For those who have never used an enameled Dutch oven and are looking for an entry-level, budget-friendly one, the Lodge cast iron enameled Dutch oven could be a great addition to your kitchen.
Lodge is famous for their cast iron cookware and it’s no coincidence the Lodge Enamel French oven is the top-selling Dutch oven on Amazon. In terms of performance, you will not notice major difference between Lodge and other high-end brands such as Le Creuset or Staub. Weighting similar to a Le Creuset, Lodge is heavier than most other budget Dutch ovens, which is a plus.
The price-performance ratio for the Lodge enameled Dutch oven is outstanding. You are essentially getting the performance of Staub or Le Creuset at 1/3 or 1/4 of the price.
1. Quality and Longevity
The Lodge enameled Dutch oven is prone to chipping and cracking. Given the price of the Dutch oven, you should not expect the enamel to be top quality. Depending on the amount of usage and care, chipping and cracking could develop between 1 – 2 years after first use. It is not unusual to read user reviews that give high praise during 1st year of use, then finding minor problems during 2nd year and essentially have to throw out the Dutch oven at 3rd year. These are expected issues given the low price. Just ensure you’re fine with purchasing a piece of cookware which may or may not last long.
2. Made in China
The Lodge enameled Dutch oven is made in China. As much as Lodge promises its customers that their Chinese partners adhere to Lodge’s strict standards, anyone who has experience dealing with Chinese manufacturing and production often have reserve about the Chinese standards. Some view the made in China label as a major turn off while some don’t. In any case, it is good to know where the product is made.
Overall, if you’re in the market for a budget-friendly Dutch oven, or if you want to try enameled cookware for the first time, the Lodge enameled Dutch oven is a solid choice.