I have always hated beef roast. Growing up, roast was dry and tasteless. So when my husband brought home a chuck roast from the store, I was less than thrilled. Then I found your recipe, and now it makes sense! Pot roast CAN be delicious and melt in your mouth moist! Thank you for posting! I will use your recipe forever!
This is the recipe that I have used for pot roast from this website for years. It is simple, delicious, and reliable. It is the first pot roast recipe I ever made and the only one I felt i needed to make ever. My trick is that I don’t ever open up wine bottles, so I buy the four pack of small bottles (Cabernet) that are sold next to the big bottles and I use the whole Little bottle. I never have any leftover wine and don’t feel like I am wasting wine.
How do you cook green beans and potatoes to go with meal? Can I add them to the crockpot? Thanks!
Hi, Amanda! Emma, managing editor for Simply Recipes, here! I think you could could add the potatoes an hour or so before the end of cooking if you want to cook them all together. I normally cook them separately so the vegetables stay a little more intact and bright-colored. Here are two good recipes: Green Beans and Roasted Potatoes!
I have a Rump Roast(bottom round roast), is this cut of meat ok to use?
Hi Tonnisha, pot roast is best made with a well-marbled shoulder cut such as chuck roast. If you have a rump roast, I suggest making roast beef with it. That’s the cut we use most often to make roast beef: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/roast_beef/
I’m cookig a 3.5 pound chuck roast, I’d like to add fresh rosemary and thyme, how much should I use? Thank you.
Hi Tiffany, rosemary is a much stronger herb than thyme, so I would be careful with it. Only use a small sprig. The thyme, you can add 3 sprigs and you’ll be fine. Good additions!
As I write this I have a small 1-1/4 lb. shoulder roast in a cast iron pot simmering on my gas range. I followed your recipe and just adjusted slightly for the smaller piece of meat. Should the cooking time be reduced proportionately? A tip from me concerning lowering the temps on a gas stove. The foil ring does work but if you have a wok the stand for it will also work well, to raise your pot away from the direct flame. Right now I am just enjoying the aromas coming from the kitchen! :) Thanks for the recipe..
Hi Joe, the most important thing is to cook it low and slow. There may be a small reduction in cooking time, but not a proportional reduction, since the long cooking time is what it takes to break up the connective tissue that makes that cut tough.
The meat I had was fairly lean, so I knew it would need to be cooked slow & low. looking at it after two hrs and thirty min. it was well done but still not fall apart tender. another 15 min gave me the desired results. The carrots were perfect and I still had about a 1/4 cup of liquid, just enough to moisten the meat. Not having a lot of fat in this cut made it slightly dry though very tender. I will get a chuck roast next time. How do I send you a picture?
How long would you suggest in a crock pot or slow cooker?
Im using a bottom round rump roast- and cooking it in a crock pot – one side is a fat mark – should i place that fat side on top ??? Im thinking the fat would work its way down into the meat , making it taste better.
This came out great. I started to try the aluminum foil donut for my gas range, then realized I could stack two of the iron burner grates for the same effect to keep the pot at a low cooking temperature. It worked!
Wonderful recipe! I’ve been cooking chuck roasts for over 30 years, but this is by far the best I’ve ever tried! The difference is the wine. All other ingredients and instructions are pretty much the same, but have never added wine before. After making your wonderful Chile rellano recipe for supper last night, I searched through your recipes, and my freezer to cook tonight’s supper. I cooked it using my Nuwave Induction stove top so I could get the exact temperature and timing perfect. Thank you, once again, and excellent recipe.
I have made many versions of pot roast but this is the very best. We just loved it. Thanks so much.
We love this classic recipe and have been enjoying old fashioned pot roast for years. If I have no red wine on hand, I substitute a can of tomato soup and water.
Hi Cathy, I could see that working well, thanks for sharing!
Hi Elise! I have an odd question for you. I love this recipe, it’s been my go to for 10 years, at least I printed out a recipe 10 years ago from simply recipes, same title, same method. But, a little different, no bay leaf, no precooking of the onions and carrots are added toward the end. Is it the same recipe, just updated? I’m curious! Either way, both recipes amazing, simple and foolproof with a simmer burner and a good Dutch oven with a tight seal. Love it, thank you!!
Hi Amy, yes, we’ve updated the recipe a little over the years. Decided to brown the onions first, etc. But it’s pretty much the same recipe.
I used your recipe. BEST POT ROAST I have EVER made (i’ve been making them since the 1970s). YUM.thanks!
I’ve made this twice already, and it is outstanding. I have tried many pot roast recipes over the years, but this reminds me most of my mothers. Fall apart tender, moist, full of flavor. The long cooking time is really the trick, as most other recipes fall in the 2-3 hour range tops. It’s amazing how much liquid is in the pot after cooking. Making it again tonight!
Hello, I added beef broth to the pot as I need more liquid volume for the potatoes and veggies that I will add near the last hour. I liked the idea of making the bed of onions and carrots to rest on. I’m doing it on top of the stove on electric range so I’m sure it will be very good. Thanks For The Ideas, Went with a Merlot and green bell peppers sliced to rest on top of the meet with the garlic. Bay Leaves in the liquid to get absorbed into the whole 5 lbs chuck roast. Thanks Again , David
Thank you for this recipe! Mine turned out great and my family and I thoroughly enjoyed our pot roast dinner. I was kinda nervous at the start because the first time I tried on a slow cooker the meat turned dry and tough (and I’ve been cooking it for 8 hrs on low). I’m skeptical if it’ll turn tender in about 4 hrs or so. But lo and behold, it was fork-tender after 4 hrs! Success! Thanks again.
N.B. I tied my meat prior to cooking because I want to retain its shape after cooking and I added 3 celery stems to my veggies. Next time I’ll add a couple of dashes of Worsterschire sauces to see if it’ll add anything better to my beef
Chuck 28 pound roast….will braze first and then cook with wine in a covered pot in the oven at 175 degrees. How long do you think it will take to be medium rare 135 degrees? Thank you for answering
A 28 pound roast? No idea.
that musta been a mighty big cow
I love this recipe! Have used it about 3 times with no issues. This new years, my friends and I rented a cabin and they want me to make this again. However, rather than having two large 3 1/2 lb roasts, they bought me five smaller chuck roasts that total 7lbs. I’m nervous to cook them and have them overcook. What do you suggest? I have cooking twine and was thinking about tying them together to create two larger chunks of meat (before browning them). Not sure if this a good idea tho. I can’t find any solutions/suggestions on Google, so I was hoping to get your opinion! Thank you!!
Hi Brynn, you could tie a couple of them together if you want. I would just make sure that whatever pan you use that the meat fits snuggly in the pan and that you are careful about maintaining a low temperature.
I was wondering what kind of itilian seasoning I should use can someone help me please??
Hi Shanice, Italian seasoning is a spice blend which usually is a combination of dried rosemary, oregano, thyme, and basil.
Ok, this is the tenth time I have cooked this recipe. Every attempt was ok, but tonite was over the top, magnfico, delicioso! This time, I had some clear-cut goals and a vision for what I wanted to achieve, and I surpassed all of them.
Goal #1 – Meat that is NOT so tender that it disintigrates into strings. I don’t like stringy meat. I want tender meat that can be lifted out of the pot in one piece, and then sliced across the grain, i.e, across the strings. It should be sliced the same way as roast beef or corned beef is traditionally sliced…across the grain! Not stringy! Not falling apart! But still super tender.
Goal #2 – Vegetables with the right texture and flavor. I want to bite into nice chunks of carrots that taste like carrots, parsnips that taste like parsnips, and turnips that taste like turnips.
Goal #3 – A delicious sauce to bind it all together.
Here’s how I did it.
I salted the meat liberally, with Kosher salt, hours in advance. Then I rinsed it and dried it thoroughly. I then rubbed it with pepper and oregano, and browned it using canola oil, which has a higher smoke point point than olive oil, so my oil never breaks down and never produces an off taste. I took care to brown both sides and all edges, because this browning process achieves the most flavor after hours of cooking.
After browning the meat, I sweated mirepoix and pasted garlic, deglazed with a half cup of good Cabernet Savignon, returned the meat to the pot and cooked uncovered in the oven at 225 degrees for 2 hours, basting several times and flipping once.
Then I lowered the temperature to 215, covered the pot, and let it continue to cook down for an hour. Then I removed the meat from the pot, placed it in a pan with enough hot stock to reach halfway up, covered it with foil, and continued to cook it low and slow all on its own.
Meanwhile, I skimmed the fat off of the liquid and added the sliced vegetables, and cooked until they were almost tender. Then I reintroduced the meat and the stock it had been cooking in.
After letting the flavors marry, I removed the meat and vegetables from the liquid, thickened the liquid with a cornstarch slurry, and reintroduced the meat and veggies one more time.
Result? Meat that doesn’t fall apart into a stringy mess. Texture counts big time, and I want the texture that can only come from slicing the meat across the grain. This also resulted in vegetables with texture and flavor that you simply can’t get by dumping everything into a crockpot and leaving it on its own for several hours.
I noticed that a lot of the posts in here tend to focus on ingredients, rather then technique. If you start out with quality ingredients, you can hyperfocus on technique to elevate this dish to a level that will absolutely blow you away with a mind-boggling complexity of flavors and textures .
I have followed this recipe several times with good results, however, I tend to add too much liquid and the meat breaks down too much, which is my own mistake. Today, I’m approaching things a bit differently. First, I salted the meat heavily with kosher salt, hours before cooking. Second, I placed the browned meat on a bed of mirepoix, and now I’m cooking it uncovered in the oven at a low 225 degrees. I figure that having it uncovered will make it easier for me to monitor the cooking time and temperature, and I’m aiming for a roast that can be sliced rather than totally falling apart. I will be adding thick slices of carrots, parsnips, and turnips at the last hour. I’m expecting the mirepoix to disintegrate into the sauce (may have to puree it, we’ll see). I’ll let you know how this turns out.
This is a great recipe! I rarely cook or eat beef, but I got a small shank with a fat bone in it from the farmer’s market this weekend. Originally intending it for a barley soup, I decided last minute to make it a roast. Of course, I never follow recipes, but the techniques employed in this recipe are thankfully forgiving and very instructive. So here’s what I did differently. After browning the meat and cooking the onions and crimini mushrooms, I laid the roast a top the veggies and added a generous teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and about 1/3 cup of homemade chicken stock. Sprinkled some crushed thyme on top. Covered and let it very gently simmer on the stove for two hours. It was heavenly. I served it with a sweet potato hash (cumin, coriander, chili pepper flakes, caramelized onions, sweet potatoes, broth, cover and steam until tender). Bon appetit!
