My Favorite Portable Vacuum Sealer for Jars and How To Use It

Sneak Preview: Find out why I’m so excited about this portable vacuum sealer for sealing Mason jars, specifically for my chopped lettuce. It also works for seeds, nuts, candy, flour, spices, etc.

shows three jars of vacuum-sealed chopped lettuce using the electric Mason Jar Vacuum Sealer

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Thanks to one of my observant readers, I have discovered a new gadget for vacuum-sealing Mason jars full of lettuce, fresh fruit, seeds, flour, nuts, etc. I have included a how-to video because I want all of my readers who use Mason jars for storing food to know about it.

Note: Vacuum-sealing a Mason jar is not a heat or pressure canning substitute. It is a simple way to remove oxygen from the inside of a jar. If the contents of a jar are perishable (such as chopped lettuce, salad dressing, or homemade mayonnaise), the sealed jar must be stored in the refrigerator. This cannot be used for canning meat or cooked veggies like tomatoes or green beans.

Over the years, I have tried many portable machines such as this one (paid link) and this one (paid link) to vacuum-seal glass jars. It’s my secret to keeping chopped lettuce fresh for 7-10 days (depending on the freshness of the lettuce going in). These handy machines seem to come onto the market, go out of stock, and that’s the last I see of them. I hope this one lasts for a while.

If you’ve never tried storing food in a Mason jar, you might be surprised at how it can help you save money.

Happy Cooks Speak Up

“I’ve used mine almost every day sealing an avocado in a jar. Thank you so much for introducing me to this sealer. It is so very easy to use and I can’t be happier! And the coupon was awesome! “–DONNA


Questions I Ask When Shopping for a Portable Vacuum Sealer

The answers you see here apply only to this particular portable sealer.

1. Can I store it in a drawer?

It’s small, fits in a drawer, and is rechargeable. You don’t have to be close to an outlet to use it. This model won’t take up precious counter space.

2. Does it require batteries, an outlet, or recharging?

No batteries are needed. It’s rechargeable and comes with a plug for the process of recharging. You don’t have to be close to an outlet to use it.

3. How well does it seal?

This is difficult to quantify. The most important thing is that the lid stays sealed for a long time. This gadget seals tighter than any unit I have ever used, including the countertop FoodSaver. I can’t pry off the flat lid with my fingernails for days. Instead, I use a small can opener that some call a “church key.

4. Will I have to buy any adapters to use with my jars?

No. This machine comes in two pieces. The biggest piece contains all you need to vacuum-seal wide-mouth jars. The second piece fits inside the main unit for sealing regular-mouth jars.

5. Is it easy to use?

Yes. Place the machine on top of the flat lid and press the “Go” button. You don’t need to hold down the button as it seals or apply pressure to maintain the seal. However, it does not shut off automatically. You need to be there to turn off the machine as soon as the jar is sealed.


This nifty invention is called an Electric Mason Jar Vacuum Sealer (paid link). The brand is OXLIMKEE. The price is quite reasonable, especially compared to all the money you save from not throwing out food that has gone bad.


How to use this Electric Mason Jar Vacuum Sealer

parts of the vacuum sealer displayedPin
Left to right: Adaptor for regular-mouth jars, electric Mason jar vacuum sealer (the large-mouth sealer is built into the top), and a cord for recharging.
preparing the jar to be vacuum sealed.Pin
Place a flat canning lid on top of a wide-mouth Mason jar. Be sure the lid and top of the jar are free of any food or debris that might hinder a good seal. See this post for more problems and solutions that can make it impossible to seal a jar.
Placing the unit on top of the jar.Pin
Place the main unit on top of the flat lid and push it down securely. When I first used this, I pushed down too hard and then had a hard time getting the vacuum-sealer off. Don’t be like me.
Actually vacuum-sealing the jar. Pin
Push the start button on top. The machine will count up how many seconds you have run the machine, but it will not shut off automatically. When you hear the machine change pitch, let it run for 10 seconds longer before pushing the button again to shut it off.

