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Foods That Should Not Be Vacuum Sealed

Posted on July 19 2019

Foods That Should Not Be Vacuum Sealed


Have you ever wondered if there are foods you should not be vacuum sealing? There are many foods you can vacuum seal for extended freshness; unfortunately there are a handful that you should not preserve using this method. Some foods contain anaerobic bacteria, which can grow without the presence of air. Within a vacuum sealed pouch, with reduced oxygen, these bacteria will grow and may pose a risk to your health.

 Do not vacuum seal:

      • raw mushrooms
      • garlic
      • soft cheeses (blue cheese, brie, camembert, ricotta and other soft and unpasteurized cheeses)
      • freshly cooked or steamed vegetables (safe to vacuum seal after they are at room temperature)


          In addition, many common vegetables emit a gas when stored. If these vegetables - in the Cruciferae or Brassicaceae family - are kept in a vacuum sealed bag, this gas will cause them to spoil. To store these vegetables properly they should be blanched, dried, then vacuum sealed and frozen for storage.

           Blanch first:

              • arugula
              • bok choy
              • broccoli
              • brussels sprouts
              • cabbage
              • cauliflower
              • kale
              • radishes
              • turnips


              We hope this little guide has assisted you in identifying the few items that should not be vacuum sealed. You can use your vacuum sealer to safely store breads, meats, vegetables, potatoes and more. Most foods can be vacuum sealed to extend their overall life whilst saving you some money and time! 


              Food Storage Chart

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              • FoodVacBags: November 30, 2021

                Hello Nancy – We suggest blanching both the turnips and the collards before freezing. Without blanching, the colors may fade a bit, and the textures and flavors could end up being off.

              • Nancy Mauldin: November 30, 2021

                I purchase turnip and collards greens at grocery with intent to vacuum seal. do I need to wash and let dry or do they need to be blanched?

              • FoodVacBags: November 18, 2021

                Hi Jennifer – Thank you for that information. There are definitely some mixed reviews on this topic. It’s probably best if we leave it up to your discretion.

              • Jennifer J Caldwell: November 18, 2021

                Hello FoodVacBags:
                It is my understanding that adding oxygen absorbers to nuts (due to their high oil content) can be a source of botulism growth and should not be done. In one of your comments, you suggested that one can easily vacuum seal and add oxygen absorbers to nuts to store them. Potentially dangerous?

              • FoodVacBags: September 27, 2021

                Hi Joy – When we talk about drying the vegetables in this post, we are talking about just blotting them so there is not a lot of extra water when you freeze them.

                As for pumpkin seeds, they can stay fresh for a few of months if refrigerated and can last several years if frozen. Here is a great article we’ve posted in the past:


              • Joy: September 27, 2021

                Why would you need to dry broccoli or other crucifers before freezing? Do you mean just blot it so there’s no excess water when freezing?

                I also have a question about hulled pumpkin seeds. Can they be safely stored by vacuuming packing or mylar and kept in a cool, dry place or should they be frozen?

              • FoodVacBags: September 21, 2021

                Hi Merri – The rules of not vacuuming sealing fresh mushrooms or garlic has to do with botulinum toxins. Most strands of botulinum toxins cannot grow at temperatures below 12 degrees C, some can grow in as low as 3 degrees C. Also important, the cold temperatures do not kill any toxins. For these reasons, we do not recommend vacuum-sealing fresh mushrooms or garlic.

              • Merri: September 21, 2021

                Is the rule for not vacuuming sealing fresh mushrooms or garlic for when you are going to store them in the refrigerator, or does it apply to storing them in the freezer too?

              • FoodVacBags: August 19, 2021

                Hi Jeanette –

                Thank you for your question about vacuum sealing in paper bags. There are a couple of reasons to vacuum seal things like flour and sugar in a bag. The suction of your sealer would most likely pull some of the powdered product in and it could clog your machine. The other big reason for vacuum sealing in the paper bag is so no granules get in the seal a ruin it.

                Sometimes when you buy the bag at the store, it’s not the “cleanest” bag because bags around it may have a hole or your bag may have a hole you didn’t know about when you picked it up. If you manage to get a “clean” bag, you could try vacuum sealing it in the bag it came in. Just know there’s still a risk of it clogging your machine or getting in the seal.

              • Jeanette Porcheddu: August 19, 2021

                You mentioned storing flour and sugar in paper bags. Are you talking about the psoer bag that the flour comes In? I want a longer shelf life for flour if u have any suggestions please ca and thank u

              • FoodVacBags: July 19, 2021

                Hello Edgar – I’m a little confused by some parts of your questions, but I will do my best to answer them.