I have made this two times, once in a electric oven and it was amazing. However I just recently moved and now I have a gas oven. Well flavor and everything turned out great, but the meat wasn’t tender falling apart like when i used the electric oven. the meat was well marbled, and I cooked it for 5 hours. It wasn’t dry, just not as good. Any suggestions?
It could be the oven, or it could just be your particular piece of meat. I recently cooked up a flank steak from a local high end market that was completely tasteless. If I were you I would lower the oven temperature by 25°F and see if that makes a difference the next time. Also make sure that the lid is tight fitting.
Elise, I tried this yesterday and all I can say is—how did we live without this recipe all these years??!! It worked perfectly, and it was SO delicious. Thanks so much to you and your mom for sharing another keeper.
I tried this out tonight and the aroma filled the entire house when it was cooking. Smelled wonderful! The only thing was that the meat was a little bit dry. I don’t think it was overcooked because it was very soft and fell apart easily when cut, but it just wasn’t tender. Almost all the liquid was gone by the end of the 4 hours, so there wasn’t much sauce leftover. I wonder if it’s the cut of the meat, maybe it’s not very good? I used a beef shoulder, perhaps a chuck roast would’ve better? The leftover onions bits at the bottom of the pot was so delicious! Tastes like french onion soup! Perhaps next time I should use more wine so that I’ll have more sauce to go with the beef.
Hi Wendy, beef shoulder is pretty much the same as chuck roast. Chuck comes from the shoulder of the beef. If your roast was dry, it was because the cooking temperature was too high or the lid didn’t fit tightly enough. If you cannot get a low enough temperature on your stovetop (this can be an issue with gas ranges), bring the roast to a simmer first on the stovetop, then put in a 350°F oven for 15 minutes, then drop the temp to 250° and cook for an hour, then drop the temp to 225°F and cook for 2 to 3 hours more, until the meat is fall apart tender. ~Elise
Something went terribly wrong halfway through this recipe. Well I should start off by saying I could not find either the shoulder or the chuck roast so I used Center-Cut Bottom Round (whatever that is.) Everything was going so well 1 hour into the 3 hour simmer. I think I might have made the horrible mistake at that point of opening the lid and flipping the roast. :-(The liquid immediately dried/evaporated and everything burnt. :-( I tried to salvage it by putting the roast in another pot with more onions and garlic on the bottom with more wine but this one evaporated and dried up too (granted this was not a good pot like the first.)
It started off oh so well too. Should I have never opened the lid in the first place?
The problem is that your heat was too high. If you cannot get a low enough (barely warm) heat on your stovetop, bring to a simmer first on the stovetop, then put it in a 350°F oven for 15 minutes, drop the temp to 250°F, cook for an hour and drop the temp again to 225°F for 2 to 3 hours more, until the meat is tender. Make sure that your pot cover fits well too. ~Elise
the perfect pot roast first try. My very finicky children and husband gobbled it up. I used my Le Creuset on a gas stove. I was very worried about using just 1/2 cup of liquid because my simmer setting runs hot but I used the foil donut hint you mentioned and it worked like a dream. I ended up with a couple cups of perfect gravy makings. Thank you!
I’m making this for the second time for Sunday dinner tomorrow. I wanted to add vegetables this time (potatoes, carrots) but when do I add them? Last time I did the whole “set it and forget it” with my crockpot (after doing the inital browning, etc) and it was YUMMY! Can I add the veggies to the crockpot at the beginning? If not, when do I add them? I don’t want to overcook the meat by adding the vegetables too late towards the end of cooking and then waiting for them to be done. Thanks again for the recipe. People brought us pot roast after we had our baby and if it wasn’t for the fact that I was starving from nursing nonstop, I would’ve thrown it out–dried out and tasteless. I was determined that when I got my bearings in the kitchen again, I would undo the horror! :) This recipe made it possible.
I would add the vegetables for the last hour of cooking. ~Elise
Wow Great Simple recipe! This recipe doesn’t require any special tools or appliances, except for the ones that Everyone has, and the meal tastes great!No need for a crock pot when you have fun cooking it! this was just what I was looking for, the pictures say a lot as well, Thanks for sharing!
So, I was doomed from the beginning: 1) I bought a 3 lb. eye of round, probably the toughest piece of cow around. 2) THEN, I didn’t have Italian seasoning, so I substituted Emeril’s Essence. 3) THEN, I used my leftover Chianti AND used BEEF BROTH to compensate for the toughness of the meat.
BLECH BLECH BLECH. Way too salty. Added the veggies too early so I had mushy salty veggies. I did use foil to keep the moisture in on my large Crockpot; probably the only thing I did right.
Elise, I’m not going to give up! In fact, I am going to stop trying to second guess and FOLLOW.THE.DIRECTIONS. I guess I should start with the correct cut of meat, no?
This was an unbelieveable recipe for the meat. BUT, I have never been successful with veggies at this temperature, and again this time was no exception. Still hard. So, while I let the meat rest I simmered the vegetables in the cooking juice, just until ready to serve the meat. They became perfectly cooked and tender. Then made a wonderful gravy, a little bit of milk and cornstarch, tossed in a small pat of butter at the end for gloss. Excellent recipe!
I’ve made this recipe many many times before and it never fails :-) Today, I brought it to a company potluck and it won best main dish! I browned the meat the night before and let it simmer for about 90 minutes. The next day, I put it in a crockpot and added 12oz sliced mushrooms, carrots, and potatoes. Cooked it on high for about three hours. Perfect.
I decided to skip turkey this year and opt to make my first pot roast ever. This was the best I’ve ever tasted! I substituted 3/4 of a bottle of Guinness for the wine and it turned out perfect! Thanks for the great recipe.
I wanted to try this recipe because of all the raving reviews but when I sent my husband to the store for the meat he came home with a chuck tender roast. Is this cut of meat the same thing or can it at least be used for this recipe with similar results? I noticed it’s not as flat as the chuck roast shown in your pictures, it’s much thicker and longer then it is wide. I don’t have much experience cooking beef, we’re usually more of a chicken/seafood family, so I really don’t know much about different cuts of meat.
I don’t know about chuck tender roast, but if it’s chuck it should work fine for a pot roast. Chuck comes from the shoulder, muscles that do a lot of work as the steer raises and lowers his head to eat grass. All that work and fat marbling make for a flavorful roast that lends itself to slow cooking. ~Elise
Just fantastic and like mom used to make. It is so good… not going to eat out anymore. Also tried the slow cooker and it turned out just as good. Thanks much.
Turned out pretty good thanks.
Oh wow, this is so good. I used to be afraid of cooking larger cuts of meat, or the tougher cuts that required care and time. But this pot roast recipe was so straightforward and easy. I couldn’t be happier with it. I browned my first ever roast today in my dutch oven. That part was much easier than I thought it would be. All smooth sailing from there. Smells great – pot is FULL of juice from the meat cooking down.
Thank you SO MUCH for the recipe!
This has become a regular dish in our house. Fabulous-thank you! It’s one of those I’ll make for guests as well.
This recipe was wonderful. Thank you. The only variation I used was that I used a pressure cooker for about 1 hr. 45 minutes and then put veggies in it (carrots, potatoes and green beans) for another 10 minutes and a couple packets of brown gravy mix to give it a thicker consistency – you could still taste the wine flavor – which was delicious. I also cut it in slices once it was cooked and soaked each piece in the gravy. It was extremely tender and very flavorful. My husband and son loved it. My son doesn’t normally like roast so I felt this was a true compliment!!!
Hi Elise,I saw many comments asking about making this delicious recipe in a pressure cooker. I use my pressure cooker all the time – it cuts down on electricity/gas use and many times I just don’t have it together in time to start dinner 4-5 hours in advance. So, that being said, the first thing I advise is that you consult the owner’s manual for cooking times. For my Cuisinart pressure cooker, I was able to brown and simmer all in the pot, then I cooked it on high for 99 minutes. I added the carrots and cooked for an additional 8 minutes, also on high. Besides increasing the amounts a little to go with the size of my chuck roast, I followed your recipe exactly and it was absolutely heavenly.
Thanks so much for being my go-to for recipes and ideas. I always get compliments on everything I make from your site. Everyone I have shared the site with loves it as well.
I’m 9 years old, and make this to rave reviews (yes.. the 2 other comments are by me, too.) I’m going to make this the night before the first day of school, and may take any leftovers as lunch for the first day. :) I enjoy your website, Elise, and every recipe I get from here comes out great!
Hi Elise,I’ve made this recipe a couple of times, first impressing my wife and second time impressing my mother in law who loved it so much she asked every detail of the recipe….which my wife said she has never done with anyone before. The second time I cooked it at low heat for 6 hours instead of 4. I couldn’t remember if it was more tender the first or last time (both were great). I got alot of juice both times. Just wondering if cooking it too long could actually make it less tender?? Was asked by the mother in law to make it again and want to make the best I can.Thanks a bunch,Darren
Hi Darren, just as long as the roast’s internal temp doesn’t get too high, you’re fine. Slow and low is the best way to get the meat tender. ~Elise
I made this roast a couple of weeks ago and my husband raved about it. We don’t drink, nor do we buy alcohol so I used beef broth instead. Everything else stayed the same (I floured the roast a little because I use the pan juices to make gravy for mashed potatoes). Wonderful recipe! Just put another roast on, same exact way I made it last time. I’m going to chop up some veggies and throw them over in the crock pot and let them cook until almost done, whip up some mashed potatoes and make gravy from the pan juices. When the roast is good and cooked I’ll add my veggies and have stock left over for soup tomorrow night. Thank you so much for this recipe.
Just wanted to get back to you after your advice on choosing the right-sized meat for my 3.5 qt Le Creuset. It worked beautifully! You CAN use a 3.5qt pot for the pot roast recipe. I used slightly less meat (by half a pound) and kept everything else the same. My gas stove was too hot and it dried out after a while but I added some beef stock, transferred it to the oven and by the end of the 4 hours, I couldn’t lift a big chunk out without it falling apart. Thanks so much for your recipe and detailed instructions!
I just tried this recipe. The flavor is incredible, and it’s amazing how much liquid is released from the chuck roast.
However, I had a problem and maybe you can help me. I used onion, carrot, and celery after browning the roast, and instead of red wine (we don’t drink and don’t have wine in the house), I used 1/2 cup beef broth. After 4 hours in a 225 degree oven, the meat was done, and juicy, but it wasn’t falling apart like I expect pot roast to do. Can you help me?
When you buy the roast, look for a hunk that is well marbled with fat. The more marbling the better if you want the pot roast to be falling apart tender. ~Elise
Hi Elise, I noted you used a 5 qt oval Le Creuset. I just bought a 3 1/2 qt oval one on sale and want to try out your recipe with it. Is it too small? Should I halve all your ingredients or just halve the meat portion?
