The French have a very well known reputation for producing exquisite and incredibly sophisticated foods and I would say that reputation translates to much of the French cookware brands also. But just because something is “French” does that mean it is better? Do you think something that is “French” or any other nationality that would mean it is better or worse than another brand? Sure, there are stereotypes and opinions built off experiences with products from a specific country, like China for example. If you were of the opinion that products made in China are of less quality than those made in France, would you be shocked to find out that some of the French brands are actually made in China for those French companies? Below you will find a list of 8 of the most well known (in America) French cookware brands in along with information about their products so you can evaluate each one.
Best Known French Cookware Brands
Cristel cookware has been around since 1826 in France, although they are still not very well known in the US. Their products are actually made in France, so if you are looking for authentic French cookware, Cristel could be a good choice. Cristel offers both 3-ply and 5-ply cookware made from stainless steel and aluminum layers which feature removable handles, are stackable and are dishwasher safe.
de Buyer Cookware
de Buyer was founded in 1830 and has over 3000 cookware and kitchen items in the product catalog ranging from copper cookware to silicone molds and other gadgets like mandolins. While not being very well known in the US, their products are generally regarded with high quality by those who know about de Buyer. Many of their products are made in France, although there are just so many I can’t possibly check each one.
E. Dehillerin Cookware
E. Dehillerin are known as an iconic cookware shop in Paris, where they sell hand-crafted tinned copper cookware among other kitchen items. While shopping for French cookware in Paris is definitely something most foodies would consider a fantastic time, it unfortunately is not a reality for most of us. Luckily E. Dehillerin have an online shop and their products are also occasionally on eBay.
Emile Henry Cookware
Since 1850, Emile Henry cookware are manufactured in the Burgundy region of France, known for some exceptional wines. The clay and soil of the region contribute to these wines’ flavor and they also contribute to the Emile Henry cookware as the clay and soils from Burgundy are utilized to create Emile Henry ceramic cookware and bakeware.
Le Creuset Cookware
Le Creuset is probably the most well known brand of French cookware in America and can be seen in many shops around the country along with a large number of places online. They were established in 1925 in Fresnoy-le-Grand, France which was along a trade route for the raw materials they needed to manufacture their enamel coated cast-iron cookware. “Creuset” in French means cauldron where liquid cast iron was heated to a liquid state to create their products. Each piece of cast iron cookware is created with 2 molds created from sand to form the shape of the cookware, and then the molds are destroyed so each piece is unique. While most people will picture their signature enameled cast iron cookware, Le Creuset is now a multi-national company that manufactures many other products including stainless steel cookware sets and many other cooking tools. As such, not all their products are manufactured in France.
Matfer Bourgeat Cookware
Matfer Bourgeat began 200 years ago in France and is a moderately sized company with around 1000 employees which primarily focuses on creating products for commercial kitchens such as restaurants, hotels and other food service industries. Their cookware and other items are available to the general public but because of their focus toward the food service industry, their brand is not well known among most home cooks. They offer cookware made from copper, stainless steel, black steel cast iron and ceramic and many other traditional kitchen tools and specialty items.
Mauviel was established in 1830 in a village named Villedieu-les-Poêles, known as “the city of copper” in the Normandy region of France. They are well known by professional chefs. Emile Henry and Mauviel are somehow part of the same company although I don’t know which owns which.
Staub was founded in Alsace, France in 1974 but is now owned by J.A. Henckels and their cast iron cookware is still manufactured in France. Their cast iron cookware are manufactured using one-time-use molds similar to Le Creuset. They claim better moisture retention while cooking compared to competitors and “self-basting spikes on the lid create a rain-forest effect evenly returning juices back onto food.” For their ceramic line a higher quality ceramic that is less porous, although their ceramic cookware is made in China.