Open Thread: Crofton Cast Iron Lightweight Fry Pan and Lightweight Dutch Oven

Last Updated on July 9, 2023

This post is an open thread and contains affiliate links.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Updated for 2023. 

Cast iron cookware has been around for a long time. Long before the invention of kitchen stoves, cast iron pots were used to cook food over an open fire. In the 20th century, Teflon-coated cookware replaced cast iron in most homes, thanks to its ease of use, but there is still a market for cast iron.

In fact, in recent years cast iron has experienced a renaissance. Nonstick cookware, for all its convenience, doesn’t last as long. What’s more, some people have voiced concerns about the safety of nonstick chemicals. Cast iron, on the other hand, can last a long time if properly cared for, and it may even have some health benefits.

That properly cared for part is important. Cast iron does require a little work, but doing so will keep it in good condition for a long time.

Aldi frequently sells cast iron cookware under the Crofton label, and in a few different varieties. It’s not uncommon to see cast iron on Aldi shelves every 2-3 months or so. All are Aldi Finds, which means they’re only in stores for a limited time. Once they’re gone, they’re gone, although you don’t usually have to wait too long for cast iron cookware to come back.

Recently, Aldi sold a pair of lightweight cast iron products. Cast iron can be heavy, so these are marketed as being easier to hold and use than a standard cast iron product.

What We Know:

Aldi sold two different lightweight products.

Crofton Lightweight Cast Iron Fry Pans

Crofton Lightweight Cast Iron Fry Pan

The Crofton Lightweight Cast Iron Fry Pan sold for $18.99 in January of 2023, which is $2 more than the $16.99 it sold for in February of 2021. It came either as a 12″ fry pan or a combination 8″ + 10″ fry pan set.


Crofton Lightweight 6-Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Crofton Lightweight 6-Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven with glass lid

The Crofton Lightweight 6-Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven cost $29.99 in January of 2023, which is $5 more than the $24.99 it went for in February of 2021. In 2021, it came in red or blue and included a glass lid.

What We Don’t Know:

We don’t know who manufactures Aldi cast iron products. Because Aldi sources from a variety of manufacturers, even under the same brand label, it’s possible different Crofton cookware may come from different makers, both from year to year and from product to product.

Also, because these are lightweight products, there may be some tradeoffs versus a standard cast iron cookware. Handles and lids may not last as long, for example. We also don’t know if the iron is as thick on these versus a regular cast iron product.

Do you have experience with Aldi cast iron lightweight cookware? Let us know in the comments.

About Joshua

Joshua is the Co-founder of Aldi Reviewer. He is also a writer and novelist. You can learn more about him at


  1. I am considering buying one of these but would like to hear from someone who is familiar before making the purchase.

  2. I just bought the 12″ and set of 10″ and 8″. They are heavier than my old teflon aluminum pans, but tlighter than my cast iron. The exterior has a smoother finish, the interior has a heavily grooved brushed finish. They need to be seasoned before use. I followed the seasoning instructions which seemed to be at lower heat than i usually season my cast iron, and the result was a soft tacky season, as expected. I turned up the heat slightly and baked them again, with better results.

    They have reasonably high walls, but the flat bottoms are relatively small diameter compared to my old pans. This means I need to go up a larger size pan for things like crepes, omlette, or tortillas

    I’ve only used them a couple times so far, but they perform well. They heat evenly and stir well. As i said, the instructions seasoned soft, so I needed to reseason the 12″ after using it for making tacos, but the smaller pans performed well with eggs and other foods.

    I expect with proper care (they should be treated like cast iron, hand wash, dry immediately, stack between towels, etc) and seasoning they should perform well.

  3. Thanks Patch! Good information I was looking for. I think I’ll give them a try!

  4. Bought a crofton Dutch oven yesterday, 2-27-2021, and it stated it was pre seasoned in the ad. Cooked dinner in it and food stuck heavily to the bottom of it. $24.99 in the trash.

    • It says on the instructions to season it.

    • OMG you threw it away?! Every single piece of cast iron cookware I’ve ever bought came “preseasoned” yet needed several rounds of seasoning once I got it home… and then you’ll have to regularly do more as you use it.

