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Enamled cast iron

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I'm looking to buy my daughter an enamled cast iron dutch oven. Le Crueset is too expensive. What is your opinion of the Kitchen Aid line of pots?

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  1. I had a Lodge enameled CI dutch oven for several years. Eventually the enamel on the inside started cracking and finally chipping. I tossed it last week. I am currently looking at buying a Le Creuset.

    1. Tramontina from Sam's Club is a great "value" option. I like it's thicker heavier weight versus Martha Stewart and similar knock offs and I think the enamel will be more durable than Lodge in the long run.

      1. Go with costco. If the enamel chips off due to manufacturing problems they should replace it.

        Check around and see if there is a Le Creuset outlet store nearby. Sometimes you can get a great deal there.

        3 Replies
        1. re: slowshooter

          I would second the Le Creuset outlet suggestion. I think you can always do well there if you aren't trying to match a particular color or something. And if you don't need to buy immediately, LC does go on sale - I bought my 5 qt. at Bloomingdale's for 75% off a couple of years ago when they were changing the designs. The KitchenAid enameled cast iron isn't that much cheaper anyway from what I can see.

          1. re: slowshooter

            How is Costco going to replace anything? They sell cookware in fairly short runs and move on to other items. They don't stock housewares long term.

            1. re: slowshooter

              I have a big LC Dutch oven I bought at TJ Maxx for $50. It was on clearance but they have good prices on LC any way.

            2. Chasseur or Fontignac. Made in France, not China, better quality, less chance of chipping, cheaper than the top names.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Sirrith

                Overstock.com has some Fontignac:

                http://www.overstock.com/search?keywo...

                1. re: GH1618

                  Fontignac is also available at BB&B. Don't forget a 20% off coupon!

                  BB&B is very good at accepting returns for damage down the road.

                  http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store...

              2. I'm not sure about KitchenAid, but I have a Lodge enameled CI 6 qt dutch oven and it has been great.

                1. I would probably avoid KA, perhaps the French made brands listed above would be a good option without paying Le Crueset or Staub prices. The other option is to shop for a good deal on one of these quality brands. I bought my Staub ovens at considerable discounts.

                  1. If Le Creuset or Staub are too expensive, then I recommend Lodge Color enameled cast iron Dutch Oven. $45 for a 6 quart Dutch Oven:

                    http://www.amazon.com/Lodge-EC6D53-En...

                    The only great value one is the Tramontina -- but it is a bit more difficult to get hold of.

                    Then of course, I have to ask: Do you really want an enameled cast iron dutch oven? All of them run some levels of risks of chipping. Stainless steel cladded dutch oven can deliver the same results for most applications. They will be about the same price or even cheaper, and they are more durable.

                    Nordic offers cast aluminum Dutch Ovens which have the same "look" as enameled Dutch Ovens for
                    $54 (the red color one):

                    http://www.amazon.com/Nordic-Ware-Tra...

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      Thanks for mentioning cast aluminum, Chem.

                      There's usually a lot of vintage Club Aluminum on eBay, most of it well under $50.

                      Also, IMUSA is a great bargain choice. It's a staple here in Tampa for red beans and rice. http://www.amazon.com/IMUSA-Aluminum-...

                      Not what the OP requested, but it is a great alternative.