Sous Vide Cooking...who does it, what do you cook, how do you do it?

I’m a hobbiest home cook, and I am all over the cooking planet of what I like to do. I am interested in all kinds of cuisines, and actively cook recipes from many of them. I love cooking classic recipes, and I am an avid user of cast iron, carbon steel, and copper cookware. Contrast that with the fact that I’ve been an avid user of sous vide cooking since Anova first released their immersion circulator. I’m currently on my 2nd circulator…

I use sous vide a lot. It is my go to method for cooking fish. I have not made a steak the “conventional way” for several years now…it’s sous vide and cast iron for me. I’ve done prime rib in a sous vide, pork roasts, duck breasts. It’s become my go to method for beef tongue, (lengua tacos are the bomb!) as well as making carnitas.

There’s a lot of good resources out there on the internet, but I tend to gravitate to Serious Eats for my sous vide guide.

Who else uses sous vide a lot…and what do you cook?

FWIW…my latest research project is making sous vide fried chicken. While I love making fried chicken, my recurrent failure is over browning the crust while trying to insure the meat inside is cooked. Pre cooking the chicken pieces sous vide should be just the ticket for insuring the meat is cooked,…the frying will just be to brown the crust. For those of you who have used sous vide for fried chicken…i have a few questions. Do you brine your chicken before you sous vide it…do you cook it in the brine? Or just avoid the brining step altogether since you are sous vide cooking it? The recipes I have read are all over the place in this step.


Steak mainly. I like it.

We do our Robbie burns nite haggis that way too

It’s a pain in the ass. I just grill steaks too. Still I like it.

I do mostly pork loin and chops. Tried chicken breast once and it was a bit ‘soft’ textured for us. I haven’t figured a way to do our preferred steaks that have lots of fat (like ribeyes) because it doesn’t render well and my wife thinks it’s disgusting. Haven’t tried fish or any vegetables. Seems like the time involved isn’t worth the difference. Still have lots to learn.

Shortribs so that they are very tender like steak but don’t fall apart as when braise it. Pork tenderloin, chicken but it is also really good for making duck confit without the need of tons of fat

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I used to all the time during the pandemic, but had not bothered with sous vide in a long time… and yet, coincidentally, I have pork chops going right now.

For your brine question, I don’t think it’s any different than whether or not you would otherwise.

As to what I’ve used it to cook - duck breast, large cuts of beef, long-cooked cheap cuts (eg chuck), pork chops. Steaks occasionally but I usually just reverse sear.

What I don’t like cooked sous vide - fish (don’t like the texture), pork tenderloin, eggs, vegetables. Not a huge fan of chicken cooked SV either.

E, wabi, Aloha. This is a challenge for me to understand. Have you been experiencing underdone meat? Dark or light or both?

Wahine is borderline phobic about moa that shows any pink at all. I’ve showed her how a pink color near the bone isn’t necessarily a sign of unsafe or undercooked, but her eyes remain unconvinced. We have that here?

One thing you might try is buying/shooting smaller birds, or, if you buy the big commercial chickens, splitting each breast half and separating drums and thighs before battering.

I’m not a big SV fan, but if I was going to fry beeg batches of mixed chicken pieces (and I wanted them to come out the same and together), I might do the thighs and drums SV for just a little bit beforehand. This is the obverse of why supermarket fried breasts are usually dry and overdone.

OR, since you’re experimenting, you could fry chilled breasts with Tradewinds-temp dark meat.

I like sous vide for chicken and turkey breast a lot. For me chicken breast is kind of the perfect showcase for sous vide. I also like shrimp and lobster a lot. Beef tongue is awesome sous vide, too. It’s great braised, but you get this different texture sous vide that I love.
I do not care for sous vide eggs or fish much. I think steak and pork chops are better reverse seared. I worked somewhere that did cauliflower sous vide and it was foul. It was like fart in a bag and really unpleasant when you opened it up, and the texture was off-putting to me.
However people swear carrots are amazing sous vide, so I’d give it a try.
I like using it to make yogurt and tempering chocolate really is much simpler than other methods.

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Tried it, don’t like it, will never use it again.

