8 Substitutes: You Can Use Instead of a Dutch Oven

There may be times when we don’t have all the necessary items to do something we love, like cooking. We might enjoy cooking, but our cookware and kitchen utensils may be incomplete. This is not because we don’t want to invest, but simply because we have bills to pay and do not have any extra money.

Therefore, you may need to use some alternatives when you cook. Not everyone has a dutch oven. Hence, it is essential that you know what to use instead of a dutch oven?

What is a dutch oven?

dutch oven substitute

A dutch oven is a kind of cookware that is not commonly seen in most households because it is rarely used compared to some types of cookware. It is a broad and deep pot with a tight-fitting lid, which allows heat to remain inside the pot.

The kind of dutch oven you may be familiar with is made out of enameled cast iron that comes with two small handles resembling an ear, but that is not always the case because there are also dutch ovens that have one long handle. People prefer the ones with a small handle on both sides because it is easier to carry heavy-weight dishes.

The Dutch oven is quite heavy because it has to maintain a particular and constant heat temperature for quite a long time. You can use a dutch oven depending on what cooking method your recipe requires you to. You can use it for roasting, baking, browning, simmering, and even baking.

Moreover, dutch ovens come in various sizes, colors, and even materials. This is also a good investment and addition to your kitchen. It is not only made of cast iron, though, because other varieties of the dutch oven are made out of aluminum, ceramic, copper, glass, and stainless steel.

Take a quick look at the table below for your dutch oven sizes guide:

8 inches 3 inches 2 quarts 11 lbs 1-2 servings
10 inches 3 ½ inches 4 quarts 15 lbs 2-4 servings
12 inches 3 ¾ inches 6 quarts 20 lbs 4-5 servings
12 inches 5 inches 8 quarts 23 lbs 4-5 servings
14 inches 3 ¾ inches 8 quarts 26 lbs 6-8 servings
14 inches 4 ½ inches 10 quarts 28 lbs 6-8 servings
16 inches 3 ¾ inches 12 quarts 32 lbs 8-10 servings

How do you use a dutch oven?

A dutch oven is versatile. It is a type of cookware that is underrated because not everyone has this, and not everyone knows that you can use this to cook any dish.

You can use a dutch oven to sauté, sear, boil, fry, bake, stew, roast, slow or fast cook, and reheat leftovers. You can do almost anything that you can think of.

Utilize your dutch oven by watching the video below to learn 7 ways on how to use it:

8 Dutch Oven Alternatives

It is okay if you do not have a dutch oven. Understandably, this is not stapled cookware that you can see for all households due to it being expensive. Do not worry, though, because there are other types of cookware that you can use to replace the dutch oven.

Listed below are the dutch oven substitutes that you can use instead.

Air Fryer

what is a dutch oven substitute

An air fryer is a healthy way of frying food. It is a small kitchen appliance with the same result as deep-frying without cooking oil but hot air instead.

Easy to use and easy to clean Quite expensive
Healthy meals Dry food all the time
Portable Power cable is short

Ceramic Pot

can you use a pot instead of a dutch oven

You can also use a ceramic pot to replace a dutch oven if you do not have one. With a ceramic pot, you can cook macaroni and cheese, soup, stew, and other dishes.

Can serve food directly from the oven Fragile and Sensitive
Non-stick More expensive compared to other non-stick pans
Easy to clean and lightweight Not dishwasher and oven-safe

Deep Frying Pan

dutch oven replacement

You can use a deep frying pan in place of a dutch oven to fry meats such as chicken, steak, pork, and you can also use it to make sauces and gravies.

Aside from that, you can use a deep frying pan for cooking pasta dishes, stews, roasts, and other desserts with sauce.

Frying pans come in various sizes, which you can use depending on your preference. However, they are naturally shallow compared to the dutch ovens. Despite being shallow, it still serves as a good alternative for a dutch oven, especially if you intend to cook cobblers, fruit pies, and macaroni and cheese.

Less expensive Shallow, thus, not enough space for a huge quantity of food
Accessible as it is almost always available at local stores and even online Often times not-oven safe and cannot withstand extremely high heat temperature
Recommended to use for browning meat Not all frying pans come with lid covers

Electric Fryer

what to use instead of dutch oven

An electric fryer, also known as the deep fryer, is also a good alternative for a dutch oven. As its name implies, it is a fryer that must be plugged into a convenience outlet to operate.

