Le Creuset - worth it?

(82 Posts)
escape Mon 25-Mar-13 12:03:52

Just wondering if there are any die hard fans or is it a case of style over substance before I invest?

HeroineChick Mon 25-Mar-13 12:13:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MildredH Mon 25-Mar-13 12:15:57

We love ours.. Cooks beautifully and washes easily. However, sainsbo's have copies on offer this week which a friend of mine has and says they are fab too so I'd say unless you're caught up on having the brand, shop around for a good quality copy made of same material.

SwedishEdith Mon 25-Mar-13 12:21:13

I have Creuset - 35+ years old, still going strong, Chasseur - 10+ years old, still great and the Sains copy- 1 week old,still great grin .Just could not bring myself to spend £100+ more just for the name

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 25-Mar-13 12:22:56


I love mine, and I've got one which was my grandma's which I still use weekly.

bakingaddict Mon 25-Mar-13 12:25:15

I have a Le Creuset griddle pan.....it's so bloody heavy I very rarely get it out of the cupboard. Put me off buying anything else although they have these cute little Le Creuset casserole pots in John Lewis at the mo

ouryve Mon 25-Mar-13 12:27:03

They're great - but only if you're sure you can lift the pans when they're full. They're a bit blinking heavy.

MildredH Mon 25-Mar-13 12:29:32

If you decide to invest in the real deal make sure you shop around. We got ours from outlet at Bicester Village but I've since noticed that John Lewis and Debenhams often have 20-25% off them for a week..

My mum still uses the set she got for her wedding almost 40 years ago every day. The big pans are very heavy when full, but brilliant in terms of heating evenly and last so long that I'm adding a couple to my wedding list too!

Beamur Mon 25-Mar-13 12:34:18

We've got a couple and they are such good quality and last well.

FrazzleRock Mon 25-Mar-13 12:48:21

Don't use the ovenware. It cracks!
It's no wonder they've got shitloads of the stuff in TK Maxx all the time.

Pans are lovely though

escape Mon 25-Mar-13 13:02:27

Frazzle - interesting, have seen those there!
Thanks for input guys

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 25-Mar-13 13:02:51

Frazzle really? I've got several things and they are all fine after many many uses - how bizarre!

nilbyname Mon 25-Mar-13 13:05:26

I have LeCrue pots and pans and they are fantastic. I imagine that they will last my lifetime and I will pass them on to my children.

AndBingoWasHisNameOh Mon 25-Mar-13 13:05:35

We have them but only buy them when on offer in a store or at the outlet where you can normally get 40-50% off. Not sure I'd buy at full price.

CointreauVersial Mon 25-Mar-13 13:07:44

They work on induction hobs, which is a bonus, but the saucepans are too blinking heavy for me (especially with the amount of grub I have to cook for my hungry lot).

Mondrian Mon 25-Mar-13 13:11:03

We have a set of 8 that have served us well over past 10 years, love the pans as they can be used on the hob or in the oven and also great when deglazing is required. Even if on a budget i would definitely recommend a couple of deep pans/casserole as they add to the kitchen decor and are very versatile. Not a great fan of the frying pan unless you must deglaze at some stage so not very versatile.

olgaga Mon 25-Mar-13 13:11:08

I have a couple of Le Creuset - a huge casserole (which is indeed very heavy when full), a Marmitout, and a griddle for steak (hardly use it now steak is so expensive!). They are brilliant for slow cooking, either on the hob or in the oven. It's nice to be able to brown meat in the dish.

I did get a Sains knock-off (lovely purple one) but the bottom would stick, and it also raised in the centre slightly after a bit of use. I send it off to the charity shop.

However I can recommend the Homebase knock-offs, I've got one of those, a mid-size oval, and it's as good as Le Creuset.

IslaValargeone Mon 25-Mar-13 13:11:18

I don't like mine, I don't find they clean well and they are ridiculously heavy.

GandalfsHat Mon 25-Mar-13 13:11:48

Totally worth it.

olgaga Mon 25-Mar-13 13:13:29

Isla soak them well and use a plastic scourer, dry them then oil the inside before you put them away. They do get a bit discoloured with use but that's ok!

IslaValargeone Mon 25-Mar-13 13:19:34

Thanks olgaga I've never done the oiling thing, that being said I'm ready to dump my set.
One or two of mine are rusting and the handle broke off my frying pan.
I shall be buying something that I can lift without fear of pulled muscles.

