An old-fashioned pot roast dinner with fall apart tender chuck roast, carrots and potatoes. A classic, cozy, comfort food recipe that’s perfect for Sunday dinner.
There’s nothing like the smell of a good pot roast filling up your home on a cold day. This easy old-fashioned pot roast recipe is hearty, healthy, full of flavor and super easy to make. There’s just something so satisfying about cooking an entire balanced meal in one pot. Tender meat, perfectly cooked fresh veggies and rich gravy made with red wine, all the juices and little browned bits scraped from the bottom of the pot just meld together to make this classic pot roast sing.
Every great cook needs a few go to comfort food recipes in their repertoire. This delicious, easy pot roast recipe will quickly become a family favorite!
- Boneless beef chuck roast – this is the best cut of meat for pot roast. It has a high fat content to meat and it’s perfect for making the best pot roast. Chuck roast is a tougher cut of meat with connective tissues that break down when cooked low and slow, producing melt in your mouth tender meat and a rich and flavorful brown gravy. You can also substitute another cut of beef like round roast or rump roast. I recommend a 2.5-3 pound roast for this recipe.
- Carrots and Parsnips – carrots are a must in classic pot roast, but I absolutely love the sweet, earthy, peppery addition of parsnips. You can skip the parsnips if you don’t have them but I highly recommend trying them or experimenting with any root vegetables of your choice. Whole carrots are recommended as they hold up better but you can definitely substitute baby carrots as a shortcut.
- Potatoes – I like to use baby Yukon golds or new potatoes in this recipe. You can also use red or russet potatoes. If they are large, cut them up into chunks.
- Garlic – fresh garlic cloves are the best, but you can substitute a teaspoon of garlic powder.
- Beef stock – I use bone broth.
- Red wine – a bit of red wine adds depth of flavor. Simply omit and use more broth to make it without wine.
- Worcestershire sauce
- Dijon mustard
- Bay leaf
- Fresh herbs – I use fresh thyme and parsley. Rosemary is also a great addition.
- Cornstarch – to thicken the gravy.
How to make pot roast in a dutch oven
This is a very easy recipe. You don’t need any fancy equipment to make a tender old fashioned pot roast, just a trusty dutch oven with a lid.
- Prep the veggies. Peel and cut the carrots and parsnips into large chunks. This will help them keep their shape. If the potatoes are more than 1.5 inches, halve them.
- Sear the beef roast. Pat meat dry with paper towels and season liberally with kosher salt and pepper. It’s important to dry the meat first, to get a good sear on it. Heat a bit of oil over medium high heat and brown meat on all sides. This will take about ten minutes total. Use tongs to remove the meat and set aside on a plate.
- Deglaze. Add the onions and garlic into the pot and sauté until softened. Deglaze with wine and scrape up all the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. This is TONS of flavor. Toss in a few sprigs of fresh thyme and a bay leaf. Add beef broth and place roast back in the pot. There should be enough beef broth to come up high on the sides but not cover the top of the roast.
- Bake. Place the lid on the dutch oven and put the pot in a 300 degree oven for 2 hours.
- Add veggies. Take the pot out of the oven, Lift the roast up with tongs and add the carrots, parsnips and potatoes, making sure everything is in the liquid. Put the top on and put it back in the oven for another 1.5-2 hours. You will know it’s ready when the meat falls apart when you pull it gently with a fork. If it’s still tough, it needs to cook even longer!
- Make the gravy. When your roast is fork tender, transfer beef and veggies to a serving platter and cover to keep hot. Skim as much fat as possible from the pan juices or use a fat separator. Place the pot back on top of the stove over medium heat and bring the pan drippings to a simmer. Dissolve a few tablespoons cornstarch in cold water to make a slurry and add the cornstarch mixture a tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired thickness.
- Serve. Serve this tender, juicy pot roast with gravy on the side and love your life!
How long to cook pot roast in the oven
- Cook a 2-3lb roast for 3-4 hrs adding veggies in after 1 hour
- Cook a 4lb roast for 3.5-4 hrs adding veggies in after 1.5 hours
- Cook a 5lb roast for 4.5-5 hrs adding veggies in after 2 hours
How to make pot roast in the crockpot or instant pot
Slow Cooker Instructions
- If your slow cooker has a searing function, sear the meat on all sides. If not, use a heavy bottom or cast iron skillet for the first few steps.
- Remove the meat and set aside. Add onions and garlic, deglaze and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the crock pot.
- Add the meat back in and pour in the rest of the liquid.
- Cook on low for 8-10 hours and add the carrots, parsnips and potatoes in about halfway through. You can definitely put everything in all at once, I prefer to stagger it so the carrots stay tender and don’t get too mushy.
Instant Pot Instructions
- Cut the roast into 4-5 pieces. This will help it cook evenly.
- Use the sauté function to brown the meat on all sides. Remove and set aside.
- Add in the onions, garlic and cook for a few minutes until softened.
- Deglaze with wine or beef broth and use a wooden spoon to scrape any browned bits off of the bottom. This will also help avoid any burn notice in the Instant Pot.
- Add beef and fresh vegetables into the pressure cooker along with the rest of the liquid. Cook on high for 50 minutes and then natural release for 15-20 minutes.
What to serve with pot roast
The best part about pot roast is that it’s a whole balanced meal in one pot! To round out the meal serve it with:
- Simple green salad
- A big basket of dinner rolls or garlic bread
More comfort food recipes you will love
- Dutch Oven Beer Braised Short Ribs
- Creamy Potato, Leek and Cauliflower Soup
- Vegetable Orzo Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken and Brown Rice Soup
- Hearty Lentil Soup
- Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells
Dutch Oven Pot Roast
- 3 pound chuck roast
- ½ pound carrots 3-4 medium
- 2 parsnips
- 1.5 pounds baby yukon gold potatoes
- 1 yellow onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1.5 cups beef broth plus more if needed
- ⅓ cup red wine
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil or other high heat oil
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees f.
- Peel and cut onion into half inch chunks. Peel and cut carrots and parsnips into one inch chunks. Mince garlic. If the potatoes are larger than an 1.5 inches, halve them.
- Season the chuck roast all over with salt and pepper.
- Heat oil over medium high heat in a large dutch oven. Place roast in the hot pan and sear on one side for 3-4 minutes without moving, allowing a crust to form on the meat. Flip and sear on each side for another 2-3 minutes for a total of about ten minutes.
- Using tongs, remove the roast from the pot and set aside on a plate.
- Turn the heat down to medium low and add the onions to the pot. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, just until softened. Add in the minced garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant.
- Add in the red wine to deglaze the pan and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Cook for another minute or two.
- Stir in beef broth, dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaf and bring to a simmer.
- Add the roast back to the pot, making sure the liquid comes mostly up the sides of the roast but not covering it. If you need a bit more liquid, just add in more beef broth.
- Put the lid on the dutch oven and bake for 1.5 hours.
- Add potatoes, carrots and parsnips to the pot, making sure they are nestled down in the liquid and not on top of the roast. Bake for another 2 hours or until the veggies are tender and the meat falls apart when gently pulled with a fork. If the meat is still tough, continue to bake until tender.
Make the gravy
- Use tongs to transfer the roast to a serving platter and a slotted spoon for the veggies. Garnish with fresh parsley and cover with foil to keep warm while making the gravy.
- Skim as much fat as possible off the top of the pan juices or use a fat separator. Place pot back on the stove and bring the liquid to a simmer.
- In a small bowl, dissolve cornstarch in cold water to make a slurry. Stir it into the pan juices a little bit at a time until you reach desired thickness.