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This is the first time I used sous vide. I bought the Anova about a year ago and never used it. It seemed too complicated. But my daughter-in-law shared this recipe with me saying that it’s the best ever. So I pulled out that Anova and whipped up a batch. Oh my, the meat is so tender and flavorful. I will definitely be making these again and looking at other recipes now that I’m not intimidated by sous vide! My old version of a French dip has been removed from my list and replaced with this one. If you haven’t tried this recipe, you must do so.
Followed your guidance, and the result was exemplary. Usually, I’m apprehensive in trying internet recipes, especially attempting for the first time, for guests.
It was a hit, and i’ll cataloge for repeat suppers.
Plan well…and you’ll be hearing ….” can I have some more”!
Spot on recipe. Made this for dinner tonight and it was phenomenal.
Can you make it and then freeze, thaw, reheat and sear?
Hi, Jay! Yes, that should work! I’d recommend reheating it sous vide for about an hour to avoid drying it out, and then searing and slicing. Enjoy!
Can you cook the roast in a slow cooker?
Hi, Olga! Sure, this would be great in the slow cooker. I actually did a slow cooker version a few years ago for another site. You can find it here. Enjoy!
I did a 2.5 lb roast and had it in for about 21 hours at 145. It was phenomenal. Came out medium-well on the well side. Amazingly tender and the jus was great without adding anything to it. Will be making again
Absolutely intriguing! Last I saw this method used was in a cook off with a chef and a scientist who used a water bath! Being pregnant my brain is going crazy over bacterial concerns. But I have read through your comments and do understand the level of pasteurization that you speak of.
I am just absolutely flabbergasted that this technology is available! Is it the first of its kind?! Is there other options? Why would this product be the best choice? Sheesh so much researching to do! Thank you for your article!
Hi, Becky! It’s exciting, right?! Sous vide cooking and immersion circulators have been around for a few years now, but mostly used in restaurant cooking. It’s just been in the last few years that this kind of device has really been affordable and available for home cooks. I like the Joule from ChefSteps because it’s pretty slender and I can easily store it in a drawer, plus it works with the pots I already have. But I also have friends who use and love the Anova and the Nomiku! Definitely do your research, but I think you can’t go wrong with a top brand. Enjoy!
I just bought one and haven’t tried it yet. I am planning on taking it in my RV as well as using it at home. Love the idea of sight seeing all day, coming back and dinner is ready!
That sounds like so much fun!
I don’t have a Smart Phone and can’t afford one. Does this mean I can’t use the Joule or any immersion device? I would hate to spend that much money (as apposed to an affordable slow cooker) and then find it useless.
Hi, Grace! Unfortunately, yes, the Joule requires a smartphone. See here: https://support.chefsteps.com/hc/en-us/articles/214090968-Can-I-use-Joule-without-a-smartphone-or-tablet-. However, there are other immersion circulators on the market that don’t require smartphones.
Gourmia makes sous vide water bath that works similar to a crockpot. It does not require a smart phone and is available on Amazon.com for a very reasonable price. Cheers!
1. The recipe that, for me, shows sous vide to the greatest advantage is chicken salad. The reason is that sous vide chicken lets you cook the chicken (safely!) to an impossibly low 142 degree finish temperature. You have to look at the time/temperature safety chart to realize that 165 degrees (the usual recommended chicken “done” temp) is designed to kill all the bacteria within seconds. At 142, it takes about eighteen minutes. However, when cooked to 142, the chicken is not only perfectly safe, it is an amazingly different dish, with juiciness you’ve never experienced before, and a texture that is totally devoid of any stringiness or toughness. When put into a chicken salad, the result is infinitely better for that dish than any other preparation and cooking method.
2. My second point is that a lot of the comments about safety posted here don’t seem to understand that because the food is in “contact” (via the thin plastic bag) with circulating water, which is an amazing conductor of heat, the temperature of the food increases very rapidly to the temperature of the water, and therefore does not stay in the “danger zone” for long enough to be a problem.
Thanks so much, John!
I have been sous-vide cooking for about 5 weeks, and I am in love with it! I started with cap steak and my husband said it was the best steak he had ever eaten! I upped the anti a little by buying some cheap beef which I cut into portions so I could sear it really well and make a great pan sauce. I adore salmon but have read mixed reviews. After reading your review of salmon I can’t wait to try it! Husband doesn’t like salmon, but I can fix it when he is out of town or working late!!! More sous-vide recipes please! I also got a couple of good cookbooks which help too.
Awesome, Ann! I’m loving experimenting with sous vide cooking, too (obviously!). I can’t wait to do more recipes!
I am concerned about the temps. that you cook at.I don’t have to tell you that bacteria grows between 40 F, to 140F.In this type of cooking at these low temps, do you see a problem?
