NutriChef PKVS18BK Review
Pros: Tender with delicate foods, solid value
Cons: Can’t seal a ton of bags successively, slow vacuuming/sealing action
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|Pros||Tender with delicate foods, solid value||Integrated bag roll and cutter, limited overheating issues, auxiliary suction hose||Powerful suction pump, gentle on food, manageable size and weight||Designed for heavy use, easy clean-up, decent ease of use features||Good with delicate foods, fairly good value|
|Cons||Can’t seal a ton of bags successively, slow vacuuming/sealing action||No drip tray, So-so suction power||Narrow seal, overheats quickly, touchy touch screen||Bulky, a little rough on food, narrow seal||Not the most convenient, average sealing performance|
|Bottom Line||This NutriChef offers above-average performance particularly in delicate foods assessment||This affordable and convenient unit can seal up to 30 bags in a row while remaining gentle on tender food||This relatively inexpensive unit is packed with convenience features, is easy to operate, and has a soft touch for delicate foods||If a machine capable of sealing in bulk is what you’re after, this convenient, though a bit bulky, machine has staying power while remaining easy to use||While we didn’t find too many issues with the Koios, there are far better products out there for the same price|
|Rating Categories||NutriChef PKVS18BK||Amazon Basics...||Mueller Vacuum...||FoodSaver V4400||KOIOS VS2233|
|Sealing Performance (40%)|
|Delicate Foods (20%)|
|Suction Power (10%)|
|Specs||NutriChef PKVS18BK||Amazon Basics...||Mueller Vacuum...||FoodSaver V4400||KOIOS VS2233|
|Measured vacuum strength||18 -inHg||14.5 -inHg||19 -inHg||16 -inHg||17 -inHg|
|Measured weight||2.9 lbs||3.1 lbs||2.7 lbs||7.8 lbs||2.8 lbs|
|Included air suction hose||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Built-in roll storage||No||Yes||No||Yes||No|
|Built-in bag cutter||No||Yes||No||Yes||No|
|Measured seal thickness||2.5 mm||3 mm||2 mm||2 mm||2 mm|
|Measured average seal time||7 seconds||9 seconds||6 seconds||13 seconds||13 seconds|
Our Analysis and Test Results
To figure out which vacuum sealer is the absolute best of the best, we looked at and compared dozens of different models, then we bought all the ones that showed the most potential to test out in-house. We rated and scored the sealing and suction performance of each machine 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 a row, the width of the melted area making the seal as well on if the bag changed pressure when manually sealing. The NutriChef PKVS18BK did fairly well, earning a 5 out of 10 for its efforts.
This vacuum sealer is actually on the faster side of the group with above-average times in three out of four of our speed sealing challenges and an average time in the fourth. It made quick work sealing a ground beef patty, the sausage links, and the cup of dry rice. However, the machine took a bit longer to seal the four slices of white bread — about 37 seconds as compared to the group average of 35 seconds.
Unfortunately, the NutriChef PKVS18BK didn't do very well in our sealing volume test, being limited to just five bags sealed in a row before requiring a break. However, the NutriChef PKVS18BK recovered somewhat by producing an average width heat seal (2.5 mm) and maintaining the same level of vacuum while doing so.
After our sealing performance metric, we moved on to rating and ranking the products for ease of use and convenience features. We compared the ease of cleaning, storing, and cutting bags as well as evaluating the user interface and measuring the unit's size and weight. We awarded some bonus points for the sealers that have a secondary vacuum pump attachment or accessory port for sealing food or drink in rigid containers. Altogether, these evaluations account for 30% of the final score, with the NutriChef PKVS18BK receiving a middling 6 out of 10 points possible.
Unfortunately, the NutriChef PKVS18BK doesn't have a place to store a roll of bags within the unit. Nor does it have an onboard tool to cut them. Moreover, it lacks a removable drip tray for easy cleanup. However, its design is fairly compact and it is one of the lightest models in the group (2.9 lbs). We also liked that this vacuum sealer has a locking lid and a pump attachment for certain containers such as a wine bottle.
Our third rating metric focuses on sealing some easily smashed food — standard white bread — 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 a top-notch performance meriting 8 out of 10 points. 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 can produce. The NutriChef PKVS18BK did fairly well, meriting a 6 out of 10 points for a measured 18 inches of mercury (in. Hg) — a good bit more than the average of 16.8 in. Hg.
Overall, the NutriChef PKVS18BK is a good value. It holds its own with models at the top of the class while keeping the costs competitive.
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