But if you absolutely love to cook and you’re going to use it over and over, it's worth the splurge. To find out, we tested Dutch ovens from 11 brands, ranging from classics like Le Creuset and Staub to modern alternatives like Ikea and Great Jones. For a more economical option, Lodge makes a Dutch oven that performs extremely well. Photo by Chelsea Kyle, Food Styling by Jennifer Ophir. However, the product requires proper maintenance because they are relatively brittle. It'll last a lifetime, and look good doing it. The model comes pre-seasoned in 2-quart sizes and the color black. The Lodge has an easy-to-grab knob on its lid, but it’s made of metal, so it's not as heat-resistant as the plastic one found on most Le Creuset models. One thing we didn't love was the super nonstick nature of this ceramic pot. Privacy Policy, Reviews of Best Dutch Ovens America’s test kitchen 2020, #1 – Lodge EC1D43 Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven, #2 – AmazonBasics Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven, #4 – Le Creuset LS2501-2817 Signature Enameled Cast-Iron Round French (Dutch) Oven, #5 – Lodge L2SP3 2 Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven, #7 – Staub 1102485 Round Cocotte Dutch Oven, #8 – Crock Pot Artisan Enameled Cast Iron 7-Quart Oval Dutch Oven, How to Pick The Best Dutch Oven on the Market, The Best Walnut Wood Cutting Board Reviews of 2020, The Best Acacia Wood Cutting Board Review of 2020, Top 8 Best Crawfish Cooker for Sale for 2020, The 7 Best Over The Sink Dish Drying Rack for 2020, Has an enamel coating to prevent reactions with foods, Handles get too hot to touch without protection, Can withstand any temperature up to 500⁰F, The resin knob can’t withstand temperatures above 500⁰F, Too small to handle with gloves when cooking outdoors, Coating tends to peel off after a few uses, Durable, rust-resistant, and long-lasting, The large size of 7 quarts, enough for any unique needs. For the gold standard Dutch oven that will last a lifetime, choose Le Creuset. All products featured on Epicurious are independently selected by our editors. The Epi Test Kitchen uses Le Creuset Dutch ovens, so we know that they hold up extremely well over time. While Ikea’s Dutch oven arrived to our offices with several chips in its outside enamel, it performed extremely well for a $50 pot. Oval models tend to have a wider range of capacities available in the market relative to round models. The Le Creuset is a top-class oven made in France using cast iron and an enamel coating; the coating allows the model to resist stains better. © 2020 Condé Nast. More affordable options, sold at a fraction of the price (like the highly rated 6-quart enameled cast iron … Ad Choices, The Best Dutch Ovens for Baking, Braising, and Beyond. We looked for large, grip-able handles that made the pot easy to maneuver, on the stovetop as well as into and out of the oven. Copper has the best heat conductivity out of all four materials making your cooking time a lot shorter. Expect to pay about $50 for a 6-quart pot at stores like Target, or around $90 at some other stores. Keep reading for this year's winners; for the specifics of how we tested, scroll to the bottom of the page. Cuisinart Round Cast Iron Casserole (5 Qt) Amazon. For our tests in 2018 and 2019, we made a beef stew that requires a stint on the stovetop as well as in the oven; for the 2020 update, because we are trying to cut back on the amount of beef we cook, we went with a slow-cooked pork ragu instead, which would illustrate each model's searing and braising prowess. The sides of this pot are curved, which makes the body truly round (as opposed to the Le Creuset pot, which has straight sides). Any cooking task can be executed through the use of these best Dutch ovens; most Dutch ovens come with different shapes, prices, sizes, features, and colors, so pick one that suits your needs and requirements. We like the look and feel of the pot ($95), which is inspired by Le Creuset but designed in California, however we didn't think it performed much better than the Lodge, which has a similar utilitarian feel and is less expensive. But it's certainly one of the best looking options, the kind of cookware you want to leave out on the stove all the time. The top handle has sharp, pointy corners, making it unpleasant—and maybe even dangerous—to grab. The only real caveat of the Le Cresuet is its price; at $330, it isn’t cheap. Just on visual inspection, you may be able to notice a few subtle differences. Learn more, @2019-2020 LLC. When it comes to cooking savory soups, stews, casserole dishes, and other meals in your kitchen, you need a multi-functional piece of equipment that can make your routine easier, faster, and more efficient. Models