Intuitive and easy-to-use functions
Vacuum bag roll dispenser and built-in cutter
Retractable handheld sealer accessory (for compatible bags and containers)
Very short power cord
Recommended for use only with FoodSaver accessories
We purchased the FoodSaver 2-in-1 Food Preservation System so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
Vacuum sealers like the FoodSaver 2-in-1 Food Preservation System are used to suck the air out of compatible bags and containers to keep food fresh for longer. Vacuum-sealed goods can last for several years in the freezer or for weeks in the fridge or cupboard without spoiling or going stale.
At well over $100, the FoodSaver 2-in-1 Food Preservation System is a few steps above a basic machine. It features premium bells and whistles like two bag-sealing strips, a panel that automatically opens and closes, and a retractable vacuum hose accessory. But is it worth the splurge? Here's what we thought.
Performance: Works great once you get the hang of it
As far as suctioning and sealing, the FoodSaver works great, but the tech-forward features of this device take a little while to get the hang of. With that said, the unit comes with a thorough instruction guide, and there are plenty of videos on YouTube that are really helpful. The FoodSaver starter kit also comes with two sizes of pre-cut vacuum bags, two sizes of zippable plastic bags, and a roll of vacuum bag material, allowing you to get going as soon as you unbox it.
Making your own bags is quick and easy once you get the process down. With the vacuum bag roll loaded into the dispenser at the bottom of the machine, the first step is to make the initial seal. This involves flipping a gray lever on the side of the machine into the “Lock” position, then the seal function is automatically activated and indicated by a blinking red light. From there, pull out the amount of bag material you need and use the built-in slicer to cut it.
The functions on the FoodSaver are quite intuitive and quick to activate. The buttons are sensitive, and the handheld sealer accessory—attached by a retractable cord—simply needs to be placed over a round panel on the compatible zip bags to initiate suction (more on that below).
We tried the FoodSaver on marinated meat (using the main vacuum-sealing compartment, not the handheld sealer attachment), sliced cucumbers, and even a piece of baguette with success—all remained fresh and flavorful days later. Although the bread required a manual override to prevent it from being crushed, all we had to do was press the “Seal” button before the vacuuming function was completely finished. The next day, it was still soft and not the least bit stale.
For the record, FoodSaver recommends only using their bags and products with the appliance. It does, however, work with bags from other less-expensive brands. We found it was also capable of resealing chip bags, but given FoodSaver’s recommendations, it’s possible that foreign materials could damage the machine over time so do so at your own risk.
We tried the FoodSaver on marinated meat, sliced cucumbers, and even a piece of baguette... all remained fresh and flavorful days later.
Features: Very versatile, especially if you invest in additional accessories
This higher-end vacuum sealer has some handy features that are worth noting. For starters, the clear panel that shields the vacuum chamber automatically opens and releases once the function is complete—perhaps not a necessity, but it’s a luxe detail. Further, it’s clear for a reason: It helps the user align the open end of the bag with the drip tray before the suction process begins.
There’s also a handheld vacuum accessory that works on compatible containers, canisters, and even wine stoppers. FoodSaver sells these items separately, though the starter kit does come with a handful of zippable plastic bags with the circular vacuum sealing panel. To use the accessory, simply place it on the panel and it will remove the air. This is great for items that you frequently open and close, like cheese slices or deli meats, because you can re-vacuum it several times without wasting sealed bags with every use.
You can also use this tool for the “quick marinade” function, which is said to infuse flavor in minutes—perfect for avid grillers and those who frequently have last-minute dinner guests. To use this feature, you will need a compatible container, which must be bought separately, though.
One thing we aren’t a fan of is the length of the vacuum sealer’s cord. It seems the FoodSaver is meant to be a permanent kitchen appliance that sits near an outlet. The cord measures around 2 feet and 9 inches, so it can’t be placed far from a power source. When it’s not plugged in, there is a compartment in the back where you can coil and stash it.
Design: Modern and intuitive
Despite its few shortcomings, it’s apparent that this two-tiered machine was built with convenience in mind. For instance, you can seal bags at the bottom near the bag dispenser, as well as in the vacuum chamber.
Other thought-out details include an open bag dispenser compartment that allows you to see the amount of material on the roll, a clear panel to help you navigate bags in and out of the vacuum chamber, a push bar to initiate the “Vacuum and Seal” function, and the panel that automatically opens and closes.
Despite its few shortcomings, it’s apparent that this two-tiered machine was built with convenience in mind.
Aesthetically, the FoodSaver looks futuristic with metallic finishes. The addition of black and gray accents make this appliance a neutral piece that will go with almost any kitchen decor.
Cleaning: Hand wash and air dry
The FoodSaver contains a drip tray, something many other vacuum sealers lack. This makes for easy cleaning in the event any liquid seeps out of your bag during the vacuuming process. That said, you do have to pull the tray out of the machine at an angle because the panel it’s behind doesn’t lift very high.
The handheld sealer is attached to a retractable cord for easy storage, and it contains a reservoir that can be disassembled for easy washing in case any liquids get sucked into it.
Both washable parts are simple to clean and sanitize with soap and water, but keep in mind that they need to completely air dry before being re-inserted into the machine. The rest of the machine can be wiped down with a damp sponge, but cannot be submerged.
The machine's washable parts are simple to clean and sanitize, but they need to completely air dry before being re-inserted into the machine.
Price: On the higher end, but worth it if you use all the features
At around $150, the FoodSaver 2-in-1 Vacuum Sealer isn’t cheap, but you’ll get your money’s worth if you use it on a regular basis. Throwing away spoiled groceries is costly, after all.
Of course, to really make the most out of this machine you’ll need to purchase additional FoodSaver accessories, such as jar tops, glass containers, and bottle stoppers. Further, while FoodSaver brand bags are recommended by the company, they tend to cost more than generic brands.
Competition: Lots of cheaper models out there
Crenova VS100S: You can save a lot of dough by opting for the Crenova VS100S. It does a great job at vacuum sealing, but it’s lacking most of the FoodSaver’s high-end features. There are no bells and whistles here, which means no bag roll dispenser or built-in cutting feature. It is substantially smaller, though, and it’s a reliable way to seal wet and dry foods alike. If you’re after a basic appliance that doesn’t look or feel cheap, this will certainly do.
NESCO VS-02: For a low cost and convenient features, the NESCO is smooth to maneuver with an easy-lift vacuum panel and built-in bag slicer. Again, it’s more basic than the FoodSaver, but it’s a step above the Crenova with features like a built-in bag cutter and storage compartments for the bag roll and cord. This vacuum sealer is roughly the same size as the FoodSaver, but its bulky design isn’t as attractive.
Good for experienced users.
Because of its high price and numerous settings, the FoodSaver 2-in-1 Food Preservation System is a solid option for those who are already familiar with vacuum sealers and know they will use this high-end gadget, but this unit may be overkill for a first-time user.
- Product Name 2-in-1 Food Preservation System
- Product Brand FoodSaver
- Price $148.99
- Weight 9.9 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 9.49 x 17.44 x 9.5 in.
- Item Model Number FM5200
- Warranty 5-year limited warranty
- What's Included 11 x 10-in vacuum seal roll; 3 quart-size vacuum seal bags; 2 gallon-size vacuum seal bags; 3 quart-size vacuum zipper bags; 2 gallon-size vacuum zipper bags