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A Buyer’s Guide to Le Creuset

Established in 1925, Le Creuset is today celebrated around the world for its enamel cast iron cookware. Starting out with its now iconic Volcanic orange colour—inspired by the flames of the molten iron used to cast each casserole dish—Le Creuset today offers its products in over 100 colours to more than 60 countries around the world. With its range of homeware expanding with each new season, we’ve teamed up with The Hut’s expert buying team to offer an essential guide to Le Creuset whether you’re a first time buyer or Le Creuset connoisseur.

Le Creuset Buyer's Guide

Where is Le Creuset made?

Le Creuset continues to make its Signature Cast Iron Products from its foundry in Fresnoy-le-Grand, northern France. Over 10,000 Le Creuset cast iron products are made each day at the foundry where the brand has product its products for over 90 years.

What sizes do Le Creuset dishes come in?

Round Casserole Dishes

Diameter (cm) Capacity (L) Capacity (QT) Serves
18 1.8 2 2
20 2.4 2.5 2–3
22 3.3 3.5 3–4
24 4.2 4.5 4–5
26 5.3 5.5 6
28 6.7 7.25 6–8
30 8.4 9 8–10
34 12.4 13.25 10–12

 

Oval Casserole Dishes

Diameter (cm) Capacity (L) Capacity (QT) Serves
23 2.6 2.75 2–3
25 3.2 3.5 3–4
27 4.1 4.25 4–6
29 4.7 5 6
31 6.3 6.75 6–8
35 9 7.9 8–10
40 14.8 13 12–14

 

Which products should I start with?

Famous for its bestselling and iconic enamel coated cast iron pots, The Hut recommends starting off with one of Le Creuset’s Signature Round Casseroles.

In terms of size and colour, we recommend opting for the 24cm dish which serves 4-6 people (perfect for families and guests) and the classic volcanic orange shade that is now synonymous with the brand’s cookware.

What colours do they come in?

Since launching with its Volcanic casserole dish back in 1925, Le Creuset has created its cookware in over 100 colours and today offers its cookware in a variety of colours. Among its most popular colours are:

Why is Le Creuset worth the money?

Le Creuset has been making world-class cookware for almost 100 years. Used by leading chefs and keen cooks around the globe, Le Creuset cookware offers outstanding performance time after time.

With an unwavering belief in the quality & durability of its cookware, Le Creuset offers a lifetime guarantee for the original owner across the brand’s cast iron range.

Le Creuset owners also frequently praise the versatility and ease of use of its signature dishes and pans which can be used throughout the year. Alongside celebrity chefs, the brand regularly offers inspiring (and often simple) recipes to try at home with your Le Creuset cast iron dish.

Looking for inspiration on what to cook in your Le Creuset cookware? Whether you’re planning your weekend brunch, a Persian feast for the family or a warming one-pot recipe perfect for those cold winter evenings, find all the inspiration you need on The Hut blog.

How should you clean your Le Creuset pots and grill pan?

You should always cool a hot Le Creuset product before washing. Do not plunge a hot pan into cold water. While Le Creuset’s enamel is designed to be the most durable on the market, thermal shock may still occur, resulting in cracking or loss of enamel.

If there are food residues, fill the pan with warm water and let soak for 15 to 20 minutes before washing. A brush can be useful for removing small food deposits, or for cleaning between the ribs on grills. Do not use scourers or abrasive cleaners on the cooking surface. Nylon or soft abrasive pads or brushes can be used to remove stubborn residues. To avoid damaging the enamel, do not use metallic pads or harsh abrasive cleaning agents.

Light stains or metal marks caused by metal tools can be removed with Le Creuset cast iron cookware cleaner. An occasional cleaning with this product will also retain the new appearance of your pans.

Never store pans while they are still damp. Store pans in a dry cupboard or airy space away from steam. Maintain the tightness of all handles and knobs by checking and retightening them regularly.

All pans with integral cast iron, phenolic handles or stainless steel knobs can be washed in the dishwasher. However, constant dishwashing may lead to some dulling of the enamel finish. This is not harmful and will not impair performance. When using the dishwasher always allow the cycle to finish before opening the door. This will ensure the pans are dried thoroughly.

Are Le Creuset dishes oven safe?

The black phenolic lid knobs on the Le Creuset Signature range of enamelled cast iron are heat-resistant to 480°F / 250°C. The black phenolic lid knobs on the Classic range of enamelled cast iron are heat-resistant to 375°F / 190°C. Products with integral cast iron handles or stainless steel knobs can be used at any oven temperature. Pans with wooden handles or knobs must not be placed in the oven.

Do not place any cookware on the floors of ovens with cast iron linings. This will increase the cooking temperature inside the oven, resulting in an increased cooking rate with detrimental effects on food. Do not drag cookware across the floor of the liners. For best results always place on a shelf or rack.

 

Are their mugs microwave and dishwasher safe?

Le Creuset Stoneware, including its mugs, is safe for use in the microwave, dishwasher, freezer, fridge and oven up to 260°C.

 

Are Le Creuset pots non-reactive?

Le Creuset’s cast iron products have a porcelain surface that is non-reactive and does not react with acidic foods such as tomatoes, chutneys, pickles or berries.

 

Are Le Creuset pans non-stick?

The Le Creuset cookware collection includes its Toughened Non-Stick Range, comprising frying pans, griddle pans, saucepans and woks all designed with a tough, PFOA-free non-stick surface inside and out.

The Le Creuset Cast Iron Collection is not non-stick but does have a smooth enamel coating that will not stick if used in the right manner. Cast Iron is an excellent conductor and retainer of heat, so we recommend using a low to medium heat when cooking. Cast Iron and the enamel coatings of our casseroles heat up and expand and contract at different rates, meaning that if you use a high heat the cast iron can expand faster than the enamel and cause damage to the enamel surfaces—usually fine hairline cracks or crazing lines in the enamel.

Here are a few tips to help protect your Cast Iron and stop food sticking:

  • Make sure that the hob ring you use is close to the base size of the casserole – not too big, but large enough to ensure that the heat is spread more evenly across the base of the pan.
  • Because Cast Iron retains heat extremely well you could start a sauce or casserole off on the hob – using a low to medium heat and giving the pan time to reach the temperature needed to brown the meat.
  • Once your sauce or casserole is at the stage where it simply needs to sit and simmer gently allowing the sauce to thicken and the flavours to develop, you can put it in the oven on a low to medium heat (maximum temp 190°c) to continue cooking. This should help prevent sticking by ensuring the pot is subjected to an even distribution of heat in the oven, rather than a concentrated area on the hob.
  • Alternatively, get a sauce or casserole to simmering point then lower the heat right down for a while, then for the last half an hour/45 minutes of cooking you could turn the heat off and leave the food to cook with the lid on. Again, because cast iron retains heat so well the food will continue to cook inside the pot without the need of an external heat source – this method also works for cooking things like rice or potatoes and is an excellent energy saver.

Can you use Le Creuset for induction cooking?

Yes, all Le Creuset cookware is suitable for use on an induction hob (except for the Le Creuset Stoneware Range which should not be used on the stove top). Even older cookware is suitable for all heat sources and we would just recommend on any heat source that you use a low to medium heat because all Le Creuset cookware is designed to heat evenly and effectively, providing excellent results even on a low heat.



atkinsons

atkinsons

Writer and expert


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