The shocking statistics published by the USDA are that about 30-40% of the food supply is lost due to waste each year. An easy way to cut down the food waste at home and thus save money and help the environment is to use a vacuum sealer to preserve the leftover foods or the garden produce for longer.
A vacuum sealer is also a perfect kitchen appliance for cooking sous vide for making Michelin-star quality meals at home.
And with the help of the food sealer, you will make sure that your food is stored properly without being ruined by freezer burn or by bacteria or by contact with oxygen. By vacuum sealing the food for storage, you can also save freezer space and better organize your storage space.
These are just a few of the reasons why investing in a vacuum sealer is highly recommended for any household or kitchen.
A tool like this is especially useful if you produce vegetables, go hunting or fishing, buy food in bulk, and have a lot of extra food which needs preserving.
You can use the sealer to preserve the seasonal fruits and veggies so they are fresh and tasty even months later.
Last but not least, a vacuum sealer can be used for the preservation of photographs and documents.
Here are the top-rated vacuum sealers of every type, size, and budget for 2021.
The 6 Best Vacuum Sealers Reviewed
Our top pick for the best overall vacuum sealer in 2021 is one of the easiest to use and most convenient of all products on this list.
The FoodSaver V4440 has an automatic detection system for the bags. This means that all you will need to do is place the bag in the vacuum chamber, and the appliance will do the rest of the job of sealing the food of your choice.
The sealer has integrated bag roll storage and a cutter allowing you to customize the bags to the size you need every time.
The vacuum sealer does an excellent job of removing as much air from the bag as possible. This means that the sealed food will take up minimal space and can last for up to 3 years in the freezer, retaining all its qualities.
The sealer has an auto moisture detection sensor. When liquid is detected, the appliance switches to the suitable mode.
Any excess liquid will be captured in the removable drip tray to eliminate the mess on your countertop.
The machine is compatible with 8 and 11-inch FoodSaver vacuum seal rolls and with all other ready-made sealable bags, zipper bags, containers, and more. You can use the appliance for quickly marinating meat and other foods and for sous vide food prep.
The additional accessories include a jar sealer and bottle stopper sealer.
The size of this unit by FoodSaver is 11 x 20 x 12 inches and weighs 10 lbs.
The device is certified in compliance with the safety standards in the country and backed by a 5-year warranty.
- It is very convenient, easy to use thanks to the automatic bag and liquid detection
- The quality of the appliance is very good, and it is backed by a 5-year limited warranty
- The sealer is used by pressing a single button
- It is compatible with all of the premade bag sizes and types
- There is built-in bag roll storage and a cutter
- You can also use it to seal jars, cans, containers, and bottles via the retractable handheld sealer
- The sealer is quite bulky as compared to other more portable ones
- It is not quick enough for very large batches of food
This affordable vacuum sealer is compact and almost completely automatic. The unit has two sealing options – one for dry and the other for moist foods, making it suitable for storing just about any type of food and cooking sous vide.
The moist sealing mode will allow you to package and store different marinated fish, oily fish, moist leftovers, and others.
This vacuum sealer will take up little countertop or storage space and functions very quietly.
Its suction rate is 3 gallons per minute, with small items being sealed for less than four seconds. The machine works with the press of one button on top of the unit.
The NutriChef vacuum sealer comes with an air suction hose, a wine stopper cork, five medium (7.8 x 11.8 inch) bags, one extra-long bag roll of 7.8 x 79 inches, each of which are waterproof and reusable.
If you need other bags, the good news is that this sealer is compatible with most bags by NutriChef and other vendors, which are up to 11.8 inches wide.
The size of the appliance is 6 x 14.1 x 3 inches, and it weighs a mere 2.9 lbs.
- It is compact, light, and portable
- The device operates with the touch of a single button
- It seals both dry and moist food
- There is a seal and a vac seal function to choose from
- It comes with reusable bags of different sizes and is compatible with bags up to 11.8 inches in width
- It is quiet and very quick, with a suction rate of 3 gallons per minute
- It is reasonably priced
- Quiet operation
- The instructions are not clear or detailed enough
This Austrian-made vacuum sealer by Mueller will allow you to make secure and strong seals, will not take up too much space in your kitchen, and will not cost you a fortune to buy.
