Review: VacMaster VP215 Vacuum Chamber
The VacMaster VP215.

Review: VacMaster VP215 Vacuum Chamber

Unlike FoodSaver vacuum sealers, a vacuum chamber will actually evacuate all the air out of a chamber. It is also useful for Sous Vide cooking and long term storage.

Product links will take you to our affiliate partner websites. We may earn a commission on purchases.

The following is a review of the VacMaster VP215 Vacuum Chamber.

Kitchen Equipment Review: 5 stars, High Recommended.
The VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber
The VacMaster VP215, fresh out of the box.

My journey of discovering the VacMaster VP215 is a long one.

I first became aware of vacuum chambers when I became interested in the world of sous vide, a method of cooking that involves sealing food in a plastic bag and submerging the sealed food in a temperature controlled water bath. Sous vide allows food to be evenly cooked to precise temperature targets. In order to effectively sous vide, as much air as possible needs to be removed from the plastic bag. You can accomplish this with a ZipLock bag using the water displacement method, a FoodSaver vacuum sealer, or with a vacuum chamber.

Vacuum chambers have the highest upfront costs of all the methods to remove air from a bag, so I held off on the purchase for quite some time. However, I got really frustrated with Ziplock and FoodSaver bags that would float to the surface during sous vide cooks. Additionally, trying to vacuum seal food that contain a lot of liquids was a pain, requiring me to pre-freeze the contents before sealing. The cost of the FoodSaver bags was also getting out of hand.

After much research, I decided that a vacuum chamber could solve the gripes I had with the other methods. I decided upon the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber for the following reasons:

  • It has a heavy duty 1/4 horsepower oil pump, opposed to a dry piston, which means that it will last much longer. Yes, it requires oil changes, but draining and replacing the oil is easy. There’s also a window on the back so that you can easily monitor the quality of your oil. According to the manual, you only need to change the oil after 60 hours of use. As a home user, I expect this to happen no more than once a year, if that.
  • VacMaster is an industry leader, meaning that parts for the VacMaster are available in abundance. The vacuum chamber is modular, with each part easily removable. If anything were to ever go wrong with this investment, I could easily locate the parts and fix the machine.
  • As a piece of commercial equipment, it is large and heavy; however, it still fits nicely into an average home kitchen. It has chamber size of 11.25” x 15.25” x 5”, which is large enough for most home applications.  VacMaster will tell you that the maximum bag size is 10” x 13”; however, I use 10″ x 15″ bag with no problem because the length dimension of the bag gets smaller as you fill it with contents.
VacMaster VP215 Chamber Vacuum Sealer
  • Equipped with a 1/4 HP rotary oil pump that can manage larger loads.
  • Overall Dimensions (WxDxH): 14” x 20” x 15” | Chamber Size (WxDxH): 11.25” x 15.25” x 5” | Weight: 84 lbs
  • Heavy-duty yet easy to use, the VP215 extends food's shelf life up to five times longer.
  • A double seal on each bag ensures a complete and lasting seal that's twice as strong as other machines.
  • This reliable and quiet vacuum sealer is perfect for small restaurants, culinary institutions, delicatessens, catering, or hunters and fishers.

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 30754 4-Mil Chamber Pouches, 8-Inch by 12-Inch, 1000 Per Box
  • Designed for use with all VACMASTER VP Series Chamber Machines
  • Keeps food fresh
  • Perfect for cooking or refrigerating applications
  • Protects items going into the freezer
  • Great for vacuum packaging bony items

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Changing oil on the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber.
Changing the oil on the VacMaster VP215 is really easy and only needs to be done after every 60 hours of use.

Unlike FoodSaver vacuum sealers, a vacuum chamber will actually evacuate all the air out of a chamber. This is demonstrated by a neat experiment I performed upon receiving my vacuum chamber. I filled a bowl up with cold tap water, placed it in the chamber, and then began to pump out the oxygen. The cold tap water soon began to boil!  This surprising outcome is due to the reduced atmospheric pressure contained inside the chamber; this is the same reason why water boils at lower temperatures at higher altitudes, or why they say your blood will boil without a spacesuit in space.