FAQ’s About a Portable Vacuum Sealer

What if I have trouble pulling the vacuum sealer away from the jar and lid after sealing?

If the vacuum sealer is challenging to remove after sealing the jar, rub a tiny bit of vegetable oil inside the sealer on the rubber part that contacts the Mason jar.
Also, don’t push the sealer down quite so much. When you press the “start” button, you should hear the noise start to change pitch. If it doesn’t, push the sealer down a bit snugger. You’ll get it after a few tries.

How long does it take to seal a jar?

It depends on the size of the jar and how full it is. Listen for the pitch of the machine to change. After that, I usually run it for about 10 seconds to get a tighter seal.

What if I don’t hear the pitch change?

First, push the sealer down with slightly more pressure. If that doesn’t help, check to see if something is keeping the jar from sealing. Most likely, there is a particle of some food between the edge of the glass opening and the flat metal lid. Remove the sealer and make sure the top edge of the jar is free of any foreign objects before trying again. Occasionally, there can be a small chip or malformation in the jar that causes a problem. Move to the next jar.


Parting thoughts: There is often a coupon available for this Electric Mason Jar Vacuum Sealer (paid link) on the website. Look for that button on the product page.

If you have questions or suggestions, email me privately for a quick answer: Paula at saladinajar.com. Hope to see you again soon! 

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29 Comments

  1. Karen Hea says:

    Do you set the sealer to Lock or unlock? I’ve tried thei repeatedly with Cereal but every time I lift the sealer, the lid comes right with it?!?

    1. You don’t need to lock or unlock. That’s for the size adapter. Sounds like something else is preventing the seal. Be sure the rim of the jar is absolutely clean. Check to make sure the lid is not bent. And lastly, be sure you have pushed the sealer down far enough to create a seal. However, if the sealer is hard to get off, you may have pushed it down too far. It’s a learning process. Keep trying.

  2. I can not unlock the top part from the lower to even use the VPO5 LARGE MOUTH SEALER. We have tried everything! please recommend. TY

  3. Patricia warner says:

    When using an electric vacuum sealer, can you use it to process meat? And is it still required to water bath?

    1. Hi Pat,

      So nice to hear from you. A vacuum sealer is not a substitute for a water bath or pressure canning. It is only good for non-perishable food
      (chips, nuts, grains, etc.) or fresh produce that you store in the fridge but want to last a few more days. How much longer it gives you with fresh fruit and veggies depends on their freshness when you seal them, how they are prepared, and how fragile they are to begin with. Raspberries and Spring lettuce don’t last long. But sturdier veggies like chopped romaine lettuce, radicchio, and carrots can last 7-10 days depending on what I just described above.

      It works great to keep bugs of out grains, rice, and the like. Never try it with meat, tomatoes, or veggies like green beans. These all require pressure canning or a hot water bath. I’m not really an expert on home canning, so if that’s what you need, please seek advice from a website that specializes in home canning.

      Have a good day.

  4. hi I’m interested in getting one of these vacuum sealers. I was just wondering about like the lettuce and fruits and vegetables. Is there a certain way or how do you prep them or how long does it last. I’m very interested in this product. I’m very new .to this whole thing. I have had people tell me in the past that you can put berries in a mason jar but I’m not real sure what to do. Thanks 👍

    1. Hi Angel,

      So nice to hear from you. I use mine mainly for lettuce: How To Keep Romaine Lettuce Fresh: Make It Easy To Eat More Salad

      I also like to use it for non-perishable food (stored in the pantry). Depending on the food, it keeps the bugs out and can extend its freshness for weeks.

      You can use it for fruits and vegetables, too. However, vacuum sealing is not a substitute for canning. All perishable food must be stored in the refrigerator. Vacuum-sealing might give you a few more days of freshness. It depends on the particular food you are storing, how fresh it is to begin with, and how you prepare it. Some fragile foods (like fresh tomatoes or spring mix) do not appreciate being vacuum-sealed, apparently.

