How do you make pot roast? I have always wondered what type of beef for pot roast and whether I could use chuck roast in a crock pot. I love beef pot roast but don’t plan to ever again make it the old fashioned way, with hours under the lamp. Pot roast is a dish that can have many different variations. The most common would be beef, such as chuck or rump roast. But what type of beef should you use for pot roast, and how is it prepared?
The best beef roast cut for the perfect pot roast is top round
And as the weather starts to cool, our thoughts turn to pumpkins, cider and a good pot roast. There are so many options in the meat case labeled “roast,” but one rules when it comes to this classic dish: top round.
Top round is a lean cut that can take a long braise to tenderize it and infuse it with flavor without falling apart.
“Top round has a very particular customer base,” said Carter Ray, owner of Wiatrek’s Meat Market on San Antonio’s North Side. “It’s one of those cuts that has history in that you may have seen your parents or grandparents use it for a big dinner.”
As beef prices continue to soar — $20 per pound for steak is a firm reality — top round roasts are still modestly priced, about $3.99 per pound. They are traditionally cut in portions of about 2 pounds per package.
Unlike chuck roasts or tri-tips, top round doesn’t have a lot of fat to it. That’s because it’s cut from the back leg of the animal, so it’s a muscle that’s asked to do a lot of heavy lifting.
In addition to braised pot roasts, it’s also a popular option for roasted beef and beef jerky. You can also cut it into steaks that have a flavor similar to sirloin.
“It’s definitely a tougher cut, but if you cook and season it with a slow cook, it can be a hidden treasure,” Ray said. “It’s probably the leanest cut on any whole calf.”
Traditionally, I’m a sucker for fat. I like fatty brisket and fatty rib-eyes. But when I add beef broth, carrots, onions, mushrooms, potatoes, garlic and multiple seasonings, the fat isn’t needed.
I like to start my pot roast by putting the top round in the smoker before braising it with the other ingredients. Like brisket, top round will absorb the smoke flavor and take on a smoke ring. You can cook it like a brisket on its own and have a favorable result for sandwiches.
A pot roast cooked with the top round won’t be laden with fat, and those leftovers in the refrigerator won’t turn into a grease monster once cooled. I consider it the king cut for roasts, and you should, too.
Beef Pot Roast
Beef Pot Roast is a type of stew wherein beef chuck is braised for several hours in low heat until it becomes very tender. The process also involves the browning of beef wherein beef is seared in a Dutch oven until the browning effect kicks-in. This produces a distinctive taste that makes pot roasts taste better.
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Pot roasts such as this is often cooked using a Dutch oven. It is a type of thick metal pot that can be cooked on a stovetop; it can also be placed inside the oven to cook for longer periods of time.
I enjoyed making Beef Pot Roast because the entire process was simple. I think that the browning part (wherein the beef was seared until it turned brown) was the only time that I needed to keep an eye on the pot. After placing it in the oven, it’s the oven timer’s job to let me know when its ready (assuming that I did not forget to set the timer).
The result was a delicious tender (I mean really tender) beef dish that I enjoyed with mashed potato. It was superb and totally worth the wait.
Beef Pot Roast
This is a recipe for Beef Pot Roast
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time3 hours
Total Time3 hours 10 minutes
- 4 lbs. beef chuck
- 1 cup red wine
- 32 oz. beef broth
- 4 medium carrots sliced into 2 inch pieces
- 5 small red potato quartered
- 3 yellow onion quartered
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 3 pieces dried bay leaves optional
- 1 tablespoon fresh Rosemary
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- Preheat oven to 320F.
- Rub salt and ground black pepper all over the beef chuck. Let it stay for 10 minutes.
- Heat a Dutch oven and then pour canola oil into it.
- Once the oil becomes hot, sear one part of the beef chuck for 5 minutes. Turn it over and sear the opposite side for the same amount of time.
- Remove the seared beef chuck from the Dutch oven. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, sauté onion and carrot using the remaining oil for 2 minutes
- Deglaze by pouring red wine.
- Put the seared beef chuck back into the Dutch oven and then pour-in the beef broth. Add bay leaves, thyme and rosemary. Cover and place inside the oven. Continue to cook for 2 hours.
- Remove from the oven and add the potato. Cover and place back in the oven. Continue to cook for 60 to 80 minutes. Add more broth if needed.
- Transfer to a serving plate. Serve with mashed potato.
- Share and enjoy!
Easy Slow Cooker Pot Roast
Slow Cooker Pot Roast is a mouth-watering, healthy and hearty meal that will feed the entire family.
This beef roast is a stick-to-your-ribs meal with plenty of flavor, and it only requires a few minutes of prep before cooking. You can come home at the end of a long day to a nice hot tender pot roast.
