If you can only afford one Le Creuset piece, this is the one to splurge on

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Le Creuset cookware is notoriously expensive, yet there’s a reason amateur and professional chefs always go back to the brand: It’s extremely durable.

Purchasing a Le Creuset piece, whether it’s your first or your tenth, is an investment. Most of the colorful enameled cast iron pieces come with a lifetime warranty, so you know they’re going to last a while. But if the price still scares you a little bit, this is the one piece you should splurge on first.

You should save up for the brand’s iconic Dutch oven.

Shop: Le Creuset 3.5-Quart Dutch Oven, $305

Credit: Le Creuset
Credit: Le Creuset

Le Creuset introduced its first piece of colorful enameled cast iron, the cocotte, in 1925. Cocotte is the French word for Dutch oven, so you could say they’ve become masters in the 95 years they’ve been making this piece.

“Individually crafted by French artisans from the finest quality materials since 1925, the Le Creuset Dutch oven is beloved for its perfected design and exceptional heat retention that locks in moisture and flavor to produce superior results from stove to oven to table,” Le Creuset’s product description reads.

The enameled cast iron Dutch oven is oven safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. It has a tight-fitting lid designed to circulate steam and return moisture back to the food inside, while its side handles are designed for easy lifting. You can use it for slow-cooking, braising, roasting, baking, frying and more, which is one of the reasons it’s worth the investment.

Plus, the piece is naturally nonstick and dishwasher safe, so it’s easy to clean, requires no seasoning and does come with the previously mentioned lifetime warranty.

Shop: Le Creuset Dutch Oven, 5.5-Quart, $360

Credit: Le Creuset
Credit: Le Creuset

You can get the Le Creuset Dutch Oven in up to 20 different colors and a few different sizes. The 3.5-quart should hold enough food to feed 2–3 people, while a 5.5-quart or 7.5-quart Dutch oven will cook enough for 4–8 people — and usually provide a few leftovers.

Prices range for the Dutch oven from $155 to $560, depending on the size. However, Le Creuset does have an under-the-radar sale section online that you can check for deals.

Needless to say, if you’re going to buy one Le Creuset cookware piece and plan to use it for years to come, make it the Dutch oven.

If you enjoyed this story, check out this $20 Pioneer Woman baking set for making all your favorite meals.

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