Since 2019, we have been working hard to reduce our overall carbon footprint as part of the Anova Sustainability Initiative. By 2022, our goal is to move to 100% recyclable or compostable packaging, have a fully recyclable or compostable vacuum sealer bag, and work with partners that help us reduce waste, such as Plastic Bank.
While we are working hard to create these initiatives, we know that one of the largest drawbacks of cooking sous vide is the creation of plastic waste. Don’t get us wrong, we love sous vide here at Anova - we eat, breathe and sleep it. But we don't like creating waste any more than you do. It’s a tough, industry wide problem with no perfect solution (yet). But if you know Anova, then you know that we love a challenge. That’s why we are working hard to bring sustainable cooking into every kitchen. We know that doing so will be a big win for everyone.
The good news is that there are plenty of awesome existing alternatives to cooking in plastic and some simple tips and tricks you can follow to reduce the amount of plastic you use. To help you get started, here is a four blog series around how to use your sous vide sustainably. The blog series will cover:
- Cooking with the the Anova Precision® Reusable Silicone Bag
- Cooking in high-quality plastic zipper-lock bags
- Cooking in glass jars
- Cooking with the Anova Precision® Vacuum Sealer Bags + Rolls
There are options for everyone. So for all the eco-conscious #anovafoodnerds out there… this series is for you!
Cooking with the the Anova Precision® Reusable Silicone Bag/
You love sous vide, but you also love the environment. You use reusable shopping bags, have a stainless water bottle, recycle, compost, and always say no to plastic straws. You don’t want to create excess waste every time you cook. If this sounds like you, then let us introduce you to your new bestie - the Anova Precision® Reusable Silicone Bag.
Each year, millions of single-use plastics end up in landfills and polluting our oceans. We created the Anova Precision® Reusable Silicone Bag with the environment in mind as part of the Anova Sustainability Initiative. We’ve designed this reusable, BPA-free food safe bag to provide an airtight seal and be dishwasher safe for easy cleaning (top rack recommended). Make your favorite sous vide meals, bag up your leftovers for easy storage, and even reheat with your Anova the next day for that same delicious meal all over again - all without increasing your plastic footprint.
You can easily remove air from the bag by hand, then roll the top to close. Then all you have to do is secure the closure with the pull tie and you’re ready to cook. This bag can easily withstand temperatures from -40˚C all the way up to 230˚C and can even be used for multi-day cooks.
While still not a perfect solution from cradle to grave, this durable silicone bag is a great cooking alternative to help curb your single use plastic use. Although silicone can be used over and over again, not all recycling centers take silicone (please contact your local recycling center to learn more.) The bags’ thicker walls mean that forcing the air out is a bit tedious. For the perfectionists out there - we recommend using a (metal) straw to get the remainder of the air out of the bag. The bags are also more buoyant, so you may have to weigh your cook down with a spoon or fork to keep the bag from floating to the top. Although it's generally easy to clean, it does become a little bit more difficult when cooking oily foods.
There are also size limitations to what you can cook. The largest bag is a half gallon, so you won’t be able to sous vide a whole turkey - unless you break it down into smaller pieces and use multiple bags (which you can easily do).
Even though there are a few issues, overall, we believe our silicone bag is a win for your wallet and a win for the environment. Learn more and purchase your very own reusable silicone bag here.
BonusCheck out this vegetarian buddha bowl recipe created by food blogger and videographer Brita Britnell in partnership with Anova + Imperfect Foods! Prior to launching our own silicone bag, Anova worked with Stasher to offer a silicone alternative to our #foodnerds. Here, Brita uses her sous vide + Anova Stasher bag to cook sweet potato, quinoa, onions and pepper for this simple and healthy bowl.
As always, thank you so much! Check back here next week for part 2 of the series, where we will discuss how to recycle your plastic bags properly.
Until next time,