A few weeks ago we shared our secret for making produce last 7-10 days when it normally spoils in just 2-3 days in the fridge. Vacuum sealer appliances are absolutely amazing for saving food- but as we're well aware, not everyone can afford to spend $100-200 on a foodsaver or other quality vacuum sealer right now. So we thought we'd share a tip on how you can get the same savings for less than $30.
First, you'll need the FoodSaver Handheld Vacuum System (which is less than $20!) and a foodsaver Jar Sealer which runs from $5-10 depending on where you get them.
Prepare your fruits and vegetables - washing, peeling, dicing or chopping as desired. Basically, you want them to be fully prepared and ready to eat- this is going to save you time during the week on meal preparation and will also help cut down on needing to run to the store for something because you'll be able to see clearly what you have on hand.
Place the prepared produce in clean, dry jar.
Place the lid on top, then Slide the Foodsaver Jar Sealer onto the Jar:
Press the Foodsaver Handheld Vacuum System onto the top of the Foodsaver Jar Sealer and Press the button for about 5-10 seconds. If you can let go of the foodsaver and it stands up by itself, the jar is sealed.
Release the button, gently break the seal by twisting the foodsaver vacuum and remove the jar sealer top. Voila- your produce is safely sealed and you can put it back in the fridge until the next time it's needed. The vacuum doesn't take up valuable (and sometimes scarce!) counter space, it's very effective, travels well and can literally save you hundreds of dollars each year.
Opening your Sealed Jars:
Do not be tempted to use lid openers or can openers to pop the tops of your sealed jars. This creates an indent in the lid that will prevent it from resealing and render it useless.
Instead, take a coin (or the handle of a piece of silverware, such as a spoon), place it on the thread closest to the top of the lid and gently break the seal.
To save time, make up jars of Salad in various sizes (single servings, family size, etc) with all your favorite toppings and veggies:
The FoodSaver Handheld Vacuum System can also be found at Box stores such as Walmart and Target, for about $5 more than Amazon's price.
A Couple Notes for Clarification:
- This is NOT a substitute for "Canning".
- This is NOT a substitute for Refrigeration- if an item is normally supposed to be refrigerated, then KEEP it in the fridge!
- The Jars can be opened as needed, but they should be resealed (takes 20 seconds folks) to maintain freshness.
- Make sure there isn't excess water or liquid in the bottom of the jars, this is what makes your veggies go bad quickly.
© Can Stock Photo Inc. / illustrart