A Nesco Deluxe Vacuum Sealer and several packages of venison.
Travis Smola

Gear Review: The Easy and Affordable VS-09 Nesco Deluxe Vacuum Sealer

The Nesco VS-09 deluxe vacuum sealer is affordable and easy to operate.

The most important part of any hunting experience is the processing and food storage preparations of the wild game meat after the hunt. How well you do this sets the stage for how fresh and flavorful the meat will be when you prepare it later. A quality vacuum sealer machine goes a long way towards making sure you can keep that meat on hand all year-round.

There are a lot of food vacuum sealers on the market, so picking the right one can be difficult, especially if you are on a budget and want to keep things affordable. Fortunately, Nesco arrived on the market with their VS-09 Deluxe Vacuum Sealer.

We recently got the chance to test this food preservation tool and were pleased with the number of different vacuum sealing features it offers as well as the overall ease of use. Using this sealer, you're sure to get a longer shelf life out of the venison and other wild game meats you harvest this season.

Nesco Deluxe Vacuum Sealer VS-09 Features

The Nesco Deluxe Vacuum sealer food machine.

Travis Smola

There are several vacuum sealers offered by Nesco, but the VS-09 falls solidly in the middle between their smaller, lower-priced vacuum sealing systems and their top-of-the-line Nesco VS-12 Deluxe Vacuum Sealer. The price point is $79.99 MSRP, which is great from an affordability standpoint. It has a 110-watt vacuum pump and can be used with bags up to 11.8 inches wide. For the type of meal prepping I do, this is the perfect size.

One thing I should mention before we get into the capabilities is the compact, efficient, organized nature of the machine. Nesco built a handy cord storage system into the base so you can wrap it and keep it stowed when not in use. The sealer fits nicely into a kitchen cabinet or closet when not in use. Nesco also included a handy bag cutter, which stows inside a slot on the sealer itself. There's no need to worry about misplacing it somewhere. It also effortlessly makes perfect cuts so you can fit your vacuum seal bags to the size of food you're preserving.

This sealer has a few different modes that offer different forms of vacuum pressure and sealing choices for different types of foods. For instance, there is a pulse vacuum mode, providing a way to operate the vacuum manually for softer foods like bakery items or buns that you might want to preserve. There's also a seal-only mode that lets you do the same thing, operate the sealing process manually. Most users are likely going to use the auto seal one touch system, particularly for their wild game meats.

One of my tests involved making some venison snack sticks. I cut the sticks into short sections and then sealed them in bags in small quantities for some road trips later this summer. It was easy, worked smoothly, and I'm set for snacks for the time being.

Nesco made this machine versatile by adding a small hose and port that allows you to marinate meats. This can help take away any gamey tastes that are unwanted in venison and other wild animal meat. The company includes some sample bags with the sealer to get started, but says it works with almost all brands of vacuum sealer bags.

The easy-lock handle gets locked in place, and when you hit the auto button, it immediately sucks all the air out of the bag. You just have to wait for the lights on top to indicate the vacuum chamber has done its work and has sealed the food items inside, a handy visual indicator. After inspecting the packages, I could find no missed air bubbles or imperfections in them. Consider me impressed with the capabilities!

The one thing this model does not have that the VS-12 does is the in-unit bag roll storage area. That's not too much of a sacrifice in my mind because of how well-designed this unit is overall.

Using the Nesco Deluxe Vacuum Sealer

Vacuum sealing venison snack sticks.

Travis Smola

If there's one downside to this vacuum sealer, it's that the instructions are a little vague and there's no pictures demonstrating exactly how to place the bags in it to use it. However, that's a minor complaint at best because it's incredibly easy to use once you give it a try, and a quick watch of a YouTube video will tell you all you need to know.

It did take me a few minutes to figure out how to place the open end of the bag properly in the sealer. However, I picked it up eventually and learned how to tell if I'd done everything correctly with that light indicator.

Once I found a groove, it took less than a minute to complete each of the small batches of venison sticks I packaged with the auto-seal feature in my test kitchen. I was rather pleased with how professional the packages looked when I was finished, too. After a few more tests, I was convinced anyone can seal and preserve various types of food using this machine. Whether that be some prime, moist venison cuts or some more delicate items like some freshly baked cookies, you'll be ready to store some food for the long term without stressing freezer burn.

The Bottom Line

The Nesco VS-09 Deluxe Vacuum Sealer is a great beginner kit for anyone who is just getting started in processing and packing their wild game meat. But it also fits the needs of someone requiring a higher usage level, like those preserving game meat from multiple punched tags throughout the hunting season.

Nesco packs all the tools you need for preparing vacuum sealed food right inside the box, and the affordable price is a huge plus in its favor. We can whole-heartedly recommend this sealer for hunters, foodies, and anyone looking to. For more information on this sealer, check out the Nesco website.

For more outdoor content from Travis Smola, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Instagram For original videos, check out his Geocaching and Outdoors with Travis YouTube channels