25 Essential Dutch Oven Recipes for Colder Months

updated Jan 9, 2020
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

My most prized possession in my kitchen is my Dutch oven. Ever since I began rifling through food magazines as a teenager, I’ve pined over the classic Le Creuset one and, knowing this, my aunt gifted my husband and me one as an engagement gift. It hasn’t budged from my stovetop since. That’s partially because we don’t have room to store it anywhere else in our tiny apartment, but we also use it incredibly often.

When the colder months hit, we use it almost daily to churn out warming soups, braised meat, and one-pot meals. Do you do the same? If not, let these 25 recipes convince you. Once you discover a Dutch oven’s endless possibilities, you’ll leave yours out on the stovetop too.

Soups and Stews

It would be hard to survive fall without an abundance of warming soups and stews. These satisfying recipes come together easily in a Dutch oven and can be doubled and stretched for additional dinners and lunches throughout the week.


Perhaps what a Dutch oven does best is braise, since low, slow braising requires a heavy pot with a lid to maintain an even cooking temperature and prevents moisture from escaping. The pot can also go from the stovetop to the oven with ease, which is helpful when a braising recipe requires the meat to be browned on the stove and then finished in the oven.

One-Pot Pasta and Rice Dishes

A Dutch oven is the ultimate tool for one-pot dinners. These pasta and rice dishes don’t require a separate vessel to cook the starch; everything comes together in just one Dutch oven.

Side Dishes

While a Dutch oven is celebrated for churning out hearty main dishes, don’t forget it makes great sides, too. When it’s not in use for the star attraction, reach for it to cook veggies and more.