Do you ever wonder if there is a difference between a cocotte and a Dutch oven? Even though at first glance or in the papers, there aren’t many differences.
Some people say they are the same thing with two different names. Well, they are partly right. However, there are some differences between them.
Want to know more about that? Then stick with me as I take you through a cocotte vs. Dutch oven comparison. Let’s get this show started.
What Is A Dutch Oven?
If you don’t know what a Dutch oven is, then let me tell you. First of all, it’s not the oven we are used to seeing.
It’s more of a pot with thick walls. They have a tight-fitting lid that is self-basting. Typically, there are two types of Dutch ovens.
One that you can use both indoors and outdoors. Then other ones you can only use indoors.
The popular material choice for a Dutch oven is cast iron. That’s the best material to use for a Dutch oven. Other than that, there are more options you can find as well.
You can get a Dutch oven made of aluminum, stainless steel, and so on. Whatever the case may be, seasoned cast iron is always the best to go with for Dutch ovens.
What Is It Used For?
So, what’s the specialty of a Dutch oven over regular pots? First of all, they come with extreme heat induction.
You can cook anything you want faster and easier. But if you want to go with slow cooking, you can get that very well from this one too.
Usually, these are great for searing, browning, roasting, and sautéing. Other than that, you can go for baking, simmering, boiling, frying, and steaming as well.
In short, you can almost do any cooking you want.
Craving for some baked pies? Or maybe you want to enjoy a movie with some popcorn in your hands. You can cook all of it in this oven. That’s what is great about this oven.
Benefits Of Dutch Oven
Owning a Dutch oven comes with a lot of benefits. Here are some of the noticeable ones-
- Dutch ovens are usually lightweight. So, you can easily move them around while cooking.
- They come in a variety of sizes and ranges. You can go for the bigger sizes you have to cook a whole dinner for guests.
- You can get a lot of color choices for your Dutch ovens. Looks are a thing for you? Well, you will be satisfied with the Dutch oven color collection.
- It can cook almost any kind of food. You won’t need different pots for different cooking purposes. You can do all of it in one. Handy, right?
- Lastly, you can use this to keep your food chilled. All you have to do is keep it in the freezer. Then, after some time, bring it out and serve your food in the pot. This works great for salads at a party.
These are some of the appealing benefits of a Dutch oven. However, if I were to nitpick on something, I would say they come quite expensive.
What Is A Cocotte?
Let me make this very clear for you, cocotte is just another variant of a Dutch oven. They are essentially enamel-coated Dutch ovens made of cast iron.
In France, such types of ovens are called cocotte. One significance of cocotte is that they are smaller than typical Dutch Ovens.
For the materials, cast iron is used as the base of the pot for a cocotte. Along with that comes an enamel coating. Cocottes are usually a bit heavy due to the thick construction.
Even the lid they come with is much heavier than other pots. Because of the heavy lid, the sealing on the pot is proper so that you can get consistent moisture in your cooking.
What Is A Mini Cocotte Used For?
Since cocotte is one kind of Dutch oven, they can perform the same cooking activities. However, because of the difference in shape and size, they aren’t as capable as the Dutch oven.
You can still use a cocotte for a lot of variety in your cooking.
Baking is a popular use of the cocotte. Because with a smaller size, it’s very easy to keep the shape of your baked food. Other than that, you can use this for braising, stewing, boiling, and even frying as well.
If you are wondering what you can cook in a cocotte, then here are some recipes. A deep-dish pizza is something many people prefer cooking on a cocotte, including me. Other than that, you can bake pies, bread, custards, or you can cook cinnamon rolls and so on. But the best foods you can cook in a cocotte are French food as they use it for most of their cooking.
Benefits Of Cocotte Oven
There are quite a lot of benefits you can get from Cocotte ovens. I am going through some of them here-
- With a heavy lid, cocotte can keep your food moisturized. This is a great help for food that easily dries out.
- The enamel coating on the pot is beneficial because food doesn’t stick to it.
- Because of the smaller size, you can cook stuff in a smaller amount yet retain its shape.
- Cocotte usually comes with spikes on the internal part of the lid. This is a great advantage to have for basting with a cocotte.
- They are great at retaining and distributing heat, so your cooking stays consistent throughout.
Apart from these benefits, you can realize how great this is once you use it. However, there are some downsides to cocotte.
First of all, the high price may be a concern for some people. This is a variant of the Dutch oven, so it’s quite normal to be expensive.
Another concern you may have with this is the weight of the cocotte. It’s a bit heavier than typical Dutch ovens.
Differences Between Dutch Oven Vs. Cocotte
Until now, I took you through the individual aspects of the Dutch oven and cocotte. As I said earlier, cocotte is just another variant of a Dutch oven.
That’s why many people consider both of them to be the same thing. However, there are some differences you can find between them. Here, I will go through them based on some factors.
