Best Emile Henry Dutch Ovens [Reviews and Buying Guide]

Emile Henry cookware is the go-to brand when it comes to ceramic or clay Dutch ovens. After a careful study of over a dozen cookware products from the brand, weíve determined the Flame Round Stewpot 5.5-Quart model as the best option. The standard-sized clay pot is considerably lighter than most similar-sized metal and cast-iron Dutch ovens and is excellent for most daily cooking tasks. It is dishwasher-safe, oven-safe, and compatible with all cooktops.

The Top Emile Henry Dutch Ovens Reviewed

 Product's nameMaterialCapacity/WeightBest ForMore Info
No products found.No products found.Clay5.2 liters (5 servings); 8.8 poundsBest OverallNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Ceramic4.5 liters (4 servings); 8.8 poundsBest High-End OptionNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Clay4 liters (3 to 4 servings); 7.4 poundsBest Budget OptionNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Ceramic4 liters (3 to 4 servings); 5.7 poundsBest Ceramic OptionNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Clay6 liters (5 to 6 servings); 9.7 poundsBest Oval ShapeNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Clay2.46 liters (2 servings); 5.1 poundsBest Small CapacityNo products found.
No products found.No products found.Ceramic2.46 liters (2 servings); 6.1 poundsBest for BraisingNo products found.

Find the Right Emile Henry Dutch Oven for You

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Best Overall

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Our top pick is the Flame Round Stewpot 5.5-Quart model, an excellent choice for the average-size family. Available in burgundy and charcoal color, this clay pot can make stews and soups for up to five people.

A round bottom thatís narrower than the top enables perfect balance on stovetops, including induction cooktops. You can choose to use it on open flames, grills, or use it under a broiler; you will get a consistent result every time. Of course, the product is oven-safe and can handle extreme temperatures up to 930oF.

But if all of these donít seem impressive, hereís something even the most expensive cast-iron Dutch ovens from other brands canít do. The Flame Stewpot can go in the microwave, thanks to the unique construction materials and the brandís proprietary state-of-the-art manufacturing process.

As expected, this Dutch oven has outstanding heat distribution and retention, so food stays hot longer.

The extra-smooth cooking surface is naturally nonstick, so whatever you are cooking is unlikely to stick and burn. In any case, cleanup is pretty easy and convenient. Thereís no need to worry about changes to the colorful glaze, at least, not in a decade because the pot is dishwasher-safe.

Pros

  • Ideal size for everyday use in average-size households
  • Compatible with all cooktops, and safe to use with grills, microwaves, ovens, and broilers
  • Easy to clean ultra-smooth, nonstick cooking surface

Cons

  • Induction cooking requires an additional induction disk or diffuser plate
  • Might have sticky white particles on the top and sides when preheated
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Best High-End Option

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The Delight Ceramic Oval 4.75-Quart Dutch oven might not be Emile Henryís best cookware but it goes for a little more than double the price of our best overall pick. Hereís why: it is constructed from first-rate ceramic that gives it the feel of a traditional cast-iron Dutch oven but without the burden of the heavy weight.

Similar to our top pick, it can go in the oven and microwave and performs excellently on induction hobs. But you donít want to use it on any direct heat source, as doing so can crack the pot or even break it.

It heats up pretty quickly and distributes the heat evenly throughout the cooking surface. If the Flame Round Stewpot is a bit too much for your cooking needs, you may want to scale down to this 4.2-liter capacity Dutch oven, ideal for up to four servings.

This Delight Ceramic Dutch oven has an elongated shape, making it great for browning, searing, and sautťing poultry or long beef cuts.

Maintenance is a breeze, thanks to its natural nonstick cooking surface. But just in case food sticks to the pot, a quick wash in a dishwasher will get rid of food residues and stains.

Pros

  • Heats up very fast
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Gently simmers food for more flavorful cooking

Cons

  • Very pricey option
  • Can break easily if it falls on a hard floor
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Best Budget Option

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Indeed, the previous model is a great choice but you donít necessarily have to put a huge dent in your wallet to own an Emile Henry Dutch oven, and the Flame Round Stewpot 4.2-Quart model attests to this fact.

