Vacuum food packing is an increasingly popular method of storing supplies and food scraps. Still, many people do not know what can and cannot be vacuum-packed. There are also often questions on the web about whether it is possible to vacuum-pack frozen meat, ready meals, or other types of food. So today, we decided to dispel all your doubts. This article will walk you through the basics of vacuum food packaging.
What is vacuum food packaging?
Before discussing issues such as whether you can vacuum seal frozen meat, we’ll discuss the basics. So we’ll start by explaining what vacuum food packaging is.
Vacuum packing is one way to prevent food from spoiling. It consists in placing the food in special packaging. Then the amount of oxygen in this package is reduced. Finally, the packaging with the food is hermetically sealed.
What do you need to vacuum seal food packaging?
As you can see, vacuum packing is about sealing the food tightly in a package in which the amount of oxygen has been reduced. Consequently, to vacuum-pack food, you need a few things:
- packaging, e.g. container or foil bag,
- oxygen suction devices,
- heat sealer or hermetic lid.
The most basic device is a vacuum food packaging machine. The best choice is a vacuum food sealer. Such a device will reduce oxygen and hermetically seal the food package. Notably, there are many household vacuum sealers.
Surely you’ve also noticed that you can equip yourself with vacuum packing bags or containers. It all depends on your preferences and the type of food you will pack. The most common choice is, of course, bags. They are durable, inexpensive, and adapt to the kind of food you pack. However, it is also worth equipping yourself with a few containers. If you want vacuum-sealed cooked food, a container with an airtight lid will be your best choice.
If you choose to use containers instead of food bags, choose wisely. Food containers available in popular supermarkets are not suitable for vacuum packaging. The vacuum container must have a lid that will fit a special pump. With the help of the pump, you will remove excess oxygen from the container. Interestingly, there are vacuum containers for storing liquids. These are jugs with suitable lids.
How to choose a food vacuum sealer and packaging bags?
Now that you know what you need to vacuum pack your food, it’s time to find out how to choose it. Below we will discuss two essential elements, i.e., a vacuum sealer and food packaging bags.
Food vacuum sealer
We associate vacuum food sealers more with gastronomic establishments and shops. Meanwhile, many great models of vacuum sealers are good for home use. When choosing a vacuum sealer, you need to know how much space you want to allocate in the kitchen. Additionally, it is good to learn more or less what size of food you will be packing. It is also important to determine how often you will use the vacuum sealer. With all this information, you can select the best device. When buying, pay attention to the length of the strip that seals the package. Also, consider the power of the welding machine and additional functions. For beginners, the display and different automatic functions can be handy.
Bags and films for vacuum food packaging
When you manage to buy a vacuum sealer, you need to buy food bags or foils for it. Make sure that there are high-quality products. They should be made of safe raw materials. Be sure to check that the bags or films you are buying are BPA-free. It is best to buy bags and foils in the same place as the vacuum sealer. Then you will be sure that you will choose the right products for the equipment you buy.
Can you vacuum-seal frozen meat?
Now let’s get down to business. First, let’s look at the topic of frozen meat. Many people buy meat in stock, especially if it is available at an attractive price. However, this saving only makes sense if you can store your food well. Therefore, the question arises: can you vacuum seal frozen meat? The answer is yes! Of course, nothing prevents you from vacuum-packing frozen meat. But, of course, you can also vacuum-pack unfrozen meat and then freeze it.
Can you vacuum seal deli meat?
Another question that often appears on the web is: can you vacuum seal deli meat? Deli meat is usually available in family packs. Then you can buy them at a much lower price. No wonder many people choose to make such a purchase. However, if you want to save in this way, you must not let deli meat spoil. Instead, you can vacuum-pack them and freeze or refrigerate them. When frozen, it will last longer.
What about vacuum-sealed cooked food?
Another type of food that we often have more than we need at any given time is ready-made meals. Unfortunately, lots of people in the world throw away leftovers. In this way, they destroy the environment and their home budgets. Meanwhile, vacuum-sealed cooked food after reheating is just as tasty and valuable as after its preparation. Therefore, it is not worth throwing away a delicious meal. Better to vacuum-pack it and eat it another time.
What else can you vacuum pack?
Of course, the types of food mentioned above are not the only things you can vacuum-pack! Almost any kind of food is suitable for vacuum packing. For example, a lot of people are vacuum-packing fresh vegetables and fruits. In addition to meat, you can also vacuum-pack fish. Liquids are also suitable for vacuum packaging – juices, smoothies, and even iced coffee!
What’s more, you can also vacuum pack loose products. So nothing prevents you from stocking up on rice, pasta, or coffee. And that’s still not all! Bread is also suitable for vacuum packing. Many people also use the possibility of vacuum packing cakes and desserts.
As you can see, many products can be vacuum-packed. This packing method is not recommended for calciferous vegetables. However, if you want to vacuum-pack them, all you have to do is blanch them.
Why is it worth using vacuum food packaging?
We’ve already said much about vacuum food packaging but haven’t answered one question – what for? So below, we list some essential advantages of vacuum food packaging. Here they are:
- Saving money – you do not waste food, you do not throw money in the trash / you can buy larger and cheaper food packages.
- Extending shelf life – you can store vacuum-packed products for a few days or weeks longer (when frozen, they can last up to several months).
- Hygiene of food storage – vacuum-packed food does not leak and does not emit odours. So, for example, you can keep fish in the refrigerator without worrying that other foods will smell like them.
- Better organization of the home budget – you can stock up on food and, therefore, better plan your purchases.
- Caring for a healthy diet – constant access to fresh vegetables, fruits, and other products is a chance to take care of a proper diet.
- Possibility of meal planning – you save time by preparing and vacuum-packing meals.
Additional possibilities offered by vacuum food packaging
While we have already mentioned many advantages of vacuum food packaging, there is still more to it! There are still some crucial pieces of information that should please you. Well, vacuum food packaging gives you additional options when it comes to preparing delicious meals.
Thanks to the vacuum packaging of food, you can start using the sous-vide cooking method. It consists of slow cooking of food sealed in a vacuum package. Sous-vide dishes are served in the best restaurants in the world. This cooking method makes the texture of the meal unique. In addition, food does not lose its nutritional value during cooking. It also retains its intense flavour and aroma. Of course, you can find advice on how to prepare a sous-vide meal at home. However, none of these tips is as effective as vacuum-packing your food.
Another way to improve your kitchen is to marinate vacuum-packed meat. It is an ideal method for anyone who likes their meals’ intense aroma and taste. Meat marinated in a vacuum package goes through the marinade more strongly, making it tastier and juicier; what’s more, vacuum-packed meat marinades are much faster than classic! Therefore, if you want to prepare something “fast,” vacuum packaging will help you.
In conclusion, good preparation is enough to change your kitchen forever. Vacuum food packing will save you money and organize your diet well. You will no longer throw away food or worry about the freshness of the products. You will also be able to easily take advantage of promotions in stores and buy larger packages of food. Your fridge and pantry will finally get tidy.
Most importantly, you get so much for so little! A vacuum food sealer is a one-time purchase; the bags and foils don’t cost much. You can easily fit this expense into your home budget. You can put your savings on it, which will stay in your wallet when you stop wasting food! If you are also a cooking lover, you will also get the chance to prepare completely new dishes!