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Sous Vide Equipment

There are two types of equipment you need for sous vide cooking: heat regulators and vacuum sealers. We'll take a look at some of the various options of each kind.

Updated Content

This information has recently been updated, you can view the new information here:
Sous Vide Machines: What is Best For You?, Inexpensive Immersion Circulators, Sealing Sous Vide Food, or my general Guide to Sous Vide Cooking.
Many people interested in learning sous vide cooking are turned off by how expensive the sous vide equipment can be. While it is true that much of the higher end equipment can get costly, it is still less expensive than many normal kitchen appliances (a Viking stove can be over $5,000).

We look at the entire range of options you have when purchasing sous vide equipment, from using a pot on the stove with zip lock bags, to $150 "sous vide controllers", to $1,000 thermal immersion circulators and chambered vacuum sealers.

Just remember, you do not have to bankrupt yourself on expensive sous vide equipment. Start small and test the waters. If you like sous vide cooking then it might be worth spending a little more for some dedicated sous vide equipment.

This information, as well as over 100 recipes is available in our book Beginning Sous Vide which you can get at Amazon.com or as a pdf download.



Did you know we also have an iPhone and Android app? It has over 400 time and temperature combinations for 175 cuts of meat, fish and vegetables. You can find it at the iTunes or Android stores, or you can search for "Sous Vide" and look for our easy to find icon!

Types of Sous Vide Equipment

Sous Vide Machine Benchmark Tests

Test
We often get asked to compare various sous vide machines and we don't always have all the answers. We decided to try and remedy that by running a bunch of benchmark tests across different sous vide machines. We will be sharing our results with you over the next few weeks.

What Sous Vide Setups Do People Use?

Me sous vide setup
We often get asked about what some good home setups are. To showcase the wide variety of options that are out there we've decided to put together this page of set ups that different people use. We've provided as much information as we can about them and hopefully they will give you a good idea on what you can do at home, from expensive circulators to inexpensive "do it yourself" projects and everything in between.

How to Pick Your Sous Vide Machine

Flow chart
One of the most commonly asked questions we get is Which sous vide machine should I buy? We normally take them through a series of questions to see what would work best for them. We thought this would make a great flowchart and could help people make up their mind about which sous vide equipment to buy more easily.

It's followed by an easy to read chart comparing the basic features of each one and then a short description of each type of machine. You can also click on either image to bring it up to full size.

Regulating Water Temperature

Water sous vide
Proper temperature control of the water bath is crucial to effective sous vide cooking. Temperature fluctuations of a few degrees can drastically change the texture of many types of sous vide dishes.

Common Sous Vide Setups

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With all the options for sous vide equipment available it can be hard to determine how to get stared. Some setups run thousands of dollars while others a few hundred. Here's a few of our recommended sous vide setups.

Sous Vide Thickness Ruler

Printable sous vide ruler
One of the biggest complaints we get is that we don't properly address cooking sous vide by thickness. We feel that in general cooking by tenderness is the easiest method to learn and is safer to implement since it helps to eliminate the need for exact temperatures. However, we do our best to listen to our readers so we've made our own version of a printable sous vide thickness ruler. To get the free ruler you just have to sign up for our Sous Vide Mailing, which is sent out every 2 to 4 weeks.

Sealing Your Food for Sous Vide

Sous vide rosemary chicken
To sous vide cook you will need to seal your food before putting them into the water bath. There are several ways to do this, each with their own trade offs.

Sous Vide Holiday Gift Guide

Sous vide pork loin side
As the gift giving season approaches it can be hard to figure out what to get the cooks in your lives. Here are a few of our recommendations, both in and out of sous vide. We hope you enjoy our Cooking Sous Vide Gift Guide
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