FoodSaver Jar Sealers

by admin on April 4, 2012

Introduction

This post takes a look at FoodSaver® Jar Sealers. We are particularly excited about these accessories especially the FoodSaver wide mouth jar sealer, which we think is the single most useful one of all. So lets take a look at FoodSaver’s vacuum seal jar product line and see what people’s experience has been using them.

These mason jar vacuum sealers are interesting products that most owners really love. They are intended to be used with traditional canning jars and though not a replacement for canning and probably not a replacement for traditional bag or roll vacuum sealing. I will say a little more about this further on. However they offer some interesting benefits that make them valuable to a lot of FoodSaver® Foodies.

Prerequisites:

  • They only work with a FoodSaver® model that has an accessory port. You cant use them with FreshSaver® or MealSaver™ models.
  • They do not ship with the FoodSaver® accessory hose which goes between the jar sealer and your unit. This has to be purchased separately if your model vacuum sealer did not include it. This is a link for it at the bottom of the page if you need it.
  • Obviously you need canning jars. Canning jars are heavy so you are better off saving the cost of shipping and buying them locally.

How they work:

They couldn’t be simpler to use. You take a Ball or Kerr canning jar with food you want to store. Pop the jar’s standard lid (flat section) on top. Place the jar sealer over it. Hook up the hose that is already connected to your sealer. Press the accessories button and 2o seconds later you have a vacuum seal. Here is a short YouTube video that shows the process.

Why use them?

  • They are the most cost effective and environmentally friendly way to use a FoodSaver® because both the jars and the mason jar vacuum sealer can be reused almost indefinitely. When the lids or sealer wear out they can be replaced very inexpensively. The jars themselves last forever. If you are already canning, you will have extra jars and it becomes a no brainer. Plus you can use this to extend shelf life once you have opened a canned jar.
  • Glass jars are completely rodent and insect proof. If this is an issue for you this is an ideal system for storing grains
  • Its certainly easier dealing with sealing liquids this way than with bags. Remember though to leave plenty of room for expansion if you plan to freeze liquids.
  • Canning jars are available in a wide selection of sizes from 1/2 pint upto 2 quarts.
  • This is a good system for maintaining flavor in dry foods that lose flavor quickly. Foods like coffee, spices and chocolate. As you saw in video the whole process is pretty fast and painless. Im enough of a coffee fanatic that its worth resealing the jar at the end of breakfast to maintain the flavor of my espresso beans for the week or so it takes me to go through a bag.
  • If you dont like storing food in plastic, BPA free or not then this is an excellent solution for you.

When not to use them:

  • Vacuum sealed jars are not a replacement for canning. You will simply not get the extended, safe un-refrigerated shelf life of canned jams, fruits, sauces etc.. Any food you normally have to refrigerate still has to be when stored this way.
  • I dont think they are a replacement for long term vacuum sealing using bags or rolls either. This is personal opinion that I should test, but I dont see how you can get as deep a vacuum or as tight a seal using a canning jar. On the other hand for short or moderate term storage times vacuum sealed jars are a great way to go.

I give more usage tips below. But one of my favorites is buying salad greens in bulk and storing them in the refrigerator in 1 or 2 quart vacuum sealed jars. How many times have you bought bagged salad greens or vegetables and have them start rotting before you could eat them all. Often in less than a week.

Tips:

Foods that work well

  • Salad greens purchased in bulk
  • Vegetables, fruit
  • Cookies stacked in a jar, sealed and given as gifts. Great at Christmas!
  • If you use a Juicer, you can get a day or two more storage out of fresh juice which normally has to be consumed almost immeadiately.
  • Dehydrated foods.
  • Dry foods that lose their flavor quickly. Ground coffee, tea, spices etc..
  • Nuts. Nut oil goes rancid fairly quickly, storing them in vacuum sealed jars will definitely help.
  • Foods with edges that might puncture bags or rolls during sealing.
  • Anything you don’t want small kids to get into :).
  • Foods that go stale quickly or get soggy in high humidity environments. crackers, potato chips etc..

Very powdery foods can be problematic as the powder can get under the lid while sealing and prevent a good seal.

Things to try if you can’t get a good seal.

  • Run the lid under hot water especially the rubber gasket ring. Make sure you dry it well before sealing.
  • Make sure everything; jar, lid and sealer is very clean and dry before sealing.
  • Sometimes the rubber gasket in the sealer ship backwards. Try flipping it.
  • Try using two lids the one on top upside down.
  • Always pull the hose out of the mason jar vacuum sealer or you unit quickly at the end of the sealing process and before you start to remove the jar sealer.
  • Try pushing down on the jar sealer while its sealing .
  • Do not use the screw ring part of the canning lid during or after sealing.

General Tips

  • Remember the FoodSaver® accessory hose is not included with the lid.
  • A butter knife is usually good tool for taking off a sealed lid. Run stubborn ones under hot water.

FoodSaver® Regular Mouth Jar Sealer

This jar sealer is intended for regular mouthed canning jars (2 3/8th inches). I don’t have a lot to add because I use the wide mouth version. So onto the reviews summary.

Amazon Customer Reviews

There are 98 Reviews. 50 of which are 5 stars. 16 1 star reviews. Significantly more people seem to have problems getting a good seal with this version of the sealer. Most people don’t but enough do so that you may want to read the tips section below if you decide to try this version. Click here for a current price and to read the customer reviews.

FoodSaver® Wide Mouth Jar Sealer

The wide mouth jar vacuum sealer is intended to work with canning jars that have 3 inch wide openings, ie wide mouth Ball or Kerr canning jars. As i mentioned above wide mouth jars come in a wide variety of sizes. Plus they are easier to clean especially when using a dishwasher than normal mouth jars.

Amazon Customer Reviews

This is certainly one of the most highly and enthusiastically rated FoodSaver® accessories on Amazon. It has 121 reviews, 101 of which are 5 stars. Only 1 1 star review and 4 2 star reviews. The negative reviews are just about the fact that the FoodSaver® accessory hose needed is not included when you purchase the jar sealer. There were some comments on trouble getting a good seal but I cover most of the tips reviewers offered in the tips section below. Click here for a current price and to read the customer reviews..

I would love to hear about your experiences with the FoodSaver® jar sealer and what you store using it. Please leave a comment below. Thanks!

For more accessory related articles click here.

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