Tnx in advance.
Hi, Jim! Cooking time is also a factor with food safety. For this recipe, and other sous vide recipe where the food is cooked below 140F for an extended period of time, the food effectively becomes pasteurized after several hours of cooking and the risk of harmful levels of bacterial growth is very small. (And foods that are cooked at or above 140F are not in the temperature danger zone long enough for bacteria growth to be a concern.)
I’ve been so curious about trying sous vide for months now (I’ve come really close to purchasing an immersion circulator several times!). When we had Thanksgiving dinner at our friends’ house last year, he prepared a lot of the meal, including turkey, sous vide style. When we arrived, he had a big cooler filled with bags of food and a circulator (his was a different brand). It was so cool, and everything was very good. This article may have pushed me into finally trying it for myself. Thanks so much!
Glad to hear it, Erin! :) A sous vide Thanksgiving sounds pretty amazing!
What adjustments do I need to make if I want to cook only a pound or two of beef?
Hi, Doug! No adjustments necessary for this particular recipe — smaller portions will cook at the same time/temperature as the larger ones. Check the ChefStep’s Time and Temperature Guide for other cuts.
Forgot to ask, I assume if I use a water bath type sous vide all the instructions still apply?
I found out through the Chefsteps website how to sous vide with frozen food. I’m so thrilled to be able to do that!! Can’t wait to try this recipe. Everything I’ve cooked from your site has been great!
Yes! I love being able to cook frozen food straight from the freezer! A friend of mine actually has her butcher season cuts of meat and vacuum seal them for her, and then she throws them straight into the freezer for quick meals. So smart!
My wow moment was with boneless skinless chicken breast. Cooked 1 hour plus at 150. Delicious!
Don’t know if it’s my imagination, but I find that I need to season the meat a little bit more than I usual.
Also, suggestion for your sandwiches. Before you sear it the second time, be sure to patted dry first.
Yes! Chicken breast is so great. Thanks for the tip on the sandwiches! I actually do that, but forgot to add a note to the recipe — will do so now!
From my investigations into Sous-Vide cooking, the Joule model is not as highly recommended as others. I would check Serious Eats (my personal favorite) or Cooks Illustrated before you decide on which model to buy. That aside, this was a very informative article about the advantages and limitations of Sous-Vide cooking. Thank You! Also, great French-Dip recipe!
Does altitude make a difference in this cooking method? I am high & dry so I liked your idea about covering the pot to prevent evaporation, but wonder if altitude boiling temp makes any difference as it does in canning projects. Also, does this work for hot water bath canning?
Hi Patti Ann, the temperature of the water when you sous vide never reaches anything close to boiling (212°F), so altitude shouldn’t make any difference. Also, because this is not a method for boiling water, I wouldn’t recommend it for hot water bath canning.
Ditto what Elise said! The max temperature for the Joule is 208F (just under boiling), and I’m guessing it’s the same for other immersion circulators.
Wow this is so cool! I’ve never tried cooking anything this way before, but I”m intrigued
Hooray! Let us know if you try it, or if there’s anything else you’re curious about with sous vide cooking!
Hi Emma, great post, thank you. I have been cooking “sous vide” almost 7 years, since Cooks Illustrated ran a review of the Sous Vide Supreme machine. I have had great results with bison filet, steaks, lamb, duck and eggs. However, I have not had good results with salmon, so I would love to see your method. I used very fresh salmon from a great supplier, but I always had trouble with albumen “deposits” on the surface. Similar spoiling of beauty to the seepage of egg white on a cracked boiled egg. The flavor and texture was still great, but the visual appeal was marred. I would love to strongly encourage you to post your salmon recipe, for the benefit of your sous-vide followers! :)
Thanks, Dawn! For the salmon, I believe I just followed the basic recipe on the ChefSteps app — 122F for 40 min, plus I added some olive oil and spices to the bag. I’ll have to double-check my notes when I’m back home. I do remember the albumen issue happening, but I think I was so amazed by the texture and flavor that I didn’t pay it much mind! I’ll do some more experimenting, and if I can find a solution, I’ll let you know. Or better yet, post a recipe!
A simple salt and sugar solution such as 5 parts salt to 1 part sugar for 10 minutes will firm up your salmon and greatly reduce if not eliminate the white albumen, results in a better texture whatever cooking method you choose.This exact brine recipe can be found on ChefSteps website.
Great tip! I’ll give it a try next time I do salmon. Thanks!
Thank you, both! I will try this next time. I also agree that chicken breast sous-vide is outstanding. If I am making a chicken salad, sous-vide is really the only way to cook the breasts – so juicy and flavorful.