FrazzleRock Mon 25-Mar-13 13:25:09

Yup. I heard an almighty bang from the oven and it was my lovely Le Creuset oven dish which had broken in two sad

I'm sure I've heard of this happening to other people

busygirl Mon 25-Mar-13 13:28:02

i keep thinking about buying one,but they usually say"not to use on direct heat",so can't goon the cooker?thats what outs me off.i have a ceramic hob cooker.they r nice,but not if i can only use them in the oven

LadyIsabellaWrotham Mon 25-Mar-13 13:28:07

They are fantastic, but the Sainsburys ones are probably 90% as good for 25% of the price - v tempted to get some this week.

i have some cast iron, stainless steel and ceramic le creuset and love it all.
my mum bought Tesco cast iron pan and finds it a LOT heavier than my le creuset.
my sister had some ceramic le creuset but dropped it and it smashed.
i probably wouldn't bother with the ceramics but the cast iron and stainless steel have been worth the money.

Posterofapombear Mon 25-Mar-13 13:36:56

They have a really long guarantee so if yours has broken take it back.

malinois Mon 25-Mar-13 13:37:17

Absolutely worth it. I have inherited Le Creuset over 50 years old and it's still beautiful. Great for anything slow cooked (daubes, braises etc) and can go straight from hob to oven.

Gives you a good forearm workout too.

olgaga Mon 25-Mar-13 13:40:44

LadyIsabella I wouldn't recommend the Sainsbury's ones, the base on mine buckled and it was much more prone to sticking. Have a look at the Homebase ones they are cheap and much better than Sains.

You can't use the ceramic ones on the hob - no! Only the cast iron or stainless steel.

They definitely give a better result for slow cooking - better than my slow cooker or pressure cooker any day.

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 13:48:19

Mine are more than 20 years old and definitely worth it. I got them in sales a year or so apart so they're different colours. I didn't realise then that mismatched colours are better than matchy-matchy so that's an accidental bonus grin

I've got two round casseroles, a shallow round pan, a round griddle and a frying pan. That's the only thing I don't use often because it's too heavy.

I lifted a bit of enamel off the smaller casserole by heating it with nothing in it. I still use it though - I just oil them now or put liquid in them first.

I really regret not buying an oval cocotte (I think they're called) because a chicken fits in really well. I have to squash mine into the round pots.

I'll look at a Sainsbury's one seeing as everyone here says they're good.

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 13:51:25

Or Homebase, then.

SwedishEdith Mon 25-Mar-13 13:53:21

I thought Homebase and Sainsbury's homewear was all the same?confused

spottyparrot Mon 25-Mar-13 13:53:22

I have 2 le crusset pots with the rest of my kitchen stuff having come from tesco/sainsburys. So if you do it like that and choose carefully then I'd say worth the money. Not worth the money to kit the entire kitchen out with le crusset although if you have loads of money, I don't see why not!

Ponders Mon 25-Mar-13 13:58:38

I've got a Le Creuset pot lasagne dish & yes, the glaze does crack; but I have 2 others as well & they're just the same. They don't leak or anything.

I also have a round casserole, which is 30 years old, & an oval one which is a bit younger - it's bigger (chicken sized, limitedperiodonly wink) & tends to get a lot more use so the inside is quite stained now. They are very heavy. I bet the cheaper ones work just as well & might be slightly lighter

Dawsons (same shop as justlinen) sell it & often have offers. Prices are similar to amazon & there's an extra 15% off until midnight today smile

Laquila Mon 25-Mar-13 14:08:54

I have a small Le Creuset and two bigger Chasseur cast-iron casseroles with lids, and I don't notice any difference between the two brands (except that the latter were cheaper!). The medium to large size ones are extremely useful/versatile.

I've also got a Le Creuset griddle pan, which I like but don't use that often, although I've noticed that the bottom of this seems to have burnt quicker than the casserole ones.

I wouldn't bother with their earthenware stuff - I think you can get cheaper, just as good quality earthenware in Sainsburys and JL, but I do find the cast iron casseroles very useful.

That said, the plastic handle/top on the lid of one of them did explode once, after a while in the Rayburn, but I don't know if that's a reflection on the stupid Rayburn rather than the dish itself...