The affordable vacuum sealer is only 14 x 3 x 5 inches in size and weighs 2.2 lbs.
It is completely automatic and requires only a press of a button to perform a dry or moist food seal.
You can use the moist seal setting to preserve, store and transport simmered steamed or poached foods.
It offers airtight or gentle vacuuming, so you can safely seal even the most delicate foods.
The machine works with all bags, which are up to 11.8 inches wide. It comes with 5 medium-sized reusable vacuum bags sized 11.8 x 7.8 inches and an extra-long roll of 7.8 x 79 inches. There is also a suction hose included in the package, so it is ready for use straight out of the box.
- It has Gentle and Airtight vac modes suitable even for the most delicate foods
- There is dry and moist food sealing
- Most of the process is automatic and is done with a press of a button
- The appliance has a small footprint and easy to store away when not in use
- It comes with accessories and reusable bags, which will allow you to start using the device immediately
- It is inexpensive
- There is no built-in bag cutter
If you are a farmer, hunter, or fisher, or if you buy food in bulk and need a high-capacity vacuum sealer, then we recommend this professional Weston Pro 2300 stainless steel vacuum sealer.
The commercial-grade appliance has heavy-duty stainless steel construction and has a fan that cools the motor allowing for continuous use and for sealing very large batches of food at once.
The unit can seal dry and moist foods with strong and thick seal bars, which will keep the food inside fresh, tasty, and safe when stored in the freezer for months.
Thanks to its extra-long seal bar, you can seal bags sized up to 15 inches wide and all other premade bags and Ziploc bags.
There is an automatic and a manual seal option, the latter being suitable for sealing delicate foods and items.
The commercial vacuum sealer is 15.3 x 23 x 9 inches and weighs 22 lbs.
- It seals all types of foods securely in seconds
- The motor is cooled by a fan making it suitable for continuous use and for sealing large batches of food
- There is a manual seal option for delicate and soft foods
- The appliance is very sturdily built of stainless steel
- It is bulkier and heavier than most vacuum sealers for home use
This cordless and compact handheld vacuum sealer is a perfect option for people with limited kitchen and storage space and for those who want to take the device with them fishing, hunting, camping, or anywhere else.
The FoodSaver handheld sealer is only 4.62 x 1.75 x 1.7 inches in size and can easily fit in the palm of your hand or in your pocket.
It has a rechargeable li-ion battery making it completely cordless and portable.
The compact vacuum sealer can seal up to 60 1-quart bags per full charge.
It comes with a charging base which is convenient for charging and storing the device anywhere.
The small sealer is compatible with all of the FoodSaver bags and accessories and comes with four reusable 1-quart vacuum-sealable bags.
- Very compact, light, and portable
- Excellent for small kitchens, for hunting, fishing, and traveling
- Easy to use and cordless
- Long-lasting li-ion battery which can seal up to 60 bags per charge
- It comes with a docking station and four reusable bags
- It costs less than $25
- There is no low battery indicator light
Best with Chamber
This chamber vacuum sealer by VacMaster is an indispensable food preservation device for avid hunters, anglers, as well as for small restaurants and catering and delicatessens services.
It allows for vacuum-sealing large volumes of food, including large meat cuts and large batches of soup and sauces.
The size of the chamber is large enough to fit and seal 10 x 13-inch bags.
The chamber vacuum sealer works by keeping the air pressure inside and outside of the storage bag equal until it is double sealed. This will prevent the spillage of soup or other liquids.
But being a chamber vacuum sealer makes the VacMaster VP215 a much bulkier device that will take up a lot of storage or home space.
It is powered by an oil pump with very little need of cooling down, which means that you can use it continuously without wasting precious time.
The size of this unit is 20 x 15 x 14 inches with an 11.25 x 15.25 x 5-inch chamber, and it weighs 84 lbs. so it is not even close to the compact and light portable models on this list.
Then again, if you need to process and preserve large volumes or large batches of foods, it is absolutely worth every cent.