Our budget pick is a nice addition to any kitchen, whether you are on a shoestring budget or itís your first time buying a Dutch oven and you want to dip your toe in the water with something very affordable.

But just because it is not as expensive as many other Emile Henry Dutch ovens donít make it less valuable. It is made from high-quality clay that is compatible with all types of stovetops and can go in the oven for slow, even cooking.

The highly glazed cooking surface encourages healthy cooking since you only need a small amount of oil or fat to cook.

It is okay to hand-wash this product with soap and water. But it is dishwasher-safe, making cleanup a lot easier and convenient.

While this Flame product might not cost an arm and a leg, it is built to last like other Emile Henry products. It is backed by the brandís 10-year guarantee for normal home use.

Pros

  • Excellent choice for a small family
  • Significantly lighter than similar-sized metal and cast-iron pots
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Can be tricky to get a secure grip on the handles
  • Red color might permanently take on a darker hue after heating
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Best Ceramic Option

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If you like the size of our budget option but prefer something from Emile Henryís Delight product line, perhaps the Delight Ceramic Round 4.2-Quart  Dutch Oven will be perfect for your cooking needs.

Made from high-quality ceramic, this Emile Henry Dutch oven is oven-safe up to 500oF and can be used on induction cooktops and in microwaves. It is highly responsive, meaning it can get hot very quickly, so you donít have to wait a long time for it to warm up. Plus, it has impressive heat distribution.

It might look heavy at first glance but it is surprisingly lightweight, making it easy to transfer between surfaces. The charcoal color blends nicely with most kitchen dťcor and it can double as an elegant serving dish, thanks to its neat matte black base.

Pros

  • Lightweight and highly responsive
  • Unique lid design improves moisture circulation
  • Ideal for cooking and serving

Cons

  • Can be a bit cumbersome to move the pot around with the lid on
  • Expensive Dutch oven
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Best Oval Shape

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If browning large poultry or cooking roasts top the list of things you want to do with a Dutch oven, a large-capacity oval pot will get the job done. Thatís where the Flame Oval Stewpot 6.3-Quart Dutch oven comes in.

The elongated shape of this 6.3-quart capacity clay pot is ideal for cooking roasts and poultry. It is also wide enough for chili, soups, and stews. Flavorful cooking is possible with a tight-fitting lid that seals in moisture and heat. In addition, it heats evenly to bring out natural flavors.

Whatever your heat source, this incredibly versatile Dutch oven can handle it, whether it is an induction cooktop, a broiler, a grill, or an oven.

In any case, warming up the pot depends on the recipe because this ceramic Dutch oven is designed to resist thermal shock. Meaning, it can go directly from the freezer to the oven or microwave without preheating.

While this pot has outstanding heat distribution and retention, keep in mind that the elongated shape will work best on wide burners.

Pros

  • Impressive resistance to thermal shock
  • Oven-safe up to 930oF and induction compatible
  • Excellent choice for poultry and cooking roasts

Cons

  • Expensive model
  • Induction cooking requires an extra diffuser plate
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Best Small Capacity

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It makes sense to buy a small Dutch oven if you live by yourself. The Flame Round Stewpot 2.6-Quart pot is the best small-capacity Emile Henry Dutch oven available, and it comes at a great price.

At only 2.6 liters, it is ideal for cooking one-pot meals that serve one or two persons at most. You can use it with virtually any heat source, whether it is a broiler, grill, stovetop, microwave, or oven. This quality simplifies multi-step cooking processes, such as starting with browning your ingredients on gas before transferring it into an oven for slow cooking.

This Flame Round Stewpot might only have a small cooking surface but Emile Henry constructed it from high resistance ceramic material, enabling it to circulate heat evenly and gently throughout the cooking surface.

It also has superb thermal shock resistance, so you can use it to store food in the freezer and move it directly to a microwave or oven without preheating. This little pot wonít crack even when you expose it to extreme heat because it is rated for temperatures up to 930oF.

A smooth nonstick surface makes cleaning very easy and the Dutch oven is dishwasher-safe for convenient cleanup.