Three steaks vacuum packed in the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber

After performing this experiment, I proceeded to vacuum seal three steaks in preparation of a sous vide cook. The steaks emerged from the vacuum chamber with a tight compressed seal. I tried to physically move the plastic away from the steak and had no luck; there was no air inside the bag to allow this. Then I placed the steaks inside a circulated hot water bath and cooked them for an hour. I did not need to use any weights to weigh down the bags, and at no point did the steaks float to surface. After the sous vide cook, I cut open the bags. The bags were still vacuum sealed, even after the cut, and I had to physically separate the two sides of the bag. I was thoroughly impressed with the quality of the vacuum! I proceeded to sear the steaks in a cast iron pan. Absolutely delicious and perfectly cooked!

Steaks seared after a 60 minute sous vide.
Steaks seared after a 60 minute sous vide.
Because a vacuum chamber removes virtually all of the air from a bag, you can do neat tricks like flash pickling and infusing foods with liquids. In fact, one of the first things I did with my new VP215 vacuum chamber was infuse a banana with maple syrup and strawberries with peach schnapps. I also rapidly pickled some cucumbers and bean sprouts for dolsot bibimbap, a Korean rice bowl! Pure deliciousness!
Another common food preparation technique that can be accomplished in a vacuum chamber is compressing fruits and vegetables. For example, compressed watermelon is the result of the intense pressure during the vacuum process. During the vacuum process, the vacuoles inside the watermelon cells start to expand like a balloon. When oxygen is reintroduced into the chamber, the pressure compresses the watermelon and forces the liquid into the empty vacuoles. The result is something that looks more like raw ahi tuna than watermelon, with a transformed texture, color, and flavor.
VacMaster VP215 Chamber Vacuum Sealer
  • Equipped with a 1/4 HP rotary oil pump that can manage larger loads.
  • Overall Dimensions (WxDxH): 14” x 20” x 15” | Chamber Size (WxDxH): 11.25” x 15.25” x 5” | Weight: 84 lbs
  • Heavy-duty yet easy to use, the VP215 extends food's shelf life up to five times longer.
  • A double seal on each bag ensures a complete and lasting seal that's twice as strong as other machines.
  • This reliable and quiet vacuum sealer is perfect for small restaurants, culinary institutions, delicatessens, catering, or hunters and fishers.

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 30754 4-Mil Chamber Pouches, 8-Inch by 12-Inch, 1000 Per Box
  • Designed for use with all VACMASTER VP Series Chamber Machines
  • Keeps food fresh
  • Perfect for cooking or refrigerating applications
  • Protects items going into the freezer
  • Great for vacuum packaging bony items

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Watermelon compressed in the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber.
Compressed watermelon, before and after.

You can also compress other porous fruits and vegetables, such as other types of melon, pineapple, and tomatoes.

Since buying the VacMaster VP215, I’ve found myself using it to save considerable amounts of money. Because the bags are significantly cheaper than FoodSaver bags, I can easily stock up on for sale items at the grocery store without having the cost of the bags negating the savings. I’ve already got a freezer full of vacuum sealed chicken breasts, thighs, and wings; ground beef and pork; and pork chops. I’ve also vacuum sealed left over whipping cream in 1 cup portions, homemade chicken stock in 2 cup portions, and tomato paste in 1TBSP portions⁠—that’s all I usually need in a recipe, but frustratingly they only sell it in much larger quantities. I also use the sealing bar to quickly reseal chips, brown sugar, and other pantry items. I can easily see my vacuum chamber as an investment that will pay for itself in a few years time.

You can also vacuum seal mason jars. Just place your food contents inside the jar, pop on the lid and loosely secure the ring. Throw the jar into the vacuum chamber, run the chamber for 30-40 second, and tada, you’ve got a vacuum sealed mason jar! A recent trip to the grocery store had me taking advantage of this technique.  It was at my local grocery store that I found Ghirardelli chocolate chips on clearance for $1.39 a bag! These are my favorite chocolate chips to use in baking, as they have a richer more complex flavour than other brands. While I was sad to see that I might not be able to procure these locally anymore, I took the opportunity to stock up on them, and to preserve them in vacuum sealed mason jars put in the freezer. I figure I should have at least a year’s supply.

