How to Afford Le Creuset Cookware on a Budget: Bargain Shopping at its Finest

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There seems to be a never-ending debate raging over whether Le Creuset cookware is worth its hefty price tag. In most food circles you will find that the answer is an unequivocal “Yes!” but given the current economic state, the high price certainly can’t be ignored when you are talking about hundreds of dollars for ONE pot or pan. The first piece of Le Creuset cookware that I owned – my 7.25-quart Dutch oven (above) – was purchased at Williams Sonoma with gift money. The price? Around $275. Absurd, you say? Probably. It’s the last piece I bought at full price and hopefully the last.

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Do you see the pieces in the picture above? There are two individual ramekins, two 7-inch individual rectangular baking dishes and a butter dish. They were purchased for $28, TOTAL. How, you ask? Shopping the kitchen section of Marshall’s and TJMaxx (I am told that Tuesday Morning also sometimes has Le Creuset in stock). When I first saw Le Creuset pieces in these stores, my heart skipped a beat. Could it be? I immediately checked the bottom of the pieces to ensure they were authentic (they were) and then went over them with a fine tooth comb to see what might be wrong with them. The only thing I have found is a slight bubble in the paint on the butter dish, and we’re talking about the size of a pin head. Essentially, there is absolutely nothing wrong with them and I continue to add to my Le Creuset collection without breaking the bank.

I have seen Dutch ovens at these stores, as well as oval gratins, larger bakers and many of the same pieces shown above. It goes without saying that finding them can be hit or miss depending on what any individual store has in stock, but it is certainly worth the look if you have any of these stores near you. I was amazed at the difference between these prices and even the outlet stores, not to mention what the full price is. For example, let’s talk about the butter dish. I purchased it at Marshall’s for $7. A couple of weeks later I saw it (same color) at a Le Creuset outlet store priced at $23. How crazy is that?!

If you love Le Creuset but don’t love the price, I encourage you to check out some of these discount stores and see what you can find!

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Le Creuset, Marshall’s or TJMaxx. This post was written based on my own personal shopping experiences.