Pros

  • Ideal choice for individuals and couples
  • Highly versatile
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Knob on lid might be cumbersome for some people
  • Not suitable for large cooking
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Best for Braising

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The Delight Ceramic 2.6-Quart Braiser is another small-capacity Dutch oven for those who prefer models from the Delight product line. Like all other Emile Henry cookware, this one is constructed from natural materials using an unparalleled manufacturing process.

As the name suggests, it is a perfect Dutch oven for braising meat cuts very slowly until they turn fork-tender and absorb all the flavors.

Delight Ceramic Braiser dons a unique dome-shaped lid with the brandís logo edged on the wide knob. This design is both functional and practical. First, the lidís shape allows trapped flavors to circulate inside the pot, resulting in mouthwatering aromas. Secondly, the wide knob enables easy opening of the cover if you need to check what you are cooking.

This slate-colored model is oven-safe up to 500oF and is compatible with induction tops, microwave, and can go in the freezer. But you want to keep it away from stovetops or direct heat sources, as that can crack the ceramic pot.

With a natural nonstick cooking surface, maintaining the pot is effortless. You can choose to hand-wash it or put it in a dishwasher. In any case, the Dutch oven wonít lose color or become damaged in any way.

Pros

  • Excellent build quality
  • Heats up very quickly
  • Dishwasher- and oven-safe

Cons

  • Very pricey
  • Not suitable for stovetops

Emile Henry Dutch Ovens Buying Guide

What to Look for When Buying Emile Henry Dutch Ovens

Emile Henry Dutch ovens are an excellent alternative to cast-iron cookware. Unlike traditional cast-iron models, these versatile products can go in the microwave in addition to being oven-safe.  They are available in a variety of sizes to meet a wide range of cooking needs. Here are some crucial factors to keep in mind when shopping for these highly functional ceramic/clay pots.

Material

Emile Henry uses Burgundy clay and other natural non-clay products to construct its cookware. The result is two distinct products; ceramic and clay Dutch ovens.

A ceramic model is your best bet if you plan to use the Dutch oven strictly in an oven, microwave, or induction top. If you want to use the pot on direct heat sources (stovetops) and broilers in addition to ovens and microwaves, you should consider buying a clay model.

You can clean the pots in a dishwasher, regardless of the material.

Capacity

The capacity of Dutch ovens is indicated in quarts and measured in liters. 1-quart is approximately one serving, so a 5.5-quart pot (which is 5.2 liters) should feed up to 5 people.

Choosing the right Dutch oven size will save you the headache of cooking multiple dishes because the pot is too small, or pay more in energy bill just to heat a near-empty pot because it is too big.

Besides the number of people to be fed, you want to think about whether you have enough space to store the pot. Also, consider the size of your stovetop and if the pot will have a good balance on it. Using a large oval Dutch oven on a small round burner, for example, will not only cause inadequate heat distribution but can also be disastrous, as the pot can easily tip over.

Hereís another thing to keep in mind. A small-sized Dutch oven is not always cheaper than larger options. The 4.75-quart Delight Ceramic Braiser is a typical example. The pot costs over a hundred dollars more than the larger 6.3-quart Flame Oval Stewpot.

Bottom line: you wonít necessarily be saving money by choosing a small-capacity Emile Henry Dutch oven. Instead, it is best to choose a pot that can conveniently feed the number of people you usually cook for without going under or overboard.

Weight

It is not uncommon to hear people complain about the weight of their Dutch oven being too heavy or lacking enough heft. Thatís because many customers make the mistake of assuming that a larger-capacity pot is naturally heavier than a small one. This is not always the case, and some of the products in this review are glaring examples.

For instance, our best overall Emile Henry Dutch oven, the Flame Round Stewpot is a 5.2-liter Dutch oven and weighs 8.8 pounds. The Delight Ceramic Oval Dutch oven comes as a 4.5-liter capacity pot but weighs the same.

Also, the 2.6-quart Flame Round Stewpot weighs 5.1 pounds, while the similar-sized Delight Ceramic Braiser weighs more at 6.1 pounds.

Hereís the point: be sure to check the weight of the particular Dutch oven you like before making the purchase. The potís capacity doesnít reflect the weight. Instead, the weight depends (to a large extent) on the construction material. Although ceramic or clay pots are considerably lighter than their cast-iron counterparts, you donít want to end up with a pot that is not the right weight (too much heft or very flimsy) for you.

