When you prepare sous vide or “under vacuum” meals, you need food containers that serve as a water bath for the food. To do so properly, the container needs to be large enough and have certain safety features.
These include the ability to tolerate high temperatures well. Not every material does that and there can be a risk when cooking at high temperatures.
If the container comes with a lid, all the better. This will ensure that it retains heat better and maintains the cooking temperature of the water.
Types of Sous Vide Containers
There are different types of containers you can use for sous vide cooking. For instance, induction-ready or metal pots are one option for preparing sous vide meals. If you’re just getting started with sous vide then you might want to use what is available to you.
Or, if you are more of an invested sous vide cook, then consider these options to find one that best fits your cooking style:
Polycarbonate water containers are an obvious favorite as this material resists heat rather well. It’s also something that is lightweight and easy to handle.
Polycarbonate containers ae not expensive to purchase and are easy available from most retail stores or online. The one consideration here is that not every container comes with a lid so look for options that do.
But since polycarbonate is a kind of plastic, you may be concerned about cooking in plastic, more so about BPA. However, BPA only becomes hazardous if it gets into direct contact with food.
When you cook sous vide style, you first wrap your food in a vacuum sealed or Ziploc bag. As long as you work with BPA free plastic bags, you are good to go.
Top contenders in this category include brand names like LIPAVI, Cambro and Rubbermaid. Although none offer BPA free containers, they do meet other standards for effective sous vide cooking.
What Not To Use
If you don’t have a polycarbonate container you might want to use a pot instead. And while you can do so, saucepans and steel pots can present a number of problems. For instance:
- Steel requires a lot of heat to be hot. This can become a waste of energy, electricity and time.
- Steel doesn’t let you see through. You aren’t able to monitor your cooking as you would with a clear container.
- Pots are round while food bags are square. This means the pot is only able to accommodate a few bags at a time.
Purchasing Sous Vide Containers
When you buy sous vide containers, you should be specific about what you are looking for. Some qualities to look for include the following:
Quality: The material needs to be durable so the container can last for a long time. The material should also tolerate high temperatures well without burning the food or material.
Another feature to look in material is for it to be dishwasher safe.
Size and shape: Sizes can vary so choose one based on your cooking needs. Typically sizes range from 8 and 12 quarts to 18 quarts. Most home cooks should go for the 12 qt one as it caters to most family meals.
Also, consider the height/depth of the container. It should at least be 8 inches high/deep to accommodate the food and any accessories.
In terms of shape, look for a square shaped container as it allows you to immerse more food bags. This is because the bags themselves are square.
Lids: Go for a container that comes with a lid for added convenience. Lids make cooking easier and more consistent by keeping in the heat, minimizing evaporation and keeping food juicy and tender.
They are also very handy if you want to use the container for storage purposes.
Design: Important design features include transparency so you can see the food being cooked. The container should also have graduated measurements to monitor water levels. And a container with handles outperforms others because it’s easier to handle and move around.
Some of the best products in this category include the following:
The LIPAVI Sous Vide Container is a light weight container which weighs only 2.16 pounds for easy handling. It also makes it easier to manage things especially when coupled with water and other sous vide ingredients.
The great thing about this sous vide container is the fact that it is made from polycarbonate lending it qualities that make it sturdy and strong. It’s able to contain water and protein foods without losing the mould. This factor also reduces the risk of spilling water when you move the container.
The second factor which highlights the beneficial aspects of LIPAVI Sous Vide Container is that it tolerates high-temperature really well. It has the capacity to ensure -40 F to 210 F making it invulnerable to high temperatures of steaming and refrigerating. You can safely steam your meals and store your food without worrying about toxins destroying your food.
To make things even better, this container is a dishwasher-safe product and won’t suffer cracks or change in shape when placed in the dishwasher. This is helpful in ensuring the safety of the product along with the hygiene of food.
The LIPAVI Sous Vide Container also features an adequate height for sous vide cooking purposes. It is 8 inches tall and gives you enough space to cook fairly substantial portions of chicken, fish, and meat. The height is also suitable for using an immersion circulator or other accessories when you might need more space in the container.
The brand carries an assortment of sizes, catering to different cooking needs.
For some people, knowing how each step impacts their dish is important especially when precision cooking. That’s why the container has been kept clear allowing you to view the contents inside during the cooking process.
Customer reviews indicate a high degree of satisfaction with this sous vide container. People like that it helped them fit the immersion circulator without running out of space or risking water spillage. Plus, the container doesn’t leak and shows sturdy construction. Overall, this container is a useful sous vide accessory in the kitchen. You can use it well for cooking and when coupled with a lid, also for storing food items in the fridge.
You can purchase this handy container starting at a price range of around $30.
- Made from sturdy polycarbonate
- Clear container for culinary precision
- Dishwasher safe product
- Plenty of space to fit accessories without spilling water
- Some people find the container to be thinner than expected
- Lids sold separately
- More expensive than other similar products
The V EVERIE Sous Vide container lid has been specifically structured to fit ANOVA sous vide cookers. The lid will also fit 12, 18 and 22 qt Rubbermaid containers.
The design of this sous vide container lid has been engineered to minimize evaporation during the cooking process. This means that you can let your meal cook overnight without worrying about the water bath drying out. The same feature also ensures that constant temperature is maintained during the entire cooking duration.
Another beneficial feature for sous vide cooking is the patent pending design. The purpose of this design is to provide mount holes which is necessary for improved water flow that optimizes heat transfer.
In addition, to make food more accessible the lid provides a folding feature. You don’t have to remove the lid, just fold it whenever you want to put food in or take it out. This feature not only enhances the functionality of the container but also facilitates handling.
The V EVERIE sous vide container lid has a design which does not require bag clamps.
