Companies like ChefSteps and Anova have pushed home sous vide more into the mainstream. One drawback to sous vide, though, is the one-time use of either a vacuum-sealed or Ziplock bag. It just feels wasteful. Which is why I’m excited to try out Stasher‘s re-useable, re-sealable silicone bags that can be used for many things including storage or sous vide.
Stasher founder and CEO, Kat Nouri, dove into ABC’s Shark Tank earlier this month to pitch her wares. After some serious back and forth about product positioning, Mark Cuban bit, and put $400,000 into Stasher for 15 percent of the company as well as a $400,000 line of credit. You can watch Nouri’s episode here (Stasher’s pitch is at the 32-minute mark).
According to Stasher’s FAQ, it’s bags are made from sand (silica), oxygen and “natural resources” that the company claims make it “safer, more flexible and more sustainable than plastic.” The Stasher FAQ goes on to say that “there are no fillers or petroleum-based products” in its bags as well as no BPA, BPS, lead, latex or phthalates.
I’m not enough of scientist to confirm the claims, and it looks like the Food and Drug Administration hasn’t studied silicone since 1979. But the Canadian government says “There are no known health hazards associated with use of silicone cookware”
Providing a safer sous vide experience is definitely a selling point. I’m not thrilled with the idea of wrapping my steak in a cheap plastic bag and bathing it in 130-degree water for an hour. Plus, the Stasher bag is re-usable, so there’s less waste, and dishwasher safe, so its easy to clean. And, of course, when not being used to cook, the bags would be a great alternative for general food storage and packing kids’ lunches.
All those benefits don’t come cheap, though. Stashers range in price and from $9.99 for a snack size, to $11.99 for a sandwich bag and $19.99 for a half gallon. On Shark Tank, Nouri said that Stasher did $1.6 million in sales last year.
With a shark like Mark on board, it will be interesting to see if Stasher can now move the needle and people off of plastic and into a new silicone-based solution for sous vide and storage.