Imagine you’re cooking a piece of steak. You probably know exactly the color and texture—the doneness, in other words—you’d like, right? With sous vide (say “sue veed”), you can get that perfect doneness every time: simply bag your food, drop it in a pot of water, and set your sous vide tool to the time and temperature that correspond to the doneness you desire.
Sous vide has been gaining popularity recently with home cooks, but it’s been used by professional chefs and restaurants for decades. It’s a relatively simple method that can easily be used at home to improve your favorite meals, remove unnecessary stress from cooking, or free you from focusing on one aspect of your meal—like getting your steak to the doneness you desire without overcooking—so you can focus on a creative side dish or sauce. Once you’re certifiably obsessed with sous vide, there are tons of amazing things you can make with it, from carnitas to perfect crème brûlée, fried chicken to smoky ribs.
Sous vide recipes you find online tend to focus on steak and fish—two excellent options—but when it comes to cooking in water, proteins are just the beginning. We use sous vide for veggies, sides, desserts, and even homemade yogurt. Here are 17 fresh ideas you can try tonight. Hungry for more? Awesome. We’ve got hundreds of amazing, well-tested recipes on our website.