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Oct 29, 2009 09:55 AM

Where should I buy my Lodge L series dutch oven?

Hi all, I am having a hard time deciding which site to buy this oven ( from. Amazon has the highest price, but the best guarantee. Lodge is having a sale on it on their own website for %103 with $14 for shipping. Katom ( is selling it for just $78 with $14 for shipping. I am very tempted to buy from Katom but it doesn't seem like they have a great return/exchange policy. Has anybody bought anything from them? They seem to have good price, but I worry about whether they sell first quality goods. How good is lodge at at replacing damaged dutch ovens? Should I just wait until Amazon has a sale on this product (how low do you think they'll go to)? Basically I want to spend as little as possible, but I still want good customer service.

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  1. How good is lodge at at replacing damaged dutch ovens?

    Is Lodge Cookware guaranteed?

    There is not a written warranty for Lodge Cast Iron Cookware, however, we do stand behind every product manufactured. For product problems, please contact Lodge Customer Service and we will solve the problem to your satisfaction. Lodge Enamel Cookware is covered by a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

    2. I've seen Lodge cookware at Outlet stores selling kitchen equipment. I think Kitchen Collection sells it. I'm pretty sure it's first quality, not seconds. They have excellent prices. You may want to call around to check before you drive there (if there is one near you).

    1 Reply
    1. re: pdxgastro

      I bought a lodge enameled dutch oven from Amazon for a great price. The enamel on the bottom of the pot wore out after 1 used. I emailed Lodge directly, they had a great service rep. She send me a label to ship it back so they could inspect it, and they send me a new replacement one promptly.

    2. Eivuwan,

      I bought my Lodge L series dutch oven from Cabela at a very low price as well. I returned it and lost my shipping fee, but at least I got most of my money back. Why did I return it? It has enameled holes in the Dutch oven, multiple enameled holes. You know. Needle size holes but very deep and very smooth. I wish they were only the exterioir. I would have lived with that, but there were needle holes in the interior cooking surface as well. I later found out this is a very common complaints like from It is unfortunate because the color is great, the shape is great, the stainless steel handle is beautiful.

      As you know, the Lodge enameled cookware are made in China and it appears the Lodge Color series (the cheaper version) and the Lodge L series (the higher end) may actually be made in two different places and have different quality control. Despite the Color series is the cheaper line, it actually has much better quality control. After my incident, I went to Walmart one day and opened 6 Lodge Color Dutch Oven and everyone of them has perfect enameled coating. I had previously bought two Color Dutch oven and they were perfect out of the box. If you go online and read Amazon reviews, no one complains about having enamel pin holes in the Color series, yet many complain about the L series.

      I am NOT discouraging you to get a L series. It is very beautiful and it is supposed to be more durable than the Color series because it has 4 layers of enameled coatings instead of 2. You may very well get a perfect Dutch oven. However, I strongly advice you to make sure you can return it if it is not up to your expectation because this appears to be a common problem.

      9 Replies
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics


        Sorry. By the way, it is not a common complaint. I experienced it and I also read maybe one or two people experienced it, but most buyers from love their L series dutch ovens.

        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

          Oh well, in any case, Amazon always seems to be the safe bet. I guess I'll just wait until prices go down a bit.

          1. re: Eivuwan


            Still waiting the price to go down? You do know a full prized Lodge L series is still cheaper than Le Creuset on sale, right? By the way, have you thought about getting the Apple series? I am a dude and even I think it looks cool.


            1. re: Chemicalkinetics

              Unfortunately, I'm a college student with a low source of income so I am not even suppose to be buying a dutch oven. My only excuse to buy cookware is the fact that I save money from not going out to eat very often. The apple pots look cool, but they're beyond my budget.

              1. re: Eivuwan


                I see. Enameled cast iron cookware are expensive. The apple one is actually cheaper than the L series when they are at normal market price range. The real problem is that the Lodge Apple is small: 3 Quart only.


                Have you considered the bare cast iron Dutch oven if you have not gotten one? They are much cheaper. I really prefer bare cast iron cookware over enamel cast iron cookware for cooking performance. You can start with a bare cast iron Dutch oven first and start saving money toward your enamel cast iron Dutch oven.

                A lodge 5 quart cast iron Dutch oven is only $30. No tax and free shipping. I own this one.


