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Sous Vide: A Simple and Stress-Free Way to Reheat Almost Anything

From favorite pans to tried-and-true microwave and toaster oven settings, we all have our go-to tricks for reviving yesterday’s steak, using up leftover leg of lamb, or enjoying that juicy chicken breast one last time. Those working for you? Great—use them! But if you’re in the market for a no-fuss reheating method that eliminates the risk of overcooking, then please allow sous vide to blow your leftovers-loving mind.

As discussed ad nauseam all over this here site, sous vide means bringing food to the optimal temperature at which you want to cook it—never hotter. So when you reheat it to around that same temperature, you’re not overcooking it and drying it out. Oh no. What you are doing is returning that food to its best self so it can live its truth inside your belly. What’s more, you can leave said food ’til you need it—a total lifesaver when white-knuckling your way through a multipart meal. In the FAQ below, find all the things you need to know about reheating foods with sous vide. Then use it to create and re-create all your favorite foods, again and again and again and again (and—what the hell—again).

First off, let’s talk about traditional reheating methods. These do more than just heat up leftover food; they also recook it. Take a chilled, two-inch-thick, bone-in steak. To warm that bad boy back up, you’ll need to best way to reheat steak it for about the same amount of time it took to cook. Throw an already cooked steak in a hot pan for 40 minutes, and you’ll wind up with a dried-out crust and a maybe-still-not-hot center. Bummer, right?