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Dutch Oven Recommendations

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Which Dutch Oven do you use? Do you have a recommendation on what I should be looking for? Which recipes do you use it for?


homemade chicken noodle soup

I have two dutch ovens.   One is an enameled cast iron variety, and the other is an All-Clad stainless steel pot.

My two pots

The Tramontina cast iron pot like I own costs a little less than $50.   I’ve never owned a Le Creuset Dutch oven, but this is a similar product except it costs $50 instead of $300.

Cook’s Illustrated does say the Le Creuset is their favorite pot, and they still recommend the Tramontina, but their best buy option is now the Cuisinart version, which is $169.

I don’t use my cast-iron Dutch oven nearly as much as I used to, mainly because I got an All-Clad stockpot($258) a few years ago, and I really prefer it.   It’s not technically a Dutch oven, but it performs all the tasks I used my Dutch oven for, so I consider it a substitute.

It IS an expensive pot, but I use and love it so much, it’s felt worth it to me.

Why do I like it better?

Well, interestingly enough, I have way less trouble with food sticking to the bottom. And when it does stick, I can scrub with a lot more abandom than I can with my enameled pot (it’s not hard to scratch the enamel!)

all clad stockpot

Along the same lines, I can use whisks and other utensils in the stainless steel pan, but those tend to damage the enamel in my cast iron pot.

I also like that the stainless steel pot is so much lighter.   Cast-iron is great, but it is a lot to lug out.

And lastly, the stainless steel pot heats up a lot faster than the cast-iron pot.

What do I use it for?

I use my pot for making soups, browning meat, heating milk for yogurt, cooking pulled pork in the oven, making jambalaya, cooking apples for applesauce, making chicken broth and more!

bbq sauce for pulled pork

I only use 8 pieces of cookware (I don’t count my cast iron Dutch oven because I never use it anymore), so each of those 8 pieces gets used a lot, including my All-Clad stockpot.

Readers! What’s your favorite Dutch oven?

Do share in the comments and give Ashley your opinions/recommendations.

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Tuesday 8th of November 2016

I wanted a Le Creuset for years but couldn't afford one. A friend of mine bought me the Kirkland version from Costco for Christmas several years ago. I think it was about $40. It is a nice cheery color of red and honestly it's fine for my purposes. I don't use it a whole lot because its very heavy and because I am single so I am rarely making giant pots of food. But on the occasions I have used it, it seems to fit the bill. Plus, I still can't afford Le Creuset!


Tuesday 8th of November 2016

I love my Le Creuset enameled Dutch oven, found it at Home Goods for $40 years ago. I drove home without buying it because I did not want to pay that much for a pan, after I seen how much they cost & had great reviews I drove half hour the next day to pick it up.

I also have a larger Food Network enameled dutch oven when Kohl's had them so cheap many years ago. I don't use it a lot because it is big, heavy and there are only 2 of us now that kids have moved out. It is great for making bread in. And a Rachel Ray enameled small fry pan, perfect size for 1 grilled cheese, it has very low sides and is oval shaped. Those are both over 10 years old and have help up well.

Debbie N

Monday 7th of November 2016

I have a cheaper brand enameled cast iron, I absolutely love it. I only had problems with stuff stuck on the bottom once when I forgot to turn spaghetti sauce down. I soaked for about 15 minutes and it all came off. As for whisking, OXO makes a great coated wisk that doesn't scratch.


Monday 7th of November 2016

The Tratomina is at Sams Club and I think less than $50 ($30?). Love it for browning and slow cooking. I also have a stainless one for pasta and such.


Monday 7th of November 2016

I have an ancient tiny frypan that is genuine le Creuset. My children love it. I have to fight to keep it in the house. Chef son, anyone?

Other than there are fakes. I bought one in Kmart that did not last long. The rest have come from Aldi over the years and I have never had problems except for a few chips when I have dropped them. They are very heavy when filled,

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