I’ve pulled together several of my top sous vide tips and tricks that will make the process so much easier and more enjoyable for you! Get the most out of your time, equipment and food with these simple sous vide tips.
Sous Vide Tips and Tricks
Understand The Basics of Sous Vide Safety
Sous vide cooking is very safe. In fact, it can be more safe than traditional cooking methods due to its precision. However, it’s very important to understand the basics before you get started. There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind and simple rules to follow.
Read about sous vide and food safety, and then you’ll be ready to go!
Read The Recipe Thoroughly before starting
This applies to all recipes, and sous vide is no different! At first glance, many of these recipes might seems as simple as a time and temperature, but there are often specific details you’ll want to pay attention to. You always want to have your mise en place set up.
Always bag food in a single layer to ensure even cooking
Sous vide cooking relies on heated water being able to circulate around the food evenly. If the water can’t reach all sides of the food, those areas won’t get properly cooked.
Use the water displacement to seal your bags
You don’t need to purchase special vacuum seal bags for sous vide, though you certainly can. Standard freezer bags from the grocery store work perfectly fine. However, in order to them to work, you need to seal them using the water displacement method.
After adding the food to the bag, press as much air out as possible, then seal the bag. Slowly lower it into the hot water bath, seal side up. This will force the remaining air in the bag upward. When the bag is almost completely submerged, open one corner of the bag to release the remaining air, then seal the bag.
Remove as much air as possible from the bag
Air is a poor conductor of heat, so you want as little of it as possible in the bag. Take your time to make sure there aren’t any large pockets of air, and don’t be afraid to start over if you need to.
Use weights or magnets if the bag won’t stay submerged
The bag needs to stay completely submerged in order for the water to circulate properly. Sometimes lighter foods like shrimp or vegetables will have a tendency to float back up to the surface.
If the bag won’t stay submerged, you can weigh it down using something like a bag clip and a spoon, or you can purchase sous vide weights or magnets (I like the magnets, which attach to themselves on the corner of the bags).
Cover the water bath with either a lid, plastic wrap, or foil
Sous vide recipes usually take awhile, so you’ll want to prevent the water from evaporating. You can use a cambro container with a lid, or you can simply cover your pot with plastic wrap or foil.
Be careful not to overcook while searing
Ingredients like meat, poultry and fish are often seared after being cooked in the sous vide (or sometimes in advance). Make sure to get the searing pan nice and hot before searing so it needs as little time on the heat as possible. Nothing gets the job done quite like a cast iron skillet. You can also have some fun and use a kitchen torch.