This article is a complete time and temperature sous vide guide for all foods. It covers everything from beef to fruit, giving you the rundown on how to sous vide each and every food in your kitchen.
Sous vide is a cooking method where food is sealed in a bag and cooked in water at a precise temperature. This allows for perfect, repeatable results that other cooking methods can not give you. The sous vide cooking method also helps the food retain most of its water content and nutritional value. Overall, sous vide is a cooking method that produces amazing results.
Beef Sous Vide
Sous vide cooking is a great way to cook beef perfectly every time. By using this method, you can ensure that your beef is cooked evenly and to the desired temperature. Not only does it help keep your steaks nice and juicy, but it also allows you to cook them at a lower temperature, which can help to preserve their flavor.
Beef Sous Vide Time and Temperature
Beef Sous Vide Steps:
- Start by seasoning your beef with salt, pepper, and any other desired spices.
- Using your vacuum sealer, seal the beef in a plastic bag.
- Fill your sous vide machine with water and set it to the temperature found above in our beef sous vide illustration.
- After the water has reached the proper temperature, insert the bagged beef and wait for the required time for it to complete.
- Sear the steaks in a hot pan for a minute or 2 to give it a nice crust.
Questions About Steak Sous Vide?
Q: How many can you cook at a time?
A: If you can fit them in the sous vide bath then you are in the clear!
Q: Which cuts work best for sous vide?
A: Any cut of beef will work great for sous vide! Just make sure to account for its thickness when determining the amount of time that it will be cooking.
Q: Can you sous vide from frozen?
A: Absolutely, however, the timings in this guide are for thawed meats and you will need to adjust your timings accordingly to account for thawing.
Poultry Sous Vide (Chicken, Turkey and More)
Sous vide is a great way to cook chicken. It results in moist, tender chicken that is cooked evenly all the way through. It produces consistent, repeatable results for a delicious meal.
Poultry Sous Vide Time and Temperature
Poultry Sous Vide Steps
- Preheat precision cooker
- Season or brine your chicken with whatever spices
- Bag your chicken
- Seal your bag
- Cook the chicken
- This step is optional, but searing your poultry on high heat makes for a delicious finishing touch. Perfectly cooked on the inside and outside.
Questions About Poultry or Chicken Sous Vide?
Q: How long does it take to cook poultry sous vide?
A: It depends on the thickness of the chicken. For boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cook for at least 45 minutes. For bone-in chicken breasts, cook for at least 60 minutes.
Q: Can I overcook my poultry sous vide?
A: Yes, you can overcook your chicken sous vide. If you overcook your chicken, it will be dry and tough. To avoid this, use a cooking time that is on the lower end of the temperature range. However, keep in mind that this will take much longer.
Q: How do I get a crispy outside?
A: You can’t get crispy skin with just sous vide. That is why most cooks will sear the meat afterward. This achieves a crispy skin and good crust on the outside, while perfectly cooked on the inside.
Q: What happens if I leave my poultry in longer than recommended?
A: It will be fine, as long as the temperature didn’t drop and sit for a long time. You will however notice a worse texture and possibly a more dry result.
Pork Sous Vide
Sous vide is a great way to cook pork. By using this method, you can ensure that the pork is cooked evenly and stays juicy and moist. Overall it’s a great way to make delicious pork of all sorts.
Pork Sous Vide Time and Temperature
Steps to Cook Pork with Sous Vide
- Place your immersion circulator in your water bath.
- Season your pork.
- Put your pork in the bag.
- Cook for the corresponding time listed in the chart above.
- Finish with a pan sear or grill.
Questions About Pork Sous Vide
Q: Are there downsides to using sous vide for pork?
A: It takes longer and requires more equipment. If you have the time and equipment, without a doubt it will turn out better than most traditional methods.
Q: What are the best cuts of pork to sous vide?
A: Bone-in-center pork rib chops tend to do well. Shoulder chops tend to be more flavorful, but are a bit tougher. Most cuts of meat you choose will have a trade-off. They are all good though, and you should experiment with both.
Q: Can I brine my pork?
A: Brining can help increase moisture, but with sous vide cooking that generally isn’t necessary. If you’re looking to put a bit more flavor into the pork chops, go for it.
Q: Can I sous vide pork chops right out of the freezer?