                I also own the Pro-logic one. It is a bit more expensive at $40, but if you can take advantage of its 4-for-3 deal, then it is really $30. My friends and I bought 4 together, so we only pay $120. Again, no tax, free shipping. It is smaller at 4 quart, but I like it better because the more ergonomic handle and round edge bottom. The side meet the bottom of the cookware at a smoother angle, not a abrupt 90o degree.


                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  Thanks for your help, but considering that I'm going to be doing mostly low-heat simmering/braising in my dutch oven, an enameled finish would be really helpful. I really need something that is at least 6 quarts since I cook for two and would like leftovers as well so that apple pot won't work. I have a 2 or 3 quart ceramic pot that would do for now so I'll just wait for that sale. hehe

                  1. re: Eivuwan


                    Yeah, the Lodge Apple is more cute than practical anyway. But I am slightly confused about your view on bare cast iron Dutch Oven. You can simmer and braise in the bare cast iron Dutch oven as well.

                    I have a 5-6 quart Chinese ceramic pot. Mine almost look like this, but mine is more rustic:


                    You probably don't even know what that is.

                    Best wishes and please keep us update.

                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      Haha, I'm Chinese and yeah, I remember my parents using that pot to cook medicine blech. Well, the problem with bare cast iron is that whenever I simmer and braise in my cast iron chicken fryer, some of the seasoning comes off and it's just annoying.

                      1. re: Eivuwan


                        These clay pots are not just for medicine :)

                        By the way, how low do you want the price to be? Just curious?
                        On the Lodge website, it is selling the the two L series at $90 and $104.


                        On the other hand, the Lodge website will probably charge you for shipping.

                        Good luck and let us know your future plan. We are interested to know.

      2. Don't know where you live, but Lodge has 4 factory stores located in Tennessee, South Carolina, and Georgia. Prices are usually at least 25% less. The factory store locations are as follows:

        Lodge Factory Store, South Pittsburg, TN
        503 South Cedar Avenue
        South Pittsburg, TN 37380

        Lodge Factory Store, Sevierville, TN
        105 Knife Works Lane Suite 2
        Sevierville, TN 37876

        Lodge Factory Store, Commerce, GA
        165 Pottery Factory Drive
        Commerce, GA 30529

        Lodge Factory Store Myrtle Beach
        100 Legends Drive
        Suite C
        Myrtle Beach, SC 29579

        1. Eivuwan, I believe that the one on Katom's web site is from the lower priced Color line, not the same as the L series.

          3 Replies
          1. re: cheesemaestro


            The picture of that Dutch oven from Katom is really the L series. See the "L" shaped handle? See this is what the L series should look like:


            1. re: Chemicalkinetics

              Yes, the picture is of an L Series dutch oven, but read the description on Katom's site just under the picture. It says "Lodge Color Enamel. . .". I would call them before ordering to be sure you'll be getting what is shown.

              1. re: cheesemaestro

                Probably. Still, I bet it is the L series. The part number and the colors are all belong to the "L" series. For instance, the Liberty Blue, Patriot Red and Apple Green are colors for the L series. The Color series has different names.

          2. I recently (within the past month) purchased four Lodge brand enameled cast iron products (all in red) from KaTom:
            (1) L-Series 6 qt. Dutch oven (4 coats enamel)
            (2) L-Series 2 qt. casserole dish (4 coats enamel)
            (3) 3 qt. casserole with lid (regular line) (2 coats enamel)
            (4) grill pan (regular line) (2 coats enamel)

            I discarded all my non-stick cookware and have been replacing those pieces (thus the above purchase). I also have a glasstop/ceramic stove and purchased the enameled cast iron rather than the regular for this reason. (Regular cast iron will scratch the surface) The enameled is nice too because I don't have to season it and can cook acidic foods in it.

            After less than a week and having only used the 2 qt. L-Series casserole dish a couple of times for cornbread, I noticed a chip on the underside of the handle. I was and have been very careful not to bang this cookware and also slowly heat it as called for in the instructions. I called customer service after noticing the chip and just received a replacement in the mail. The replacement has 3 pin-holes with the cast iron exposed and with some very fine lines (cracks) (on the same handle, in the same spot as my original dish). I think this is a quality control issue. I decided also to recheck my other pans again- I noticed a chip on the side of the lid of the L-Series 6 qt. Dutch oven! The grill pan and the 3 qt. casserole look fine (both from the regular line).

