Earning one of the top scores overall and having one of the more affordable price tags, the NutriChef PKVS18BK easily distinguished itself from the rest of the vacuum sealers in the group to claim the Best Buy award. This product affords you plenty of control, allowing it to do an absolutely phenomenal job at vacuuming and sealing softer and more delicate types of food. It's also fairly easy to operate, has solid sealing performance, and pulls a decently strong vacuum. All in all, the NutriChef PKVS18BK is definitely worth considering if you want the most bang for the buck when it comes to external vacuum sealing appliances.
NutriChef PKVS18BK Review
Pros: Fantastic at delicate foods, great value
Cons: Can’t seal a ton of bags successively, bit on the slower side
Compare to Similar Products
Our Analysis and Test Results
This product finished right behind the FoodSaver V2244, only missing out on the top spot by a few points. The NutriChef PKVS18BK matches the performance of the V2244 when it comes to sealing delicate foods and is equally convenient and easy to use. However, the FoodSaver V2244 did a bit better in our set of sealing performance tests, while the NutriChef PKVS18BK did pull a slightly stronger vacuum in our suction performance test.
To figure out which vacuum sealer is the absolute best of the best, we looked at and compared dozens of different models, the bought all the ones that showed the most potential to test out head-to-head. We rated and scored the sealing and suction performance of each one, as well as how they handled delicate foodstuffs and how easy each one is to operate.
The most important set of assessments overall, our series of sealing performance evaluations are responsible for 40% of the overall score for each product. We graded each on how fast it could seal different types of food, the number of bags it could seal in row, and the size of the melted area when it sealed, as well on if bag changed pressure when manually sealing. The NutriChef PKVS18BK did fairly well, earning a 5 out of 10 for its results.
This vacuum sealer is actually on the faster side, delivering a faster than average time in three out of four of our speed sealing challenges and an average time in the fourth. It put up the relatively faster times when tasked with sealing a pound of ground beef shaped into a square patty, four sausages, and a cup of dried rice.
It took a little bit longer for it to seal the four slices of white bread — about 37 seconds, compared to the group average of 35 seconds.
Unfortunately, this kitchen appliance didn't do terribly well in our volume test, with the NutriChef PKVS18BK only able to seal five bags in a row before it needed a break — a bit less than the average 10 bags of the group.
However, the NutriChef PKVS18BK finished with a strong showing in this test, having one of the thicker heat seals of the group and maintaining the same level of vacuum when we went to manual seal
Following our sealing performance metric, we moved on to rating and ranking how easy to operate all of these food storage solutions are. We compared the ease of cleaning, storing, and cutting bags for each appliance, as well as the interface and overall size and weight of each product. Additionally, we also awarded some bonus points if the vacuum sealer has any additional vacuum pump attachments or accessory ports for sealing food or drink in rigid containers. Altogether, these evaluations account for 30% of the final score, with the NutriChef PKVS18BK delivering a solid performance and earning a 6 out of 10.
The NutriChef PKVS18BK doesn't have any place to store a roll of bags or any way to cut them. However, this does keep the overall size of this kitchen appliance down and it is one of the lightest vacuum sealers of the group.
We also liked that this vacuum sealer has a locking lid, but we did wish that there was a removable cleaning tray for easy clean up.
Additionally, we also found the touch interface to be a bit finicky and oversensitive, making it easy to accidentally start the wrong operation.
It also includes a pump attachment for certain containers, as well as a cork for vacuum sealing a bottle of wine.
For our third rating metric, we tried sealing some easily smashed food — standard white bread — in each product, as well as rating each one on how much effort it took to control the amount of air evacuated by pulsing the control manually, rather than using the automatic functions. The NutriChef PKVS18BK delivered an absolutely phenomenal performance, meriting it an 8 out of 10 — tied for the top score we have seen so far. This pair of tests constitutes 30% of the overall score for this vacuum sealer.
It's super easy to finely control the amount of vacuum with this vacuum sealer. You can alternate pressing the "Vac/Seal" and "Cancel" buttons to pull small amounts of air out, letting you remove as much air as possible from the bag with the white bread without smashing it.
For the remaining 10% of the overall score, we used a vacuum gauge to determine just how much suction power each of these products have. The NutriChef PKVS18BK again did fairly well, meriting a 6 out of 10.
This vacuum sealer was able to pull a vacuum that measured 18 inches of mercury (in. Hg) on our gauge — slightly stronger than the average of 16.8 in. Hg
Overall, the NutriChef PKVS18BK is a fantastic value, holding its own with models that cost significantly more.
If you are looking for a fantastic all-around vacuum sealing solution that won't suck away all your spare cash, then you should definitely check out the NutriChef PKVS18BK.
— David Wise and Austin Palmer