Love Le Creuset But Not the Price? 9 Great Alternatives You’ll Love.

Ellyn Eddy
Ellyn Eddy

Ellyn Eddy

Ellyn is a seasoned writer and editor with profound experience in covering culinary topics. She covers cookware guides and writes hands-on product reviews for The Skillful Cook.

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Le Creuset Alternatives

Le Creuset is expensive, and for good reason. Luckily, if you want a high-quality Dutch oven but don’t want to break the bank, there are some good alternatives. There are also some not-so-hot dupes that you’ll want to watch out for.

The best Le Creuset alternative, in my opinion, is a Staub cocotte. It’s often mentioned in the same breath as Le Creuset, with a reputation for safety and longevity. While it may not be as elegant looking, its cooking power rivals or even exceeds Le Creuset.

Staub isn’t the cheapest option, but you can find deals on it throughout the year. 

If you want to dip a toe into good enameled cookware but without the high price tag, my budget pick, Lodge, may be the best way to go.

Le Creuset

Le Creuset

Our score:
90.5/100

Width (incl. handles):
11.75 inches

Diameter:
9 inches

Height with Lid:
6 inches

Weight with Lid:
8.2 pounds

Thickness:
3.6mm

Country of Origin:
🇫🇷 France

Best Alternative

Staub

Our score:
92/100

Width (incl. handles):
13.75 inches

Diameter:
10.25 inches

Height with Lid:
7.25 inches

Weight with Lid:
11.3 pounds

Thickness:
4.0mm

Country of Origin:
🇫🇷 France

Best Budget Choice

Lodge

Our score:
80/100

Width (incl. handles):
14.75 inches

Diameter:
11 inches

Height with Lid:
7.25 inches

Weight with Lid:
12.5 pounds

Thickness:
5.4mm

Country of Origin:
🇨🇳 China

*See our full comparison here: Le Creuset Vs Staub Vs Lodge Dutch Ovens

2024 Best Le Creuset Alternatives

Let’s take a closer look below at several Le Creuset alternatives and weigh their pros and cons.

Staub 5.5 qt Dutch Oven- Best Alternative

The Winner
Staub 5.5 Quart Round Cocotte
Staub is made in France and features 12 beautiful enamel colors to choose from, as well as different knobs to help you further customize your Dutch oven to your tastes. There are even vegetable-shaped cocottes to choose from!
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Staub’s lid has dimples to aid with braising. Its dark interior helps reduce staining, unlike the patina that develops on the white enameled interior many other Dutch ovens. It is dishwasher safe, though Staub recommends hand washing. Oven safe to 500°F (260°C), our tests suggest it may edge out the “gold standard” Le Creuset in performance.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 2.75 qt, 4 qt, 5.5 qt, 7qt
  • Colors Available: 12
  • Best For: Searing, Braising, Bread

Pros

  • Discounts available
  • Unique shapes and lid knobs
  • Possibly better than Le Creuset

Cons

  • Overall larger
  • Fewer colors than Le Creuset
  • Still pricey

USA Lodge Enamel Dutch Oven

USA Lodge Enamel Dutch Oven

Most of Lodge’s enameled cast iron is made in China, but there is a small line called USA that is made in America. It features only three colors. It is oven-safe to 500°F (260°C). The 6 qt Dutch oven weighs 15.8 lbs. The lid knob is tall, which makes it easier to grip with an oven mitt on. The handles are wide and also easy to grip.

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There are few reviews of this Dutch oven out there, but Lodge as a cast iron company has been around a long time and is known for reliability. This Dutch oven does not have dimples on the underside of the lid, which tends to collect condensation. It also has silver inserts in the handles that are held in by two screws. This could trap food or water.

The USA Lodge enameled line is not winning any awards for affordability, as it is significantly more expensive than the Lodge made in China.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 3 qt, 4.5 qt, 6 qt, 7.5 qt
  • Colors Available: 3
  • Best For: Soups, Bread

Pros

  • Made in America
  • Broad handles
  • Tall lid knob

Cons

  • Few colors
  • Heavy
  • Few Reviews

Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven – Best Budget

Great Budget Choice (80/100)
Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Lodge is my best budget enameled cast iron pick! Let me be clear, it’s not the cheapest option. Remember, we’re looking at value as well as price, and Lodge has been making quality cast iron since 1896 and is a household name. Lodge is oven-safe to 500°F (260°C) and available in a range of sizes.
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You can find as many as 22 colors on Amazon. However, Lodge does rotate or retire colors regularly.