            I really love the way the food cooks in these pans (cornbread has a nice crusty outside) and I like that I can go from stovetop to oven and even broil in them! They are very pretty... especially the Dutch oven with the elegant stainless steel handle (which, by the way, is comfortable and easy to pick-up even with a pot holder) The red color of all my pans is deep, vibrant, cheerful and goes wonderfully in my Tuscan style kitchen! The grill pan makes crusty sandwiches (I like the way it toasts the bread much better than a regular fry pan) and is great for hamburgers (seems to seal in the juices). I haven't used it much for anything else yet. I didn't see the need for the Panini press because I just flip the sandwiches over and toast the other side! (I've never used a panini press so I don't know if there is some other benefit to it? I felt I'd just flip the sandwiches and won't have to worry about storage of another item in my already limited space and also forgo the extra effort and energy of having to heat it to grill the top of the sandwich (one sandwich at a time too)) The Dutch oven and 3 qt. lidded casserole have made nice tender meat dishes. I've used the Dutch oven for pot roast and soup and the 3 qt. casserole for a rice dish (Jambalaya) and homemade macaroni and cheese. I like the fact the cast iron keeps the food warm during the meal. The dishes are sturdy and the lids fit nicely. The finishes are smooth (except for the areas of the chips) They clean-up easily. (If food sticks, just a soak in water and a non-scratch nylon pad work great)

            I also purchased one LeCreuset item (over the phone from a factory outlet)- a red enameled cast iron omelet pan (works great for eggs)- almost non-stick! So far, I've had no problems with the LeCreuset brand. The LeCreuset red is more of a bright red (although it is graduated and is deeper on the bottom of the pan- but you can't see the deep red on the bottom... I like the Lodge red a bit more- it is a deeper red on the handles where you can see it) Also the handle on the LeCreuset could have a better design- it comes straight out from the pan (no curve upward), so it is more difficult to get your hand under the handle- especially with the needed potholder. I purchased it because of the smooth beige enamel interior which I thought would be good for cooking eggs and it is! I only purchased one LeCreuset pan because my budget will not allow me to purchase all the above items as well (in the LeCreuset brand-even at the discounted prices). (I still have muffin pans, bread pans, cookie sheets etc. to purchase- which, by the way, Williams and Sonoma has their own line of commercial bakeware that is NOT nonstick, is very sturdy and is reasonbly priced. I looked at it in-store but have not made the purchase yet... but will soon)

            (So, after reading many reviews, I decided to go with the Lodge enameled cast iron.) My problem has not been resolved yet because I just e-mailed KaTom customer service last night (to let them know that the replacement has the same problem as the first dish I ordered and now my Dutch oven lid has a chip). I have not heard back today (Friday) so maybe they will contact me Monday. And I am deciding myself what I should do. It's funny I came across this blog because I was thinking to myself that maybe the L-Series is lacking some quality control (?)- I read another note on this page where someone mentioned that. I don't want to bash the product, because there are a lot of good qualities and maybe I just got (3) bad eggs(?) Afterall, they are hand made and there is human error- just HOW OFTEN is the question. My inclination is to ask to have Lodge send me a new 2 qt. casserole dish from their factory (maybe it will be from a different batch) and maybe exchange the L-Series 6 qt. Dutch oven for a 6 qt. Dutch oven from their regular line (at KaTom). (Even though I really love the look of the L-Series Dutch oven)... And hope they all hold up . So far, the regular line (2 coats of enamel) seems sturdy and made well. Just a note too, the regular line lid handle can only withstand heat to 400 degrees, so I ordered a stainless steel knob from LeCreuset that can withstand heat to 500+ degrees to put on my Lodge 3 qt. casserole lid- I have not put it on yet. The knob came to about $13 with tax and shipping. (The Lodge L-Series Dutch Oven comes with a very pretty stainless steel handle) I was disappointed with the knob from LeCreuset though because it feels very light weight. I was expecting it to be heavier, but it should do the job.

            I revisited the LeCreuset and Staub brands but can't justify spending that much on cookware. I am the type of person to buy quality to last, but am more middle ground.

            I will wait to see what customer service has to say. Has anyone else encountered these issues?

