Moderate price point
Handle is difficult to hold
Oval shape not well suited for stovetop
Difficult to store
We purchased the Great Jones The Dutchess so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
Great Jones exploded onto the cookware scene in 2019, and since then, its brightly colored pans and Dutch ovens have been popping up everywhere—but can the best-selling Great Jones "The Dutchess" Dutch oven actually hold its own against more well-established brands?
Great Jones markets itself as a cookware company designed with millennials in mind, and this stylish pan is available for far less than the cost of similar models from classically luxurious French kitchen brands. We tested The Dutchess out to see if its performance was up to snuff, and here's what we found.
Design: Stunning, but the shape isn't ideal
There’s no denying The Dutchess is gorgeous. The "Blueberry" color is a deep and saturated blue/puruple. (In addition to this shade, The Dutchess is available in yellow, green, grey, red, black, and white options.) The surface is matte, and it has a subtle texture to it—a detail that stands out when compared to the smooth, reflective finish of a Le Creuset or Staub Dutch oven.
In terms of shape, The Dutchess Dutch oven is a long, large oval. The walls are 4.75 inches high, which is enough to prevent splatter and accommodate an ample amount of whatever you’re cooking. Plus, the pan is big enough to hold large pieces of meat or even a whole chicken, which makes it great for braising.
However, we found that the pan is too long to fit neatly on one burner if want to use it for a soup or another stovetop application. Plus, putting an oval pan on a round burner puts you at risk of getting a hot spot in your cooking—in other words, the area of the pan that's directly over the burner will get much hotter than the surrounding areas. In theory, the cast iron should be thick enough to evenly disperse the heat, but when browning onions, we noticed caramelization developing only in the round area above the burner.
The Dutchess is too long to fit neatly on one burner if want to use it for a soup or another stovetop application.
For an oven application, though, the oval shape is great. The Dutch oven, which has a volume of 6.75 quarts, was so spacious that we were tempted to move in! Somehow, it still managed to fit comfortably in a “junior-sized oven.”
However, while it was in the oven, a problem arose when it came time to lift the lid and check on a braise. The lid handle, which is an aesthetically pleasing copper loop, was quite difficult to grab while wearing oven mitts. (Competing brands solve this by using a knob that you simply wrap your fingers around.) Getting mitted fingers through the small copper handle was tricky, and we were nervous that we would bump our hand against the inside of the oven while messing around with it, trying to get a good grip.
Material: Enameled cast iron
Like most Dutch ovens, The Dutchess is made from cast iron, a material prized for its ability to retain and distribute heat evenly. Unlike many cast iron pans, however, the interior of The Dutchess is covered with a nonstick enamel finish in a light gray color, which means you don't need to build up a seasoning on the cast iron.
Why gray instead of white? Great Jones claims the color is light enough that you’ll be able to see caramelization developing while cooking, but dark enough to hide stains.
Cleaning: Dishwasher safe, but easy to hand wash
Another appealing aspect of The Dutchess is that the pan is dishwasher safe. We tested this claim, and the dishwasher did a good job on the pan's exterior and inner walls. However, it didn’t manage to get 100 percent of the browned bits off the bottom. Additionally, the pan was so large that it took up the entire bottom rack of the dishwasher.
The dishwasher did a good job on the pan's exterior and inner walls, but it didn’t manage to get 100 percent of the browned bits off the bottom.
For an average dinner, we’d rather load the dishwasher up with plates and clean the Dutch oven by hand. Luckily, the nonstick enamel interior is easy to wash with a sponge, even after cooking a stew with considerable browning.
However, be warned that it can be a little unwieldy. The pan is around 15 inches long, and with the lid included, it weighs 15 pounds. If your sink is small, you might have trouble fitting the whole pot inside of it.
Price: Unbeatable value
The Dutchess costs just $155, an amazing value for a sizable Dutch oven. While it might still seem like a lot of money, cast iron is often quite pricey, and you’ll almost certainly get a lot of use out of this pot. During testing, we used it to make everything from caramel corn and sautéed spinach to a giant vat of chili. Plus, the sturdy cast iron and thick enamel coating are built to last for years.
Great Jones "The Dutchess" vs. Le Creuset Signature Round Dutch Oven
Compared to the classic cast iron brands, Great Jones stands out based on value. The Le Creuset Signature Round Dutch Oven comes in a similar array of bright colors and boasts an enamel interior, but the difference is that a 5.5-quart model from Le Creuset retails for around $360. The French brand is renowned for its unbeatable performance and timeless design—after all, even Julia Child cooked with Le Creuset!—but Great Jones offers a new, sleeker aesthetic at a more budget-friendly price point.
It's a worthwhile option for new cooks.
The low price point of the Great Jones The Dutchess Dutch oven makes it a good choice home cooks who aren’t ready to invest in high-end cookware, and you won't be disappointed with its size or performance. However, its oval shape works better in the oven than on the stovetop.
- Product Name The Dutchess
- Product Brand Great Jones
- Price $155
- Weight 15 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 15.75 x 6.75 x 9.75 in.
- Volume 6.75 quarts
- Material Enameled cast iron
- Warranty Limited lifetime