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by Le Creuset

From start to finish, Le Creuset is the ingredient that brings every meal together. In kitchens around the world, Le Creuset has been trusted for over 80 years for its legacy of style and quality. Their brilliant colors and user-friendly cookware have created an unforgettable dining experience. Trusted by those who appreciate every flavor’s subtle complexities, Le Creuset invites you to enjoy food and life to the fullest. Since 1925, Le Creuset has designed and manufactured Enameled Cast Iron cookware at their foundry in Fresnoy-Le-Grand, Northern France.

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  • Cast iron is an extremely versatile and quality cooking material. Whether your slow cooking or high-temperature searing, cast iron can be used reliably on any heat source, including induction, oven, and grill. Cast iron is also ideal for taking dishes straight from the stove to the table. It's ability to retain heat means it keeps food warmer longer. It can also be used to keep food in the refrigerator or freezer for storage or advanced food preparation. 

    Before your first use remove all packaging and labels. Wash your new piece of cookware with hot, soapy water, then rinse and dry thoroughly. Unlike raw cast iron cookware Le Creuset is ready to go right out of the box. There's no need for seasoning or further preparation before you start cooking. Use this guide for other helpful tips as you learn to cook with cast iron.
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    Cooking Tips

    Le Creuset cast iron cookware can be used on all heat sources. As a general rule, always match the pan's base size to the stovetop heat zone size. This prevents overheating of the pan and sides and potential damage to the handles. Gas flames should never extend beyond the base area to the sidewalls of the pan as this can case damage. Also for safety reasons, make sure that longer handles are positioned safely over the cook top and do not hang over the front of the stove. Handles and knobs will become hot during cooking, always use a thick cloth or oven mitts when lifting.

    Medium and low heat will provide the best results for almost any type of cooking, this includes frying and searing. Many people believe that higher heat is required for searing however the trick is to pre-heat the pan before you begin. 

    High heat temperatures should only be used to boil water or for reducing  stocks and sauces. A pan should never be pre-heated over high heat. Cast iron retains heat so well this will cause your food to burn. 

    With the exception of grill pans, the enamel surface of Le Creuset cast iron cookware is not ideal for dry cooking. Your choice of oil, butter, or fat should completely cover the base of the ban before heating begins. Do not preheat a pan without and liquid as this can cause damage to the enamel. For deep frying, the oil level should not exceed one third full. This allows for sufficient height for the oil to rise once you add food to cook. When frying keep a lid close by to use in the case of overheating or flaring. 

    Silicone, wood, and heat resistant plastic tools are recommended for stirring. Metal can be used but pay special  attention not to scrape over the enamel surface. Hand-held electric or battery-operated mixers and beaters can also damage the enamel so these should not be used. Remove all food from the pans to cut them with knives and then replace if needed. 

    When serving from your Le Creuset cookware make sure to always place hot items on a trivet, wood board or silicone mat. Hot cast iron placed on unprotected surfaces can leave burns and stains.

    ​For use in the oven note that the black phenolic lid knobs on Le Crueset Signature cookware are heat-resistant to 480°F (250°C). The black phenolic lid knobs on Le Creuset Classic cast iron cookware are heat-resistant to 375°F (190°C). Pieces that feature integral cast iron handles or stainless steel knobs can be used at any oven temperature. Any pans with a wooden handle or knob must not be placed in the oven.

    Do not place any cookware on the floors of ovens with cast iron linings. This will increase the cooking temperature inside the oven, resulting in an increased cooking rate with detrimental effects on food. Do not drag cookware across the floor of the liners. For best results always place on a shelf or rack.

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    Cooking Tips for Grilling

    For proper grilling and searing, place the empty pan on medium heat allowing it to heat up for several minutes. Do not add oil to a cold pan, this can cause the oil to become too hot and smoke. 

    To test that the pan is hot enough take a few drops of water on your fingertips and scatter over the hot surface. You are looking for the water to sizzle and evaporate immediately to know the pan is hot enough and ready for use. Sear lines from ribbed grills will not be produced if the pan surface is too cold so wait a little bit longer if the water doesn't evaporate immediately. Once the surface is ready lightly oil with cooking spray or brush with oil. Vegetable, ground nut, and corn are preferable to olive oil which may cause excessive smoking. 

    For distinct sear lines, leave your food undisturbed on the surface for several minutes. Make sure that any food you are attempting to grill is dry before you begin cooking. Cooking with wet food may result in a less than ideal flavor and sear. If needed use paper towels to pat off excess moisture before you begin cooking. Not that this also applies to foods that you are marinating. 

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    Get Cooking!

    The Cast Iron Way to Cook features 68 fresh and delicious recipes for Le Creuset's cast iron cookware. Each chapter focuses on a different piece, and includes tips on achieving delicious, healthy meals every time. This beautifully illustrated cookbook has a fully modern approach, and all the recipes teach you how to make the most of fresh and readily available ingredients. 

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