            22 Replies
            1. re: LeFleur

              Hi LeFleur,

              Like I wrote earlier, I think the quality control of the L series may be worse than the Color series, even the L series is the more expensive line. Anyway, I returned mine and just wanted the money back as I become a bare cast iron user. I do agree that the L series Dutch oven is ridiculously beautiful. I mean The Le Creuset ones are in no way as pretty as the L series. If only the L series has better quality control, I think Lodge would have really stole the show.

              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                Hi Chemicalkinetics,

                I agree. If that is true, that is a shame. I considered regular cast iron too, but my glasstop stove is new. I also don't know if I could have kept up with the seasoning... I'm a bit overwhelmed as it is with household duties. This is the first time I've used cast iron. (I've learned quite a bit about cookware on these blogs!)

                1. re: LeFleur


                  If you are still interested in Lodge L series, then I would call Lodge and ask if these are sold in a walks-in store. This way, you can walk in, open the box up, inspect it and decide if you want to purchase it. Yes, you may have to pay a bit more, but I think it is worth.

                  The bare cast iron may or may not scratch your glasstop stove. I know some people had no problem with bare cast iron on smooth glass stovetop, but that is only some people. In my experience, it is easier to take care of a bare cast iron dutch oven than an enamel one. In fact, this is why I originally switched. Yes, it is easier to clean an enamel cast iron cookware than a bare cast iron cookware if you are limited to using a sponge or soft brush. But, in practice, you can use harsher methods to clean a bare cast iron cookware, like scrubbing it with a metal spatula or metal brush. As such, it is easier to deal with bare cast iron. In addition, you can use higher heat on bare cast iron during cooking, so you don't have to wait as long. You also know that the bare cast iron is nearly indestructible, so you don't have to be supercareful about it. If you accidentally drop your cast iron cookware on the floor. It is the floor you need to worry about. Finally, bare cast iron cookare is much cheaper. The fancy Signature series is $120:


                  but the regular one is only $30.


                  About the seasoning, I won't worry way too much. It isn't like you have to season it every time. Maybe once stovetop seasoning every 10 cooking sessions and some people never have to season it for 100 cooking sessions. Stovetop seasoning is simple too. Heat up the cookware and put a thin layer or oil swirl the oil around in the cookware, and when the oil start to smoke, turn off the heat and swirl again. Finally swipe the oil with a paper towel when the cookare cool down just a bit. That's it. This is not the full blown seasoning, but you don't need a full scale seasoning on a regular basis.

                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                    Thanks Chemicalkinetics, I initially checked the bottoms of the Lodge regular cast iron and found them to be slightly rough on the bottom. I am careful on my stove, but know especially with the weight of the cast iron, I would drag it a bit . (or the others in my household!) Thank you for the tips on seasoning. I didn't know that. I did read where it was suggested to heat the clean pan on the stovetop to be sure it's dry before storage and then oil it with paper towels. I thought that would be too much for me everyday.

                    I can kick myself because before I knew anything about cast iron, we did receive quite a few sized pans from my husband's grandmother. I didn't like it because I thought it was sticky so I tried "cleaning" it (I didn't know about the care and seasoning of cast iron). I dontated it. If I had known, I would have kept it and would have purchased a new gas stove instead of another electric! Oh well... hindsight.

                    1. re: LeFleur


                      Yes, most likely the cast iron cookware will scratch your stovetop. I guess you can use a heat diffuser in between the stovetop and the cookware to protect the stovetop, but that will length the cook time, not a good solution:


                      Yeah, I guess once the cast iron pan is clean, you should heat it on low (to dry it) and then oil it a bit to prevent rusting before storing it. I do that something, and it is not as bad as it sounds. It take you like may be 10 seconds. Sometime I do that, and sometime I just wipe clean it with a papertowel. and store it. Keep in mind, the whole point of heating the cast iron cookware pan at low heat is to evaporate any water residue. I think a wipe with a dry towel will do just fine, unless you need to store it for 6 months and really want to make sure it is very dry. Otherwise, I usually clean it, wipe it dry with towel and store it. It works fine for me.

                      In fact, I will let you in a little secret, don't tell others here :) I just remembered that I used my cast iron skillet two days for some light jobs. It is still sitting on the stovetop. I haven't even cleaned it yet. See, this is the thing, all you want is to prevent it from rusting. Once you wash it, you will need to dry it. Since I haven't even cleaned it with water, I have nothing to worry about.