Lodge’s cast iron is made in China, except for USA Lodge, which has a review later!  Lodge releases a bit more steam than Le Creuset and takes a little longer to heat up, but maintains heat very well. It is also heavier than some Dutch ovens of a similar size. Lodge offers a limited lifetime warranty.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 1.5 qt, 3 qt, 4.5 qt, 6 qt, 7.5 qt
  • Colors Available: 22
  • Best For: Braising, Bread

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Similar cooking ability to more expensive brands

Cons

  • Heavier than some Dutch ovens of the same size
  • Made in China
  • Colors regularly rotate or retire

Lodge Natural Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Lodge Natural Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Lodge natural cast iron has been around since 1896 and is still made in Tennessee. It’s well known as a quality budget option that will last generations when it is properly cared for. The lid has self-basting dimples.

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Natural cast iron works as well as enameled cast iron, like Le Creuset.  Unfortunately, it does need to be seasoned regularly and is more prone to rust. Natural cast iron is not good for slow-cooking acidic foods. Lodge natural cast iron is a great way to get an American-made product at a budget price.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Natural (Raw) Cast Iron
  • Size: 1 qt, 2 qt, 5 qt, 7.5 qt
  • Colors Available: Natural
  • Best For: Braising, Frying

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Made in America

Cons

  • Requires seasoning
  • Not good for acidic foods
  • Rust prone

Made In Cookware Oval Dutch Oven

Made In Cookware Oval Dutch Oven

Made In Dutch ovens come with a dimpled lid, excellent for self-basting your meat when you braise in the oven. This Dutch oven has handles that are easy to grip with pot holders. It is oven-safe to 580°F (304°C).  Users love Made In, commenting it cooks just as well as the much more expensive brands.

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Made In is made in France, like Le Creuset and Staub. It has fewer color options than its competitors. While not a budget brand, it is still cheaper than both its French counterparts. At 15.28 lbs for the 5.5 qt Dutch oven, it is a very heavy piece and may be difficult for some cooks to use because of that weight.

Some consumers also report poor packaging which leads to damage before use.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 3.5 qt, 5.5 qt,7.5 qt
  • Colors Available: 5
  • Best For: Braising, Bread

Pros

  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Dimpled lid
  • High heat tolerance

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Few colors
  • Packaging

Amazon Basics Enameled Round Dutch Oven 

Amazon Basics Enameled Round Dutch Oven

Amazon Basics is one of the cheapest options on the market. The 6 qt Dutch oven weighs in at 13.1 lbs and is made in China. It has 10 lovely colors you can choose from, though there aren’t many sizes available. They do hit the sizes consumers will be looking for most frequently.

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However, many reviews mention that while the listing claims it is oven-safe to 500°F (260°C), the manual states it is only oven-safe to 400°F (204°C). I am concerned about the quality of the enamel, as multiple reviews mention chipping and scratching after only a few months of use.

While AmazonBasics is highly rated on Amazon, I have concerns about the quality of the reviews. High star ratings include pictures of the product chipped and still in the box.

In my opinion, tread carefully if you choose to purchase this Dutch oven. It is most suitable for those who plan to use it infrequently and do not want to cook higher than 400°F (204°C). There is a limited 1-year warranty.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 4.3 qt, 6 qt, 7.3 qt
  • Colors Available: 10
  • Best For: Casual use

Pros

  • Affordable
  • 10 colors
  • Popular sizes

Cons

  • Only oven-safe to 400°F
  • Concerns about enamel quality
  • Made in China

Crock-Pot Artisan Round Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Crock-Pot Artisan Round Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Enameled cast iron probably isn’t the first thing you think of when someone says Crock-Pot, but the name is synonymous with slow cooking! Crock-Pot Dutch ovens come in 3 sizes and 9 beautiful and unique colors. Some of the colors are softer than you typically see on enameled cast iron.

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The 5 qt Dutch oven comes in at 12.3lbs. Crock-Pot is very affordable, being one of the cheapest options on our list.

Reviews mention the lid doesn’t create the best seal, leaking steam when they cook with this Dutch oven. Because of this, rust has formed on the rim of their Dutch Oven. Crock-Pot Dutch ovens are made by Gibson Overseas, LLC, which has ownership in 3 of the largest factories in China.

I’m always wary of products made in China, even when there is a strict oversight process. Crock-Pot Dutch ovens are also not in compliance with California Prop 65. There is no warranty that I can find.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 3 qt, 5 qt, 7 qt
  • Colors Available: 9
  • Best For: Soups, Stews

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Unique Colors
  • No Warranty

Cons

  • Made in China
  • Not Prop 65 compliant
  • Lid needs to be tighter

Great Jones The Dutchess

The Dutchess: Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven | Great Jones

Great Jones has only been around since 2018, but quickly became very popular thanks to the Dutch oven’s social-media-worthy good looks. Great Jones The Dutchess is oven-safe to 500°F (260°C) and has three separate layers of enamel.