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Hands down . Whole beet cooked in sous vide is second to none. Beats the pants off cooking in the oven.

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I’ve made a few things (chicken, steak, pork chops) sous vide but nothing WOWED me enough to go out of my way to do it again. I’m also just cooking for myself these days so I’m less motivated to try new things. I kept the sous vide machine when I moved here but I haven’t used it in the 3.5 years I’ve been here.

Kaleo…the problem I have frying chicken is getting the interior cooked before the coating is too cooked. I will usually stick a Thermapen into the thigh when I am cooking it to see that it’s approaching at least 160…but I find the coating getting too dark before that happens. I don’t mind a little pink, I just dont want raw. Most of the chicken I fry are Costco bone on, skin on, thighs. I do like to break down my own birds, but da wahine no like white meat. We also always have those thighs on hand. I’ve tried lower temp, longer frying at around 300, but the chicken can be greasy then. I have tried various ratios of corn starch and wheat flour…but my coating still seems to brown way too easily. Embracing a prior sous vide cooking of those thighs seemed to be a nice work around for this.

FWIW, I leave the sous vide circulator on top of the counter all of the time, so it is used a lot.

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Yep . Fried chicken is my white whale. It’s never come out right for me . Multiple internet searches and recipes. This could be a whole thread by itself.

Hiki no. I’ve just never heard of this problem before.

Does fried chicken from restaurants suffer being overbrowned and undercooked for you?

Big SV fan here, but it’s not the right tool for everything. I like it for chicken and turkey breast, pork tenderloin, duck breast, salmon and shrimp (but not most other fish). I also like it for cooking roulades (like a stuffed and rolled flank steak or turkey thigh), because those items are very difficult to cook evenly due to thickness. It makes great pork belly, too, as long as you get it good and dry before you try to crisp it up.

It also makes great pâté and crème brûlée, really anything you’d normally cook in a bain-marie in the oven. Also works well for tempering chocolate.

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Not a fan of it for most proteins - there is something about the texture I don’t care for, but I love it for making yogurt. And since we go through yogurt rapidly here I’m making a batch a week normally (temporary apartment during our reno so SV did not make the moving cut as no counter space)

I use it, and have both a “water oven” and an immersion circulator.

Now that you ask, I used to use it for 72 hour short ribs, but I realize now my main use is larger batches of “poached” chicken breasts for chicken chili, salmon for confit, or a bunch of soft boiled eggs. I’ve tried to use it for tempering chocolate, but could use some help with that.

For steak, pork chops, and chicken breast for two, I now do a dry brine and “reverse sear”.

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I mostly use mine to pasteurize eggs for ice cream!

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I like my sous vide but can’t say I use it all the time. I use it most often for eggs, steaks and certain vegetables. It really depends on the dish, and most of my nightly cooking is what can be cooked fast. Since I get a meat share, I occasionally get cuts better suited for long and slow cooking. The sous vide works perfectly for those.

I prefer sous vide when I need to have precise temperature control and have the time to do it super slowly. It’s a lot easier than minding a pot on the stove, checking for spillovers, water level, etc.

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Cooked sous vide after a long time, and it struck me that lots of people here do but we don’t talk about it much anymore.

I’ve been using my Instant Pot’s sous vide functionality, which works remarkably well even though there isn’t a circulator.

Yesterday I cooked a whole pack of bacon, one of the things I think sous vide does good things for. 145F for 24h (I did 135 for the first 2h because I had a steak in there too). Goes into the freezer, crisped before eating.

Also the aforementioned steak, which I cooked at 135F for 2h and is now in the freezer for a quick meal another night.

Now that I’m using it again, I’m reminding myself of the things I’ve actually preferred cooked (or started / tenderized) this way – pork chops, beef short ribs, korean galbi, and beef chuck roast (whole or in steaks).

Anyone still cooking this way regularly? Favorites? Marinades, methods, times & temps?

Linking the thread that came (and went quiet) before this one.

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I still do steaks SV occasionally, and carrots.

135F for beef steak? If I go much past 120F in the bath, I have not liked the results after the sear.

Frankly, I get comparable if not bettet results baking steaks at 120F and then grilling over high charcoal for 90 seconds/side.