                A – IS IT GOOD TO VACCUM PACK FRESH FISH. CHICKEN, & MEATS AFTER CLEANING AND WASHING. – Yes! Our vacuum seal bags are perfect for vacuum sealing fish, chicken and meats.
                B – HOW LONG CAN YOU KEEP IT IN THE FREEZER AFTER VACUUMING – Here is a link to a great chart that will help you figure out how long you can keep things after they are vacuum-sealed. –
                C – WHAT TYPE OF VACCUM PACK DI YOU RECCOMENT. PLASTIC OR ALUMINIUM. – I’m not sure what Aluminium packs you’re asking about. I’m thinking you might be thinking of Mylar bags. For meats and fish, we recommend plastic. Mylar is typically better for dry goods. Here is a link with more information on Mylar bags:
                D – IS THE DOUBLE SIDE COMBINATION OF CLEAR PLASTIC /ALUMINIUM RECOMMENDED – I’m not sure what you are referring to with this question. I’d be happy to try to answer with a little more detail.
                E – SHOULD I USE ONLY PLASTIC OR ONLY ALUMINIUM. – While these products are similar, they have different uses (if you’re referring to Mylar bags).

              • EDGAR STEPHEN PEREIRA: July 19, 2021

                A FEW QUESTIONS:-






              • FoodVacBags: May 17, 2021

                Hi Michael –

                Vegetables (or food in general) should not be sealed while it is still hot, as this can harbor bacteria growth. Give your food a chance to cool to air temperature before beginning to vacuum seal. You could cool it down quicker using the fridge.

                As for Cruciferae or Brassicaceae vegetables, you could certainly fully cook them instead of just blancing them before vacuum sealing. I would watch out when you reheat them that you don’t end up over-cooking them. If that is not a concern for you go, I see no reason not to fully cook them, as long as you’re able to dry them and cool them before vacuum sealing.

              • Michael: May 17, 2021

                Would you please add to the article explaining the science behind why freshly cooked or steamed vegetables should not be vacuum sealed and why it’s safe to do so after they reach room temperature? Can they be refrigerated first, then vacuum sealed?

                Also, are there storage advantages to blanching Cruciferae or Brassicaceae family vegetables over fully-cooking/steaming them before vacuum sealing (assuming they are cooled first)?

              • FoodVacBags: May 11, 2021

                Hi Joshua – Vacuum sealing fresh garlic and/or mushrooms can lead to the growth of a species of bacteria that can cause botulism. Botulism is a very dangerous disease that can potentially be lethal, which is why we advise against storing these products in a vacuum when they are fresh. You can store cooked mushrooms and garlic in FoodVacBags vacuum seal bags.

              • FoodVacBags: May 11, 2021

                Hello Aleksandra –

                Let’s talk about vacuum sealing nuts. The first step in storing nuts is to store them in a vacuum sealer bag. This will stop airflow and minimizes exposure to light. The air-tight seal will also keep any moisture out. The second step, especially in warmer climates, is to store them in the fridge or freezer. Adding oxygen absorbers certainly wouldn’t hurt. Nuts have a high oil content which tends to have them go bad quicker. If you follow these steps, your nuts will last longer.

                If you plan on storing your jerky or jerky type meat for the long term, vacuum sealing it in vacuum bags will allow you to keep the moisture in and the air out. Include an oxygen absorber to maintain the freshness and consistency of your jerky, and to prevent oxygen from spoiling your jerky.

                As for crackling, I suggest vacuum sealing it with a piece or two of paper towel in the bag with it and keep it in the fridge. This should preserve it for about a week. You could freeze it, but the moisture added in the freezing process can ruin the texture of the crackling.

              • FoodVacBags: May 11, 2021

                Hi Julie – Mac and Cheese tends to last 3-5 days in the fridge. If you freeze it, it can last up to 18 months. Sometimes Mac and Cheese can get a little dried out in the freezer. If that happens, all you have to do is add a little milk when you reheat it.

              • Julie: May 11, 2021

                I am going to start making meals for my 89 year old Dad and I am wondering how long Mac and cheese would last in fridge after Vacuum sealed? Could freezing work? Would like to do a variety of different things that would last him about a month.

              • Joshua Ault: May 11, 2021

                How about mushrooms or garlic that’s refrigerated or frozen?

              • Aleksandra LM: May 11, 2021

                I’m considering some food storage in vacuum sealed bags.
                If i dehydrate whatever sliced roast and vacuum seal it, will it keep wirhout refridgeration? Just like jerky… Talking of roast – preserving crackling would be nice, too. The last batch i made was not really preserved, but was still good to consume after a week of starage in a regular plastic box.
                What about monkey nuts? Normally, the date on the bags they’re sold in is like 3-4 months away, and it doesn’t seem distant enough… i’d peel them…
                Things like pecans, macademias, sesame seeds or nut flours? Or would it be better to add oxygen absorbers into vacuum sealed bags for extra protection?

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