Chocolate chips preserved in vacuum packed mason jars using the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber.
Chocolate chips preserved with the VP215 Vacuum Chamber from VacMaster.
Below is a summary of the advantages and disadvantages of the VacMaster VP215 vacuum chamber:
VP215 ProsVP215 Cons
Minimizes floating bags during sous vide cookingHeavy (84 lbs)
Heavy duty 1/4 horsepower oil pump that’s built to lastRequires oil changes after every 60 hours of use
VacMaster is built in a modular way, and the company is an industry leader with easily accessible parts for maintenance
30-40 seconds to vacuum and seal
Affordable bags
Ideal for long term storage of meats, produce, and pantry items
Flexible: can vacuum seal in bags, mason jars, and other containers
Ideal for sous vide, rapid pickling, and infusing fruits and vegetables with liquids
VacMaster VP215 Chamber Vacuum Sealer
  • Equipped with a 1/4 HP rotary oil pump that can manage larger loads.
  • Overall Dimensions (WxDxH): 14” x 20” x 15” | Chamber Size (WxDxH): 11.25” x 15.25” x 5” | Weight: 84 lbs
  • Heavy-duty yet easy to use, the VP215 extends food's shelf life up to five times longer.
  • A double seal on each bag ensures a complete and lasting seal that's twice as strong as other machines.
  • This reliable and quiet vacuum sealer is perfect for small restaurants, culinary institutions, delicatessens, catering, or hunters and fishers.

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster VP215 Accessories and Bags

VacMaster Pouch Stand for Vacuum Packaging
  • Designed to accept one gallon bags and pouches (12" x 16").
  • Holds and supports bags and pouches for easy filling and prepping when vacuum packaging.
  • Keeps the sealing area clean for reliable seals.
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Perfect accessory for use with VacMaster Vacuum Sealers.

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 30608 4-Mil Chamber Pouches, 6 by 8-Inch, 1000 Per Box
  • Designed for use with all VACMASTER VP Series Chamber Machines
  • Keeps food fresh
  • Perfect for cooking or refrigerating applications
  • Protects items going into the freezer
  • Great for vacuum packaging bony items

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 40721 3-Mil Vacuum Chamber Pouches, 6-Inch by 12-Inch, 500 per Box
  • Heavy-duty 3 mil thick, Nylon/Poly material
  • Keeps food fresh up to 5x longer
  • Prevents freezer burn and dehydration
  • Frozen, refrigerated, microwaved, boiled, or cooked sous vide
  • BPA-Free ; compatible with chamber vacuum sealers

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 40722 3-Mil Vacuum Chamber Pouches, 8-Inch by 10-Inch, 500 per Box
  • Heavy-duty 3 mil thick, Nylon/Poly material
  • Keeps food fresh up to 5x longer
  • Prevents freezer burn and dehydration
  • Frozen, refrigerated, microwaved, boiled, or cooked sous vide
  • BPA-Free ; compatible with chamber vacuum sealers

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

VacMaster 30754 4-Mil Chamber Pouches, 8-Inch by 12-Inch, 1000 Per Box
  • Designed for use with all VACMASTER VP Series Chamber Machines
  • Keeps food fresh
  • Perfect for cooking or refrigerating applications
  • Protects items going into the freezer
  • Great for vacuum packaging bony items

Pricing last updated on June 22, 2022 - 14:00 MDT / Pricing and images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This was a  review of the VacMaster VP215 Vacuum Chamber.

Did you like this VacMaster VP215 review? Read my other reviews here.

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Email
Subscribe
Notify of
3 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Sous Vide Newbie
2 years ago

I got a VacMaster last month and it’s certainly upped my sous vide game. I like the fact that I can do liquids without freezing them first. Still trying to find a place to put the thing though. Wife isn’t too happy with it being in the living room ?

Keith
1 year ago

LOL! Yeah, it’s a beast… I’ve had the VP215 for about 10 years… I keep mine on a stainless steel table in the basement with a rack next to it to hold bags of food upright while I work with one at a time. I keep the bags upstairs in the kitchen. But after filling them, it’s pretty easy to walk them downstairs for the vacuuming. My extra freezer is down there, anyway, so half the time that’s where they’re going…

Shirley
3 months ago

I have had one for some time I vacuum everthing I get my hands on. Had it on my counter but took up to much space so I got a table on wheele’s and roll it from pantry to kitchen or just use it in the pantry if I have a small amount to do , has saved me tons of money

Kitchen Equipment Reviews

Anova Precision Oven Review – Sous Vide in an Oven
Ninja CREAMi Review: Make Incredibly Easy Tasty Ice Cream at Home
Best Whisk for Nonstick Cookware

Delicious Recipes

Rapid Vacuum Pickled Cucumbers and Bean Sprouts
Bibimbap-Inspired Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Caramelized Eggs Cooked in Heavy Cream

Food Articles

A Guide to Selecting the Right Onion
Best Cookbooks of All Time
Can you use a cooling rack in the oven?