Hi Lisa, you want to use a pot that will fit your roast. The roast should just fit in, without a lot of wiggle room. ~Elise
Thank you so so much for this recipe!! My parents had bought a chuck roast (it was on a super sale for $6.50 for about 3.8lbs), then they asked me to cook it while they were at work. I found your recipe and I must say you and your mother are culinary geniuses :). I did change it up a bit. I sliced an extra clove and a half of garlic and then actually placed it into the roast (i put small slits in the meat). I then added the red wine (cabernet sauvignon) and just a bit more since my roast was a bit larger than you had called for. I cooked it for the amount of time you had said and of course had miscalculated when we would eat lol so I simply turned it off and an hour before we ate I turned it on the lowest heat setting. It didn’t loose any of its tenderness or flavor, in fact I think it actually got more tender :). So thank you again!!! It was delicious and something I will definitely be making again!!!!
Usually I make my pot roast in the crock pot, but my bone-in roast was too big for it. I followed this recipe exactly, using a foil covered roasting pan and it was Superb!!! The only red wine I had in the house was a nice, dry Shiraz and it gave the roast a wonderful flavor. Thanks – this is now my “go to” pot roast recipe.
Try adding a bay leaf or two (depending on the weight of the roast). Fabulous!
Hi Elise. I have never cooked a pot roast before and bought a chuck roast. I came upon your recipe and realize that I need a dutch oven. Can you cook the roast in another pot and still get the same results?
You need a pot just large enough to contain the roast with a thick bottom and a tight fitting lid. ~Elise
I am wanting to cook this for dinner tonight, but I just found out we’re expecting company, and I don’t think my roast is large enough for all. Is it okay to throw in a steak, too? Thanks!
The pot roast works because chuck is a tough cut of meat that need the long slow cooking to dissolve the connective tissue. Steak cooked that long might just turn to mush. I would just fry up the steak separately and serve it with some of the drippings and sauce from the pot roast. ~Elise
Thanks, Elise! I just made this and there IS a lot of juice from the meat — using what I had: a local farmer’s lean free-range steer chuck roast, shiraz (a very little extra cabernet), and 3 Tb balsamic vinegar, red onions, 6 cloves garlic. I didn’t have italian seasoning on hand, so I used cardamom for a fun spicey edge. Added celery and potatoes toward the end. Excellent!
Sounded good and is in the oven as I type-just one question came to mind as I was scrubbing my carrots: why do you peel yours?Looking forward to dinner tonite-hungry with just the aromas in the house-thanks!
Carrots grow in soil. Sometimes it’s easier to peel them than it is to scrub out any residual dirt. ~Elise
This recipe works great with a Crock Pot, too. Just put all of the veggies in with the roast and cook everything on low for 10 hours. You can put the roast on top of the veggies or the veggies on top of the roast or both. I like to have at least some onion and garlic on top so the flavors seep in.
I use a 7 bone chuck for some extra flavor and beef broth for liquid because I’m stingy with my Merlot. It produces so much juice, though, that you really don’t need to add any liquid — it’s just a matter of taste.
Thank you so much for this site, Elise! I always look here first. :)
Thanks for your prompt reply Elise! I brought the temp up from simmer to 200 and just gave it more time to cook. It turned out great!!! I did use the chuck roast and it was tender, just like everyone said. I was amazed at how the liquid just appeared! I am another one of your fans! Thanks for sharing this great recipe.
Hi Elise, I was searching the internet for the perfect pot roast recipe and found yours with all the positive comments. I am in the process of cooking this in an electric aluminum dutch oven set on “simmer”, following all your directions. With an hour left of cooking time, I decided to add carrots, mushrooms, and celery, but when I opened the lid, there was not much liquid and the meat is still firm. Can you tell me what I am doing wrong? Do you think I am using the wrong kind of pot? I put aluminum foil under the lid while cooking. Thanks for your help!
Hi Barbara, hmmm. Sounds like the pan is the issue. The seal with the lid must be tight, and the temperature must be very low. When we still had an electric stove, we set the temperature on “warm”, which was a setting below simmer. Another thing to keep in mind is that whenever you open the pot, you release what low heat is there, and you have to bring the temp back up so that the liquid is simmering, before lowering the temp setting again. Another thing that influences cooking time is the actual cut of meat. Some roasts are tougher than others and require a longer cooking time. But you can tell if you are cooking at too high a temperature if the roast is dry and there’s little liquid in the pot. Beef is 60% water, so cooked at the proper low temp it should give off a lot of liquid. ~Elise
This is the best pot roast I have ever had. My husband loved the flavor the wine added. It was so easy. It will be a definite favorite at our house.
I recently purchased a 5.5qt Dutch Oven. I went with a 3.5lbs. rump and followed your recipe. Cooking time was 3.5 hrs. on the stove top.
The roast was dry and virtually inedible. I was so disappointed. I was amazed at the amount of juice/gravy from just .5 cup of wine.
My question is, does the rump take less time?
Hello John, a better method for cooking a rump roast is to make roast beef. Our pot roast recipe requires a chuck roast (the shoulder), which naturally comes with enough fat marbling to ensure a tender result. Also because there is so much connective tissue and tough (flavorful) muscles in the shoulder cut (from the steer lowering and raising its big head to eat grass) the long slow braising is the method that breaks down the connective tissue and tenderizes the meat. Regarding the 1/2 cup of wine, you could do this pot roast without any liquid at all. Beef is 60% water. The low and slow cooking releases the moisture from the beef and it is captured in the pot. In the oven the moisture would just evaporate. ~Elise
This is the absolute best pot roast I have ever made. It is super easy and so full of flavor. I have a french cast iron enamel dutch oven that works wonderfully. I made the roast for a dinner party and heard nothing but raves from my guests. I have made it using fingerling potatoes and have also served it with creme fraiche mashed potatoes. It is a great comfort food.
The last time I made a roast I seared it by completely rubbing it with garlic olive oil, then put it on a wire rack which sat on a cookie sheet in the oven at 500 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes. Turn your exhaust fan on high as this is a smokey process. Took it out and seasoned it while inserting cloves of garlic in. Put it in my cheap covered dutch oven along with a cup of 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of water and orange juice. Then cooked it on low heat (225 degrees) as others have suggested for many hours. When I took it out I let it set on top of the stove for about 15 minutes, this actually makes the roast juicier. It was delicious, mouthwatering, flavorful and no word of a lie, I could almost cut it with a fork. My 18 year old son who is a very very picky eater called it “orgasmic” and kept going back to the fridge for more after we finished eating.
I had asked a few questions on Thursday about this recipe and youreplied so quickly! I made this absolutely scrumptious pot roastfollowing your directions for my dad’s 95th birthday on Saturday!My family of 10 people couldn’t believe how tender the meat was,especially my dad, who has trouble chewing! It was such a big hit, and I want to thank you and your mom for sharing this incrediblerecipe
Best Regards,Laura Goodman
Will cooking bags work?
No idea. I’ve yet to cook with cooking bags. But if you try it, please let us know how it turns out. ~Elise
Hi, Elise. Recipe looks delicious! I was curious as to whether or not I could use a 12 inch cast iron skillet for this covered with aluminum foil? Would I need to increase the amount of liquid to accommodate for the increased circumference? Thanks!
Hi Adam, the problem with that is I’m doubtful you will be able to get a good seal. You really want a tight fitting lid. Aluminum foil over a cast iron frying pan will let too much liquid vapor escape. BTW, I think I remember seeing some inexpensive cast iron Dutch ovens at the new Target off Mace in Davis. ~Elise
I just came across your delicious sounding pot roast recipe! I wantto try it for my Dad’s 95th birthday coming up in a few days!If I double the recipe, do I also double the time to cook it? Also, what size Dutch oven is best for 2 pot roasts together? (This would be for 10 people.)
Hi Laura, the size of the Dutch oven depends on the shape and size of your roasts. You want them to fit rather snugly in the pan. But roasts vary in shape. What we do is get the roasts first, then pick the pan that suits them best. You will probably need to increase the cooking time, but not as much as to double it. If you allow the roasts to come to room temperature before cooking, you won’t have to increase the cooking time as much. ~Elise
Can this recipe be adapted to lamb? I have a small 2lb boneless butterflied leg of lamb. I’d like to do on the stove top as a pot roast but I’m not sure if this is the right cut of meat or too small.
Great question! I think of the pot roast recipe as a good recipe for a flavorful but tough cut of meat, such as a chuck roast. The slow braising works well with the chuck to break down the connective tissue. As for leg of lamb, that cut is more typically roasted or grilled. That said, if you do a search on Google for “braised leg of lamb” you’ll find several options. ~Elise
Hi Elise, thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. I will be preparing this dish soon, and I have a question. I’m thinking to use fresh herbs in this dish (thyme, rosemary and bay leaf). What is your take on that? And also, is it ok to use herbs given the small volume of liquid that we are starting with?
Fresh herbs would be fine. And yes, it’s okay to use to use them even with the small volume of liquid. The meat will release a lot of liquid. ~Elise
Absolutely the best… such a basic recipe, but that’s just fine because it’s sooooo delicious.
I was a bit skeptical, as I’m used to cooking my chuck roasts in the slow cooker.. lots more time… since they are grassfed and therefore leaner/tougher. I forgot to start cooking my chuck roast until 3 pm, and panicked, until I found your recipe.
It is absolutely wonderful. :-)
I know you have a lot of comments but I still had to post. I’m 25 and have never made any type of roast! This recipe was so flavorful, my husband was floored! I realised halfway through that it was a beef recipe (I bought pork, and I had googled pork roast) but I didn’t put bay leaf or any other seasoning only good for beef. I followed the directions exactly, and wow. Thank you for posting this, now all of us beginning cooks can be culinary geniuses for a night!
Awesome recipe! Thanks so much for another amazing recipe. Made it yesterday for Sunday dinner and it was the best pot roast I’ve ever made. Not too salty, just perfectly cooked. I think it would work very well in the slow cooker too. Thanks again!
Cooking the vegtables in a slow cooker is easy. I make a hobo packet out of aluminum foil. I put the carrots and potatoes with some seasoning in the foil pocket and lay it over the roast. After 8 hours in the slow cooker, I open the foil and dump the contents in with the roast and broth. Let it sit for 10 min or so.
It’s a good way to cook everything in one pot.
One variation, rather than put the potatoes in the pot, about an hour before serving, I roast potatoes, carrots, an onion, and a red pepper (in chunks) in some olive oil until crusty. Then toss into the stew pot. The roasted vegetables have a nice crunch and add great body to the flavor.