A: Yes, you can. Make sure to adjust your time by about an hour to allow the pork to fully thaw.
Sea Food and Fish Sous Vide
Sous vide cooking is a great way to cook seafood and fish. The gentle heat of the water bath ensures that the seafood cooks evenly, without drying out or becoming rubbery. Seafood and Fish in sous vide are the best when using fresh, high-quality seafood, lightly seasoned, and cooked at lower temperatures.
Seafood and Fish Sous Vide Time and Temperature
Fish and Seafood Sous Vide Steps
- Cut your seafood beforehand, sous vide tends to make seafood and fish very tender and it will be harder to cut.
- Prepare your water bath and circulator.
- Seal your bag with your seafood/fish.
- Cook for the specified time required.
- Finish with a sear or grill depending on the type of meat.
Questions About Seafood Sous Vide
Q: Is seafood any different from normal meats when cooking with sous vide?
A: Sous vide cooking seafood and fish is generally the same as others. One thing to keep in mind is seafood and fish are normally a bit more tender, so you should consider the differences when cooking.
Q: Should I cut my seafood/fish before cooking?
A: Yes. Seafood & Fish are much more tender and will most likely fall apart if you try to cut them after cooking.
Vegetable Sous Vide
If you're looking for a foolproof way to cook vegetables that results in them being tender and packed with flavor, look no further than the sous vide. When using sous vide for your vegetables you can cook them all at once and then have perfectly cooked veggies ready to go whenever you need them. This cooking method is also great for those who want to meal prep ahead of time.
When it comes to vegetables in particular other methods such as grilling, stir-fry, or any other high-heat cooking option can cause significant water loss in the final product. With sous vide, instead, the structure of the veggie is maintained and you get the perfect texture.
Time and Temperature Chart
Steps to Sous Vide Vegetables
- Place your immersion circulator in your water bath at 183°F/84°C.
- Place vegetables in the bag with desired seasonings.
- Vacuum seal the bag properly.
- Cook for the time required according to vegetable type.
- Remove and enjoy your vegetables cooked to perfection.
Tips for Sous Vide Vegetables
- Make sure your bags have a proper seal. While this is important with any sous vide cooking, vegetables are especially prone to losing flavor without a proper seal, and any air will make the vegetables float, preventing proper cooking.
- Don't Be Afraid To Season. Seasonings can make or break a dish. Let's be honest, a well-seasoned vegetable beats a plain vegetable 99.99% of the time.
- Don't overcook. Vegetables should be cooked just long enough to be tender, but still retain their crunch. Overcooking will result in mushy vegetables that lack flavor.
- Don't mix vegetables of various cooking times. If you are planning to sous vide different types of vegetables at once, feel free to use the same water, but keep the vegetables in separate bags so that you can remove them when they are ready.
Questions About Veggie Sous Vide?
Q: Are all vegetables set to the same temperature?
A: Vegetables should be sous vide cooked to 183°F/84°C but depending on the type of vegetable, the cooking time can vary with root vegetables taking the longest.
Q: Are sous vide vegetables healthier?
A: With sous vide cooking your vegetables, more of the vitamins and minerals are retained as there is no water loss like with other methods.
Q: How long can I store sous vide vegetables?
A: Sous vide vegetables can be stored in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to six months. When you're ready to eat them, simply reheat them in the sous vide water bath.
Q: What is the best way to reheat sous vide vegetables?
A: The best way to reheat sous vide vegetables is by placing them back in the sous vide water bath for a few minutes or submerging them in a pot of boiling water.
Egg Sous Vide
Sous vide eggs are the perfect way to cook eggs. They are cooked evenly and come out perfectly every time. We will discuss how to make sous vide eggs, what equipment you need, and address any questions you may have.
Sous vide eggs work a little differently than all the other sous vide methods we have listed in this article. In particular, the main difference is that sous vide eggs don't utilize a vacuum seal throughout the process.
The process of using sous vide to cook your eggs is all about temperature and determining how you want the result to turn out.
Time and Temperature Chart
Egg Sous Vide Steps
- Choose how you want your eggs. (Scrambled, Poached/Soft-boiled, Hard-boiled, and yes even Pasteurized)
- Set up your sous vide station with your immersion circulator and water bath.
- Set the required temperature for the chosen type of egg.
- Timing is key for the perfect egg. Make sure to set a timer and pull them out at the required time.