Lid

The pot covers come in two major designs; a near-flat lid with a knob and a dome-shaped design with cupped side handles.

The near-flat lids feature dots under the covers. These enhance the circulation of flavored condensation.

A drawback of the Flame product line is the almost-impractical knob on the lids, especially for the small-sized Dutch ovens. The knobs can be difficult to grasp with towels or mitts.

Generally, it is a lot easier to open a model with double-sided cupped handles on the lid and a wide knob.

Handle

One of the apparent differences between Emile Henry Dutch ovens and products from other brands is the handles. It can be tricky (and even cumbersome) grabbing the handles on these pots, especially if you are used to loop handles.

Instead of loop handles riveted at the sides of the pot, the brandís Dutch ovens come with either slightly-curved handles or deep-cupped handles. This can pose some problems if you need to lift a fairly large-capacity pot from a hot oven.

If possible, consider a model with cupped handles for larger cooking. Flat handles can be managed on smaller-capacity Dutch ovens.

However, it best to always use a thick towel or oven mitt when handling these pots, regardless of the shape of the handle.

Color

Burgundy (red) and slate (charcoal or dark grey) are your options when it comes to choosing colors.

While color doesnít really affect a Dutch ovenís performance, it is a great idea to choose something that complements your other utensils or overall kitchen dťcor.

Keep in mind that you can only get a slate color if you prefer a pot from the Delight product line. Flame collections offer both red and charcoal colors.

Shape

Emile Henry makes beautiful cookware, bakeware, and tableware that come in plenty of regular, irregular, and attention-grabbing shapes. However, the brand offers only two standard options when it comes to Dutch ovens; round and oval.

Unlike the productís color, the shape of your pot can affect your cooking. Round models sit well on most burners, enabling more efficient heat distribution. In most cases, they have more depth than oval-shaped pots, making them ideal for stews.

On the other hand, some oval pots might not work well for smaller stovetops. The elongated shape does not allow heat to distribute evenly, at least not as quickly as is obtainable in round Dutch ovens.

The long shape makes oval pots shallower than similar-sized round models. An oval pot would be the most ideal choice if you plan to buy a Dutch oven for predominantly cooking longer-cut meats or searing large poultry.

Heat Source Compatibility

This factor is coming last but it is by no means less important. You can unintentionally crack and even break your beautiful Emile Henry Dutch oven if you assume that all of the brandís cookware can handle all heat sources.

Consider choosing a Dutch oven from the Flame product line if you want a versatile pot that can go from freezer to stovetop and oven or microwave without any pre-heating necessary. Flame options are designed for use on direct heat sources, including electric, gas, and induction stovetops, (although, you need an induction disk for induction tops).

These models can withstand extreme temperatures of up to 930oF. They are constructed with high resistance to thermal shocks, so you can move them from storage to oven without any need to warm them up. You can also heat Flame products up to 450oF without food or liquid in them.

All other Dutch ovens from Emile Henry are not designed for use with an open flame (campfires, grills, and stovetops). It is best to use them in the oven with temperatures not exceeding 500oF.

FAQs for Emile Henry Dutch Ovens

Conclusion

If you are in the market for a versatile Emile Henry Dutch oven, you might want to check out the Flame Round Stewpot 5.5-Quart Dutch Oven. The clay pot can go directly from zero degrees Fahrenheit to a hot oven without problems and is compatible with virtually all stovetops. Food stays hot for longer periods in this pot, thanks to its excellent heat retention capacity. Also, it is a great size for most daily cooking.

If the 5.2-liter capacity model does not meet your cooking needs, the Flame Oval Stewpot 6.3-Quart Dutch Oven is a great alternative. But if you want something considerably smaller, we recommend the Flame Round Stewpot 2.6-Quart Dutch Oven. This option is also very affordable. 

About Colin Matthews

Cookwared Reviews is a website run by two roommates, Colin Matthews and Samantha Brooks. While we have tested many of the products hands-on, some of the reviews featured on our website are based on our online research, reading reviews from other customers, watching videos on youtube, and comparison specs from the manufacturers.

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