I’m standing in the kitchen, sucking all the oxygen out of a bottle of wine I didn’t finish.
I’m vacuum sealing an apple fritter into a smushed brick for someone special’s lucky day dessert.
I’m watching past-their-prime leeks get preserved in plastic, squeezed and compressed like a sorority sister in a bandage dress.
I LOVE MY ZWILLING VACUUM SEALER.
While researching new electric kitchen appliances because it’s my job and my passion, I came across Zwilling’s Fresh & Save food storage system. I don’t do any sous vide cooking, so I’d never had much use for vacuum sealing — but what a world I was missing. A world without oxygen.
The Zwilling Fresh & Save vacuum pump is a mini handheld vacuum sealer about the size of a pepper grinder. By vacuum sealing your leftovers, from lasagna to parsley to spelt flour, you can extend their shelf life by days to weeks to months. Zwilling says vacuum sealing will keep food fresh for five times longer than non-vacuum sealed food on average, and because ~ 30 percent of the food we bring home from the store ends up being wasted (oof), it’s nice to think that we might have slightly less food waste by using this thing. And after owning this vacuum sealer for more than a year, I can confirm it’s a godsend for leftover ingredients that might otherwise go bad, like avocado halves. They don’t brown! Here’s what I have to say about it so far.
- The Zwilling vacuum sealer legitimately extends the life of leftovers.
- The compact, cordless vacuum pump is more convenient than a bulky countertop vacuum sealer.
- It works with multiple storage methods. The plastic bags are great for the freezer while the glass and hard plastic storage containers are perfect for stacking in the fridge.
- It’s a whole system — the pump must be used with Zwilling’s reusable plastic bags and containers.
- Careful with liquids: If you suck teriyaki sauce into your vacuum pump, it’s game over.
The Zwilling Fresh & Save vacuum starter set, which is available with either plastic or borosilicate glass containers, includes a vacuum pump, a medium vacuum container, a large vacuum container, two small vacuum sealer bags, and two medium vacuum sealer bags. You can also purchase all the items à la carte if you’d like — a big plus if you only need small bags or want different sized containers. Zwilling makes vacuum sealable bento-style lunchboxes too (including one for kids with a dinosaur motif), and you can — and should — get the vacuum wine sealer set so you can save half-empty bottles of Cab Franc for later in the week. (Do not attempt this on sparkling wine, lest you vacuum up all the bubbles.) When you release the wine topper, it lets out the most thrilling psssssssfffffft, like a frosty bottle of Pepsi. It even sounds fresh!
As far as food vacuum sealers go, Zwilling’s Fresh & Save Pump is small (7.5 inches long by 2 inches wide — about the size of a pepper grinder), lightweight, and completely cordless. It’s easy to hold, easy to store, and easy to recharge via mini USB. But don’t let its size fool you — this compact device has all the power of a countertop vacuum sealer machine in handheld form, and I’ve used it on everything from loaf cakes to ham hocks. Because the pump only has one button on it, it is also incredibly intuitive to use. It’s automatic, so you don’t have to hold the button down for it to work — just press it once and it’ll quietly suck the air out of your bag or container and shut itself off once all of the air has been removed. Depending on the container size, your food will be vacuumed sealed in about 30 seconds.
How does the Zwilling Fresh & Save vacuum sealer work?
To use this vacuum sealer machine, you’ll first need the reusable vacuum bags and / or containers — which come in plastic or glass — that Zwilling makes to go along with the vacuum pump. (That part is annoying, because I hate having mismatched containers. But this is a whole system, so Zwilling envisions this being your one and only, I guess.) Both the containers and bags have these round plastic belly buttons that you align with the vacuum pump’s circular rubber nozzle. Press the button on the pump, and a little motor whirs while it sucks the oxygen out of the container. When there’s no more oxygen left to suck, the vacuum turns off automatically and you press down on the container’s red belly button to seal it tight.