and conversion it's about ~$30 cheaper but I haven't accounted for duties, if any.
Hence I'm looking for a Canadian/local supplier...but it looks like all Canadian retailers sell for super expensive Smiling Face With Horns
Member
Sep 8, 2002
335 posts
25 upvotes
Vancouver
@iam_immigrant , only just saw this and I hope it's not too late for you. I ordered from flexpakshop.ca, they ship for free over $99. Prices similar to Vacmaster Brand if you buy from the US but significantly cheaper than Vacmaster bags in Canada. I ordered 3 mil and 4 mil and regretted getting the 4 mil now because it is harder to fold down the top all the little scratches and cracks from the fold seem deeper than the 3 mil which is softer.

Also for sealing liquid, I watch as it is vacuuming and at the first sign of boiling, I pushed the stop button and seems to work. I think last time I set it to about either 27 or 29 sec and that is just about at that point. I have the VP215 but imagine the 112s would work similarly?
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Aug 11, 2006
1304 posts
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yatyat wrote: @iam_immigrant , only just saw this and I hope it's not too late for you. I ordered from flexpakshop.ca, they ship for free over $99. Prices similar to Vacmaster Brand if you buy from the US but significantly cheaper than Vacmaster bags in Canada. I ordered 3 mil and 4 mil and regretted getting the 4 mil now because it is harder to fold down the top all the little scratches and cracks from the fold seem deeper than the 3 mil which is softer.

Also for sealing liquid, I watch as it is vacuuming and at the first sign of boiling, I pushed the stop button and seems to work. I think last time I set it to about either 27 or 29 sec and that is just about at that point. I have the VP215 but imagine the 112s would work similarly?
BIG, HUGH, GINORMOUS Thanks!!!! Was gonna order on Friday but glad I had to work late this weekend.

Just a quick question before I order a bunch; do these have a notched part on the bag for easy opening similar to the ones from VacMaster? Also I am assuming these are also boil and microwave safe?

Thanks again for the link!!
Member
Sep 8, 2002
335 posts
25 upvotes
Vancouver
They don't have the notch - I had to go and look at one since I never used that notch on the Vacmaster bags, so that is not a big deal for me. I am not sure about the boiling and microwaving, I used mine only for sous vide and freezer storage and sous vide never gets to boiling point. I would be hesitant to boil the bags for a very long time, Vacmaster do have the re-therm kind that is more robust for boiling i think. you can email the company and ask, they do respond. They will also send you samples but mine took a while to come.
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2006
27311 posts
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Image

It's an old thread, but still relevant since a few people have asked about it in a recent Hot Deals thread.
I figured I'd bump with an updated "grocery list". Prices have gone up for bags and the sealer, but shipping has come down significantly.

Here's my reasoning for bags:

6x12 - This is what I use most frequently. Anything small goes in this. Since it's only $40 and you're spending $1000 already, buy 2000 to save on shipping a 2nd time.
10x13 - I currently have 8x12 but figured the extra 2" in width is nicer. I still might buy 8x12 since it fits 1L almost perfectly. If you're sealing a liquid though, a bigger bag would help since it tends to literally boil out of the bag. I use this for yogurt by dividing up 4L buckets.
12x16 - The technical limit for the VP112 is 12x14 but there's nothing stopping you from putting in a 12x16 by "rolling" over. I frequently seal 2 full racks of ribs and the extra 2 inches would be quite helpful. Plus 1000 is quite a lot for this size since it's my least used.

If anyone has any questions, please feel free to ask.

EDIT: I figured I'd do cost calculations too.
Since I have no easy way of breaking up shipping, I'm just going to add 10% to the price since that's roughly what it is.
I'm also using midmarket rates of 1.32252 so this is going to be roughly accurate as of pretty much today only. All below prices are in CAD and after shipping.

6x12 = $0.057
10x13 = $0.112
12x16 = $0.160
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2006
27311 posts
12967 upvotes
LongLiveRFD wrote: Do you think food grade poly would work?
Hmm.
I'm not sure. 1mil is going to be pretty thin too.
If those are the bags I'm thinking of, they may not hold up to damage.
Even 3mil gets poked through on occasion.
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2006
27311 posts
12967 upvotes
Random bump.

For some reason the VP112S is now $700USD. No idea why.

Also for those wanting bags locally, for some reason Staples (yes, that Staples) has some Vacmaster bags on for a surprisingly reasonable price.
Still a hair more than Webstaurant but not really that much more once you factor in shipping, buying domestically, and the coupon codes that Staples always has.
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May 19, 2003
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It's going up because it's discontinued and there's no more supply. Vacmaster isn't making them any more. Very likely discontinued because the VP112 failed a lot.
Lots of reports of the lid cracking. There's a reason Vacmaster doesn't have any "consumer" grade models any more.

death_hawk wrote: Random bump.

For some reason the VP112S is now $700USD. No idea why.

Also for those wanting bags locally, for some reason Staples (yes, that Staples) has some Vacmaster bags on for a surprisingly reasonable price.
Still a hair more than Webstaurant but not really that much more once you factor in shipping, buying domestically, and the coupon codes that Staples always has.
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2006
27311 posts
12967 upvotes
shutterbug wrote: Lots of reports of the lid cracking.
I've heard this too which is apparently why there's a giant sign on the thing saying use 2 hands.
I do agree that the handle design is stupid because you do need 2 hands.
There's a reason Vacmaster doesn't have any "consumer" grade models any more.
That would explain a whole lot.
Time to get a few replacement supplies just in case.
Moderator
May 28, 2012
10933 posts
3107 upvotes
Saskatoon
death_hawk wrote: I've heard this too which is apparently why there's a giant sign on the thing saying use 2 hands.
I do agree that the handle design is stupid because you do need 2 hands.

That would explain a whole lot.
Time to get a few replacement supplies just in case.
I picked the VP120 for the convenience of not needing two hands to close it. I see it's no longer available as well. If I had to replace it, I would probably go next step up and get the VP215 from Costco online. Lucky members who can just drive over to the States to pick up these sorts of products.

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