- Enjoy your perfectly cooked egg.
Questions About Egg Sous Vide?
Q: Do you need to use a bag to sous vide eggs?
A: While the shell contains the egg, if you are doing scrambled eggs or cooking outside of the shell at all you will still need a vacuum seal bag.
Sous Vide Fruits
Sous vide fruit is the perfect dessert. It is healthy, easy to make, and can be made ahead of time. It is also very versatile and you can sous vide just about any fruit you want that will pair well with the rest of the dish.
Add a bit of cinnamon or whatever else you would like and you have a perfect finish to any meal.
One of the best things about sous vide fruit is that it is healthy. You are not adding any extra sugar or fat to the dish, and you are getting all of the nutrients from the fruit.
But the most important part of a fruit dish made from sous vide is that it tastes fantastic! The fruit retains all of its flavor and sweetness, and the texture is perfect.
Time and Temperature Chart
Steps to Sous Vide Fruit
- Determine the time and temperature to sous vide your fruits from our diagram above.
- Set up your "sous-vide station" with the immersion circulator and water bath.
- Cut the fruit and place it in a vacuum seal bag with any extra spices.
- Set the fruit in the water bath. Times can vary depending on fruit ripeness, so check every 20 minutes or so for the proper texture.
Sous Vide Safety Tips and Other Information
Most cooking methods do require some thought into food safety. Cooking with the sous vide method is no different. It can almost be safer than other methods because of the ability to control the temperature much more precisely. There are a few things to consider and think about when starting your sous vide journey.
There are many ways to kill pathogens in food, but of course, cooking is the easiest. Every common pathogen found in food has a temperature it can’t grow in and temperatures it dies in. Most food pathogens cannot grow past 122°F (50°C), but other ones like Clostridium perfringens (which causes classic food poisoning) can grow at temperatures up to 126.1°F (52.3°C). That is why traditionally, in sous vide cooking you start at 130°F (54.4°C) or higher to cook.
There are a variety of food pathogens that can potentially cause sickness, but you only need to worry about the worst ones. The three main pathogens are Salmonella species, Listeria monocytogenes, and the different strains of Escherichia coli. The good thing is, that all of these are easily killed by sous vide at 130°F (54.4°C).
Your water bath temperature matters a lot. Certain meats may take longer than others to cook depending on size, and if it is poultry, beef, etc. The salt and fat content can also affect cooking times so it’s good to do your research and figure out what exact time and temperatures you need for a good result.
As long as you follow basic food safety guidelines and ensure you follow the correct times and temperatures, sous vide is as safe as it gets.
Have More Questions About Sous Vide?
Q: What Sous Vide machine should I buy?
A: You can buy an immersion circulator, which does not come with a container that is required. Or, some companies make all-in-one sous vide machines that come with everything needed to operate the device.
Q: Are vacuum sealers necessary?
A: They are not necessary. They can help to prolong the shelf life of certain foods, but it is not needed. The main consideration with using vacuum sealers for sous vide is to make sure your food doesn't float while cooking. Other methods of maintaining complete submersion are acceptable as well.
Q: Can I use ziploc bags?
A: Yes, but you should be careful when using these bags at high temperatures.
Q: Why does my meat smell strange?
A: The funky smell after a long cook is normally caused by the growth of bacteria on the surface. If you have cooked it properly, this bacteria will not be harmful. Before bagging, you can hit the meat with a quick sear or with boiling water. Boiling water will be more effective at getting into all the small spaces that a sear might not reach. It will take just a few seconds to kill this non-harmful bacteria at boiling temperature.
(Note: If it smells very bad, it’s probably something else and you should proceed with caution.)
Q: Does it matter if the bag of food is floating?
A: Whatever you are cooking should be completely submerged in the water. If it is floating it is not being completely heated.
Q: Should I sear before or after?
A: Most people opt to sear after the cook for a better texture. If you are looking to save time and want convenience, searing before is perfectly fine.
Q: Should I cover the container I am cooking in?
A: Yes, you should most always cover the top. This helps reduce evaporation and keeps the temperature more consistent.
Q: What do I do if raw meat/juice falls into my water?
A: Empty the water and thoroughly wash your water container. We also recommend periodically cleaning your device in a vinegar bath to keep things fresh.
Questions, Comments, or Concerns?
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