Tools & Gadgets
NutriChef PKVS18BK Review: Budget-Friendly Vacuum Sealer
What We Like
What We Don’t Like
An affordable vacuum sealer that is very easy to use and is packed with a full set of features.
Vacuum sealers preserve freshness and taste in food by eliminating oxygen, which causes rot and bacterial growth. As such, these appliances are very handy kitchen tools because they keep food fresh for longer as compared to zipper, container, or freezer storage.
These sealers are not usually very expensive and NutriChef’s PKVS18BK is a particularly affordable piece. Despite this, it has a lot to offer and all this is explained in detail below. Let’s get started.
NutriChef PKVS18BK Review
Performance: Keeps Food Fresh Up To 5X Longer
Vacuum sealers are known for their ability to preserve food for very long periods and NutriChef’s PKVS18BK is no different. It is lab tested and certified as capable of preserving foods up to 5 times longer than zipper bags and containers, but this depends on the type of food.
That said, to achieve this, the unit has a suction power of 12 liters per minute, which is provided by a strong 110-watt vacuum pump. This does the job in very little time and ensures all the air is sucked out for total vacuum storage.
The unit has dry and moist sealing features and as the name suggests, the dry mode is suitable for vacuum sealing dry foods while the moist mode is recommended for poached, simmered, or steamed food.
However, with hot food, the sealing bar is designed to withstand temperatures of up to 212ºF, and therefore, you should not exceed this or else you will damage it. On the bright side, the unit is durable enough to withstand 50 consecutive seals, which saves on time and money.
Other features include a compact and lightweight design that weighs only 2.93 lbs. while fitting on any kitchen countertop, and a stain-resistant housing that is very easy to clean because it does not absorb any accidental spills.
Note: You should not immerse the unit in water for cleaning. Only wipe the outer surface using non-abrasive cleaners and use tissue paper on the inner surface.
Delicate Foods: Gentle Suction
While dealing with delicate foods that might crumble when vacuumed, NutriChef’s PKVS18BK offers a solution in the form of gentle suction. The unit has two suction modes, with the default one being “normal”.
In gentle mode, you can manually control the degree of vacuuming by pressing the seal button. Using cake as an example, if you see that it is about to crumble, you can press the seal button to halt vacuuming and this will automatically seal the bag at this point.
That said, this might leave some air inside, and therefore, the food might not stay fresh for a long time. The other more effective option is by using a vacuum canister.
The sealer is equipped with an accessory hose port, which is accessible when the cover is opened. An air suction hose is included in the set and this lets you hook up the vacuum sealer to your canister.
Since the canister’s walls are firm, they retain their shape when air is sucked out, which leaves your delicate food untouched.
Ease of Use: Soft Touch Digital Control Panel
Instead of using buttons, this vacuum sealer is fitted with a digital soft-touch control panel, which is very intuitive and easy to use.
On the far right is the “vacuum seal” touch button and as the name suggests, this sucks out the air then seals the bag. You should wait for about a minute after each sealing process for the machine to cool down.
“Seal” is the next button and this is used for sealing without vacuuming. In the middle is the “food” button for selecting between dry and moist food while the “mode” button right next is for selecting between normal and gentle, which are explained above.
Lastly, there is the stop button, which is meant for instantly stopping the vacuuming or sealing process. These buttons have LED indicator lights that show when each one of them is active
That said, there is one physical button and this is the one used for canister vacuuming. During this process, you can opt to wait for the machine to complete vacuuming after which it will stop automatically, or you can use the stop button to halt the process at any time.
Note: Do not overfill the bags. Leave enough length at the front to fit into the vacuum chamber. Also, ensure the bag opening is not wet and does not have debris because these may cause leaks.
For perishable food such as fruits and veggies, pre-freeze them before sealing then keep them refrigerated after sealing.
Price: Pocket Friendly
With a price tag that is way below the $100, NutriChef’s PKVS18BK is a very affordable vacuum sealer. Despite this, it comes as a complete kit, including various accessories such as 5 medium size bags, an extra-long bag roll, a wine stopper cork, and an air suction hose.
Both alternatives are cheaper than the PKVS18BK but pack in fewer features. For instance, the PKVS15BK gives you fewer options on the control panel, which include “Vac Seal/Stop”, “Seal” and “Canister”.
Additionally, it does not come with the wine stopper cork and the extra-long vacuum bag roll.
On the other hand, the PKVS35STS is a bit more powerful because it has a suction strength of 14 liters per minute but it does not come with a wine cork stopper. All other features are very similar, except for its design. It has a stainless-steel finish with touch buttons on the right side.
A reasonably priced, powerful, and fully-featured vacuum sealer that is recommended for either home or commercial use.
NutriChef’s PKVS18BK is very affordable because it is priced well under the $100 mark. Despite this, it has a powerful vacuum strength of 12 liters per minute, which makes it very quick.
On top of that, it gives you multiple options on the control panel options and comes with multiple accessories as a full kit. This makes it ideal for home or commercial use. However, you need to watch the food’s temperature not to exceed 212ºF when sealing hot meals.
- Product Name: NutriChef PKVS18BK
- Product Brand: NutriChef
- Vacuum Strength: 12L/min
- Maximum Food Temperature: 212ºF
- Weight: 2.93 lbs.
- Dimensions: 14.1 x 6.0 x 3.0 inches
- Soft-touch digital buttons.
- Two sealing modes (normal and gentle).
- Dry and moist food sealing features.
- LED indicator lights.
- Stain-resistant surface for easy cleaning.
- Includes environment-friendly polyamide sealable bags.
- Comes with an air suction hose and a wine stopper cork.