Pot Roast Dinner

As I expressed in my post about Pulled Pork, I adore slow cooked meat. I have been waiting all winter long for the chance to make a big juicy Beef Pot Roast. Well, this week (thanks to Mardi Gras break), I got the chance to do some extra cooking, including a Pot Roast! Because this dish comes equip with vegetables that cook along side of the meat, I decided to go ahead and make this post for an entire dinner, not just the roast itself. The Pot Roast Dinner includes the roast, veggies, rice and gravy; everything you need for a belly warming winter meal. This will make 8 large servings so if you’re by yourself stay tuned. I will have some “second uses” for the meat posted hopefully within a week.

There are a million and two recipes for pot roast out there. I debated for a day or so whether or not to do this from scratch or buy a seasoning packet. In the end, I decided to go from scratch. After looking at a good 20 recipes or so, I decided to go with this one from The Crepes of Wrath. Of course, I made a few minor adjustments but the basics are the same. I reduced the amount of broth from 4 cups to 3 to make the flavors of the spices more pronounced, I added about 6 cloves of garlic (I just can’t go without garlic) and I used mushrooms because what sounds better than mushrooms that have been cooking and soaking in beefy broth all day? Nothing. Oh, and I also used brown sugar instead of honey because honey is stupid expensive.

Pot Roast Dinner

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Total Recipe cost: $18.09
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Cost per serving: $2.26
Prep time: 15 min. Cook time: 8 hrs. Total: 8 hrs. 15 min.

INGREDIENTS COST
3 lbs. beef chuck roast $10.86
3 cups beef broth $1.49
6 oz. tomato paste $0.42
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar $0.80
1 Tbsp brown sugar $0.15
2 tsp paprika $0.10
2 tsp alspice $0.10
1 sprig fresh rosemary (or 1 Tbsp dry) $0.15
1 lb. carrots $0.50
2 small onions $0.50
6 small red new potatoes $0.76
8 oz. button mushrooms $1.49
6 cloves garlic $0.13
Gravy COST
2 Tbsp cooking oil $0.07
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour $0.11
3 cups juice from cooked roast nada
Rice COST
2 cups uncooked long grain rice $0.47
TOTAL $18.09

STEP 1: In your slow cooker, combine the beef broth, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, paprika, allspice, rosemary and garlic cloves (whole). Stir or whisk until everything is evenly incorporated.

STEP 2: Wash/cut/peel the vegetables (carrots, onions, potatoes, mushrooms). Leave the vegetables in fairly large chunks because they will be cooking for hours and smaller pieces will disintegrate. Put half of the veggies in the slow cooker with the broth.

STEP 3: Place the chuck roast on top of the veggies and broth then top with the second half of the vegetables. Secure the lid on the slow cooker and set to low heat. Let cook on low for 8 hours (perfect for while you are at work).

STEP 4: After 8 hours, begin to cook the rice. Transfer the roast to a cutting board and slice or shred the meat (your preference). Remove the vegetables from the broth with a slotted spoon. Either use the remaining liquid as an au jus or continue to the next step to make a beef gravy.

STEP 5: For the gravy, heat 2 Tbsp of cooking oil in a sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add 3 Tbsp of all-purpose flour and continue to stir and cook for about 2-3 minutes (this toasts the flour particles and prevents a floury taste). Whisk in 2-3 cups of the juice from the cooked pot roast. Let the mixture simmer until thickened (should only take 1-2 minutes). Pour the gravy over top of the roast, vegetables and rice.

Step By Step Photos

roast broth
Combine the beef broth, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, spices and herbs in the slow cooker.

add vegetables
Add half of your washed/peeled/chopped vegetables to the broth.

add meat
Place your chuck roast on top of the vegetables.

add more vegetables
Cover the meat with the remaining vegetables, secure the lid and cook on low for 8 hours.

cooked roast
Like magic, after 8 hours you’ll have this beautiful, fragrant pot of gold.

cooked roast
Remove the roast from the pot and either shred with a fork or slice across the grain. It should be fork tender. Remove the vegetables from the remaining juice.

roux
For the gravy, make a roux out of cooking oil and flour. Stir and cook for 2-3 minutes then whisk in 2-3 cups of the juice from the cooked pot roast. Let simmer till thick and bubly.

Pot Roast Dinner
Pile your meat and vegetables over a bed of rice and cover with gravy or au jus!

NOTE: Most of this work can be done the night before so that you can just dump the ingredients into the slow cooker in the morning, set the temp to low and go to work. When you come home it will be ready and smelling delicious! Just chop your veggies and put them in a container in the fridge, make the broth mixture and put that in another container in the fridge. In the morning, just put it all in the pot and go!

If you find that you have extra rice, make these wonderful rice pancakes the next morning!