I just purchased the 6 3/4 wide round dutch oven. Although it’s a little wider and shallower, I think it’s more versatile than the normal round ones. You can brown more meat instead of doing it in batches and still do everything you could do in the other one.
You certainly are the expert here, but I don’t think the the roast will dry out because the Le Creuset enameled cast iron cookware is known for their even cooking. And if the roast gets lonely in there, I’ll just have to add another one! I’ll make this and let you know how it turns out. I can’t wait. I ate dinner earlier and my mouth is still watering from looking at the photo at the top of the page!
Hi Ed, I love my Le Creuset and agree that it is an excellent product. For making a pot roast, what you want to do is to match the pan to the roast. You will get the best results from cooking the roast in a pot in which the roast just fits. We have lots of different sizes of Dutch ovens with which we cook. 2 1/2 quart, 5 quart, 6 quart 8 quart. The pot we choose to cook with depends on the size and shape of the roast. Good luck with it! And enjoy that new Le Creuset. ~Elise
Elise, I see you used a Le Creuset. Can you tell me which quart size it is? Thanks and I can’t wait to make this recipe! First I have to decide on which one to purchase—the 6 3/4 wide round one or the 7 1/4 round one!
I think that’s actually a 5 quart. For pot roast you want a pot that the roast just fits in. If the pot is too big for the roast, the roast may dry out. ~Elise
Thank you for posting this receipe, Elise. I made pot roast for the first time and was skeptic if my meat would fall apart and be as tender as I imagined. Being apprehensive, I checked my simmer constantly (which probably contributed to a very long cooking time). For only 2lbs of meat, it took me a good 5 hours to really relish in the tenderness it is known for. The flavor was just irrestible. What an easy recipe and fun to make. Thank you!
Thank you Elise! This weekend was the first successful pot roast I’ve ever made! It fell apart just like my Mom’s–and she uses a pressure cooker. It was the comments/responses from this blog that finally convinced me of the importance of keeping the temp low and of not peeking! Almost every time someone commented that their roast came out dry, Elise responded that the heat was too high. What really hit home for me was that Elise said she keeps her burner on the “warm” setting. Food & meat “safety” has been drilled into my head my entire life. I think that is why I have had a tendency to keep the heat higher rather than lower. But, this time I suppressed my paranoia and used all the tricks: 1) followed the recipe exactly; 2) started with the meat at almost room temp; 3) used foil to seal the lid; 4) kept the flame on the lowest possible setting; 5) doubled the rack over the flame; and 6) kept the lid on tight for 3 1/2 hours without peeking! There were even a couple of times I thought maybe the pot was getting too hot and turned off the flame for 5 minutes (used a timer of course) and then resumed the cooking. The result was the most tender pot roast and at least 2 cups of juices for gravy!
Hi Elise,I just posted the comment about losing my simmer while cooking this roast. Thank you for responding to my post so quickly. It’s been about an hour and I am happy to report that my simmer has returned! It smells DIVINE in this apartment and I think my neighbors will be jealous. Can’t wait to see how it turns out.
By the way, I have only just stumbled across your site today while looking for a pot roast recipe. I have to tell you that I love the site and, while my roast is cooking, I have printed off about six recipes to try over the next weeks. Thank you so much for the detailed recipes and this great website!
Hi Alicia, so glad it’s simmering as it should. Thank you for the kind words! Happy cooking. ~Elise
Hi. I’m trying this pot roast recipe right now. I browned the meat and added the liquid and onions. Once it came up to a simmer, I dropped the heat to low, as instructed, but I have lost my simmer now. Will it eventually come back up to a simmer or do I need to turn the heat up a little. I didn’t want to turn it up for fear of it drying out. Any tips for me?
Hard to say, every stove setup is different. I would recommend leaving it as is, and making sure that the lid is on tight. If after an hour there is still no simmer, then up the heat a little. ~Elise
I made a pot roast tonight using a modified version of your recipe because I didnt have enough time… It was pretty damn good for my first. I plan on being able to follow your instructions better next time and see if my husband likes the next one even better than this one. Thanks.
This was the best pot roast I have ever had! My roasts usually turn out a bit dry, but this just melts in your mouth…. sooo good.
It was an outrageously good recipe. Purchased a chuck roast and after browning it, simmered it for four hours on top of a bed of yellow onions and garlic. Used 1/2 c. of Martini&Rossi for the red wine. Added the carrots the last 1/2 hour and they were still hard so I upped the heat and cooked longer. Still rather firm. I will have to add them sooner next time and there will definitely be a next time for this recipe! The meat just pulled apart and was delicious. Couldn’t resist eating some with my fingers right out of the pan. Major yum. There was a ton of liquid left from the simmering so I added a bit of cold water and flour and whipped up a gravy. I can’t stress just how wonderful this recipe was and so easy.
Oh and another thing, I have a black roast pot. You know the funny oval-shaped black ones with white specks all over them. Not sure what it’s made of but I’m HOPING it won’t really matter. I know I have to oven cook that but we’ll see. I think i’ll use that little tip about the tin foil. I have a sirloin tip roast. I read that yeah you have to have more liquid and it has to cook a bit longer but I’m not exactly sure and I can’t find the post in this long long list of comments. I know you’ve probably posted it a million times but do you know what to do with the different cut of meat? and it’s only a 3 pound roast.. so it shouldn’t be too bad but I just need a little help altering the recipe to fit the picky husband with the alcohol and the type of cut.
With that pan, you’ll definitely need to cook the pot roast in the oven. You want to make sure that the lid is tight, so covering first with aluminum foil is probably a good idea. Beef is 60% water, did you know that? That’s why you don’t need much liquid in this recipe. As long as the cooking temperature is low enough. ~Elise
OK I was just wondering, see my husband refuses to touch alcohol. I mean even when you cook with it I know it evaporates but he still won’t eat it. Is there something else I could use to cook it in because I’ve been searching for the perfect pot roast recepie and this one seems to be perfect. Except for the alcohol part. Can anyone suggest something that I can use? I know my mother used to use just plain water but I don’t know if it would work with this. And if I do just use water what kind of spices do I have to use to compensate for the lack of flavour from the wine?
You can use plain water, or chicken stock. Pomegranate juice would be good too. Most of the flavor is coming from the browned meat. Just make sure you brown the roast really well before settling into slow cooking it. ~Elise
Very good recipe. My roast kept coming out tough. Last night it was great so I bragged on your recipe. Thanks
This is a wonderful pot roast recipe. Since I didn’t have a dutch oven, I made it in a Schlemmertopf clay roaster. Cooking in clay involves soaking the vessel for 15 minutes in cool water and cooking at a high temperature, a bit different than cooking in a slow cooker or dutch oven. The moisture in the clay’s pores is slowly released into the meat during cooking and the lid, not tight fitting, allows for browning. I pre-browned anyway, which I discovered, was not necessary. After doing a little research, I learned that I needed to cook the roast at 400 degrees for around 3 hours. I seasoned the meat as per Elise’s recipe (loved the garlic and sliced onions on the bottom of pot) and used a bit more liquid (red wine) than was called for. I also cooked it close to 4 hours which was a little long for the clay pot. I should have added my veggies towards the end of cooking as Elise recommends. Adding them to the meat, at the beginning, resulted in over cooked veggies. I loved the Italian seasoning. This being my first pot roast, the meat, in spite of my missteps, was fall apart tender and very flavorful. I highly recommend this recipe and will definitely make it again – either in my clay pot or in a dutch oven I plan to purchase. A personal note of thanks to Elise who supported me in this cooking adventure.
I’m so glad your experiment with the clay roaster worked for you Beverly. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. ~Elise
Hi all, I posted back on July 6, 2008. Well I recently made this again as the recipe says with 2 minor changes.
1. I was out of Italian seasoning so I had to use Cajun.
2. I too like extras in my pot roast so I added 2 potatoes, 2 carrots, & 2 stalks of celery all cut up (and with other posters suggestions) appx 1 hr before done.
AGAIN PERFECT, PERFECT, PERFECT!
If I die tomorrow, I will share this recipe with God in Heaven.
Thanks again Elise. I can’t wait to dazzle my family and friends.
Thanks so much for the great recipe, it was so fast and easy and it came out perfectly delicious! I added some red potatoes to the roast when there was about an hour left and they came out perfect too.
I’ve tried this recipe before with a chuck roast and it was absolutely perfect! Yummmm! Change NOTHING! But tonight, I only have stew beef that’s been cut into chunks- how different do you think the recipe will work? For example, amount of liquid, time in the oven, etc.
You might need more liquid as the already-cut-up meat may be more inclined to dry out. I would check out some of the beef stew recipes on the site. ~Elise
This is the absolute best beef roast recipe ever! I am 51 and my roasts have always been too dry or too tough, never again. I served them with Garlic Mashed Potatoes Green Beans. Incredible. Thank you.
I’m making this for second time. The first time was such a hit! This time, I’ll believe you and only add the half cup of wine.
I am interested in trying this in a pressure cooker, as I have recently purchased one (the kind with the weighted valve). Do you keep the same amount of liquid, or do you need more? Also, what temperature do you cook it at when you pressure cook it?
I’m a long-term vegetarian who forgot how to make pot roast! I now have to eat meat I’m a recently diagnosed diabetic and the doctor advised me to eat low-carb, which is just impossible to do as a vegetarian. Thank you for this recipe; it’s exactly what I wanted.
One thing I did learn from having been a vegetarian… for the allergic-to-onions gal, use a pinch–JUST a PINCH, TRUST me on this–of asafoetida, also known as “hing” powder in Indian cooking. Mix the powder with the wine first because it is so strong it needs to be diluted. The overpowering smell and flavor will mellow wonderfully with the long moist cooking and give the dish the lovely flavor of onions and garlic with a bare hint of mustard-like warmth (a good thing for meat). If you have an Indian or Pakistani grocery near you, ask the clerk for a hing powder that is easy to use and reliable.
I don’t have a heavy pan for roasting this in the oven, just an old fashion blue speckled ware oblong pan with a lid. My stove top pots are not good candidates for this recipe either as they are also poor quality and thin. I don’t have a rack for the pot, but I was wondering if I could stack some celery stocks under the roast to lift it a bit? My beef chuck tender roast is a bit less than three lbs, so I am going to go with about 3 1/2 hour cook time. I’ll add red potatoes and a yellow onion in at the beginning also as I love the taste and texture of slow roasting veggies. Sounds like I don’t have to use the dreaded meat thermometer and calculate rare, medium rare etc, but rather just let ‘er go for all those hours. Wish me luck…
I would recommend stacking the meat on top of a bunch of sliced onions. BTW, you don’t need a meat thermometer for pot roast. It’s all cooked well done. ~Elise
I wanted to tell you I used this recipe for my first Christmas Eve Dinner with my husband of one year and my family. It was such a great hit that my loving husband is already wanting me to make it again. My family members kept asking me for the recipe so I refered them to your website! Thanks for the yummy meal and I will enjoy the recipe time and time again! Thank you again! Happily Fed and Married!