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Great Jones is dishwasher-friendly! However, it has raw cast iron edges, which means you have to take a little extra care when hand-drying it. Best of all, this Dutch oven is a third of the price of Le Creuset!

I prefer a more traditional knob. I have my doubts about trying to use an oven mitt to remove the lid with the very lovely arched handle that this Dutch oven has.

The Dutchess only comes in a 6.75 qt oval, though you can get a smaller “Dutch Baby” which is around 3.5 qt Dutch oven. Great Jones products have a “global supply chain”, that includes factories in the US and China.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 6.75 qt
  • Colors Available: 6 and Limited Edition designs
  • Best For: Roasting, Bread

Pros

  • Dishwasher friendly; no heated dry
  • Moderately priced
  • Gorgeous

Cons

  • Only been around since 2018
  • Raw cast iron edges
  • Only one size

Milo by Kana Dutch Oven

Milo by Kana Dutch Oven

Milo by Kana is made from 40% recycled iron. They put a lot of emphasis on sustainability and earth-friendly materials. The Milo Dutch Oven is dishwasher friendly, oven safe to 500°F (260°C), and comes in at a whopping 16.2 lbs.

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Consumers love the gorgeous colors of Milo, as well as the tall lid knob that makes the lid easier to remove with an oven mitt.

Milo has a large range of colors available, but is only available in two sizes. This lack of range will affect those with large families, cooking for large gatherings, or folks who want to do their holiday turkey Dutch oven-style.

Quick Overview:

  • Material: Enameled Cast Iron
  • Size: 3.5 qt, 5.5 qt
  • Colors Available: 12
  • Best For: Roasts, Soups

Pros

  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Dishwasher Safe
  • Earth-Friendly emphasis

Cons

  • Few Sizes
  • Heavier than Le Creuset
  • Made in China

Buyers Guide

When purchasing a Dutch oven, there are several key aspects to consider. You’ll want to choose what size Dutch oven is best for your needs. A 4.5 qt Dutch oven is great for a loaf of bread, but not ideal when creating your famous soup for a large potluck dinner.

Keep in mind a larger Dutch oven will cost more than a smaller one.  If you plan to make bread every day, but only need to cook for a large group twice a year, I’d recommend splurging on your smaller piece. After all, Staub and Le Creuset are “pass it down to the next generation” quality manufacturers. These Dutch ovens make excellent workhorses, while a cheaper piece will be fine for limited use.

I always look for comfortable, large handles. Dutch ovens are heavy and full of food they are even heavier. As someone who has dumped a pot of hot spaghetti sauce all over the kitchen floor, I never want to risk that happening again! Likewise, I like an easy-to-grip lid knob. The better your grip on the lid, the less likely you are to accidentally drop it.  Enameled cast iron is tough, but it can chip, especially due to dropping, or bumping the lid against the pot.

All of the Dutch ovens in this article are cheaper than Le Creuset. It’s difficult to find one lighter than Le Creuset, however. 

Conclusion 

Le Creuset is expensive. If it’s out of your budget, there are several good alternatives. If you want a high-quality Dutch oven that offers a beautiful pop of color at a lower price point, I can’t recommend Staub enough. It offers the WOW factor and is sure to impress your dinner guests with its looks as well as its cooking ability.

If you only plan to use your Dutch oven a few times a year and want to keep the price under $100, Lodge offers the best bang for your budget buck!

Great Budget Choice (80/100)
Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

The “Essential Enamel” Lodge Dutch oven is affordable and a great introduction to cooking in enameled cast iron. It releases more steam when cooking and takes a bit longer to heat up, but it retains heat almost as well as higher-end models.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why Is Le Creuset So Expensive?

Le Creuset is considered the “gold standard” in enameled Dutch ovens. It is made in France of quality materials, is light, and has a lifetime warranty.

Do I Need An Expensive Dutch Oven?

No! There are several affordable options that cook well and are durable. However, they are more likely to be made in China, have limited colors, or be heavy.

What is your favorite Le Creuset alternative? Let us know in the comments!

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Ellyn Eddy
About The Author
Ellyn is a professional writer and a short-order cook for her family of four. As a mother, her spare time is filled with investigating all things food and wellness. Equipped with a pantry of exotic ingredients, a shelf full of nutrition books, and a bit of international travel experience, she loves creating healthy and beautiful meals.

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