Portable, compact, and fast. Ideal for preserving game and other fresh meats. Includes adapter cord, carrying handle, and ability to perform 80 consecutive seals.
Tends to leave air bubbles in the sealed bags, especially when sealing large cuts of meat. Fewer features than some others on our list.
CrushFree Instant Seal protects and seals delicate foods. Manual design is a plus for those that don't want more control over the plastic-cutting process.
It doesn't seal quite as fast as costlier models, but considering the price, you may not mind.
A fast 2-in-1 model w/ retractable handheld sealer and viewing window. Efficiently seals large quantities of food. Includes a pull-out drip tray.
Consumes lots of counter space. Control buttons can be confusing.
Easy to use and dependable for creating average-sized packages. Machine's roll storage and cutter let you create custom sized bags. Automatic bag detection helps to make the process easier, along with LED indicators. Users appreciate the spacious drip tray.
Automated process sometimes makes it difficult to remove all the oxygen and get a good seal.
Dry and moist sealing modes helps preserve flavorful marinades. Includes built-in handheld sealer. Onboard bag storage and cutter streamline customization and convenience. Compact, sturdy machine that's easy to store when not in use.
Some have problems getting this model to seal bags effectively. May need to buy marinating accessories separately if you want to make the most of this feature.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
Throwing spoiled food away is like watching your money go out the door with the garbage. FoodSaver vacuum sealers prolong the life of food so that less of it ends up in the garbage can. Models range from large countertop vacuum sealers designed to seal fresh game to small handheld models that make sealing small, individualized portions fast and easy.
There’s a FoodSaver out there to meet your specific needs, and here at BestReviews, we’ve worked hard to help you find it. Take a look at our top picks, and read through our shopping guide to determine which model is right for you.
If you’re looking to preserve food for a lengthy period, a FoodSaver vacuum sealer can help. FoodSaver vacuum sealers help prevent freezer burn and can preserve food for up to five times longer than unsealed food.
How does this work? A FoodSaver vacuum sealer removes excess air from the food bag and seals it with heat so air cannot re-enter. The brand’s specially designed vacuum seal bags can be frozen, heated in the microwave, or boiled. Bags come pre-cut or as a roll.
You can use a FoodSaver vacuum sealer for any or all of the following purposes.
Preserving wild game
Preserving domestic meat
Preserving fresh fruits and vegetables
Before you shop, it helps to decide which type of FoodSaver vacuum sealer would best serve your purposes. There are countertop models, handheld models, and models designed specifically for the preservation of wild game.
Countertop FoodSaver vacuum sealers come in three different sizes: compact, mid-size, and full-size. All compact models are manually operated; mid-size and full-size models are automatic, though the sealing function can be run manually if needed.
Compact: These manually operated vacuum sealers consume less storage space, and many include a hose port that allows you to seal canisters for marinades. Manual models must be timed and sealed by the user; some products have an indicator light that signals the completion of the vacuuming process.
Mid-size: These automatic models take some of the guesswork out of the equation. A sensor detects when the air is removed and automatically seals the bag. Mid-size FoodSavers often include roll storage within the machine and a roll cutter on the lid. Some have an extra-wide sealing strip to accommodate large portions or cuts of meat.
Powered by a rechargeable battery, handheld vacuum sealers cost less than their countertop cousins, yet they offer great versatility without taking up much space. Handheld FoodSaver vacuum sealers can be used with Foodsaver bags, food storage containers, and canisters as part of the brand’s patented Food Preservation System.
FoodSaver bags have a vacuum-sealing hole where the handheld sealer attaches, removes air, and seals. FoodSaver containers can hold everything from leftovers to garden vegetables. The sealer attaches to a hole in the top of the container to remove air. These models save space, time, and money; they’re an excellent deal if you’re on a budget.
The largest of the FoodSaver vacuum sealers are specially designed to make preserving wild game easy and efficient. They have an extra-wide sealing strip and drip tray to accommodate large cuts of meat. Their powerful commercial-grade motors can perform 40 to 100 consecutive seals, which is needed when preparing meat from an entire animal. Some have titanium casings for extra durability, and others have power cords that plug into a cigarette lighter so meat can be sealed from anywhere.
Label your bags after they’ve been sealed. It can be hard to identify a meal after all the air has been removed. Some bags come with a label strip for writing on.
When selecting a FoodSaver vacuum sealer, you may wonder which features to prioritize. Based on our research, here’s a look at the considerations that we find most important.
Before buying a vacuum sealer, take a close look at your needs. Are you a hunter? Hunters need a vacuum sealer that can perform a high number of consecutive seals. If you plan to seal a lot of meat, a countertop or wild game vacuum sealer would work best. Are you looking for a way to efficiently store dinner leftovers? If you plan to seal smaller portions, a basic countertop or handheld sealer would probably be enough.
