The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Dutch Oven Capacity

lepainSamidien's picture

Dutch Oven Capacity

Hello companions !

I believe that today I will, for the first time in my 3 year baking "career" (we're dreamers here, non ?), I will be utilizing a dutch oven in order to bake my breads. Part experiment, part necessity, this adventure will surely prove to be an educational one.

However, as my dough nears the end of its bulk ferment, I realize that I have NO CLUE! how much bread dough (in weight) can fit into a dutch oven. Obviously, it's going to vary quite considerably depending on an almost infinite variety of factors (hydration, levain %, whole grain %, etc, etc, etc), but I'm looking for a ball-park estimate as to what I can expect.

I've got about 2250 g of dough at present, and I have access to two 4.5 quart Le Creuset dutch ovens. I am planning to divide the dough in two (2-1125 g pieces), and let them rise in baskets until the fateful moment. Just curious to see what size doughs other people load into what size dutch ovens.

Any insight, advice, or encouragement (even blind) will be much appreciated !

emkay's picture

I put about 1 kg of dough into my 3.75 quart Le Creuset marmitout (combo cooker) and it fits well. The dimensions of your 4.5 quart LC dutch oven will matter, but I think you should be fine with 1125g in your pot. 

timko's picture

Slightly off the thread of this discussion - I enjoy using these  as well. I have two on the go at the same time to produce two loaves side by side in the oven.

Le Creuset doesn't want to reissue these as they seem to have gone out of fashion.


cerevisiae's picture

I usually do about 1 - 1.5 kg of dough. I think the dutch oven I have is also a 4.5 quart, but not totally sure.

sandydog's picture

Try fitting one of your already baked loaves into your dutch oven - If it fits nicely, then use the same weight of dough you used for that loaf for your next bake. If it is too small, or too big, then adjust accordingly - This works for any size of Dutch oven.

dabrownman's picture

No worries.  Happy DO oven Baking You may not go back the old, less practical way.  I like putting Magma stem  in an oven just to burn the skin off my face so I don't have to pay someone else to do it at a spa or less powerful volcano:-).

lepainSamidien's picture

Thanks to everyone for the insights. The loaves fit all too comfortably; I probably could have gone upwards of 1.6-1.7 kilograms of dough before it would have been knocking on the lid, but it was a good learning experience all the same.

And now that the skin is burnt off my face à la dabrownman, there's little left to do other than enjoy these polenta einkorn loaves!