I made this today and it cooked for 4 and 1/2 hours and was delicious and fell apart with a fork. Great recipe!Laura
The pot roast turned out great! Thank you!!
I just prepared everything, browned the meat, even poured the red wine into the meat at the crocker pot. I haven’t started cooking yet. I was planning to leave it on LOW over night, however, my husband is not feeling too comfortable to leave it on over nite. Is it ok if i put the meat back to the fridge and cook it tomorrow morning instead. Will it affect how the meat tastes?
Hi Kat, I agree with your husband. I would put the meat in the fridge, get up early in the morning and put it on. Taste should be fine. ~Elise
Wow. I’ve made this chuck roast twice now. The first time my mother-in-law decided that her son did marry someone who can cook – couldn’t stop picking little pieces. I made it the other day for company and was given rave reviews. I almost felt bad as it’s not a great cut of meat and requires so little work. I just love your site Elise. With the help of your blogs my husband is no longer wary of my cooking! It’s my first stop for any recipe I’m looking for! Thanks so much.
I am having a dinner party for 10 and am planning on making a pot roast. I found your recipe and want to try it. My question is: I would need to triple the recipe so do you think I can do it all in one pot? Another question is: I want to make sure everything is done before my guests arrive. I thought I could put it in the slow cooker to keep warm. What do you think about that? FYI: I have a gas range and electric oven so I planned on browning on the stove then transfer to the oven.
Possibly you could cook it in one pot, if you had a really big pot. If I were to double or triple the recipe and I also owned a slow cooker, I would do half of it in the oven, and the other half in the slow cooker. Just brown all of the meat first, before putting into the slow cooker. Yes, you could keep the whole thing warm in the slow cooker, but then you will also need a pretty big slow cooker. ~Elise
This is the best pot roast I’ve ever made! Thank you! I accepted all the compliments and must now pass them along to you. Tasty, so moist and delicious! What a relief to finally have THE pot roast recipe that beats all the rest!
I am just wondering if I can use this same recipe and place the roast in a reynolds baking bag. Would it cook the same and use less time in the oven?
I did a roast 2 days ago. Being a 66 year old bachelor, I did what all bachelors do. I improvised. EV Olive Oil to cover bottom of slow cooker. Chopped red onions and 6 garlic cloves covered with 1/2 bag of cold slaw fixins (Just 2 kinds of cabbage and carrot slivers). Seasoned and browned roast on George Foreman Grill. Put roast in cooker and covered with a mixture of 1/2 litre V8 Juice, 1/4 cup Tequila, 1/2 cup Myers Dark Rum and enough water to barely cover the roast. Cooked at 250 for 4 hours. It was “Kiss the cook” delicious. Thankfully, it was a large enough roast that I made two days of sandwiches too. Instead of making a gravy, I poured the left over liquid into a mason jar and put it in the refrigerator to use as stock for either my next roast or a soup. The cabbage was good too.
Joy-gasmic! Thank you so much for this recipie. I did a trial run for company yesterday…I couldn’t stop doing my yummy food dance it is so good! Thanks for the other comments they were so helpful. I found this site two days ago and haven’t stopped looking at it since! Thanks Elise and friends.
I will be making this pot roast for the 3rd time today. The first two times have been absolutely fabulous! I’ve got a 4.40 lb Chuck Eye roast this time :P
How do I do this using a crockpot?
Not sure. I would brown the roast on all sides first in a skillet. Then I would put the onions, chopped garlic in the slow cooker, add the meat on top, then the wine, then slow cook on the low setting for several hours, until the roast is fall apart tender. ~Elise
I have already made this once on my gas stove top and it turned out great! To the onion I add chopped celery and celery leaves as well as green bell pepper and jalapeno pepper. The half cup of wine is PLENTY! Trust me! I have a very small burner called a simmer burner on my gas stove that worked perfectly for this method of cooking, no need for the foil ring. But I definately recommend the chopped celery and leaves…so delicious! Am making it as I type and the aroma is making my mouth water!
I made this last night to wonderful raves from friends. I don’t have a dutch oven, but used a deep All-Clad saucepan instead and covered the lid with tin foil to create a better seal. I was amazed at the amount of juice that came out from just a small amount of wine. A fabulous recipe, Elise. Thanks much.
I made this tonight and loved it! Simple to assemble and easy to cook and it came out great!
I intend to make this recipe tonight. However, I noticed some people commenting about the wine. I havent decided completely how Im making my roast, but my mom when she makes food with wine, especially in a slow cooker, she boils the wine for a bit prior to adding it to the meat. This is so that the alcohol content leaves the broth and you are left with just the flavors of the wine. Mom learned from experience, that gotta boil the wine, after she got us kids “drunk” off dinner :) So if you are using a slow cooker may want to try this approach, if you dont like wine, may help.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!
Okay, so I didnt follow your recipe exactly but here is what I did.
Pot Roast (2lb) in a pan covered with tinfoil. Added 5-6 cloves of garlic – one chopped and rubbed on the roast. A table spoon of olive oil and onion + seasoning salt. (Very basic).
I had it in the oven for about 2 hours and a blog on the internet to take it out around the 2 -2 1/2 hour mark. But when I checked the roast it felt rough and wasn’t what I was expecting. I came accross your site on google and followed your directions for a tender pot roast. Your directions to turn down the heat and let it roast for a long time (took mine out at 4 hour mark) really helped turn my roast around. It was exactly what I was expecting.
I now plan to make this dish for family and friends – it’s definetly ‘fancy’ restaraunt quality. thanks!
Recipe turned out great! It was simple and I love the pictures! I would definitely do this again! And I never mind opening up a bottle of red wine with dinner. A must try!
I am sorry for not posting this earlier. I made this recipe about a month ago after reading all the posts on this. I too was skeptical of the amount of liquid to add to this. I am an absolute pot roast newbie (it was on sale at safeway at an incredible price so I had to buy it). Not knowing what to do with it I came to the internet and this site was no. 1.
That being said:
Do not change anything from the original recipe. It was perfect!
I was truly amazed that the small amount of liquid was enough.
I never post on any sites but I felt like I had to for this one.
Brand new newbie makes Killer Pot Roast!
This was awesome!
I’ve made this roast twice so far and both times it has been so tender that it falls apart before I even have to try and cut it… unfortunately, the meat still tastes dry and a little bit stringy, and although there is a small amount of liquid at the bottom of the pot, it doesn’t seem to give off as much as everyone says it should. I keep the heat on the stove as low as I possibly can, and I use a ring of tin foil to separate the pot from the burner by an extra half inch or so…. What could I be doing wrong?
If there is only a small amount of water at the bottom of the pot, there is still too much heat. Like I mentioned in the post, when we make this on the stovetop, we keep the temperature on the warm setting, the lowest possible setting, of our electric stove. I would add another ring of foil to raise the pot by another half inch. You just have to get the temp lower. The other thing is to make sure that you have a tight seal on the lid. No air or steam should be escaping. If your lid isn’t perfectly tight, place a piece of aluminum foil over the pan before putting on the lid. ~Elise
I made this recipe for my in-laws. I don’t cook meat very often (I’m a “mostly” vegetarian) and my MIL is always bragging about how her meat fell off the bone and all she added was water, etc. Well, water and meat just don’t make a flavorful combination and I’d tried wine before and it was good, but I’d had to keep adding fluid because it kept drying out. I didn’t believe the 1/2 cup, so, after a while, I added some water to the mix. BAD ME! I should have left it as instructed! :) It was still delicious, and the meat fell apart, but the liquid was not as flavorful as I know it would have been if I hadn’t succumbed to temptation and added the water. I’m sure I’ll call on this recipe again when I have to make pot roast for my IL’s again. But next time, I’ll trust the 1/2 cup…
Hi Sonya, the trick to being able to use only 1/2 cup of liquid is having a burner with a very low (warm) setting. Did you know that beef is 60% water? That’s why you can do a pot roast like this. At a low enough heat, the beef releases its juices while it cooks, and the juices don’t evaporate. ~Elise
Does anyone know what heat settings I should use for this recipe if I were using a pressure cooker? Do I cook on high the whole time? And how long do I cook vegetables if I’m adding any?
Elise, I and my children are allergic to onions. Is there a spice that I can substitute to get a great flavor? I usually just stick to salt, pepper and garlic powder. Thanks.
I would have recommended garlic or garlic powder, so it sounds like you are on the right track. Can you handle shallots? If so, you might try them. ~Elise
Hi Everyone!! :) I made this recipe last night, it was not only my first pot roast, but I also used Venison Round Roast. I used a little sherry, as well as red wine, in order to cover the gamey taste. After I browned my onions I readded the meat, and covered them both with a light cover of flour. I added the alcohol, and let her go. When it was all over and done with 5 hours later, not only was the meat falling apart, but the sauce was thick enough to be gravy, and I eliminated a few minutes of work. :) Loved it!!!
Made this recipe using a slow cooker with the following changes: there are 2 of us, so I reduced the meat to 1.5 lbs (hormone-free grass fed chuck roast); added more wine (shiraz); added new potatoes and carrots after about 3 hours. cooked on high for 2 hours and low for 3 hours. It was delicious! Very tender, awesome recipe. I will make again, but will cook on low the whole time for 7-8 hours next time. I was worried the wine wouldn’t simmer on low but it picks up eventually. Love your site!
Hi, Elise I have tried your pot roast it was very good, to say the least. I enjoy cooking so I added crushed tomatoes with a little sugar to take away the bitterness. Instead of using a crock pot I used my pressure cooker. It was done in 45 mins. the meat was great tender the potatoes and fresh veggies and everything was done to a tee. Try using a presure cooker instead and have your meal done in less than 1/2 the time.
If you are doing this recipe for the first time, I would suggest that you use a chuck roast. It has the most connective tissue and will make the nicest slow-cooked roast.
I tried this a couple of months ago in my crock pot/slow cooker, and didn’t like the way it came out. So, I will continue to make it the ‘old-fashioned’ way, in a Dutch oven on the stovetop.
I’ve never used wine before in my cooking but I want to with this. Can you give me recommended brands or specific cooking wines you used with this or ones I can buy and use? Really excited to try this and succeed!:)
Hi Lee, whatever you do, do not use “cooking wine”. Better to use water, beef stock or chicken stock if you don’t have any good drinking wine around. I wouldn’t buy a bottle of wine just to use a half cup in this recipe. If you are on a budget and would like to have a decent bottle of wine to use in the roast and serve with the meal, Yellow Tail produces some good reds for the money. Avoid Charles Shaw, you never know what you’re getting with those. ~Elise
This roast was amazing! I made it tonight for my fiance and myself. We both loved it. I was shocked by how tender it was; it also had a great flavor. Thank you for this outstanding recipe!
