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Old 05-27-2016, 02:23 AM   #1
Assistant Cook
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane
Posts: 10
FoodSaver bags for sous vide

Hi all

Sorry if I'm posting this in the wrong sub-forum but I'm a bit curious as to what people who have used sous vide cooking think about using regular glad bags as opposed to the vac bags.

I'm planning on getting an Anova Wifi Sous Vide soon but the only thing that is inhibiting me is thinking about the bulk number of bags I'd need to buy/ the food saver that I'd need to get as well.

I read a lot of mixed opinions about the use of glad bags and would just like some feedback from anyone who has had experience with both :)

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Old 05-27-2016, 07:16 AM   #2
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Location: Florida
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It depends. I sous vide more than I use my stove, so I've pretty much tried everything. I actually have 2 appliances - the Sous Vide Supreme Water Oven and the Anova Immersion Circulator.

Glad bags come in 2 types - the lightweight sandwich style, and the heavy freezer/storage style. The sandwich style will not work.

The freezer bags can work out well for small foods at low to mid temperature ranges, and shorter cooking times. I've had mixed results with the zipper holding - they sometimes leak and your bag takes on water. When I use them, I make sure I use a clip to hold the top of the bag against the pan above the water line.

The problem comes when you cook something in the 160-180F range, or for 6 - 12 - 24 hours. The seams often don't hold up at higher temps and/or longer cook times. They can split and you will have a mess in the pot. I speak from experience!!!

They are very useful however, when you have added liquid marinades in your bag. A home vacuum sealer can be tricky to manage with liquids, but using the immersion/displacement method you can easily use glad bags for this.

I buy my vacuum bags in large rolls, which I then cut to size as needed, from a restaurant supply store online. I don't know if they ship to Australia, but I'm sure you can find one there. They're about 1/10 of the price of the name brand bags. And you don't need a fancy vacuum sealer with all the new bells & whistles. A simple, inexpensive one will do quite nicely.

If you have any other questions about SV, ask away! There are a few of us here that use them.

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Old 05-30-2016, 05:55 AM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: New Hampshire Seacoast
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According to the listing for the Sansaire immersion circulator on Sur la table's site, it can use any sealable plastic bag.

Sansaire Sous-Vide Immersion Circulator | Sur La Table

I don't know why this would be any different from the Anova unit, as they are similar in operation. By the way, there was no reference to the bag type on Sansaire's site.
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Old 06-23-2016, 05:44 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Seattle
Posts: 185
Double-zipper freezer bags

I also have - and love - the Anova WiFi, though I've never used the WiFi. I was devastated when leakage destroyed an expensive 2-day project, so I researched thoroughly. I double-bagged in the meantime, which is annoying and wasteful.

My solution was double-zipper* freezer bags. I leave a corner open, submerge the bag like Achilles to get the air out, and squeeze the corner shut before letting go. Never had another problem. The longest I've run was 72 hours.

*By "double-zipper" I mean that it has a double row of squeezable sealers, not an actual zipper. The ones with the actual zippers make a weaker seal.

Hope this helps.
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Old 06-28-2016, 03:35 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane
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Thank you guys so much for your replies. I'm about to commit to getting the Anova despite my one true love being Chefsteps' Joule (they haven't received the permit to ship their electronics into Australia yet :( ) but I've come to find some proper sous vide bags in a roll that can be cut-to-size at Costco for around $20AUD. I'll give that a go because after reading a few more anecdotes of bags splitting and people creating beef stews out of their water bath, it makes me feel like it's not worth the risk....

Thanks guys !

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Old 06-28-2016, 05:29 PM   #6
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Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Seattle
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I really like the Joule's magnetic feature, because it's sometimes a bugger to get the Anova attached in a way that allows free circulation, but that's the only way the Joule grabs me. The Anova allows you to choose where the water jet goes, so that mostly nullifies the advantage. By all means get it, but they've smartly been putting it on sale now and again, to increase penetration into the market, so perhaps wait.

It's certainly durable enough. Before I got the bagging right, I came back to one of the "beef stew" disasters that you mention, but the Anova came apart and survived a good scrubbing unscathed. Just for giggles, I tried it in a 20-quart Styrofoam cooler, and it breezed through, as long as I kept the lid mostly closed. Other than the great magnet, there's nothing to recommend the Joule over the Anova.

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