Which would suit you best, a manual vacuum sealer or an automatic vacuum sealer? Manual models require you to time, watch, and manually press the seal button once all the air has been removed. It takes more focus and leaves more room for error, but these models cost far less than automatic sealers. Automatic models have sensors that detect when all the air has been removed from the bag or container; the machine completes the seal for you. Automatic sealers are easier to use, but they’re usually larger and more expensive.
If you live in a small house or apartment, you probably won’t have space for a countertop FoodSaver. Individual meat portions, food storage containers, and storage bags can instead be sealed using a handheld FoodSaver, saving you space and money.
A compact countertop vacuum sealer also saves some space and performs well, but it won’t have all the bells and whistles of a full-size FoodSaver vacuum sealer. If you have the need and a fairly large amount of kitchen space, you may wish to consider a compact countertop FoodSaver.
If you’re really serious about preserving food in bulk and you have plenty of space and an ample budget, a full-size or wild game FoodSaver makes the most sense. This workhorse machine will make quick work of preserving your food.
Do you plan to seal delicate foods – bread, fruit, and so on – that could possibly sustain damage as a result of the sealing process? Not to worry. Some FoodSavers have a pulse setting that gives you manual control over the vacuum process. This is convenient, because you can stop the process before you see your delicate foods get crushed. Other FoodSavers have a “gentle” seal setting that slows the vacuuming process and creates a seal before fragile foods like bread or fresh fruit sustain damage.
Vacuum sealers can be used for much more than food. Protect garden seeds, toiletries, and photos by removing air and giving them a compact, protective packaging.
Keeping all your sealing supplies together makes the process easier and faster. A FoodSaver with a built-in bag cutter and roll storage reduces bag waste, saving you money. It’s also easier because bags are automatically loaded into the seal position.
A vacuum sealer with a wet/dry button allows you to seal moist foods such as fruit, soup, and sauce. A sensor tells you when the air has been removed and starts the seal before too much liquid is lost to the drip tray. The heat bar gets hotter while in wet mode to evaporate the extra moisture and achieve a good seal.
Some FoodSavers with a wet/dry mode also have automatic liquid detection. These models automatically switch to wet mode when liquid is detected.
Notably, a vacuum sealer without a wet/dry mode cannot be used to seal food with any kind of moisture in it.
Upright vacuum sealers take up less counter space while maximizing features. These models are large but are meant to sit on your counter for quick use at any time.
Horizontal vacuum sealers work just as well as uprights, but they take up more counter space. Some horizontal vacuum sealers have similar features to uprights, while others are basic manual machines.
FoodSaver offers both upright and horizontal models. How often you’ll use the sealer along with your available storage space will help you determine which type is best for you.
During the sealing process, any removed liquids fall into the drip tray. A removable drip tray can be emptied and placed in the dishwasher for fast cleaning. Drip trays that aren’t removable must be wiped clean and dried while still in the sealer. Some FoodSaver vacuum sealers have removable drip trays while others don’t.
FoodSaver vacuum sealers should only be used with bags and accessories specifically designed and made by FoodSaver.
FoodSaver accessories can often cost as much as the machine itself. Sealers that come with extra accessories save you money in the long run. Accessories to watch for include the following.
Jar Sealer: Jar sealers don’t come standard with all FoodSaver models. They preserve a greater variety of foods and come in regular and wide-mouth versions.
Bottle Stopper: You can seal and keep wine fresh for days using this accessory.
Food Storage Containers: Say goodbye to your old plasticware with these containers. They come in various sizes and hold everything from leftovers to casseroles and vegetables. The more food storage containers you can get with the vacuum sealer upon initial purchase, the better.
A vacuum sealer allows you to buy more foods in bulk. Cut meat into smaller pieces, seal it, and you’ve got the meat properly portioned for your next meal.
Around $20: Handheld FoodSavers cost as little as $20. Bear in mind that you’ll need to buy the accessories necessary to use it, such as food storage containers and bags. This will add to your expense.
$20 to $100: FoodSavers in this range are usually manually operated with only one seal setting. At the higher end of the range, you may find a sealer with a wide sealing strip. Countertop FoodSaver prices start around $55.
$100 to $150: You’ll find both automatic countertop and wild game FoodSavers with extra wide sealing strips, two seal settings, and some built-in bag roll storage and bag cutters here.
Q. I want to save money with a manual vacuum sealer, but how do I know when the bags are sealed?
A. While you will need to time the process, manual FoodSaver vacuum sealers have an indicator light that turns off once the vacuuming process is complete. At this point, you’ll need to seal the bag.
Manual FoodSavers provide more control over the sealing process. Once you get used to how the machine works, you may find that you can simply listen and recognize when it’s time to stop sealing based on how the machine sounds.
Q. How long do marinades take in a vacuum-sealed canister?
A. By removing the air from a marinade container, you can infuse the food with a marinade in minutes rather than marinating overnight. After 30 minutes, most food will be ready to cook. You can give it a little more time if you want extra flavor.
BestReviews wants to be better. Please take our 3-minute survey,
and give us feedback about your visit today.