I have this in the oven right now. It smells great! I was worried about the amount of liquid, but I just checked it (after 2 hours) and it has double the liquid that I put in. I plan on making a gravy out of the pan juices and serving over mashed potatoes. Thanks for the recipe!
I have to add that this is the BEST pot roast recipe I’ve ever tried – my entire family loves it. Once, as a little girl, my aunt made pot roast. It was browned, the onions were caramelized, and the meat melted in your mouth. I’ve tried for years to duplicate this and your recipe has helped me do it. I use a cast iron dutch over and I use a bottle of beer instead of wine. Thank you for this treasure of a recipe!
This is the best pot roast recipe I have ever had. I used a burgundy wine and it just had so much flavor… I added the potatoes to the pot at the end and mixed them up a little to get the flavor on them. I will never cook this any other way! Thanks Elise and Mom!
I have a 5-6 lb. Sirloin Tip Roast – I don’t have a dutch oven so I will need to cook it in a slow cooker. I know the roast weighs more than the one you say to use so I need to know how much longer I should cook it for and should I use more wine than what you have stated?
It seems as though each and every time I cook a roast, it is dry and tough. I saw this recipe and was excited until I saw that I don’t have the same type of roast that you say to use.
Hi Jaimi – Sirloin tips are more tender and have less marbling than chuck roasts. I consulted with my mother and she says you can use it for her pot roast recipe, but that she also recommends her roast beef recipe for this cut. Because there is less marbling, she recommends adding more oil or even bacon fat to the pan when you are browning the roast before you put it in the slow cooker. You can add another half cup of wine if you want. Not sure on the times, as we don’t use a slow cooker, you may want to consult your instructions for the cooker. If cooked in a regular Dutch oven, the cooking time would be at least another 45 minutes for that size of a roast. ~Elise
I’m cooking the roast in the crock pot. I started it out on high for about 1.5 hours then turned down to low. It’s been simmering on low for about 2 hours now. At what point do I put in my carrots and potatoes? Do the vegetables have to be covered in liquid? If so, I don’t think I have enough liquid in the pot. Any suggestions?
Hi Jennifer – I would suggest putting the vegetables in for the last hour if you are using a slow cooker. ~Elise
I made this last night and can I just say OH MY GOSH! I have mastered the perfect roast. I will never make it any other way then this way from now on. As a matter of fact went to the store and bought my daughter a chuck roast and took it to her, told her how to cook it and YES she said is that all the liqiud you use. I said trust me, do it and you won’t be sorry.Thank you Elise and Mom.~Gina~
Also, I only have a pressure cooker without the lid(very old but refuse to throw away), I was going to put foil on top with a tight fitting lid..is this okay?
Try it. You want a tight seal so that the moisture doesn’t escape. ~Elise
I want to try this recipe..I too have been cooking roast for a long time but can never master the perfect roast. I have a bottom round roast and no red wine..should I use 1/2 beef broth and 1/2 red wine vinegar?
I wouldn’t use vinegar, just use the beef broth. You could even use chicken stock. ~Elise
Hey, thx so much for the recipe. I am a college student, so I think this simple pot roast recipe is great for me since I don’t have a whole lot of different ingredients and seasonings. It’s cooking right now. I have a question though, does the red wine have to cover up the beef? Maybe my pot is too wide, the red wine can not cover up the beef completely. Is that a problem? Maybe I should flip the beef a couple of times to get even amount of cooking time for both sides?
The recipe calls for only a half cup of wine, so it will definitely not cover the roast. It’s okay, that’s the way it’s supposed to be. No need to flip the beef. ~Elise
What can I substitute instead of wine?
Water, beef stock, or chicken stock. ~Elise
It was very yummy…fell right off my fork. I used a crockpot after browning the meat instead and added a little soy sauce. Will be making this one again. Thanks Elise
I think Hsin had the problem with the roast drying out because she used the bottom round roast. Round roast or round steak is a very lean cut of beef, very little fat, which is the reason it is always so hard to make tender and juicy. That type of roast needs to literally be immersed in liquid. The reason a chuck works is because of exactly what you said in the recipe itself. There is so much to break down into liquid.
Give it another try Hsin with a chuck roast. A sirloin will probably turn out the same way as the bottom round…..
This recipe is amazing! My family just love it. So easy and delicious. I have never left a comment before on anything, but felt so compelled to write and say thanks for the great recipe. I have it cooking on the stove right now (my 4th time making it!)
I also made this on Christmas Day. I did two variations. One with the above ingredients and the other I replaced celery and potatoes with the onion and garlic and beef stock in place of the wine. Both turned out perfect and offered everyone something they liked. To add a little flavor at the end, I applied a little bit of worcestershire sauce directly to the meat from the edited recipe. Not necessary, but it definitely enhanced the flavor. This is a great recipe and relatives asked how I did it. They even took some leftovers home with them.
This is an awesome recipe!! I made it for X-Mas dinner and my family loved it. I actually used a slow cooker and it came out wonderful. It had all the right seasonings and the meat was so tender. I’m definitely adding this recipe to my list of favorites.
Thank you for sharing!
I’ve been trying to make a good pot roast for 20 years. Like others, I too questioned the small amount of liquid but I tried this and my pot roast was absolutely delicious. I didn’t have any red wine so I used beef stock — excellent. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe.
I have a pot roast recipe that you might find interesting.I fly by the seat of the pants when cooking but ussually seam to do quit well.the roast recipe I have is one I made up and produces a tender,moist roast in 40 minutes.I always use a 5 quart pressure cooked to cook a roast as it forces moisture into the meat.I start off with a 1 1/2 pound chuck roast in my pressure cooker with 2 cups water.I season with 1 tspn cooking sherry,1 tspn season salt,1/2 tspn crushed dill weed,1/2 tspn mustard seed and 1 tblspn worsesterchire sauce.I add 4 stalks celery cut into 1 inch long pieces,carrots cut into2 inch pieces and split if there iver one inch diameter.1/2 medium yellow onion.and 4 medium potatoes cut into wedges.I turn the heat on high till the pressure cooker starts it’s thing,then turn it down till it’s just barely going and cook for 40 minutes…After the roast is done I thicken the excwss juices a little with flour and pour over my sliced roast…This recipe is absolutely wonderful and produces a moist,tender roast in just over half an hour….Hope you like it
I had a lot of reservations about this recipe but I gave it a go sense I have probably cooked every recipe known to chefs on the Internet and this was just one more. I modified absolutely nothing !! About an hour or so before completion time, I added potatoes/ simply because I like them ! It was absolutely awesome!!
How do I tell if the flame is too hot? I use aluminum foil to raise my pot but I hear a little rumbling in the pan still, is that ok?
Note from Elise: Hard to tell, it may be more trial and error than anything. If you check the roast in an hour and the liquid is almost all gone, it’s too hot, and you’ll need to add more liquid, bring to a simmer again, and then lower the heat even lower.
This will be my first pot roast. I dont have a dutch oven. I do have a teflon pot with a lid to be used on top of the stove. Will this work? I am really looking forward to preparing my first roast. I also bought a Merlot for my red wine. Is that ok to use? Can’t wait to see how it turns out!
Note from Elise: The most important thing is to keep the temperature low. The lid must be tight fitting or steam will escape and the roast will get dried out. Merlot is fine.
I’ve read many recipes and watched many cooking demos of pot roast before and as a result I’ve experimented on what i’ve learned but have never been successful before in making a good one. What’s different with you, Elise, is that you described the steps so accurately and gave tips and reminders along the way. The comments posted by each of your followers also helped a lot. At first I also doubted being able to cook a slab of beef with just a half cup of liquid but the comments of others who have done it encouraged me. I followed every detail of your recipe and instructions, I’ve been very patient and just waited, and all was worth it. So at last! I was able to make my first pleasing to the eye and delectably edible pot roast. Thanks to you! Now, I’m getting ready to try EVERYTHING! on your website.
Thank you so much. First time I could do a real pot roast. It turned out to be wonderful. I am very proud, because my husband asked me to cook it soon again… Thanks for the sucessful add to our daily kitchen meals.
I stumbled on your recipe when checking for cook times. I’m not a recipe follower, just give me the guidelines. Anyway, the manner in which I’ve been cooking my roasts is nearly the same as this. The one exception is that, instead of wine, I use water and balsamic vinegar. It really helps to tender the meat. Also great for making slow cooked broths.
Good way to cook pot roast. I took a chance and added a bit of molasses (as an earlier reviewer mentioned). I think it added depth and warmth to the broth — I’ll do it again. The key is to keep the heat extremely low (and your pot tightly covered), because 1/2 cup of wine is truly all it needs. Any more than that and you’re going to boil your pot roast. I have an electric stove, and the “warm” setting definitely kept my cast iron pot simmering. As always, I turn to your site first, Elise… so many great recipes to try, so little time.
My mom uses a very similar method but she adds ketchup AND the red wine. It’s amazing. Definatley my FAVORITE dish growing up.
Amazing! Thank you!
I used your recipe in a slow cooker and Bethany Shiraz Cabernet. Added some potatoes and my wife thinks I’m the husband best ever.
I must say I had to leave the house though because my belly was sore from hunger pains with the aroma this dish caused.
This is a very good recipe would have this again .The whole family loved it and wouldn’t change a thing.
This is the absolute best recipe for pot roast that I have found. I bought a very cheap pork roast and it turned out wonderful. Before browning it, I rubbed my roast with cajun seasoning, accent, seasoned salt, and then hot sauce. I let it sit in a bowl for a while and then cooked it. I took a piece of aluminum foil with a rubber band around the top of the pot before putting the lid on it, to seal it fully. I used a Merlot Bordeau wine. I put in potatoes, carrots, and mushrooms after about 2 hours and they were awesome. I cooked the first hour a bit hotter than the lowest setting and then turned it down for the next 3 hours. The slow-cooked roast was so tender and tasted fantastic. Don’t take the aluminum off though until you put the veggies in or are ready to eat. My pot filled with liquid by the time I finished cooking it all. Thanks to you and your mom for the wonderful recipe.
