Can a meat that is vacuum sealed for sousvide cooking be cooked instead in a pressure cooker and appropriate results be achieved?

  • 4
    What do you mean by "appropriate results" and what meat? – rumtscho Aug 16 '20 at 20:15
  • What kind of packaging? Can it withstand the elevated temperature of the pressure cooker? – moscafj Aug 16 '20 at 21:03
  • Bags will handle up to 250°F. appropr0aite results = tenderized without being overdone. – flipz Aug 16 '20 at 21:37

This probably isn't safe, and there's no reason to do it in the first place

The purpose of sous vide cooking is to get your food to a very specific and even temperature throughout, in order to guarantee a certain degree of doneness and minimise the possibility of overcooking. It achieves this by holding the food in a water bath at that appropriate temperature until the food has equalised with the water in temperature.

Pressure cookers, on the other hand, work by preventing steam from escaping from a boiling liquid, thereby raising the pressure in the vessel and hence raising the boiling temperature, which will allow certain reactions in the food to proceed more quickly than they would at a regular boil. This means that a pressure cooker is held at a much, much higher temperature than a sous vide water bath - indeed, if i wanted to overcook food without burning it, an extended stay in a pressure cooker is the most effective method I can think of.

If your sous vide bags can handle the elevated temperatures of a pressure cooker (and I don't think that's true for you; a quick Google suggests that pressure cookers are generally capable of hitting 250 degrees Fahrenheit, which is the number you provided for your specific bags) there may still be a danger in putting them in your pressure cooker; when you release the pressure, the liquid inside your pressure cooker boils rapidly to come back down to a temperature that makes sense at its new pressure; the liquid sealed inside your sous vide bags, however, can't vent to the atmosphere, meaning that your sous vide bags are suddenly themselves tiny pressure cookers, except they're not built to withstand internal pressure like that and will likely burst, spraying boiling liquid out of the pot.

In summary, cooking food sous vide inside a pressure cooker will generally drastically overcook it, and then, if you're not careful, spray boiling liquid around your kitchen. Personally, I wouldn't try it.

  • Thanks for your advice. I have a sous vide oven that I use frequently. I was just seeking a quick way to prepare a beef stew, so I simply put the beef out of the vacuum pack into a Bain Marie configuration in the instant pot and achieved the results that i wanted. – flipz Aug 18 '20 at 0:22

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