      I hope this gives you a better idea of what you can expect.

  5. Tammy White says:

    Thanks for the helpful information.

    One question, can you use any flat lid to seal or does it have to be the ones that come with the sealer?

    1. Hi Tammy,

      You can use any flat “canning” lid that fits the jar you are sealing. Usually, a sealer will only seal large-mouth or regular-mouth lids on the standard Mason jars. There are many versions of sealers on the market, but if you are talking about the sealer shown in my article, it will only seal those two standard sizes.

  6. If you open the jar can you use the lid again?

    1. Hi Karla,

      Yes. I reuse my lids countless times. Of course, if they get bent, they won’t work, but that’s hard to do. I don’t throw mine away until they rust.

  7. can i use the for putting homemade chicken noodle soup in mason jars , how long will it last in the refrigerator

    1. Hi Joe,

      I have not tried this. I don’t normally vacuum-seal cooked foods. If I have leftovers or more than what is needed for one meal, I freeze them.

      If you try it, just make sure you keep the soup in the refrigerator. Vacuum-sealing does not replace heat canning with pressure.

      Have a good day.

  8. Nancy Beazel says:

    Hello. At the top of the article, you say you have included a how-to video. I can’t seem to find any link or video on this page. Thanks for everything.
    –Nancy

    1. Hi Nancy,

      Check to make sure you don’t have any ad-blockers on the browser you are using.

  9. I’m wondering if this system or another is good to create shelf stable canning. I’d love to can tomatoes and have them shelf stable.
    Thanks, Deb

    1. Hi Deb,

      I’m glad you asked. This is absolutely not safe for canning tomatoes. They must be heated under pressure. This is only good for non-perishable foods that you would keep in the pantry. Or it can be good for food you store in the fridge, but it only extends the freshness; depending on what it is, that may be only a few extra days or maybe 2-3 weeks.

  10. If I vacuum seal flour or oats or the like in a jar, can I reseal that jar with the same lid after I have opened it to use some of the product? I’m really excited to be making my own dry soup mixes or sauce mixes but won’t be using the entire jar all the time. I’m hoping I can re-vacuum seal the jar until the next time.
    Many thanks for your help!
    Colleen

    1. Hi Colleen,

      Yes, you can seal or reseal as many times as you need or want to. As long as you don’t bend the flat lid, they will last until they rust. That could be years if you don’t wash them in the dishwasher.

  11. Linda Bott says:

    Can I use this canner for leftover chili? I’m so glad to find you
    I want to use it for unused leftovers

    1. Hi Linda,

      Nice to hear from you. I’m glad you found me, too.

      I’m not sure what your intention is with the chili. Anything perishable must be stored in the refrigerator, including your leftover chili. You might get a few more days of edibility with vacuum sealing, but that’s all. However, if you were thinking you could put it into the pantry for a month or six months, that’s not possible. You must heat seal perishable food to store without refrigeration. That requires a full canning process.

      If I have misunderstood your question, please write back.

      1. Can you use store bought flats or is there special one you have to use for the electric sealer?

        1. Hi Carla,

          I’m not sure what you mean by the term, “store bought flats.” I sent you an email. If you didn’t get it, check your junk mail.

  12. I’ve used mine almost every day sealing an avocado in a jar. Thank you so much for introducing me to this sealer. It is so very easy to use and I can’t be happier! And the coupon was awesome!

    1. You’re welcome, Donna. I agree that it is very easy to use.

  13. Becky Turner says:

    Just hit the order button for the sealer…. hope it holds up!

    1. Me, too. So far, so good.

  14. Thanks, Paula! Although I have an Avid Armor vacuum sealer that I really like, it is a bit of a job to pull it out of the cabinet and hook it up to the jars, so having one of these will make it much easier to seal jars, and I will be more inclined to do it. 😉 And thanks for the hint about a discount. The first link did not give me one, but I searched around and found one! Happy Monday, and thanks for always being so helpful.