We extensively researched over 75 different vacuum sealers, then bought the 7 best products on the market in 2020 to test side-by-side and find out which sealer truly took our breath away. We tried sealing all sorts of different types of food in these products, ranging from berries to burgers. In addition to comparing food sealing performance, we also measured the strength of the vacuum each machine was able to pull and rated how convenient and easy to operate each product is. Read on to see which appliance claimed the top spot, which is your best bet on a budget, and which one is great for heavy-duty applications.
The Best Vacuum Sealers of 2020
Best Overall Vacuum Sealer
The FoodSaver V2244 is our all-time favorite product in this category, earning it the title of sealer supreme. It did one of the best jobs of the entire group at sealing delicate or easily squashed foods, offering the most control when it comes to the amount of suction applied. The interface is user-friendly and the V2244 has a locking mechanism that secures the bag in place while sealing, all in a form factor that doesn't cause too much of an impact on your counter real estate. There is a removable tray that makes cleanup a breeze if you accidentally suck some liquid into the machine and it can be used quite a few times in a row before it needs a break or there is a drop in performance.
However, the heat seal isn't the largest and takes a bit longer to heat up and seal than some of its rivals. It also lacks built-in storage for a roll of bags or an integrated cutter and doesn't have the strongest vacuum compared to heavier duty machines. Regardless, it should be strong enough for most people, whether you are using it for sous vide cooking or simply hoping to save by buying food in bulk, and is the model that we most highly recommend.
Read Full Review: FoodSaver V2244
Best Bang for the Buck
For a top-notch vacuum sealer that won't suck your wallet dry, check out the NutriChef PKVS18BK. It finishes near the top of the entire group. It has above-average suction power and allows enough finesse to seal foods that are easily squashed. Plus, it is quite easy and convenient to use.
Regrettably, the PKVS18BK failed to impress us much when it came to sealing performance; it was only able to seal five bags consecutively before it needed a brief break to cool down. This makes it a poor choice for sealing large amounts of food but should be more than adequate for smaller batches of food. So this should be your first choice if you are shopping on a budget.
Read Full Review: NutriChef PKVS18BK
Best for Tight Budgets
The Geryon E2900-MS is a great choice if you are shopping for a vacuum sealer on a restricted budget. This product does a solid job with foods that are easier to vacuum seal and is intuitive and easy to operate. The Geryon even has a pump attachment that can be used to vacuum seal food in special containers or even an open wine bottle. This product finished in the middle of the group in our suction power measurement test as well.
However, there are some notable concessions with this product and it can't really compete head-to-head with the top-tier sealers — enough that we would only recommend the Geryon if you are shopping on the tightest of budgets. It can be a bit hard to seal delicate types of food without either leaving residual air in the bag or completely crushing your food. It can also take a bit longer to seal things like ground turkey or beef due to all the trapped air. The Geryon might not be for everyone but it's our top recommendation if you want to spend the absolute minimum when shopping for one of these products.
Read Full Review: Geryon E2900-MS
Best for Heavy-Duty Food Storage
Weston Pro 2300
If you are an avid hunter or fisher or someone else who routinely needs to vacuum seal large quantities of food, then consider the Weston Pro 2300. This massive appliance can seal bags that are almost twice as wide as many other products and it can seal significantly more bags in quick succession without a break than most of the lighter-duty models. The interface is intuitive and easy to operate and this heavy-duty model has superior suction.
Unfortunately, it also costs significantly more than every other model in this test — costing about the same as a vacuum chamber, which allows you to vacuum seal liquid without freezing it. This makes it a bit of a hard choice between the Weston and a chamber model, but the Weston is a great choice if you know you are primarily preserving large quantities of meat. This machine is too much for the average person, but among the best for a hunter who needs to store a whole lot of meat.
Read Full Review: Weston Pro 2300
Why You Should Trust Us?
Our evaluation team of Austin Palmer and David Wise, have comprehensively reviewed and performed hands-on tests with over 75 different kitchen appliances for TechGearLab, ranging from juicers to bread machines. In addition, both use similar products at home frequently — Austin is a BBQ master and David is an avid home baker and loves to cook with the sous vide method. TechGearLab purchases all of the vacuum sealers that we tested — we won't ever accept free products so that our reviews are unbiased.
