This Joule sous vide review will look at the fairly new sous vide immersion circulator by ChefSteps. Does it bring anything new and exciting to sous vide cookers that will make it worth buying? How does it perform and will it does its job satisfactorily? What’s good about the Joule by ChefSteps and what’s bad about them? These are all questions you should be asking before you buy it and you’ll find the answers to all of them in this review.
Small and powerful
The Chef Steps Joule Sous Vide is the smallest sous vide immersion circulator I have ever seen. It measures just 11 inches tall and under 2 inches in diameter. Being so small, you won’t have any problems finding storage space for this thing. You can slip it in a drawer without any problems.
What is really impressive is that you can cook in up to ten gallons of water. It takes up less space than the other sous vide circulators, yet it has just as much power. Actually is has more power than some because it can handle up to 10 gallons of water. Some larger sous vide circulators can only handle up to 8 gallons and they’re way bigger than the Joule. For such a small device, it certainly is powerful.
Runs in just 1.5” of water
Yep, the Joule doesn’t require much water to work. You can run it in as little as 1.5” inches of water. What does this really mean? This means you have a lot of options when it comes to containers, pots, etc. for cooking via sous vide. For longer cooking sessions, you don’t have to worry too much about the water level getting too low.
I also love that this thing it is compatible with Amazon Alexa. Cooking is really as simple as telling Alexa to adjust your temperature and your timer–no hands necessary. I can have it start heating up while I’m preparing everything; all with the command of my voice. This also makes it easier to hand off your cooking chore to someone else without them having to download the app.
App is great
The app for ChefSteps Joule sous vide immersion circulator is compatible with both Android and iOS. The app is very user friendly and offers many recipes. You can set a timer on the app and it will send you a notification when your cooking time has completed. I would have personally preferred an alarm because general notifications frequently go unnoticed. However, you don’t really have to worry about overcooking with sous vide cooking, so it’s not really a problem. The app from ChefSteps has everything to get a beginner started in sous vide cooking.
Doesn’t pause when connectivity is lost
This cooker can operate via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi only, so it’s nice that if you lose connectivity with the cooker, it will continue to cook at your settings. On the Anova, it will pause your cooking cycle when your phone disconnects from your cooker. When that happens, I really didn’t like that I would have to return to my cooker and unpause the cooking cycle, or reconnect with the app.
I love the Joule by ChefSteps because of how easily and securely it attaches to your cooking container. It features a clip that securely attaches. On most other devices, I see many complaints about the durability and the reliability of the clip. Not only does the Joule by ChefSteps have a large, durable clip, it also has a strong magnet at the bottom of the device so that the cooker stays upright. This doesn’t really help you when you are cooking in a non-metal container, but you could get a separate magnet to attach to the outside of your container considering the magnet is strong enough. The magnet is a big plus in my book and I’m sure you’ll love it too.
No built-in controls
There is no built-in user control interface. Everything is controlled through the smart phone app. I’m marking this off as a con, because some people may not have access to a phone, or they may not know how to use a smart phone or the app. For those who aren’t very tech savvy, they may struggle to get this thing to work properly and might want to consider something else like the Anova, or the Sansaire.
You have to have the app in order to set the temperature on your cooking. I know, I know, for most of us, this isn’t much of a problem because we always have our phones on us any ways. But for those times, when we don’t happen to have our phones on us, it’s going to be a big hassle.
Should You Buy the Joule by ChefSteps?
If you aren’t very tech savvy, this isn’t for you. But if you can manage then the ChefSteps Joule sous vide immersion circulator is probably one of the best option at the moment. It’s small, it’s powerful, and it does the job very well. The app is also great and is full of excellent recipes for you to experiment with for a while. By the time you’re done with all the recipes, you’ll be pretty good at sous vide cooking. Hopefully this Joule sous vide review was able to provide you with enough information to decide if it’s a worthwhile buy. If you buy it, please do return and let us know what your thoughts are after using it.