Sous vide cooking delivers the perfect meal every time because it brings your food to a specific temperature and keeps it there. This makes it perfect for meal prep.
So in this post, I’ll cover how to prepare weekly meals with sous vide, some benefits, and three tasty recipes.
The Benefits Of Meal Prepping With Sous Vide
Here are some benefits of sous vide for meal prep:
- Your food is tastier
- It’s time-efficient
- There’s a reduced risk of contamination
Your food is tastier
The standout benefit to using sous vide is tastier food. This is because sous vide warms your food to the desired temperature, so you can’t overcook it. Unlike direct heat, sous vide bags also hold all the juice and flavor, ensuring your food is restaurant-quality.
Another reason sous vide is popular amongst meal preppers is because it’s time efficient. Leave a few bags of chicken, steak, fish, or vegetables in the bath and carry on with your day.
Once your food is finished, an alarm will alert you. But even if you’re not home, you don’t have to worry about overcooking your food since sous vide keeps it at a specific temperature.
There’s a reduced risk of contamination
When you’re meal prepping the traditional way, you’re handling cooked and raw meat simultaneously, which can lead to contamination.
With sous vide, place all meats into a vacuum-sealed bag and lay these bags into your bath. After the timer rings, leave the bags in the freezer. This way, raw and cooked meat never comes close to each other.
Now let’s learn how to prepare meals with sous vide.
How To Sous Vide Meal Prep In 5 Easy Steps
Here’s how to meal prep using sous vide in five steps:
- Shop for the food you want to sous vide
- Vacuum seal your meals in a ziplock bag
- Set the desired time and temperature
- Place your bag in the freezer
- Sear your meals and enjoy
Step 1: Shop For The Food You Want To Sous Vide
First, visit your local grocery store or butchery and buy an entire week’s food in bulk. Most shops offer discounts which reduces grocery expenses.
Consider foods like:
These foods last long when frozen and regain flavor, ensuring your meals stay tasty.
Step 2: Vacuum Seal Meals In A Ziplock Bag
Next, generously spice your food and place them in a vacuum-sealed ziplock bag. Depending on the food you’re sealing, you’ll need to use different settings. For example, vacuum sealing fish requires a lower setting than chicken or steak.
Opt for the water displacement method if you don’t have a vacuum sealer. It works just as well as a machine, and you won’t have to worry about damaging delicate foods.
To use the water displacement method, fill a large tub with water, put your chicken or fish in your sous vide bag, and slowly lower it into the water while closing the ziplock. This removes all air, and you won’t need a fancy machine.
Step 3: Set The Desired Time And Temperature
Once you’ve sealed your food, lay them in your sous vide bath for a specific time. This will depend on the food you’re prepping and how well you’re looking to cook it.
For chicken, cook it at 145 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour and if you want the perfect fish, opt for 135 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes.
Steak is tricky because you can cook it to different levels of doneness. So consult this table when cooking steak in a sous vide bath.
- Rare (120 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour)
- Medium rare (130 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour)
- Medium (135 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour)
- Medium well (146 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour)
- Well (156 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour)
Step 4: Place Your Bag In The Freezer
After you’ve cooked your food in the sous vide bath, let it sit for a few minutes, so you aren’t placing a hot meal into the freezer.
Step 5: Sear Your Meals And Enjoy
Whenever you’re hungry, take your chicken, steak, fish, or veggies out of the freezer, sear it for a few minutes and enjoy.
But don’t forget to add butter and additional spices like garlic for a tastier steak.
Sous Vide Meal Prep Ideas
Here are some tasty yet basic and easy-to-make sous vide meals:
- Sous vide chicken with salad
- Sous vide steak and eggs
- Sous vide salmon and potatoes
Sous Vide Chicken With Salad
Chicken breast and salad are popular amongst athletes and bodybuilders because they contain large amounts of protein.
To prepare, put your chicken breast in a sous vide bag and season generously with salt, pepper, chicken spice, and olive oil. In another bag, add some vegetables like broccoli and carrots. Vacuum seal these bags using a sealer or the water displacement method.
Leave it in the sous vide bath for one hour with the immersion circulator at 145 degrees Fahrenheit. But if you’re running errands and can’t take it out immediately, don’t worry. The bath will keep your chicken perfectly cooked for the next four hours.
The last step is to sear your chicken and vegetables until they are golden brown, and enjoy.
Sous Vide Steak And Eggs
Another convenient option for meal preppers is steak and eggs because it contains micronutrients like:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
To prepare steak and eggs sous vide style, put your steak in a sous vide bag and season with salt, pepper, and some olive oil. Once you’ve sealed it, lay your bag into your sous vide bath for one hour at 120 to 156 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on how you’d like your steak.
With the eggs, you don’t have to seal them in a bag. Carefully set them in your bath alongside the steak for 10 to 15 minutes.
After one hour, remove the steak and eggs, sear the steak until it has a crispy crust, and enjoy!
Sous Vide Salmon And Baby Potatoes
Go for sous vide salmon and potatoes if you prefer fish over steak and chicken.
First, score the skin of your salmon, so it has a crispier sear. Sprinkle salt and sugar over it and let it sit for 10 minutes because it adds flavor.
Rinse the sugar and salt, before placing it in a ziplock bag so it firms your fish and provides a deep seasoning.
Next, add your baby potatoes to another bag, sprinkle a touch of seasoning and olive oil and place both bags in your water bath.
Cook this salmon for 30 minutes at 122 degrees Fahrenheit and once it’s done, give it a quick sear.
Final Thoughts On Meal Prepping Using Sous Vide
If you’re prepping weekly meals that taste bland, consider sous vide. The vacuum-sealed bag retains all juices and flavor, giving you restaurant-quality chicken, steak, and fish every time.
It also doesn’t take long. Simply pop your bag into a water bath, go about your day, and remove it when you’re free.