We sealed hundreds of food items such as berries, ground beef, sausages, and dried goods performing rigorous side-by-side tests to evaluate performance. We also spent tons of time comparing the ease of sealing different types of food — both wet and dry — and the overall convenience of using each machine. Finally, we used a vacuum gauge to see which one had the strongest suction, using a custom-built testing apparatus to truly get an objective metric to find out which one pulled the best vacuum.
Related: How We Tested Vacuum Sealers
Analysis and Test Results
We conducted extensive research, combing through existing reviews and manufacturers' websites to pick the models that had the highest potential to win an award. We then bought the most promising nine to test side-by-side.
Related: Buying Advice for Vacuum Sealers
Both of our award winners, the Editors' Choice FoodSaver V2244 and the Best Buy NutriChef PKVS18BK are both decent values. The FoodSaver is priced in the middle of the group but delivers the best performance. The NutriChef PKVS18BK is a less expensive and only scored a few points lower overall. The Weston Pro costs a few hundred dollars more than the rest. It is a much heavier-duty product, far more suitable for someone who hunts or fishes and needs to preserve a large quantity of their take or for someone who needs to store a larger quantity of much bigger portions.
This metric is responsible for 40 percent of each sealer's score, or almost half the total. We first measured how fast each one could evacuate the air from a bag and seal it, using four different food items. We also scored each product on the number of bags that could be vacuumed and sealed in a row without the machine needing a break or a noticeable drop in performance. Finally, we also awarded points based on the thickness of the heat seal.
Claiming the top spots, both the FoodSaver V2244 and the Weston Pro 2300 each earned a 7 out of 10 for their sealing performances. However, neither of them got off to a great start in our speed test. We timed how long it took to seal four slices of standard white bread, one cup of dried rice, a pound of ground beef shaped into a square patty, and four premade sausages. The Weston did a bit better than the V2244, but still was not the fastest of the group. The Foodsaver V2244 took a bit longer than average to seal the rice, ground beef, and sausages and was right on the average time for sealing the bread.
The Weston was above average at vacuum sealing the sausages, rice, and the bread, and the average time to seal the ground beef. It did the relative best with the bread: 29 seconds to evacuate all the air and seal the bag, 6 seconds faster than the group average.
Both of these products did very well when it came to volume. The V2244 was able to seal 21 bags, the Weston 15 bags. The Weston had the edge in actual seal strength with a heat-sealed area that measured 5 mm across, twice that of the FoodSaver's.
Following these top products, the FoodSaver FM5200 and the NutriChef PKVS18BK each earned a 6 out of 10 for above-average sealing. The NutriChef PKVS18BK is reasonably speedy at sealing, putting up faster than average times in our rice, ground beef, and sausage tests and an average time with slices of bread.
The FM5200 is on the slower side in all four tests, but it still took less than a minute to complete each one. Neither the FoodSaver FM5200 or the NutriChef PKVS18BK can match the Weston or the V2244 when it came to sealing multiple bags, each only able to seal 4-5 before needing a break.
These both have some of the larger seal sizes of the group, with the NutriChef measuring 3 mm and the FoodSaver FM5200 2.5 mm. This pair had great showings in our last test, each maintaining vacuum perfectly when we manually sealed a bag.
Next, the Koios VS2233 earned a 5 for its middle-of-the-road sealing performance. The Koios is one of the slowest vacuum sealers of the entire group. However, it did fairly well in our volume test, able to seal about 14 bags in a row before the vacuum weakened. It had a slightly skinnier than the average seals of 2 mm in width, and let in a tiny bit of air when manually sealing, losing about 1 inch of mercury before the bag was closed off.
The Geryon E2900 and the Nesco VS-02 followed, both with 4 out of 10 for below-average sealing skills. The Nesco seals surprisingly fast, but it only sealed about 6 bags before performance dropped and has a seal on the thin side: 1.5 mm.
The Geryon is about average in speed, although it took a long time to seal the pound of ground beef. It did seal 11 consecutive bags before showing signs of a struggle. It has a thinner seal — 2 mm — and let in a ton of air with the manual seal function, making this a poor choice for delicate food items. The Nesco does the opposite, continuing to evacuate air when you initiate a manual seal.
