There are many benefits of cooking sous vide, such as enhanced flavours, textures and tenderness, but did you know that it’s also has a range of health benefits?
There’s No Additional Fat Required
Traditionally, adding extra fats and salts to our food is just standard, whether it’s to add flavour or to help prevent food from sticking to the cooking surface.
These oils are often bad for us, increasing the amount of calories and cholesterol in the food, however, with sous vide cooking you either only need to use a tiny amount of unhealthy salts and fats, or usually, none at all (usually only if you’re searing in a pan to finish).
Bear this in mind when preparing and vacuum sealing your ingredients, as many people make the mistake of adding far too much fat to their pouches, which will take things the other way and be far unhealthier than traditional cooking.
It Retains Nutrients
Many of the best nutrients found in foods, which can help to do things such as give us more energy and boost our immune systems are actually lost or destroyed during the cooking process.
Exposing your food to heat, water and oxygen leads to a loss of lots of nutrients which are really good for you, whether it’s over-carbonisation of meat, or vitamins and antioxidants in vegetables being lost into the water when boiling.
However, vacuum sealing your ingredients before cooking ensures that the food isn’t exposed to any oxygen or water, and heat is kept to a minimum so that all those healthy vitamins and minerals which are usually lost through traditional methods such as boiling and steaming are instead kept locked within the bag.
It’s Easier to Digest
Sous vide also helps to make food easier to digest, breaking down the collagen proteins into gelatine, which is much easier for our bodies to absorb.
As you can see in this post from Dr. Axe, gelatine has a range of health benefits, not only making the food easier to digest but also helping to protect the joints, improve sleep quality, improve skin health and more.
There’s No Chance of Undercooking
One of the best things about cooking sous vide is that contrary to what many people may think, it’s actually a lot safer than traditional methods of cooking, meaning you can’t really undercook your meals and end up with any nasty food-borne viruses.
The fact that food is vacuum sealed in pouches also means that there is no oxygen to allow harmful bacteria to survive.
So long as you cook your food for the right amount of time and at the right temperature, any harmful bacteria should be killed off, with no margin for error. (You can use our Cooking Time Calculator or check our Guide to Sous Vide Cooking Times for some guidance.)
Finally, to ensure that there are no bacteria on the surface of the food, simply give it a quick sear before serving just to ensure that it’s totally safe!
It Makes It Easier To Batch Cook
It goes without saying that the easier it is to prepare healthy food, the more likely you are to be motivated to eat well.
Flavour and convenience are often placed ahead of nutrition, and many of us simply don’t have the time to spend making healthy dishes.
Batch cooking is a great way to go about this, preparing large quantities of food in advance, ready to be popped in the sous vide water bath or container ready to be left to cook (dependant on the product it could be left to cook overnight).
You could even freeze your pre-prepared ingredients, ready to be cooked without defrosting if you wished.
The long shelf life of sous vide prepared foods also means that you could choose to pre-cook large quantities of food, then simply leave them to be served up at a later time, giving you all of the aforementioned health benefits, but without the traditionally long cooking time of sous vide.
Proper Home Cooking is Just Healthier!
Finally, when it comes down to it, cooking at home is simply healthier, whether you use sous vide or not.
As you can see in this study, people who regularly cook at home consume fewer calories, usually because of the high levels of carbohydrates, fat and salts used in restaurants, takeaways and ready meals.
Cooking your own food means you have ultimate control over your meals, especially with sous vide, and once you own your own sous vide machine, and realise the tender and flavoursome dishes you can consistently create, you’ll find yourself wanting to use it as often as possible, meaning you can throw that takeaway menu in the bin!
Ultimately sous vide cooking means that you don’t have to compromise on flavour to eat healthily, and you only need to look to the fact that it’s trusted by many top chefs in their restaurants around the world, to see that it really is a great and healthy way to cook.