February 10, 2013

Perfect Pot Roast

I have been making this recipe for a few years and it turns out perfect every time.  It is extremely tender and juicy and is actually the only pot roast recipe I have ever made.  Serve with mashed potatoes and homemade rolls on the side.  

The leftovers work great for nachos, taquitos, quesadillas, french dip sandwiches, shepherds pie and anything else you can think of.

Perfect Pot Roast
adapted from: The Pioneer Woman
(Printable Recipe) or (Printable with Picture)

3 Tbl. olive oil
kosher salt
3-5 Lbs. chuck roast
2 onions
6-8 carrots
2 - 2 1/2 c. low sodium beef broth
3-4 fresh rosemary sprigs
2-3 fresh thyme sprigs
mashed potatoes, for serving

Preheat oven to 275 degrees.  Heat a large dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add one Tablespoon of olive oil and let it get really hot.  Meanwhile, generously salt and pepper the chuck roast on both sides; set aside.  Cut a couple of onions in half from root to tip, then cut off the tops and bottoms and peel off the skin.  When the pot is very hot, place the onions in the oil and brown on both sides, about one minute per side.  Remove the onions to a plate.  Add another Tablespoon of olive oil to the pot.  

Next, thoroughly wash, but don't peel the carrots.  Cut them roughly into 2-inch slices.  Throw the carrots into the same very hot pot.  Toss them around until slightly brown, about a minute or so.  The point here is to get a nice color started on the vegetables, not to cook them.  Remove the carrots from the pot and allow the pot to get really hot again.  

Add another Tablespoon of oil to the pot.  Place the meat in the pot and sear it, a few minutes per side.  Remove to a plate.  Now, deglaze the pot by adding one cup of the beef broth, whisking constantly to get all the burned bits off the bottom.  Place the meat back in.  Followed by the carrots and onions.  Pour enough beef broth into the pot to cover the meat halfway.  Put in the fresh rosemary and thyme sprigs.  Tuck them into the juice to ensure the flavors are distributed throughout the pot.

Cover the pot and roast in the oven for 3-5 hours (around one hour per pound of meat).  Don't disrupt the roast during the cooking process.  When the cooking time is over, check the roast for doneness; a fork should go in easily and the meat should be very tender.  If it does not easily shred, cook a little longer.  Remove the meat to cutting board and shred against the grain.  Serve with the cooked carrots and some mashed potatoes.  Spoon plenty of pan juices over the top. 

Jenn's Notes: I have used both a chuck roast and rump roast and both taste great.  I have also used fresh herbs and dry herbs and both taste great.  Lately, I use dry herbs.  Use whichever you prefer.  This time, I strained the liquid from the pot and cooked it with a little tapioca flour to thicken it and make a creamy gravy.         


  1. YUM! Pot Roast is always a favorite in our house.

    1. How does this recipe compare to your favorite?

  2. This looks DELICIOUS, Jenn!! Thanks for sharing another fabulous recipe! ;) Pinned!

    Have a terrific week! :)

  3. This looks great and I plan to try it next week! Just a question though: why don't you peel the carrots?

    1. I can't wait for you to try it. Since the carrots cook for so long they need the peel for some structure to hold them together. The peel gets really soft and you won't even be able to tell it's on there when you eat them.

  4. Do you think I could add little potatoes straight to the pot to cook with everything? I love the potatoes that hang out in all those flavors and juices!

    1. I have never tried it, but I think it would be great. I would probably wait and add the diced potatoes for the last hour of cooking time. I think they would turn to mush if they were in there the whole time. If you try it, come back and let me know how it worked. - Jenn

  5. If you use dried herbs instead of fresh do you know about how much you use?

    1. When I make this, I usually use around 2 Lbs. of roast and I probably add around 1 - 1 1/2 teaspoons each of dried rosemary and thyme. If you use a bigger roast, like the recipe calls for, you will want to add a little more dried herbs. - Jenn

  6. I just made a pot roast, and I honestly don't understand why some chefs like to add seasonings such as rosemary and thyme. Here's how 4 generations of my family have made ours. American Pot Roast:
    roast/water/onions/salt & pepper/potatoes/carrots/cornstarch
    1. sere your roast in the pan your cooking it in. No oil, no water
    2. when sere looks delicious, add about 4 cups of water and 1 whole cut onion
    3. oven at 350 degrees. after 2 hours check water level, add if needed
    4. repeat #3, turning roast over and put the onions on top of the roast
    5. check roast, and if pink, repeat #3, this time salt and pepper ALOT
    6. after 5 to 6 hours, if roast is not pink, add peeled carrots and potatoes
    water level should be at least 1/2 depth of roast. now check in 30
    minutes as carrots and potatoes will absorb some of the water. continue
    cooking until potatoes are soft when fork inserted in middle flakes a bit.
    I cook my roast no shorter than 6 hours, and some times I turn the oven down
    to 325 degrees while potatoes and onions cook, for more roast time in oven
    7. in a glass, add 1/2 cup of cold water and 1 heaping teaspoon of cornstarch
    together, stirring until cornstarch is dissolved
    8. remove roast, potatoes, and carrots... not onions
    9. add the cornstarch mixture to water and onions and stir until thickened to
    your desired gravy thickness, remove onions or leave in the gravy.
    eat and enjoy (I am currently on day 3 of my delicious American Roast)


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