The very best pot roast recipe in the world !! I had my 42 week pregnant daughter her husband and my 6 year old grand son over for dinner, it was very hot and humid so I didn’t feel like turning on the oven to cook. I had a pot roast, so I tryed your recipe,the alcohol evaporates so no danger for mother to be! Well every body loved it even my grandson who does not eat anything. I floured and seasoned the pot roast on both sides then browned the meat added yellow onions and garlic to botton as you directed and 1/2 cup of red bordeau wine. One hour before the meat was ready I added new potatos and baby carrottes my husband who hates wine even ate it because we don’t taste the wine. The most tender melt in your mouth pot roast ever!!!! Thanks a whole bunch :P
This is the best!!!!! My husband loved it. I added green beans and mushrooms at the same time as the carrots and it came out perfect. Thanks
wow! This was absolutely delicious. I made it for my boyfriend and his parents and they loved it. I wish I had bought a bigger piece of meat cause the 2 lbs that I made was gone quick and we were left wanting a little more meat. Thank You very much for this recipe.
I tried this recipe last night and my family loved it!
Hi Angel – I doubt that there is much alcohol left after several hours of cooking, especially if you only start with half a cup in the first place. The alcohol is the first thing that boils away. That said, if you really don’t want to use wine, I would use chicken stock or beef stock as a substitute.
Hi, I was wondering if you could use water instead of wine, I am currently pregnant so no wine for me!
I have made roast before but never browned it first so I’m excited to see how it turns out,Thanks!
Hi! Just made this yesterday for my daughter’s baptism party – over 50 guests, and everyone LOVED it!!
I cooked two roasts, browned on all sides in a 6 qt slow-cooker on 10 hours (lowest of low) and used 1.5 cups of cab sav. Restarted it (another 10 hours), and about 2 hours before done the second round, drained off most the liquid into a skillet, added a tsp of liquid smoke, and thickened with cornstarch (added and whisked into a small amount of water first, then whisked into the reserved liquid).
I then poured the (now gravy) back into the slow cooker, and used a fork to piece up the meat – served on rolls for pot roast sandwiches. FABULOUS!!!!!! Thank you so much for this recipe!
Elise, I made this tonight (in a slow cooker on low for 8 hours–with the wine increased to 1 c.), and it was delicious. After I recently found out that I am allergic to a multitude of foods, my husband and I decided to start eating meat again as long as it’s local and sustainably grown. This recipe was a great use of the shoulder roast I had bought. Everyone loved it. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks to Christina for the tips on the mushrooms – I love mushrooms and didn’t think about putting them in with the roast.
I did serve this last night. I added in the carrots and potatoes about 30 minutes before serving, and found that they could have used another 10-20 minutes (they were cooked, just not as soft as we prefer).
Next time I will either try adding more liquid or doing it in the oven, since this didn’t leave us with a ton of liquid left for gravy – but it was AMAZINGLY tasty. Thanks ever so much for this, I can’t imagine that we’ll be trying another pot roast recipe for a while!
Thanks for posting this recipe! I was looking for a good pot roast recipe to break in my brand new Le Creuset French oven. This dinner was a total hit. I was so impressed with how little work it took and how little heat it took. I was able to cook my roast on about “1” (my stove goes from LO then 1-9 and then HI). I was skeptical about the liquid and the low heat… but it was perfect and did indeed fall apart. We used a serving spoon to serve it because a knife was not needed.
I tried to add my potatoes at the last 20 minutes… they took more like an hour. I cut mine pretty small. I added my carrots at the same time they came out fine. I also added 8oz of whole crimini mushrooms at the very beginning (with the onions and garlic). Very, very, very tasty and wonderful dish. I doubt I’ll ever make pot roast differently in the future!
I tried this recipe and it was the best pot roast I have ever tasted. I didn’t have wine so I substituted that with the freshly squeezed juice of an orange. I squeezed it right over the roast into the pot. The gravy at the end was GREAT! Oh I also added a bit of honey.
Its true! Im not a cook myself but I tried this recipe once and my friend was so impressed, he thought I was a chef. I added potatoes and eggplants to the carrots and it turned out wonderful. The vegetables also soaked the rich sauce from the roast. I am trying it again now with duck fat instead of olive oil. Will let you know the results.
This was a great turnout. I followed the recipe with the following modifications: added 2/3 cup Bogle Old Vine Zin, put the carrots and some white new potatoes (quartered) in about 45 minutes before taking it off the stove (at about 2:45 into the cooking). At 3/12 hours, this was perfect! Also sprinkled in some fresh thyme at the same time. I think the key was to NOT OPEN THE POT~ as tempting as it was! We enjoyed this very much and it will be my pot roast recipe for the future!
I have to post… I also have tried for decades and have NEVER been able to make a flavorful and/or tender roast. I have tried tons of “no-fail” recipes… which all failed. I tried this today and was totally amazed. The meat practically melted in our mouths and it had a wonderful flavor! Thank you so much for posting this recipe.
Do you think using port wine instead of red would make it too sweet?
Can you do this with plain stew meat?
With stew meat, which is usually already cut up, I would make a beef stew. ~Elise
Loved this recipe! And so did my guys! Thank you for sharing it. We used double the amount of wine and it was wonderful. I used a 5lb hormone-free grain fed all-natural round roast and a “Lodge” brand black cast iron pot with tight fitting lid. During the last 15 minutes I threw i some baby carrots, stewed tomatoes, and fingerling potatoes. I also took one of the other commenters advice and added a bit of blackstrap molasses! Yum. The house smelled amazing! I think my guys will be asking for this again and again…
Hi Cicely and Shani – chuck roast needs the long cooking time to break down the connective tissue of the meat. So you are still going to have to cook it a good long time. Instead of taking 3 1/2 hours, a 2-pound roast might 3 hours, depending on the shape of the meat. If it is cut like a steak it will take less time, perhaps even 1 1/2 hours. But if it is rolled and tied, or just a thick roast, it will be closer to the times given here. Once the meat is falling apart tender, it’s done. I would keep the same amount of wine and other ingredients by the way, even though your piece of meat is smaller. Just use a smaller pan.
I searched the web to find how long to cook a 2-lb pot roast and found this page. I was excited until…. I got to the end and there is no answer yet! Shari, did you ever find out??
I have a 2 lb. chuck pot roast that I’d like to use. How should I modify the cooking time? I’m going out now to get a nice bottle of wine.
Hi Pam – the roast needs to start out thawed, and preferably at room temperature or close to it.
Does the roast need to start out frozen or start out thawed?
I was a little worried because I made this for the first time last night and we were having guests–so there was a lot of pressure on me. But let me tell you, this was FANTASTIC. Very easy and I wish I had bought a bigger roast because everyone wanted more meat. My husband said we would definitely be making this one again. Very tender and flavorful meat.
I used grass-fed beef from a local farm, which is much leaner than what you buy in a store because the cows aren’t fattened up with grain, only grass. While it is very healthy to eat this way, I am wondering if it might have been why my recipe turned out slightly dry. Or, could it have just been my pot? I used a large, heavy Calphalon saucepan with a glass lid. The flavor of this recipe was phenomenal, though! I cooked it in the oven on 275, but only for about 3 hours– by that time it was getting dry and I had to take it out. What would adding a cup of liquid do to it? Would adding more oil help? Does anyone know low you can safely go when it comes to temperature for this cut of meat? At 275, it was starting to burn the top.
Hi Katy, the oven temperature was too high. Use 200°F (below the boiling point of water). Also when picking out a roast to buy, pick out a piece with as much fat marbling as you can find (I know it’s a bit harder with grass fed). ~Elise
Made this pot roast last night…WOW! My husband and I are in our 60’s, have eaten a lot of pot roasts, THIS IS THE BEST EVER!!! Am throwing away all my other pot roast recipes and am using this one from now on. THANKS SO MUCH, Elise, for sharing this great recipe.p.s. I had no fresh cloves of garlic (I ALWAYS keep it on had, but not this time), so instead I sprinkled 1/2 tsp of granulated garlic over the onions. The roast tasted wonderful.
Has anybody tested this pot roast recipe using a pressure cooker?It says to cut the time in half for the meat which would be about 2 hours cooking time in the pres-cooker. That still seems to me like too long for this method, but I don’t know. I’m an amateur this side of beginner. But for example, when I make a beef stew, I only cook the meat (in pressure cooker) for 20 minutes.Would appreciate any suggestions.. Thanks..Greg D.
Just made it again tonight.. Delicious!!This time I did 8.5 lbs of 7 bone chuck roast.I made gravy with the drippings too..
Art, I used a crock pot for this twice it is pretty awesome. I brown the meat first in a pan and then I transfer it to the crock pot. Cooking-wise I cook it on high for the first 3 hrs (because it is hard to bring the wine to a simmer) and then I do the last 1.5 hrs on low. After I add the vegetables though I bring it back to high for the last half hour. Realize though I have been cooking larger portions than the recipe specifies.I have a 6.5 quart crock pot and I can cook for 10 in that pretty easily.
Oh I also wrap the edge of my glass lid with plastic wrap and then use it to create a soft plastic bead/gasket to keep everything in.
I used only 1/4 cup of red wineand added 1/2c rice wine vinegarand 1/2c Soy Sauce,and 1tbsp jamacan PICKAPAPEPA SAUCE(its kind of like Worcestershire)a bay leafand a dash of mustard seed
I just cooked this recipe up this evening with a couple of slight modifications documented here:
Brilliant! Thank you for sharing this recipe. The end result was fork tender and flavorful.
Next time, I’ll use less liquid and a longer cooking time. For the first time, I wanted to err on the side of too much moisture just to be sure that it didn’t completely dry out. No worries of that.
Thank you again.
I just discovered this site, and this pot roast recipe. I’m doing a pot roast for New Year’s Eve, tomorrow, and will incorporate much of this recipe.
I haven’t read all of the responses in detail, so please pardon any duplication of this tip:
The suggestion of using aluminium foil for slow cooking on a gas stove is a great one. However, I have found that stacking the grid, from another burner, under the pot, keeps it a “simmering distance” from the flame. (NOTE) Be VERY careful if the recipe calls for repeated stirring. The pan/pot will not be as steady as it is on one grid.
My boyfriend and I went across the country so I could meet his father and visit for a week. One day the boys went golfing and came home to this dish. Even though I had dated my boyfriend (who runs restaraunts) for a year, I had never cooked for him. Both he and his father were blown away. Buyer beware: They’ll think everything you cook will be this good.
Hey, just wanted to reinforce that this is an excellent recipe. I have done it twice now and have had nothing but rave reviews. One change on my end was with the choice of wine. Instead of your typical dry red, I went with a tawny port instead. It worked very well, the sweetness and ripe quality of port lend an even heartier flavor to this dish.
Wow! This roast came out amazing! This is the first time I really tried cooking and I did this instead of turkey for thanksgiving and it was wonderful.Instead of 3lb I did a 6lb shoulder and I did it in a slowcooker on high for 5 hours. (It took an hour and a half to bring to a simmer). I added celery in addition to carrots. If I can cook this anyone can! This is comming from a GUY who only 6 months ago was living in the college dorms.Thanks Elise!!