Limitedperiodonly and Ponders - I was cooking at a friend's house with her oval one this weekend, and really liked the shape - it was easier to fit other stuff on the hob around it.

Areyoumadorisitme Mon 25-Mar-13 14:10:26

I love my Le creuset pan set and also have lots of ovenware. I never took to the frying pans though and have them away.

The pans have lasted 15yrs so far although handles don't look great due to dishwasher which is a no-no but I have always done. Otherwise I think they would be good as new.

I replaced some of the ovenware last year after 14yrs as it had cracked glazing and two items had cracked but they were used regularly for 14yrs so I don't think that is bad.

I can't remember the website but it is possible to get up to about 40% off rrp with a bit of searching online.

Areyoumadorisitme Mon 25-Mar-13 14:11:49

Oh, also have a massive cast iron casserole with lid. Still good as new after 15 years smile.

Startail Mon 25-Mar-13 14:13:09

Too heavy, can't dish wash it, stuff burns and sticks, wy cheap supermarket frying pan is way better.

It's not been down of the cupboard in years.

Ponders Mon 25-Mar-13 14:16:54

Mine go in the dishwasher? confused

agree they are a bit burny on the hob, but great in the oven

LadyIsabellaWrotham Mon 25-Mar-13 14:17:39

I dishwasher my Le Creusets - they seem fine.

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 14:23:44

My friend wrecked the wooden handles of her saucepans in the dishwasher. My dishwasher's called DH so I don't have that problem. The outside of the one that gets used the most is black so I'm going to have words with my dishwasher.

Where do you get Chasseur? I haven't got a car but I've got Debenhams, John Lewis and that sort of thing near me.

Ponders Mon 25-Mar-13 14:32:12
Tigglette Mon 25-Mar-13 15:32:52

I have an oval casserole and a cast iron lasagne/roasting dish both by Le Creuset, I've also got a generic cast iron casserole I bought from a supermarket in France for a third of the price. All three are fantastic and in constant use - I'd not bother with the saucepans ought, too heavy for me to lift with one hand.

OlyRoller Mon 25-Mar-13 16:07:34

I would say just get the enameled cast iron casseroles and the grill pans. They're tops. As are the enameled cast iron bakeware. The saucepans not so much.

I would avoid the stainless steel and the non-stick stuff.

I'd get a few key pieces - an oval and a round casserole - maybe a grill. But I wouldn't replace all my cookware with Creuset.

And I would never buy it at full-price.

Timeforabiscuit Mon 25-Mar-13 16:16:28

I lugged a full set of Le Creuset by hand from France over the cross channel ferry for my mum at the tender age of 16, so if your looking for a bargain it's much cheaper in the huge (back then!) French Supermarkets.

I inherited them 10 years ago and the one I use daily the enamel is becoming very thin on the bottom - but they have been fantastic, the frying pan is a bit too heavy to work with but the enameled cast iron casserole are superb.

I am tempted to try the Homebase one though ....

Ponders Mon 25-Mar-13 17:16:04

My huge oval one came from Carrefour, biscuit!

it was c 25 years ago - this was pre € & it was dirt cheap then, about £25. I've looked on every trip since but with the relatively weak £ they are generally pretty expensive now (sob)

PigletJohn Mon 25-Mar-13 17:51:10

don't bother with the pottery ones, no point

the iron, I agree they are very heavy. DP refuses to use them. I couldn't when I injured my arm. The smaller ones are good for lasagne and other individual dishes.

You are of course paying for the name. The technology to make cast iron, and enamel it, has been around for over a hundred years, and the name over the factory gate makes no diffence to the quality.

I'm fed up with the orange but like the black.

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 19:03:27

Bloody hell. I've just looked at that Chasseur link. The prices!!!!

I can't remember how much I paid for my Le Creusets - mostly poison bottle blue, one racing green and a trendy grey that I guess was left over.

Either they were good prices or I was a very keen young wife with money to burn grin.

But I'd still definitely recommend anything with two handles. The cost per use over 20 years has been worth the scary outlay and they'll outlive me. That's why I'm balking at buying something new. I don't think I have enough time left on earth to justify it.

Frying pans and saucepans are too heavy for me but I don't usually move the griddle pan from the hob. I use it every day for toast - I just hoover the burnt crumbs. I grilled some steak on Saturday which was lovely. Though I Brilloed it, it definitely added something to Sunday breakfast's toast.