              2. re: LeFleur

                hey LeFleur, can you let me know what happens with the customer service and whether or not the 6 quart L-series has a dimpled lid? thanks.

                1. re: Eivuwan

                  Hi ChemK, so far no reply from c/s. The L-series lid does not have dimples. It does have 2 circular ridges- I don't know if that's a special design or not (The regular 3 qt.casserole lid does not have dimples or ridges- just a smooth surface) Thanks for your other reply!

                  1. re: LeFleur

                    Hi Eivuwan- sorry, I was in such a hurry- I should have directed my response to you! Have you made a purchase yet?

                    1. re: LeFleur

                      At this point, I am a little worried about buying a defect oven and having to go through the trouble of returning it. I think I will keep waiting on it. If the price on Amazon get low enough, I would get it. I am actually thinking of just saving up money over a year or something and getting a 6.25 qt round Staub instead.

                    2. re: LeFleur


                      I don't own a L series Dutch Oven, as mine arrived damaged, so I returned mine. However, I thought I remember the lid of my 5 qt L series Dutch oven has round spikes on the interior of the cover.

                      I have to say I had two bare cast iron Dutch oven from Lodge. The Logic and the Pro-Loge. My Logic one has spikes on the cover, but my Pro-Logic one has a circular ridge instead.


                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                        Hey Chemicalkinetics, I guess they changed the lid design of the L series dutch ovens. Do you think there is any difference in performance between the spiked lid and the lid with circular ridges?

                        1. re: Eivuwan


                          Maybe, but probably not. I was referring to Dutch Oven lids. LeFleur was talking about casserole lids.

                          As you know, when you cook, the liquid get evaporated and then condense on the lid. As the condensed liquid accumulates, they will roll down to the lowest point and drop. If you have a completely smooth curve lid, then the condensed liquid will slide all the way to the edge before dripping down. Some people like the spikes ones because the condensed liquid will drip down from the spikes and therefore dripping down more evenly across the lid. The circular ridge design is intermediate. It stops the some of the condensed liquid droplets from rolling all the way to the end of the lid and encourages the liquid drop from the ridge. The liquid won't be dripping as evenly across the lid as the spiked ones, but more evenly then a completely smooth lid.

                          I really don't know if these designs will make a huge difference in term of cooking performance. It does make it less messy when you open the lid and not to have tons of droplets dripping everywhere. What I do know is that some people have complained about the Mario Batali enamel cast iron Dutch oven of chipping enamel surface on the spikes, and you can understand that too. The spikes have abrupt shape and enamel surface will probably be weaker there. Someone used to load up a photo of the chipped lid on, but I don’t see it anymore. If I find it later, I will put the link up.

                        2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                          Hi Chemicalkinetics... sorry- I know you returned yours- I thought you had replied to the posting, but it was actually Eivuwan!

                          1. re: LeFleur


                            That is fine. I knew it. So have you heard more from Lodge customer service? Can you return your semi-deflected cookware?

                              1. re: LeFleur


                                Why don't you also email Lodge at the same time? Whoever willing to replace your cookware, you will send to them. You have nothing to lose except maybe spending another 5-10 minutes writing another email.

                                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                  I know that Lodge bare cast iron is made in South Pittsburg,TN. and that it is the only cast iron made the us. But do they send or are the pots made in China to be enameled. If its all done China, then Lodge has a big Q.C. headache. Because all of the cast iron wears from China are very very poorly made and hard to season.

                                  1. re: yakitat jack

                                    Hi Yakitat jack,
                                    I will have to research that. The package says, "made in China", but I'm not sure if it's just the enamel application process that's done in China...

                                    1. re: LeFleur

                                      I am pretty sure the iron is also made in China in this particular case. Lodge website used to have that information, but now Lodge has recently clean up the website, I cannot find that information.

                                  2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                    Good idea Chemicalkinetics- I will do that.

                                    1. re: LeFleur

                                      I ended up returning the Lodge L-Series 6 quart Dutch Oven and received a refund. I am going to purchase the Lodge Color Series 6 quart Dutch Oven from Wal-Mart. So far I really like the Lodge Color Series 3 quart casserole and the Color Series grill pan that I have.

                                      1. re: LeFleur


                                        Good to know. My experience too. For some odd reasons, the budget priced Lodge Color has better quality control than the elite Lodge L series.