I have made this roast numerous times now. It is one of my husband’s favorites. I worried about the low amount of liquid too, the first time I made it, so I added enough beef broth to cover. I cook with gas, so my low setting is still a bit of a simmer/boil. I found that cooking it this way for about 4 hours makes it nearly impossible to get out of the pan because it falls apart as soon as you touch it! Perhaps those who find theirs is too dry may want to try this veriation. I also serve mine with mashed potatoes (my husband’s other favorite) and make a gravy with the pan juice.
I made this in the crock pot on low, after browning the roast in a cast iron dutch oven. I put the meat on top of the onions and garlic, which I did not precook. It turned out beautifully. It cooked for about 5 hours, and is falling apart as we speak. I chose to do the carrots separately, though. 1/2 a cup of wine was plenty. I would think that you would want to use a real crockery-pot, with a glass lid. I can see why the person who tried a plastic lid had less than perfect results.
I’ve never been successful at cooking a pot roast and apparently still am not. I used a chuck roast and followed the directions in this recipe. I even have the blue dutch oven as shown in the picture. My roast has been cooking 5 1/2 hours, the juice in the pot has doubled maybe even trippled but the roast does not fall apart. I have a gas stove and have been cooking it on low, maybe I didn’t have it hot enough? My son had to eat it before he left for work and said it was good, but I want my roast to fall apart like it’s supposed to. Any suggestions?
Sounds like you had a particularly tough chuck roast. I would just cook it longer. Also, make sure you are getting a piece of chuck roast that has a lot of fat marbling. The fat is what will make the roast fall-apart tender. ~Elise
Wow! I actually did it!! I too was concerned with the amount of liquid in this recipe (I added 1/2 bottle of Italian Chianti!) and I used beef shoulder instead of chuck roast (i was worried it would be to hard and dry).
The trick is to be patient..
5 hours later, The Result:
The meat? Super tender.. hard to cut off a full slice, falls right off!
Oh I added bacon before browning the meat.
The sauce I added a creamy celery/garlic sauce to offset the richness of the stock
*Future adjustments? One day marinate prep for the beef, most likely a dry rub. Probably gotta utilize butter… making a honey butter glaze.. portebello mushrooms.. hmm.. maybe add grounded roasted corn to sweeten it up slightly.. etc.
Thank You so much Elise for helping me make this Damn Pot Roast of Fury! Tell you mom she done well..
I have made the recipe 4 times, and each time it has come out perfectly! And now I figured out how to make the gravy! Here’s my recipe:
6 Tbl Smart Balance Butter substitute (butter works too!)6 Tbl flour1 1/2 Tbs beef boullion gel3 cups reserved liquid from the roast(Remember to double the wine and onions when cooking the roast. Also, I put foil over the pot before I put the lid on it. DON’T open during cooking!)) Gravy Master
In a medium sauce pan, slowly melt the butter and boullion gel, whisking all through the process. Slowly add the flour to make a paste. Next, slowly add the liquid from the roast, continuing to whisk constantly until mixture boils. Boil for 1 more minute, and add Gravy Master to taste. (I also add a small amount of cream sherry for extra flavor.)
Serve with roast over yolkless egg noodles.
I have struggled to make a pot roast for years that did not come out tough and tasteless.
Nailed one tonight using your recipe.
Recipe turned out great. I was surprised how little liquid was needed. Question: I recently bought a dutch oven like the one pictured above in the recipe. Know any tricks to getting it in and out of the oven without killing your back?! Ouch!
It’s taken a long time since my divorce, but I’m a fairly good cook these days. However, one recipe I just haven’t been able to master is pot roast – which is a shame, since it was my mother’s specialty. Yesterday I tried this recipe, and am proud to say that I CAN cook pot roast!
The only things I changed were to use a bottom round, omit the garlic, (I’m allergic) and add a full cup of the wine. (I used Merlot.) The roast was PERFECT! Now, if I could only figure out a way to thicken that delicious broth into gravy.
Add a little corn starch (make a slurry first with some corn starch and a little water) to the resulting liquid to make a gravy. Or, remove the roast and vegetables, and boil down the liquid until it is very thick and starts to caramelize, then add back in a little water. ~Elise
I’ve never cooked a roast without putting my potatoes right in it? So, I didn’t omit them this time either and they turned out great!
I tried making this in a slow cooker. I browned 4lbs. of chuck in a pan, and sat the roast on 1.5 medium onions with 3/4 cups red cooking wine for 3.5 hours on the high setting. The lid was plastic and flimsy, so I threw a phone book on top to make a better seal. The liquid at the end (before adding carrots) went up to the very top of the roast! This is my first roast and it turned out average: slightly dry but still tender; something you’d expect at a restaurant. The flavor was excellent. Just wanted to say it’s possible with a slow cooker and with a little more skill, should turn out really well!
Might I suggest adding some cinnamon to this recipe? I’d start with a teaspoon. Give a potroast a nice, wonderful warmth.
I threw in a cinnamon stick. Yum. :)
I love this style of cooking (even more so in the colder, damper, darker months). A few simple veggies, your braising liquid of choice, and a cheap, honest cuts of meat: Oso bucco, coq au vin, oxtail stew, steak & kidney …
A couple of times I’ve done the same basic thing, only with a wild boar shoulder, king trumpet mushrooms, and home-brewed cider and veggie stock to braise.
Hey Elise, guess who. It’s me, Lois. I posted the comment immediately prior to this one. I’m getting back to you as promised with some news. A week has gone by. We had company, and I wanted to prepare a memorable meal for the occasion. I purchased a bottom round roast, and followed your instructions carefully. My lid doesn’t fit tight, so I secured a seal using alunimun foil, as someone suggested. Everything went perfectly. There was plenty of juices to make a delicious gravy, and the roast was magnificent! It was without question, the best I’ve ever made. I assure you I am not just saying all this. It’s true. Please thank your mother sharing her recipe, and not keeping it a guarded secret. And thank you Elise, for all your own efforts.
I stumbled into your website while pursuing my New Years goal of mastering the elusive Pot Roast. This is the first recipe I tried and results were superb. My husband was rolling his eyes with delight at the dinner table and asked if we could have this every week!!Thanks for such a great collection of “real food” recipes. I think I’ll try the Turkey Stew next.
You all have some great comments and questions.
This is a great recipe, and if I may add:
Red wine is always good to cook a chuck roast in.
Go easy on the garlic, 5 or 6 whole cloves are plenty. Please do not brown them with the onions, they’ll turn bitter. Just drop them in the pot after the wine. Any more, although tasty, overpower the sauce the wine creates.
Add 3plus Tablespoons blackstrap molasses when you add the liquids. The burnt sugars add a wonderful depth to the sauce.
No better cooking vessel than a cast iron one. Got a 9QT cast iron kettle for christmas and have been cooking in it steadily.
Best to you all!
Great roast! I’ve been cooking for 25 years and amazingly I’ve never been able to master THE POT ROAST!!! This is delicious and easy. Thanks to you and Mom for sharing!
Hi Elise,This recipe is amazing, never had such good pot roast while in the States. Now I can enjoy this traditional cuisine right here in Malaysia.
Are there any recommendations for adapting this recipe for a slow cooker? I want to set it up in the morning before I leave for work and come home to it for dinner!
Let me qualify this response by saying that at the moment I do not have a slow cooker. If I did have one, and wanted to use it for this recipe as you suggested, I would brown the roast on the stove as instructed, lay down a bed of onions in the slow cooker, add the browned roast and wine. I would cook it on the warm setting all day. Upon returning from work I would add the vegetables, increase the setting to low and let it cook an hour longer. ~Elise
We cooked our pot roast either on top or in the oven. Either way. Slow, slow, slow cooking. The last hour of cooking we put our veggies in. My mom never put wine in. Just beef broth and wine vingar. Still tastes great.Donna A.
Just wondering if you think this recipe would work in a pressure cooker. I usually cook my pot roast in one and don’t see why it wouldnt work, but just asking.
My mother has been known to cook a pot roast in a pressure cooker (after browning) to save time. If you usually cook a pot roast in a pressure cooker, there would be no reason to not do so with this recipe. ~Elise
I cook my pot roasts in a cast iron dutch oven. Makes for a great browning and then slow roasting. I think the cast iron helps to concentrate the flavors, especially with a very tight lid.
While you’re cooking the roast, do you flip it / rotate it, or just leave one side always in contact with the wine and onions?
As a side comment, my Italian mother-in-law suggests making small cuts in the roast and inserting whole cloves of garlic. I know her roast is flavorful, but have never tried this myself.
Hi Amy – when mom cooks her pot roast, she browns the roast on all sides first, and she does not flip it or rotate it. Regarding small cuts and garlic, my mother uses this technique for her roast beef. ~Elise
Wonderful recipe! I’ve made this twice, and it’s definitely a family favorite. I added celery and potatoes to the sides of the pan along with the carrots (a nod to my grandma). The second time I added more wine and cooked for an hour less. It was even better than the first time.
I have to say, this is a great recipe. I omitted the italian seasoning, and used white onions instead of yellow. I used an old vine zinfandel, and it turned out wonderfully. I had good luck cooking it in the oven instead of the stove, at about 275 for around 4 to 5 hours. Mashed potatoes, gravy from the drippings, a great meal. Great start Elise. Thanks for the wine idea, it makes all the difference in teh world. Try it with glazed baby petite carrots, an incredible treat. Home cooking is such a breath of fresh air with all the infusion and gourmet cooking we do nowadays. This is so easy, and makes the whole house smell so wonderful. I love my mom!
Can I substitute beef broth or beer for the red wine (one sip of the stuff and I stop breathing)?
Hi Martha – you might try it with some dark beer instead of wine. Should still turn out fine. ~Elise
I made this tonight for the first time. Turned out so tender and flavorful! This is easier than other pot roast recipes I’ve seen and tried, so this is definitely a winner in my book.
One thing I did, which I don’t know helps or not – the pot I used isn’t a very good one (the lid doesn’t seem tight enough to me). So I put some aluminum foil over the top tightly before putting the lid on.
Anyway, this was a very easy and tasty Sunday dinner!
This is the best pot roast I’ve ever had! My husband considers himself the cook of the house, and even he admitted it was better than his. Thanks for sharing this wonderful family recipe–it will be a staple in my family from now on!
Thank you for posting this wonderful recipe Elise. I have made the pot roast quite a few times and my Husband, (He’s a chef and very hard to cook for!)and I just love it. The meat is just so tender with just the right amount of flavor.I will be definately trying more recipes from your site.
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