Many customers new to the process of sous vide cooking were satisfied with how easy the V EVERIE sous vide container lid made it to cook food. They are happy with this purchase as it does what it promises.
This product sells at a very reasonable price of $9 and above.
- Features minimal water evaporation
- Works well with multiple sized containers
- Hinge feature lends easy handling
- Inexpensive price tag
- Material may not be very sturdy
- Hinges may be weak
This is another product by V EVERIE on this list. This sous vide container has a lid that offers a corner mount hole where you can mount your Anova cooker. The design offers minimum evaporation to ensure that you can cook for long hours or overnight without worrying about refilling the container.
Another feature which facilitates sous vide cooking further is the collapsible lid. The hinge has been specially placed around the machine so that you can open it easily to check the progress. You can also add in more ingredients whenever your recipe requires you to do so. The hinge feature is a durable addition which has been tested to last for up to 100,000 uses.
To make sure that your cooking experience is improved, the container features a no-clamp design. You can easily fit sealed bags within instead of using clamps to keep them from floating. It will stabilize your food bag to give even and consistent cooking results.
The container and lid are both made from strong plastic with high quality heat insulation. This ensures that they are neither toxic for food nor vulnerable to weight. The lid of the container is also specifically designed to work with Anova cookers.
Most customers who have used this container were satisfied with the strong construction of the container and lid. They reported this product successfully improving their sous vide cooking experience by impressive results.
Together the different features of this container combine to make up for a sturdy, non-toxic and high-quality sous vide container. Anyone who owns 12 quart Anova cooker will find this to be the perfect size for cooking sous vide meals.
Overall, the E EVERIE sous vide container for 12-quart Anova cooker fits the machine well and provides a comfortable sous vide cooking option.
You can get this bundle of container plus lid at a price range of about $37 and above.
- Bundle includes lid and container
- Specifically designed for Anova 12 quart cooker
- Collapsible lid features hinges closer to the machine
- No need for clamps to secure food bags
- More expensive than other similar products
The Rubbermaid Commercial Sous Vide container has been designed to fit 8 and 12 quart Anova cookers among others. This is a special container as it has been designed to increase storage space up to 25%.
The Rubbermaid sous vide container is made from break-resistant technology making it sturdy and durable for use. It has been engineered from polycarbonate so it is clear as well as strong. It also comes with graduated measurements so that you get precision in your cooking.
The blue measurements are in liters whereas red are for quarts. This feature will facilitate your sous vide cooking so you can fill up the container as per your recipe needs.
Another thing that is exclusive to the design is a smooth surface to offer easy cleanup. It is a dishwasher safe container that you can wash along with the rest of your utensils.
The Rubbermaid sous vide container has high capacity for temperature endurance and will easily endure temperatures of -40F degrees to 212F degrees. This means that whether you use it in the refrigerator or for steaming, it won’t be vulnerable to the temperature.
There are handles and drain holes in the design of the container which greatly adds to the hygiene aspect of the container. This also lets you hang it dry before the second use.
This Rubbermaid container is made from FDA compliant materials making it non-toxic and safe for cooking even with high temperatures. It is also a lightweight container which weighs only 1.8 pounds. The dimensions are suitable for cooking average sized meals.
Most customers who bought this container were pleasantly surprised with the large size of the container. The size also made storage much easier. They have reported the container taking up less space on shelves but providing plenty of space to get consistent cooking results. Last but not the least, the handles featured with the container makes it much easier to move around without getting hurt or spilling any water.
This product is available at a very reasonable price starting at around $10 or slightly above.
- Color coded measurements marked on the container
- Made from FDA compliant material
- Dishwasher safe
- Endures high temperatures well
- Cost effective product
- Does not feature a lid
- Some complaints of leaking
The SO-VIDA sous vide container sleeve can be a useful accessory in your kitchen. It is made from premium neoprene of high-grade quality. The purpose of this neoprene sleeve is to save electricity as the heating will be quicker with sleeve.
This container sleeve also offers work surface protection so that you can move the container without hurting yourself. It also protects other utensils around the container from getting affected due to high temperature. The base insulation will safeguard the working surface as well.
In addition to that, there has been an independently conducted benchmark test to check all claims. According to the test, this neoprene sleeve is capable of saving 26.4% electricity during 24 hours of sous vide cooking. Furthermore, it only takes 3 minutes of warm-up tie. This means you can save time as well as electricity using this neoprene sleeve.
Another interesting feature of the sleeve is that it has a tight fitting which is essential for insulation. The tight fitting makes sure that heating time is reduced and that electricity saved as promised. Your meals will prepare faster as the container will remain heated without evaporation risk.
So if you are conscious about the cooking surface getting burnt from the heating, this sous vide accessory can be useful in protecting it. It will also provide protection to other accessories around the container from burning, changing color or texture.
In short, this is a layer that will come in handy for added protection. As an added perk, its capacity to preserve heat and provide insulation will reduce the cooking time while decreasing energy usage as well.
This product has been a favorite among customers due to its sleek design and useful nature. Some customers find it to be quite pricy but since it offers high-quality and provides ultimate saving, it is still worth the investment if you are a sous vide cooking fan.
This neoprene sleeve costs around $26 and above.
- Neoprene is high-grade premium quality
- Provides insulation and heat protection
- Saves cooking time and electricity up to 26.4%
- Also protects cooking surface
- Expensive price tag
To sum up, it’s not hard to see that sous vide cooking demands particular accessories to work well. You need to be quite specific when you buy equipment for steaming your food properly.
If you are careful about the size and type of the containers, you can purchase containers which will enhance your cooking experience. Also, using the right accessories in your kitchen can be one of the most satisfying experiences. By investing in the right items, you will be able to get the desired results from your sous vide meals.