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What Size Dutch Oven Do You Actually Need?

There are many different Dutch Oven sizes. Here is a guide on which Dutch Oven size is right for you.

  • George Steckel
  • Nov 24, 2021
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A Dutch Oven is a must-have piece of cookware for any home cook. With them, you can sear short ribs, saute vegetables, simmer stews, braise brisket, boil soup, and even bake bread. And not to mention, if cared for properly, they’ll last a lifetime. So, when in the market for a Dutch Oven, it’s essential to know which one is right for you.

There are a lot of factors to consider when buying a Dutch Oven, but, the shape and the size are great places to start. The most common shapes are oval and circular, while the sizes aren’t as clear-cut. Dutch Oven sizes range from 2 Quarts to 13 Quarts, so picking the right size is an essential first step when buying your first Dutch Oven.

This blog post will focus on the different sizes and shapes of Dutch Ovens and when it is best to use each one.

Different Dutch Oven Sizes

When buying a new Dutch Oven, you should ask yourself how many people you usually cook for, as this will determine what size Dutch Oven you will buy.

Smaller Dutch Ovens, such as 2 and 3 Quart ones, are great if you live by yourself or with someone else. They also lend themselves perfectly for cooking side dishes such as grains, vegetables, or making sauces. Smaller Dutch Ovens work well for reheating leftovers, too, and if you already have a large Dutch Oven, a smaller Dutch Oven is a wonderful complement.

If you find yourself hosting parties or have a large family, opting for a larger size, such as a 7 or 9 Quart Dutch Oven, is wise. You can make big batches of chili, stews, braised meats, and grains, and have plenty for leftovers.

The Perfect Dutch Oven Size

We believe the most versatile Dutch Oven size is 5.5 Quarts. A 5.5 Quart Dutch Oven will comfortably feed a family of four or two people with leftovers for the next. Whether you’re braising short ribs, baking bread, or making a tomato sauce, there is no limit to what you can make in a 5.5 Quart Dutch Oven.

Different Dutch Oven Shapes

Unlike the variability of Dutch Oven sizes, Dutch Ovens come in two different shapes: circular and oval. The most popular Dutch Oven shape is circular, but that doesn’t mean that an oval Dutch Oven doesn’t have its place in the kitchen.

Oval Dutch Ovens

An oval Dutch Oven is great for cooking oddly shaped foods, such as searing beef or pork tenderloin, roasting poultry, or braising vegetables like leeks or whole carrots. It also stands out on the dinner table, juxtaposed with round dinner plates, providing a beautiful tablescape.

Circular Dutch Ovens

However, we believe a circular Dutch Oven is better than an oval Dutch Oven for two main reasons.

First, a circular Dutch Oven provides more flexibility in the kitchen. One of the most common uses for a Dutch Oven is baking bread, and if you were to have an oval Dutch Oven, you’d end up with a pretty odd shaped loaf.

Second, circular Dutch Ovens fit more naturally on burners, whether gas, electric, or induction. You achieve even heating throughout the entire base with a circular Dutch Oven, while an Oval Dutch Oven will have part of its base hanging over the burner.

Plus, the oval shape is narrower, making it harder to stir and evenly distribute your ingredients.

Picking The Best Dutch Oven For You

When it comes to picking the best Dutch Oven size and shape, it is clear that circular Dutch Ovens perform best. It will provide the most versatility, whether you’re baking bread, searing meat for a braise, or simmering a stew for hours.

If you’re buying a Dutch Oven for the first time, we suggest going with a size that provides the most uses, which is a 5.5 Quart Dutch Oven. Once you have a 5.5 Quart Dutch Oven in your repertoire, then purchasing another in a smaller or larger size to complement it is worthwhile.

Made In Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

We obsessed over every detail of our Dutch Oven when designing it. We partnered with a manufacturer in Northeast France who brings over a century of craftsmanship to the table. Our Dutch Oven features a Cast Iron body and gets sprayed by hand with a layer of enamel, creating a smooth cooking surface that makes it unsusceptible to rusting.

What you’re left with is a beautiful piece of cookware perfect for roasting chicken, braising short ribs, baking sourdough bread, and sauteing vegetables for many years to come.

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Born out of a 100-year old, family-owned restaurant supply business, we work to ensure our Cookware is as detail oriented as the chefs who choose to use it in their kitchens.

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