I think about buying a Dutch Oven. As this is mainly - and as the name says - an oven, I think also about buying a pot to cook in the fire/coal. After some research I found

a) a Dutch Pot, also called a Dutchie (which is mainly used in the caribbean, take a look here) and b) a Potjie (which is mainly used in South Africa).

They look different and I have the impression that they do also "work" different in a way I cannot specify (and there is not so much information about Dutchies in the web). So can anyone explain me the difference between these two?

  • 2
    Don't let the name mislead you, a Dutch oven is not an oven, it is a pot.
    – rumtscho
    Jun 15, 2016 at 15:09
  • Yes, I know - but with a flat bottom (in contraty to Dutchie and Potje) so you can easily bake with them - calling it an oven without further explication was a bit short, sorry.
    – Largo
    Jun 15, 2016 at 15:19
  • 1
    I am Dutch, and it is so funny to always hear about those terms. We don't call those thing anything like what you call them. A "Dutch oven" is just a large iron pan to us. And we don't consider it to be typically Dutch at all. Probably just like hollandaise and such. Going Dutch, however, is normal to us, and, as we learn when we go abroad, typically Dutch.
    – Cerberus
    Jun 15, 2016 at 17:06
  • The Dutch comes in this case from the Dutch from South Africa so I guess it is as exotic for you as for me in Europe :)
    – Largo
    Jun 16, 2016 at 9:42
  • 2
    @Daniel it actually comes from Pennsylvania Dutch (US), which were actually Germans that immigrated to the US see Pennsylvania Dutch
    – DragonSamu
    Sep 23, 2016 at 9:33

3 Answers 3


I cannot speak for the Caribbean version but a traditional South African Potjie is more like a cauldron that a pot. It has three legs so as to be able to stand on its own.

Conventional wisdom dictates that you would not use a potjie in an oven seeing as that hurts the pot. Another differences is in the size. You get the standard number 3 Potjie that is the most common and then also the number two pots and the number one.

The number one pot is truly fantastic to use.

Number 3 pothie

Number 2 potjie

Number 1 potjie

enter image description here


I think they basically work in the same way with thick bases for good heat retention and with heavy lids that keep moisture in. A potje pot is usually cast iron and is meant for outdoor cooking- it has legs so it can only be used over an open flame/fire. A dutch oven which is also cast iron (sometimes with an enamel coating) has a flat bottom and can be used on the stove, in an oven and probably over an open fire if you place it on a metal stand over the fire. The Dutch oven seems more versatile

  • Sorry, I was not asking for the difference between a Dutch OVEN and a Potje but for a Dutch POT (also known as caribbean pot) and a Potje. But anyway thank you.
    – Largo
    Jun 16, 2016 at 9:43

The camp oven, ie dutch oven with legs, and potjie pot cook pretty much the same. However, I prefer the camp oven as I find it more versatile due to the lid design that allows coals to be placed on the top for baking and the ability to use the lid as a skillet.

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