We evaluated how easy each product was to use. We awarded points if products had built-in storage for a roll of bags and an integrated bag cutter, if there is a removable cleaning tray, and if there are any integrated attachments for sealing other types of containers. We also rated the interface, the locking mechanism on, and their overall size and weight. Altogether, these tests are responsible for 30 percent of the total score.
When it comes to convenience, one stood well above the rest: the FoodSaver FM5200 earning a 7 out of 10. It has both a bag cutter and storage for a roll, making it super easy to evenly cut a lot of bags quickly. It also has a removable tray that makes cleaning it a breeze. It also has an accessory port for specific zipper bags or other containers.
Unfortunately, this vacuum sealer is also one of the larger models, making it more difficult to store. The lid locks in place and the push-button interface is fairly easy to use and navigate.
Following the FoodSaver, the FoodSaver V2244, the Geryon, the Nesco, and the NutriChef all earned a 6 out of 10. Of these four, only the Nesco has built-in bag storage and an integrated bag cutter. None of these has a removable tray for easy cleaning. The NutriChef, the Geryon, and the V2244 are all about average in size and have an included pump attachment for other storage containers. The Nesco is quite a bit larger and only has an accessory port.
Both the Nesco and the V2244 have push-button interfaces that we favored over the touch buttons on the NutriChef and the Geryon. We liked that all four have a lid that locks in place while vacuuming and sealing.
Following this group, the Koios merited a 5 out of 10 for its average level of convenience. It doesn't have any bag storage options or a removable cleaning tray, but it is relatively compact and has a locking lid.
The Koios does have an attachment for containers with special valves and has a very easy to use push-button interface.
Finishing in the back of the group, the Weston Pro merited a 3 out of 10. It lacks any sort of bag storage or cleaning tray, as well as a pump attachment. It has a fairly responsive interface but you have to press and hold the lid down when using it. It is also gigantic compared to most other models, weighing almost 10 times as much as some of the other models.
Next in terms of importance, we scored each on how it handled squishable food items; how easy it is to control the amount of vacuum to avoid pulverizing more delicate food items. These tests account for 20 percent of the overall score.
The NutriChef and the FoodSaver V2244 tied for the top spot, each with 8 of 10. It was very easy to manually control how much air was evacuated from the bag by alternating between the "Vac/Seal" and "Cancel" buttons, though the V2244 is a tiny bit better. Both machines are very responsive, allowing you to pulse the vacuum and creep up to the perfect seal with delicate foods: evacuating as much air as possible without smashing the food.
Next, the Koios merited a 7 out of 10. It does let in a bit of air with each pulse, making it more frustrating to use. The Koios also occasionally isn't very responsive to the "Cancel" button, causing you to thoroughly smash delicate food items.
The Geryon came next with 6 of 10. It's very easy to manually control the vacuum and the machine is very responsive, but it lets in a bit of air with each pulse cycle. The Geryon lets in quite a bit more air, making sealing delicate foods a two steps forward, one step back kind of process.
The Weston Pro followed with 4 out of 10 for below-average performance. It doesn't stop or start immediately when you press the buttons and lets in a significant amount of air with each pulse cycle, making it a pain to seal delicate foods.
The remaining vacuum sealers — the FoodSaver FM5200 and the Nesco all earned a 2 out of 10. The FoodSaver and the Nesco all continue vacuuming when you try and pulse, leading to some very squished bread.
For the last 10 percent of the score, we measured the maximum vacuum each appliance could pull, measuring the strength by a gauge we mounted into a standard vacuum bag.
Earning a 7 out of 10, the Weston and the Nesco tied for the top score, pulling a vacuum that measured 20 and 18 inches of mercury (inHg), respectively.
The Geryon, the Koios, and the NutriChef came next at 6 out of 10 with measurements between 16 inHg and 18 inHg. Both FoodSaver models earned a 5 out of 10 each pulled between 15 inHg and 16 inHg.
Hopefully, this has been helpful in your quest to find the perfect vacuum sealer to add to your kitchen, whether you are looking for an industrial-grade model for heavy-duty use, a top-tier model for sous vide cooking, or a budget model that won't break the bank.
— Austin Palmer and David Wise