An Easy Pot Roast Recipe
This easy pot roast recipe features veggies, potatoes, chicken broth, and lots of tender meat for a well rounded out meal.
This might be one of the best Crock Pot roast recipes because you can toss the simple ingredients in the pot in under a few minutes, turn it on, let it cook, and come home to a delicious meal.
I gotta say, this main dish is one of my all-time favorite meals–for several reasons:
It’s easy to throw together
It takes me about 15 minutes to peel the potatoes, chop some onions and celery, and add everything to the Crock Pot.
You can add red potatoes, Russet potatoes (that’s what I use), sweet potatoes, or Yukon gold potatoes and have a ton of flavor.
And after picking up kids from school, going to practices, and running errands, it’s nice to come home to a finished meal.
The Slow Cooker Pot Roast Tastes Delicious
I love the way the roast falls apart and the veggies are soft and piping hot. There’s a whole intermingling of flavors that is just amazing.
The Dinner Is Versatile
You can add just about any type of veggie, red wine vinegar, onion flakes, ranch seasoning, or anything you’d like. Tomatoes, green beans, corn, butter beans and so much more can be added to the roast.
Slow Cooker Pot Roast
What is the best cut of meat for pot roast?
Chuck roast is the best cut of meat for a pot roast, which is the shoulder section.
But there’s more than one type of meat, including:
- Boneless chuck roast
- Shoulder pot roast
Don’t be worried about the fat in the meat because it will add a lot of flavor to this dish and help create tender meat that can’t be beaten. If you place your fork on the meat, it falls apart so easily.
Is there a difference between pot roast and roast beef?
The main difference is that roast beef is cooked without liquid, and pot roast is cooked with liquid.
Is a beef chuck roast tender?
Yes, any meat that comes from the shoulder will be tender cuts of beef, and very delicious after the cooking process.
Items you will need for the best pot roast recipe in a slow cooker:
- Crock Pot
- Chuck roast
- Large potatoes
- Baby carrots
- Diced celery
- Diced onion
- Minced garlic
- 1 packet of onion soup mix
- Chicken broth
Full printable recipe with measurements and instructions listed at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.
Where do you buy your meat and veggies?
I usually buy the meat at Publix or Fresh Market when it goes on sale.
You can freeze it until you’re ready to use the meat and then you can set the meat in the refrigerator at least one day ahead to thaw it out a little.
I buy the veggies at Aldi’s Grocery Store or Kroger delivery because I get a great deal on the veggies. You can buy a large bag of potatoes for around five dollars.
How long do I cook a pot roast in the slow cooker?
I usually cook the meat for about eight hours on low to get it tender. You can also cook the roast on high for four to six hours, but I personally don’t think the meat will be as tender.
How To Make the Easy Slow Cooker Pot Roast
Peel and dice the potatoes and put them into the bottom of the slow cooker.
TIP: I always spray the cooker with non stick cooking spray before adding any food. It helps make clean up easier.
Cut up the celery and the onion and add it in. I use baby carrots and just put those in whole.
I also buy minced garlic in a small jar. It just makes life easier and I can spoon some out and put it in the slow cooker.
Place beef chuck roast on the top and sprinkle the packet of dried onion soup mix on top.
If you don’t have any dry onion soup mix, you can sprinkle on some dry ranch dressing mix instead, beefy onion dry soup mix, or French onion soup mix. The other soups make for a flavorful roast, as well.
I like to keep a packet of Lipton handy for recipes. You can get a regular rotation of soup flavors going for your pot roasts.
If you want to make your own soup mix, give this homemade dry onion soup mix a try from The County Cook.
Some people like to sear both sides of their meat in a large hot skillet with butter before adding it to the slow cooker. You can do that, but it’s not necessary.
Add the chicken broth (or beef broth) and water, as well as a pinch of salt and pepper to give it some more seasoning.
I didn’t add too much salt, because the onion soup can be a bit salty.
Cook on low heat for about eight hours. At the end of the cooking time, when you take off the lid, you’ll have a wonderful beef pot roast.
If you want to cook the roast in less time, you can cook it on the high setting for about five to six hours. Just be sure it’s done cooking.
The temperature should reach 210-degrees when it’s done cooking.
Mmm… your easy slow cooker pot roast recipe is done with little effort!
This pot roast recipe in the slow cooker is somewhat of a budget-friendly meal. I spent around $20 for everything.
We have two adults and two growing teens and we got two good, filling meals out of the recipe.
We love leftovers here, and that’s one more night I don’t have to cook!
What To Serve With Pot Roast
- Moist Jiffy cornbread
- Homemade dinner rolls
- Green salad from Gimme Some Oven