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The Best Sous Vide Machines (Immersion Circulators)

If you’re planning to plunge into sous vide cooking, we’ve got the best tool for the job.


Last Updated Oct. 3, 2022.

Update, June 2023

Our favorite sous vide machine was recently discontinued. The model that replaced it, the Breville Joule Turbo Sous Vide, is our new favorite. (Note: If you own the older Breville Joule Sous Vide, you can trade it in and receive a $75 credit toward the new Turbo model.)

We also tested and recommend the Anova Precision Cooker 3.0.

See Everything We Tested

What You Need To Know

Sous vide cooking is easy, if you have the right immersion circulator. We compared the speed, accuracy, ease of use, and cooking results of several new models. The Breville Joule Sous Vide-White Polycarbonate is still our top pick, priced at about $200. Simple to set and easy to clip on a variety of vessels, it heated water rapidly and kept the temperature right on target, whether we were cooking for 12 minutes or 20 hours. Everything from eggs to asparagus to steak to pulled pork emerged perfectly cooked. The smallest, most compact model in our lineup, it’s easy to store, and its app is very user-friendly. Our Best Buy is the Yedi Houseware Infinity Sous Vide, priced at about $100. While it’s bigger and bulkier to store and a bit less efficient to read with its high, flat display, it heated accurately and circulated water powerfully, with excellent results. 

What You Need to Know

A sous vide immersion circulator is a sticklike appliance that heats water in a vessel to a desired temperature and then maintains that temperature to cook food immersed in the water bath. The food, which is first sealed in plastic (though not always; you can cook sous vide in glass jars, and eggs can be cooked right in their shells), eventually reaches the same temperature as the water, so it can’t overcook. With meat, poultry, and fish, you usually follow up with a quick sear in a skillet for surface browning. 

The benefits of sous vide cooking are perfectly and uniformly cooked food and a process that’s quiet, neat, and mostly hands-off. Cleanup is minimal, because you’re cooking your food in water. And because they’re not cooked directly in the water, vegetables such as carrots and asparagus come out intensely flavorful and stay brightly colored. Sous vide cooking can also be long, slow, and gentle, turning tough cuts of meat fork-tender.

What to Look For

  • Accuracy: The device must heat and hold water at a precise temperature; accuracy is everything in sous vide cooking.
  • Speed: Our favorites rapidly reached the target temperature, shaving off many minutes of waiting around to begin cooking. Especially with short recipes such as poached eggs, faster-heating devices made a dramatic difference in the total cooking time.
  • Power: Devices that were more powerful circulated the water more efficiently, spreading the heat to maintain a uniform temperature in the bath.
  • Simple, intuitive controls: Setting time and temperature should be easy and quick.
  • Easy-to-read display: Being able to monitor progress without waiting for rotating displays or interpreting cryptic readouts was a major plus. 
  • Attachments that adapt to a variety of vessels: Whether w...

Everything We Tested

Good : 3 stars out of 3.Fair : 2 stars out of 3.Poor : 1 stars out of 3.
*All products reviewed by America’s Test Kitchen are independently chosen, researched, and reviewed by our editors. We buy products for testing at retail locations and do not accept unsolicited samples for testing. We list suggested sources for recommended products as a convenience to our readers but do not endorse specific retailers. When you choose to purchase our editorial recommendations from the links we provide, we may earn an affiliate commission. Prices are subject to change.
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Reviews you can trust

Reviews you can trust

The mission of America’s Test Kitchen Reviews is to find the best equipment and ingredients for the home cook through rigorous, hands-on testing. We stand behind our winners so much that we even put our seal of approval on them.

Lisa McManus

Lisa is an executive editor for ATK Reviews, cohost of Gear Heads on YouTube, and gadget expert on TV's America's Test Kitchen.