- It can be used to package completely liquid foods like marinades, soups, sauces, and others
- It works with bags that are 10 x 13 inches for large volumes
- The vacuuming is quick with no need for stopping for cooling down
- It is perfect for sealing large cuts of meat and fish, large batches of food of all types at home and even small restaurants
- It is much heavier and bigger than the other vacuum sealers
- It works with proprietary bags by VacMaster
How do vacuum sealers work?
Vacuum sealers work by sucking out the air from sealable bags via vacuum pumps or pressure chambers and then sealing them to prevent the air from entering back in. many of the home vacuum sealers work with most bags sold on the market, but some do work only with proprietary bags and pouches.
These devices use heat to seal the bags once the air is removed. This allows the food to stay out of contact with oxygen and pathogens and prevents freezer burn and moisture, making the foods last much longer.
What are the benefits of using a vacuum sealer?
As mentioned earlier, there are multiple benefits of using a vacuum sealer.
With an appliance like this, you can store most types of food and even other items like photographs and documents safely without the risk of them being exposed to oxygen and fading.
The removal of the air and the seal helps slow down the spoilage of the food and limits the risk of freezer burn. This can help you store food items and meals for up to 3 months and more without them losing their taste, texture, and nutritional qualities.
Needless to say, this will help reduce the wastage of food and money and will also allow you to store seasonal foods or fresh meats for use later on in the year.
Vacuum sealers are suitable for all households but are especially useful for hunters, fishers, people who shop meat and foods in bulk, farmers, and for people who like to prepare large batches of food for later use, such as campers and hikers.
Also, with these nifty devices, you will make the storage packages much smaller, which means that you can store more food in your freezer.
Most models can reseal bags of different products such as chips and cereal.
Last but not least, if you love cooking, you will love the fact that you can use these devices for sous vide food prep.
Types of vacuum sealers
As you have probably noticed from our list of the top-rated vacuum sealers for 2021, there are different types of these appliances being offered on the market.
Chamber vacuum sealers
The chamber vacuum sealers like the VacMaster VP215 are more commonly used in restaurants and other commercial settings, but this particular model is small and affordable enough to be used at home too.
These vacuum sealers remove the air from their pressure chambers while preventing the bag from deforming. This makes them suitable for vacuum-sealing bulkier items and liquid foods that the other sealers cannot do.
- They are suitable for vacuum sealing liquid and very moist foods
- They are quick and require little or no cooling time, making them suitable for continuous use for sealing and preserving large batches of food
- Some of them can be used for preserving very delicate and soft foods like ripe strawberries or chips
- They are larger, heavier, less portable, and significantly more expensive than the other types
External suction vacuum sealers
These are among the most common vacuum sealers which you can find on the market. They work by clamping down the vacuum bag, which is filled with food, and then the air is suctioned out with a pump before the bag is heat-sealed.
They are less powerful than the chamber vacuum sealers, and most of them cannot be used for sealing very moist or liquid foods.
- These are convenient and more compact types of vacuum sealers than the chamber ones and are more suitable for home use
- They are reasonably priced
- Some of them come with accessories for sealing bottles, jars, and other canisters
- External suction vacuum sealers were designed for convenient home use, so they tend to be smaller, lighter, and less bulky than chamber sealers
- The majority of these vacuum sealers cannot be used to preserve liquids and very moist foods
- They are slower than chamber vacuum sealers and may need time for cooling down during long sealing sessions
Handheld Vacuum Sealers
These are the smallest vacuum sealers, which are compact, take up little countertop or storage space, and are usually cordless.
One of them, the FoodSaver Cordless Food Vacuum sealer, can easily fit in your hand and is compact enough to be taken anywhere. They are an inexpensive and convenient option for occasional use and for preserving smaller items, especially when you are off the grid.
- They are the most portable type of vacuum sealers
- Many of them are battery powered making them suitable for camping, fishing, hunting, and other outdoor activities
- Most of them come with reusable ziplock bags, which will help you save money and the environment
- They are not the best option if you will be using the sealer on a regular basis for sealing larger items or large batches of food
- They are not as powerful as the other types
What to Look for When Buying a Vacuum Sealer
When choosing the most suitable vacuum sealer for your needs, you may want to consider what types of special features you want.