You can probably get away with one oval casserole. I've got two round ones and use the 22cm one the most. I use the 26cm shallow pan with lid all the time.

<<My name is limitedperiodonly and I am a frugal addict of expensive cooking utensils>>

Follyfoot Mon 25-Mar-13 19:07:39

Lost all my Le Creuset in a divorce sad but they were excellent. Now have a couple of Chasseur casseroles, they are lovely and just as good.

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 19:22:51

follyfoot Divorce? Oh no. They make very good blunt instruments wink

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 19:24:05

And I'm using my 26cm shallow pan right now.

plannedshock Mon 25-Mar-13 19:30:03

Sold my whole pan set-just too heavy when full! Wimpy wrists but the casserole dishes and griddle pan ate fab!!

TomArchersSausage Mon 25-Mar-13 19:34:32

I cant see the appeal of it; it's all so blimmin heavy.

fieldfare Mon 25-Mar-13 19:49:39

I've got one huge cauldron type pot. I love it and it's my most used pan.

smaths Mon 25-Mar-13 19:49:42

the stoneware is pretty average and breaks quite easily, but the cast iron stuff is FAB

limitedperiodonly Mon 25-Mar-13 19:50:17

To cook with. Not as an offensive weapon.

NewBlueShoes Mon 25-Mar-13 20:01:24

Love them. We have saucepans, serving dishes and a big casserole dish.
Make sure you get a standard colour such as black or red. I chose a sage green which has been discontinued.
If you can try and buy from an outlet shop such as Gloucester because they are much cheaper.

Ponders Mon 25-Mar-13 20:11:22

nah, doesn't matter what colour you get. mixed colours are fine.

(I have to say that because mine are a) bright yellow & b) "hazelnut" ie mid brown grin)

FlatCapAndAWhippet Tue 26-Mar-13 07:02:26

I have a couple of old LC pans, they'll out live me for sure. I've also got the Sainsburys version of the LC casserole pot which is equally as good and was £20 in one of their promotions (which I think is currently running).

andadietcoke Tue 26-Mar-13 07:11:09

I'm undecided. We replaced a set of KitchenAid pans in the summer when we got an induction hob for an entire set of Le Creuset - pans, casseroles, wok, griddle etc. I struggle with the frying pan especially and have ended up buying a non stick one. I think the problem's not being used to induction rather than LC - not sure whether I should be letting the pans warm up more gradually.

We got the vast majority of ours from Cheshire Oaks with the 10% off card you get from the customer service desk, and some from Harts of Stur online.

Mondrian Tue 26-Mar-13 07:17:07

Seen an on-line offer for 3 piece Chasseur set in lettuce green for £140 which seemed like a good bargain. We have only ever used half our 9 piece LC set.

weegiemum Tue 26-Mar-13 07:22:41

We got a 6-piece LC set as a wedding present. A frying pan, 2 casseroles, 3 pots. That was 18 years ago and apart from when we're on holiday, I've used them every single day!! Cook great (I've always used gas), clean easy, go in dishwasher, transfer beautifully to table (mine are all Volcanic red).

Only gripe is that now I've got a disability that affects my hand feeling/grip/strength I find the frying pan hard to use sometimes - it's very heavy. Still make the effort with the others though! I miss them when I'm cooking in a holiday home/at parents or inlaws house!

Thistledew Tue 26-Mar-13 07:34:21

I have several Le Cruset and one Chasseur. The enamel on the Chasseur has chipped in one small patch on the bottom.

Pollaidh Tue 26-Mar-13 20:06:11

Very good, but very heavy. I can't lift the large casserole dish once it's full!

The griddle pan is very good, large casserole dishes very good, as well as the casserole dish with a water bath at the top, which keeps the contents moist, not sure how it works but husband is convinced. I wouldn't bother with the brand for oven dishes, ramekins etc, as there's nothing special about those.