- Shapes And Sizes
Cocottes tend to have round or oval shapes most of the time. They also come in a bit of a smaller size. You can use them for cooking food for a small family dinner.
On the other hand, typical Dutch ovens are a bit on the larger side. You can cook for a party in a Dutch oven. As for the shapes, they are quite similar to cocotte.
In a cocotte, you will see the base of cast iron with an enamel coating. This is also something you get to see in a Dutch oven.
However, Dutch ovens also come in some other materials.
You can get Dutch ovens in aluminum and stainless-steel variants if you want to. Then there are base cast iron Dutch ovens that come with and without enamel coating. There is also a Dutch oven that specifically has non-sticky features.
- Cooking Facilities
If you have a cocotte, then you must cook in the kitchen. It’s not safe to cook with a cocotte in a campfire. Wondering why? Well, it’s mostly because of the enamel coating.
Whereas you can cook with a Dutch oven, both indoors and outdoors. Some Dutch ovens are great for cooking on a campfire.
The biggest difference you will find between cocotte and Dutch oven is the lids. The lids of the cocotte come with spikes inside that are great for basting.
And from the outside, they are flat and stays in the place at all times. This helps in retaining moisture in the food and prevents them from drying out. However, they are a bit difficult to clean.
Dutch ovens come with more of a dome-shaped lid that has a smooth upper and inner. They don’t specialize in anything. But they are very easy to clean.
Cocottes are much heavier than Dutch ovens. This is the part. Dutch oven excels a lot. If your cooking involves moving the pot too much, then the Dutch oven is a clear choice in such cases.
The cooking surface of the cocotte comes with a rough black color. In contrast, the Dutch ovens have a smooth and colorful surface.
On the black surface, it’s a bit hard to see how much the food is cooked. With a colorful surface, you can see the brownness of your food.
Most Popular Mini Cocotte Brands
Well, if you want to get yourself a mini cocotte and see that fits your needs, then I have got some choices for you. So, here are the popular brands of cocottes you should check out-
- Le Creuset
This is a brand well known for providing high-quality cookware. The cocotte they make have a balance of functionality and shape. In their stoneware cocotte set, you get to see the quality from the get-go.
It comes with an 8-ounce pot with a material that can go through any amount of high temperature with ease. The heat distribution in their cocottes is perfect because it doesn’t absorb any moisture from your food.
So, what you end up with is a classy cocotte set that gives out delicious food for you. What more could you want, right?
When it comes to cocotte, I think they are probably the best out there. They define cocotte better than any other company can.
Their cocottes have that classic design you look for in cocotte, and the functionality lives up to their name.
Quality is never a question when you opt for Staub ceramics cocotte. Especially, their mini round cocotte set is already a fan favorite that many cooks around the world love.
The mini cocotte set comes in three pots.
So, you get to enjoy delicious dishes on these stoneware pots three times more than having a single pot. And the food quality is something more than you can expect from this cookware.
All-Clad is a cookware company that tries to be unique in most of its cookware. They try to come up with something that is not traditional and somehow works very well for you.
A prime example of that is their stainless-steel cocotte set.
Unlike most cocotte sets out there, this one is made of stainless steel and does a good job of fulfilling the purpose of a cocotte. Along with all that, it’s lightweight and affordable too.
Most Popular Dutch Oven Brands
Don’t know which Dutch oven to try out first? Here are some top recommendations that are popular because of their excellent quality-
- Le Creuset
In terms of getting a Dutch oven, you can’t simply get better than a Le Creuset. It’s the highest standard for a Dutch oven that you can get in the market.
It’s a trusted brand that you can always rely on for its top-notch quality and high-performing cookware.
Especially, their signature cast iron round Dutch oven is a fan favorite all over the world. You can never go wrong with this Dutch oven because it will never let you down at all.
It’s the perfect example of how a Dutch oven should work like.
Even though they are priced quite high, I would say it’s worth the money. Because once you buy a Le Creuset Dutch oven, you are buying quality for life.
They are the absolute best you can get, so naturally, they will come at a price.
Unlike Le Creuset, Lodge gives you the option of affordable Dutch Ovens with the perfect functionality. They may not be as good as Le Creuset, but they are pretty close to touching that feat.
And, if you are tight on budget, still need a Dutch oven, then this is the brand you should be looking out for.
Among many of their choices, the enameled Dutch oven is an absolute fan favorite. Whether you are worried about heat distribution or versatility, or easy cleaning features, it takes away all of them.
And for the price you pay on this, you get more than you can ever expect.
To sum up, cocotte may be a variant of Dutch ovens, but they are different from the typical Dutch ovens. Which one suits your needs the most?
Well, you can figure that out from the cocotte vs. Dutch oven comparison very easily. Whether you are considering size, lids, materials, or cooking facilities, it’s up to you.