Considered to be economical Not a healthy choice as it requires a lot of oil to deep fry
Improved flavor and texture of the food Boiling oil can be dangerous and can cause harm and injury
Faster cooking Messy and high maintenance

Pressure Cooker

what can i use if i don't have a dutch oven

A pressure cooker is also an excellent substitute for a dutch oven, especially when making soups, stews, roasts, rice, pasta, steamed meats and vegetables, and more. And sometimes, it does more than what a dutch oven can.

It is the perfect type of cookware, especially when you are in a hurry or too busy to prepare longer time. Sometimes, a pressure cooker can help you finish a dish in less than an hour.

Saves energy and less cooking time Do not allow you to check your food if it is ready
Durable Quick to overcook items
Helps preserve the vitamins and nutrients Take time to learn how to operate

Roasting Pan

what can i use instead of a dutch oven

A roasting pan is also considered to be an excellent dutch oven alternative. As the name implies, it is often used to roast chickens and turkeys.

Moreover, it is also good to use when baking dressing and casseroles and a massive quantity of desserts such as apple crisps, mac and cheese, and many more. It can stay inside the oven for quite a long while and withstand high heat temperatures.

Can cook large servings of food Usually do not have lid covers
Versatile; food rack is also removable Cannot be used directly for browning food
Durable, Sturdy, and can withstand high heat temperature Cannot be used to serve dishes on the table


what can i use in place of a dutch oven

Another good substitute for a dutch oven is a stockpot. It is also versatile as it can do multiple tasks usually executed by a dutch oven.

A stockpot also has tall sidings, perfect for large servings of dishes. It can accommodate vast amounts of rice, pasta, vegetables, soups, and sauces.

Like a dutch oven, it also comes in various sizes that you can use depending on the quantity of serving you will prepare.

Unlike a dutch oven that will still require you to transfer in an oven to perfectly brown the meat, you can use this stockpot on the stovetop alone; you will only need to reduce the heat temperature, though.

A stockpot is one of the deepest cookware you may encounter, and it also comes with a tight-fitting lid cover. Moreover, aside from being too deep, it is also wide and has a flat-bottom surface with two small handles resembling an ear, making it easy to carry.

Very lightweight Makes it difficult to store due to its tall height
Wide-mouthed and deep Not short-people friendly as it may be difficult for them to see the bottom
Comes in various sizes and usually large Not advisable if you prefer to make a dish from the oven transferred to the table


what to use if you don't have a dutch oven

Instead of a dutch oven, you can use a wok pan to roast chicken and cook french fries, steak, or any stir-fried food. You could even sear and cook a roast in a wok!

Wider cooking surface Quite heavy
Versatile Not a good heat conductor
Long lifespan Handle can get too hot

Learn how to properly season your first and newly bought wok pan by watching the tutorial below:

These 8 types of cookware are just a few of the many dutch oven substitutes you can choose from. You can select which one you prefer the most and which one is more applicable for the recipe you are trying to cook.

5 Tips To Remember about Dutch Oven Care guide

Just like any other cookware that you have, it is necessary that you know how to take care of your dutch oven, that is, if you have decided to purchase one. Remember that it is expensive and the price is not a joke. Therefore, it is essential that you know how to care for it to last a long time.

  1. Avoid submerging a scorching dutch oven in the cold after, or it will probably crack.
  2. Ensure that you use the hot water and soap solution to clean the dutch oven using a gentle sponge.
  3. Avoid using abrasive pads or metal scrubs when cleaning a dutch oven to prevent damage to the enamel coating.
  4. Though you can also use the dishwasher to clean the dutch oven, manually washing the cookware is still more advisable.
  5. Stack and store properly to avoid chipping on the enamel coat.


Now that you know what to use instead of the dutch oven, you will no longer worry if the recipe you want to make is still feasible, even if it requires you to use something that you do not have. Keep in mind the various alternatives you can use and slay that recipe.

what can you use instead of a dutch oven

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