Some of the higher-end appliances have automatic bag feeding, automatic food type detection, and options for sealing wet or dry foods.
The basic models have fewer features but cost less as well and are usually more compact.
When deciding what type of vacuum sealer to buy, you should contemplate whether you will be moving the appliance around a lot and whether you have enough space for using and storing it.
The handheld models are obviously the smallest, most portable, and easy-to-store ones.
The countertop ones can be with external suction or chamber vacuuming. The former is less expensive, more compact, and uses pre-cut bags. The latter are bulkier, more powerful, and are suitable for sealing liquid and very moist foods and large items.
Some vacuum sealers work with bag rolls and even have storage for them. They will cut the bags to the desired length every time, and you won’t need to feed and align a bag every time manually.
Choose a vacuum sealer that works with bag rolls or pre-cut bags which are wide and large enough to fit the food items and types you are planning on preserving.
If you are planning on making sous vide, you should opt for rolls or bags which are boil safe as well.
Make sure to check whether the appliance of your choice is compatible with most bags in order to have a wider choice of vendors.
Most vacuum sealers have a pre-set time for their vacuum cycles, but some of the more expensive and advanced ones will detect the pressure in the bag or the chamber to trigger the sealing process.
Some of them need to be activated manually, and others have automatic controls.
The longer the seal cycle of a vacuum sealer, the longer you will need to wait in between uses for it to cool down.
So, if you will be processing large batches of foods, then you should opt for a faster cycle external suction sealer or a chamber vacuum sealer.
The size and portability are also essential. Choose a sealer you have the space for and which you can carry with you if you want to use it out of your home.
Most standard features which the external suction vacuum sealers offer include accessories for sealing jars, bottles, and canisters, adjustable bag sizes, built-in cutters, and others.
Some have controls for wet and dry food sealing and airtight and delicate sealing.
Choose the best vacuum sealer depending on your specific needs and plans for usage.
Foods that should not be vacuum sealed
While vacuum sealers are indispensable for ensuring the longer and safer preservation of different foods like meat, fish, veggies, snacks, and many others, there are certain types of foods that should not be vacuum-sealed.
If you are using a chamber vacuum sealer and want to seal a soup or another liquid, you should ensure that it has been cooled down to room temperature or lower because the hot liquids can begin boiling from the internal air pressure and may explode and make a huge mess.
Other foods such as soft cheeses (ricotta, blue cheese, camembert, brie, and so on), raw mushrooms, garlic, and freshly steamed veggies can contain anaerobic bacteria, which can grow and become harmful when all of the oxygen is removed from the bag. To vacuum seal steamed vegetables, you should allow them to cool down at least to room temperature before proceeding with the sealing.
Also, some vegetables from the Brassicaceae and Cruciferae families can start producing a gas that can spoil them once the oxygen is removed from the bags. The way to properly seal this type of veggies is first to blanch them, then dry them thoroughly, and then vacuum seal and freeze them.
Some of the vegetables from these families which do not take vacuum sealing raw well include:
- Brussels sprouts
- Kale turnips
- Bok Choy
Vacuum sealing is an easy and highly efficient way to reduce the wastage of food and your hard-earned money.
You can seal most types of raw and cooked foods and may even prep foods for sous vide and to marinate meats and fish.
By removing the air and oxygen from contacting the foods, you can protect them from the nasty water crystals known as freezer burn. The lack of exposure to oxygen helps prevent the growth of bacteria, mold, and fungus, which cause the spoilage of the foods.
Vacuum sealing will allow you to preserve seasonal fruits, veggies, and other items for use throughout the year. You can use the sealer to preserve your own garden produce as well.
It also helps increase the storage space in your freezer, fridge, and pantry.
Best of all, using a vacuum sealer is among the quickest and easiest ways to preserve foods for months without the use of any chemicals or other preservatives.
But, hopefully, pretty soon, you will start using your chosen vacuum sealer and will see all of the advantages of owning an appliance like this for yourself!