This is probably obvious blush but if you burn something on it, soak it. Definitely don't use a metal scouring pad. That will wreck it. If you avoid scouring pad mishaps then they should last decades.

papalazaru Wed 27-Mar-13 20:27:48

I love mine. I have 3 of the real thing and one knock off. It's true they are super heavy when full but nothing beats them for even-ness of cooking. and to be honest I can't tell any difference between the L.C. and the knockoff.
I agree about the ovenware though- quite a few of mine are cracked. But I still use them.

lisamcd1979 Mon 09-Dec-13 22:18:14

We bought our stainless steel set from cheshire oaks outlet. Lifetime guarantee and they will price match anything you find cheaper. I love mine. They have a handy measurement guide inside the pan.

Volume121 Mon 09-Dec-13 22:30:51

There's loads of Le Cruset in TK Maxx at the moment

OpalTourmaline Mon 09-Dec-13 22:32:49

So in conclusion, they last well but you need to be Geoff Capes to lift them

higgle Tue 10-Dec-13 14:57:57

I had a big casserole for wedding present 29 years ago and a small one for my 21st - 36 years ago. I used both of them at least once a week but this year they were starting to stick a bit and the insides had gone from being glossy to dull. I've replaced them with Sainsbury's this time around as didn't want to spend so much and the Sainsbury's ones were on special offer. I don't suppose I need anything that will last until I am 94 - won't have the strength to lift them if I'm still around by then!

JRmumma Tue 10-Dec-13 15:06:11

Yes, yes and yes! Sooo good i cook everything in my le creuset pot. Love that it goes on hob and in oven, cooks evenly and keeps food warm for ages.

BrownSauceSandwich Tue 10-Dec-13 20:09:00

I have a few (more than I use), and I really like them for slow cooking, but I wouldn't have them as my only pans. Also have a couple of chasseur (yep, I'm acquisitive), which I'd say are just as good, and were cheaper, but are slightly less pretty.

You can't put any of them in the dishwasher if you want the finish to stay glossy.

coffeeinbed Tue 10-Dec-13 20:13:18

I've been drooling over a Staub casserole.

greyvix Tue 10-Dec-13 21:00:28

I love mine, particularly the large casserole dish. The bottom is pitted though, where DH burnt it. They are meant to have a lifetime guarantee, but I wouldn't know where to take it now. It's 30 years old.

Yankeecandlequeen Fri 13-Dec-13 16:47:22

I have a Pyrex one I got with the Tesco stamps. Works really well & a fraction of the price with the stamps.

I love mine, my friends mum gave me hers when moved house and didn't have space for them anymore - they are at least 35years old.

A good tip for getting ridding of staining on the inside is to use a couple of scoops of bio washing powder, add hot water and simmer for a few hours. Then leave to sit on top of your stove for as long as you can face (I usually forget it and leave it for a day or so) and they come up beautifully.

Had to do this after I had an incident with a pan of burnt damson chutney, it got rid of the purple stains and, eventually, the horrendous burnt mess on the inside.

I wasn't prepared to give up lightly when it came to my Le Creuset!

echt Fri 10-Jan-14 02:31:28

DH bought his set of Le Creuset pans 30 years ago and still going strong - the orange ones.

Aldi's Crofton range is good, and very cheap.

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Fri 10-Jan-14 07:46:13

Big oval

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Fri 10-Jan-14 07:47:02


BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Fri 10-Jan-14 07:58:00

Big oval crock pot - fab. Bought at an outlet place but was still £80! Ouch - will hopefully last forever though.

Gridle pan - useless. Too hard to clean.

Mugs - lovely and look fab in our drab old kitchen BUT have chipped which i hoped they wouldn't.

I love le creuset and always look for bargainous ones sadly looking to use it all for colour inspiration if DH ever gets round to the kitchen extension

roastchesnutlatte Fri 10-Jan-14 08:15:12

I bought a set of saucepans with my first pay cheque over 25yrs ago. I use them daily and they look pretty much good as new.
Large casserole of a similar vintage also going strong and various new ones added.
Dont use frying pan as prefer lighter non stick ones.
Not much else in my kitchen is of similar age!
was very pleased to get a new casserole dish in a lush purple for xmas smile

Mrswellyboot Fri 10-Jan-14 08:21:41

Frazzle my ovenwear cracked as well! Wasnt happy. Still have one ceramic casserole pot but only use it for serving.

I have the griddle pad. I find food sticks and the saucepans are far too heavy for me. So they are in the cupboard!

HazleNutt Fri 10-Jan-14 11:39:45

Good, but in the same price range you can also get Staub, which I find better.

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