If you’ve ever researched cookware, chances are you’ve come across Le Creuset.
If you were looking for a budget-friendly option, then you scrolled right past the Le Creuset pan/dutch oven/pot/etc.
You may have felt shocked (like me) and wondered “what makes a pan so expensive?”
This holiday season, we’re going to outline all of the costs and benefits of owning Le Creuset products.
Then you can decide for yourself whether it makes sense to invest in the famed French cookware company.
Why are Le Creuset Pans so Expensive?
Founded in France in 1925, Le Creuset pans have withstood the test of time in terms of quality and reputation. We’ll look into the specifics of the cost below.
What is the Average Cost of Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Pan?
Le Creuset cast iron skillets range from around $136-$300 USD.
If you’re looking for a Dutch Oven or specialty pan, the cost will range anywhere from $200-$700+ USD.
On average, you can buy a Le Creuset pan for around $200-$300, but that’s an average – it could be less, it could be more.
How Long Does a Le Creuset Pan Typically Last? Is there a Warranty?
A Le Creuset pan should last a lifetime, if one takes proper care of the pan. It could last multiple generations with excellent care. Thus, Le Creuset is a lifetime investment.
Depending on the product, Le Creuset offers different warranties.
For their Enameled Cast Iron, there’s a limited lifetime warranty, which covers household use and ensures that the item has no defects at the time of purchase.
It does NOT cover commercial use, wear and tear that’s out of the norm, overheating, or anything that results from using the cookware improperly, according to their website.
Furthermore, “The lifetime limited warranty does not apply to cookware products with a nonstick coating, non-cast iron pieces and accessories.”
The Stoneware limited lifetime warranty covers poor workmanship and materials when the item is used normally, according to instructions. It does NOT cover normal wear and tear, nor improper use.
Most of the other products come with a similar warranty, which means you have to take good care of your Le Creuset cookware.
For specific cookware warranties, check the warranties page on the website.
What You Get When You Buy a Le Creuset
As the first cookware company to offer colored enamel on their products, Le Creuset currently offers a wide range of color options.
You can mix and match to your heart’s desire! Want to match your cookware to your kitchen wall color? Do it. Have an heirloom dish set you’d like to complement your pans? Feel free!
When you buy a Le Creuset product, you receive a well-made item, as well as the historically-backed reputation of Le Creuset and the promise of lifelong quality.
The company is able to charge so much partially due to these factors – they have survived as a company amongst the hundreds of other brands that make the same products. And, hopefully, the quality speaks to the cost.
How the Quality is Ensured
Each pan takes 10 hours to make from start to finish.
Before they’re approved for sale, each pan has to pass the inspection of at least 15 team members. The quality-inspection process further adds to the high cost.
Though Le Creuset enamel is strong and scratch-resistant, chipping is technically possible and there are reports of it.
However, if you have taken proper care of your Le Creuset cookware, it’s possible that the warranty will cover the chip.
In order to take advantage of the warranty, you will have to reach out to the company’s customer support and go through the inspection process.
Depending on how the inspection goes, you may receive a new product.
Nonstick Enamel Coating
The Le Creuset enamel coating is “essentially nonstick,” but if you want specifically non-stick pans, you can buy from their nonstick selection, such as their Toughened Nonstick PRO line.
Though you can clean metal scratch marks with Le Creuset cookware cleaner, it’s best to use metal utensils sparingly, and never on nonstick surfaces.
Le Creuset is dishwasher-safe. Not many enameled cast iron pans are dishwasher safe, so this feature definitely sets the company apart from its competitors.
It’s worth mentioning that the company recommends hand washing over using the dishwasher.
As we’ve mentioned, the Le Creuset line is highly durable. As long as you follow the care instructions, your pan should last a lifetime, if not two.
Most of the skillets and Dutch Ovens can withstand up to 500°F in the oven.
Even Heat Distribution
The enamel of the Le Creuset products allows for even heat distribution and easy clean up.
It gives all the pros of cooking with cast iron without the hassles of uneven cooking and difficult clean-up.
Tight-Fitting Lid = Insulation for Hot or Cold
The snug fit of Le Creuset lids allows you to capitalize on the temperature of your food.
If you want to keep your dish hot, the lid provides insulation to keep your food warm for longer.
On the other hand, if you want your dish cold, you can freeze the dish and it will retain the cold for a while.
Who is Le Creuset Not For?
If you’re looking for a cheap, lightweight pan that you can use on a glass stovetop, Le Creuset is most likely not for you!
Are There Any Downsides to Owning a Le Creuset?
Given that it’s so pricey, it’s best you figure out if Le Creuset is a good option for your needs before you buy. Though it’s a popular brand, it’s not for everyone!
Not all Le Creuset cookware is microwave-safe. Make sure to check the specific item you’re looking at before purchasing. The Stoneware is microwave safe.
Use Caution on Glass Cook Tops
Using cast iron on glass stove tops is not recommended. If your home has a glass stove top, you can only use cast iron inside the oven itself.
Le Creuset pans are heavy. If you’re not comfortable using heavy cookware or just have a preference for lighter cookware, Le Creuset enameled cast iron is not your best choice.
Clearly, Le Creuset is not for the bargain shopper. It is, however, a great option for home cooks and professionals alike who want to invest in a high-quality, life-long product.
If you take proper care of your Le Creuset, you could pass it down through your family, or gift it to a friend when you no longer have use for it.
Before buying, remember to check the specifics of the product and its warranty. And weigh the pros and cons of the expense, if that’s helpful.
While Le Creuset offers well-constructed and inspected products that are built to last, they are still quite an investment.
If you’re looking for a colorful upgrade to your kitchen, Le Creuset could be the product you’ve been searching for.
The features, history, and quality make it a top-contender for cooks and bakers who want easy clean-up, evenly-cooked dishes, and aesthetically pleasing cookware.
Do you own any Le Creuset products? Do you want to? Let us know!