Lodge 5qt "Dutch Oven" Choices: I'm Torn
I can't decide between two (or four) products for a Lodge cast iron 5 quart "dutch oven."
The 5qt chicken fryer looks appealing because I do like having an actual handle. I have the Lodge 3qt 10 1/4 inch combo cooker and absolutely love it. I just wish they made a 5qt 12 inch version of it though, then my decision would be made.
Here's the 5 qt 12 inch chicken fryer:
Then there is the 5 qt 10 1/4 inch double dutch oven. The lid converts to a 10 1/4 inch skillet, which I don't need at all. I already have a normal Lodge 10 1/4 inch skillet and also the 10 1/4 inch skillet/lid to my combo cooker. So this double Dutch oven's lid would be quite redundant for me, and I'd have to use 2 hands on the lid -- No big deal but a normal lid that I can lift with one hand would be more convenient.
Here is the 10 1/4 inch 5qt double Dutch oven:
Or, do I get the legless plain 'ol 10 1/4 inch 5 qt dutch oven with loop handles here:
I'm also diggin' the spiral handle one:
Ugh, so many variables. Like I mentioned above, if Lodge made a 12 inch 5qt combo cooker just like their 3qt 10 1/4 inch one that I own, I'd be sold. I love the handles and a second 12 inch skillet is also needed.
I think I'm leaning towards the chicken fryer (I could also use the lid on a 12 inch skillet) but...
... Is there something different about cooking with a smaller diameter, deeper, straight vertical sided pot like the "dutch ovens" versus the wider, more shallow, angled sides of the chicken fryer?
spiral handle if you want to hang it over a camp fire or remove from camp fire with long pole - if you are using in your kitchen only skip it
skillet lid - only if you don't have a 10" skillet already - a 10" skillet with wee little side handles is not all that useful - like a small CI Paella pan - cute feature but not necessary
I like the classic DO - there is a reason the shape/size has been popular for over a century now
as for the chicken fryer
well... clearly you need one of those too LOL
Yep, it would be nice to hang over a fire since I camp a lot. But my goal is to someday get camp-specific cast iron to store in my camping garb. Another combo cooker, and a spiral handled dutch oven with legs come to mind for my camping garb.
And, yes, a larger chicken fryer would be nice for at home lol.
What are you planning to use it for?
The main difference is that the chicken fryer gives you more surface area. The dutch oven gives you more depth. I've seriously considered adding the chicken fryer but if I'm frying on the stove top it's in my 7 qt dutch oven anyway so I can't justify the purchase. I'm not a fan of the long handles anyway
One very useful feature of the double dutch oven is that you can use it upside down to make a bread cloche (trap the steam inside, better bake).
I have both the 5qt dutch oven and 5qt chicken fryer. I like having both b/c the lid of the dutch oven fits on my 10" skillet and the lid of the fryer fits on my 12" skillet. I like the fryer for cooking food that needs to be turned, whereas the dutch oven is good for soups and things that need to be stirred. I use my dutch oven for pot roast, but think the fryer could work. I think liquid would evaporate faster in the fryer. I also like using the fryer for cooking bacon or sausage or anything that splatters. The higher sides are better than a regular skillet for avoiding grease all over my stovetop.