differ in terms of shape, size, color, material, functionality, and price; each of these features tells you something about the service delivery provided. And, while it built up a nice fond, the pot was relatively easy to clean. To revisit this article, select My⁠ ⁠Account, then View saved stories. Some pots, like the Le Creuset, have relatively straight sides, while others, like the Lodge and the Dansk, are quite rounded in the corners. The models come in blue, green, and red colors for you to choose from. The Lodge EC1D43 is compactly designed for anyone who needs something they can easily fit in their kitchen storage. You can achieve a cooking temperature of up to 500⁰F with this model; you can also use it in the oven or on a stovetop giving you more options to work with. We worried this would have an effect on cooking, but it didn't, really. This refers to the shapes Dutch ovens come in; you can choose yours based on your preferences. The models in the market are based on four different types of materials, which include Stainless Steel, Copper, Cast Iron, and Porcelain-Enameled Cast Iron. You can use the model for cooking all sorts of food in your kitchen. But the rounded corners do create more evaporation and limit the amount of flat surface area for searing (the pot fit about three chicken thighs, rather than the four that fit easily in the Le Creuset). All Rights Reserved. These models are much easier to maintain over time, but they tend to wear out quickly. A family can get a model with a size of 5½ or 6 quarts; those sizes should serve at least six individuals. We tested Dutch ovens in the 6-quart range. It seared meat evenly and crisply, the braised meat was tender, and we were satisfied with the amount of evaporation. For our 2020 update, we added three models to the list: the Cuisinart Chef's Classic in the affordable category (it costs $85), and two new-to-market direct-to-consumer darlings, from Great Jones and Caraway. The craftsmanship and style are remarkable and sure to complement the design of your kitchen. Going for oval models, you have access to different sizes you can work with. Inside the saucepans are convenient measuring marks, and the smaller of the saucepans has a pour spout. We wanted to see how meat braised in the Dutch ovens. At $60, it's a fraction of the price of the Le Creuset and still high … The Staub was also not as effective at searing meat, with results that were uneven and less crisp than its competitors. We also wanted a sturdy, snug-fitting lid—ideally with a knob that made it simple to remove. $180. The model achieves this by evenly distributing heat to all parts of its build to hold the flavor and moisture of your food better. Rounded pots make stirring easier and keep food from sticking in the corners, but also provide less flat surface area at the bottom for searing. The knob of the oven is made of stainless steel, which allows you to open your lid conveniently during cooking. Typical uses of Dutch ovens include baking, frying, and roasting meals; they can also be used for indoor or outdoor purposes. They are compatible for use with stovetops as well as ovens. The pots had varying levels of scorching and residue on the bottom. Le Creuset offers a lifetime warranty on the product, but this doesn’t cover any misuse, not under the instructions provided. The Cuisinart pot produced lackluster results in the searing category, and on the whole didn't heat very well, which produced unevenly cooked pork. We tested 11 models of the indispensable, heavy-duty pot to find the very best one on the market. The downside to this material is that the coating tends to peel off after some time. The stew came out of the oven watery, without the proper level of evaporation. They can be used on a stovetop, through induction, gas, as well as in glass and ceramic ovens. We reviewed the Lodge vs. the Le Creuset dutch ovens here. $180. It is less well-suited for deep-frying than the other models we tested. It doesn’t get hot too quickly on the stovetop, and can be removed for super high-heat baking projects, like bread. The size of this model is 4.3 quart, enough for you to feed up to four people. They still sell the classic but you should know the difference between the two. The enamel doesn’t seem to ever chip and the pot can withstand high temperatures, frying, braising, boiling, and whatever else we throw at it. The product is manufactured in the U.S.; this piece of high-quality heat equipment can be used to cook, roast, or bake any kind of food you desire. The pot’s light-colored enameled bottom made it easy to see the level of browning as we cooked, and it didn’t catch or scorch food like some of the other contenders.

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