  5. i bought the 2-1 8 and 6 inches pan in Feb.
    seasoned them per instruction, but turned out sticky. I probably coated the oil too much. the oil coating needs to be very thin when seasoning. so, I reseasoned them. Turned out very nice, absolutely non-stick at all and the pots are shining black. plus they are much lighter than the regular cast iron pan, very user friendly.

    • Yes, the instructions are kind of lacking on the seasoning. I too had mine turn out sticky, and this being my first use of anything cast iron, I then took to the internet, and found out the proper way to season. I scrubbed off the sticky layer with kosher salt and have started over. I am still in the process; glad to hear from you that once seasoned properly, they are good pans. I bought 2 of the 12″ skillet.

  6. Eileen Wiebelhaus

    I just bought the lightweight 6qt. dutch oven, with glass lid. The instructions say the pan can take up to 400* but the lid only 325*.
    How do I use the pan at 350* without the lid? All the food would dry out?

    • I just purchased the same 6 Qt Dutch Oven. It was marked down to $14.99, so I couldn’t resist! I have a Lodge Double Dutch oven that has a cast iron lid, so it can go in the oven. You’re right, that the lid on this can only go to 325°, but the bottom can go up to 450°. The recipes in the user manual don’t have you use the lid. For this particular product, I would use aluminum foil if I wanted to cover in the oven. But, tbh, you may want to use this more on the stove top and then purchase a cast iron Dutch oven for use in the oven. Amazon has them pretty cheap. It would be worth it if you do a lot of oven cooking.

  7. the lightweight dutch oven is seasoned-has rust ring and turns all my food grey/black. Concerned about the material in this pan. Giving to good will/or garbage.

    • The “material” is iron, which rusts very easily. Scrub the ring with vinegar until the rust is gone and it will be as good as new. Also dry iron right after washing else it will rust again. Please don’t throw it away!

    • I have the same problem with this Dutch oven . If I wipe the inside with a paper towel it is all black. Used it once and have not used it since. Have no idea what this black is . Wanted to bring it back but unfortunately never got there

  8. If you wiped the inside with a paper towel and there was a black residue, that just means you didn’t clean it well enough. Toss in some powdered Bar Keepers Friend and just a tiny bit of water to make a dry paste and rub it around with a cloth or paper towel. It will remove any remaining residue and be as good as new. Don’t toss out a perfectly good dutch oven!

  9. I bought the lightweight cast iron skillets, intending to use the smaller sizes for camping. However, the instructions say to not use the skillets over a campfire or on a grill. Does anyone know the reason for this? What would happen if I disregard this advice?

    • The handles are not cast iron and couldn’t stand up to the flames, unfortunately. You’d need to buy a skillet that is 100% cast iron throughout. The thicker and heavier the better when using over a flame.

  10. Thank you for the information, Paige.

  11. After some hesitation, I purchased the lightweight cast iron Crofton 12” pan over a year ago, but with some doubt and misgivings as to what exactly “lightweight” cast iron was. I found the seasoning directions to be overly simplified and inadequate, so I seasoned the pan the way one would a regular cast iron pan. We use it regularly with much oil/butter and with very careful (no soap, no abrasion) cleaning. The layer of black (paint?) began to come off quite quickly and I was concerned about the possibility of paint in our food. Now, over a year down the road, the finish is simply coming off in layers, leaving a dark residue on our food. I’m quite alarmed. Will no longer be using this pan, nor any like it, since there seems to be some sort of painted layer on the cooking surface. I venture to say it cannot be healthy. My trial purchase is not a successful one, I’m actually quite concerned. Back to investing in a legitimate Lodge brand cast iron pan, and reliable seasoning and cooking.

  12. I have the lightweight skillet and I use it on an induction stove. It heats rapidly and all cooks perfectly. I seasoned it by pouring oil in the pan, drained it and put it in the oven at 400 for two hours. Perfectly seasoned. After use I clean with water and a scrubber, dry it and spray it with pam and then use a paper towel to clean the excess. I am waiting for the next sale to buy the dutch oven.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *