Pot roast is one of those classic comfort foods. Perfect for Sunday dinner, Father’s Day, or (if my husband got his way) every day.
In the lovely cookbook my mom got me for Christmas, Pioneer Woman Cooks, Ree teaches the basics of making a perfect pot roast. I have made it 4 times now and have made it differently each time by changing up the vegetables. It gets easier every time you make it! If you follow her instructions, you’ll end up with a perfectly tender, juicy, and savory pot roast every time. Bonus: The vegetables are soft enough for a baby to eat!
Pioneer Woman’s Perfect Pot Roast Recipe
Makes 6 generous servings
3 Tablespoons olive oil
One 3-5 lb. chuck roast
6 to 8 carrots or 12 yukon gold potatoes, quartered
2 to 2 1/2 cups beef stock
3 or 4 fresh rosemary sprigs (or 2 to 3 teaspoons dried rosemary)
2 or 3 fresh thyme sprigs (or 2 to 3 teaspoons dried thyme)
Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
Heat large pot over medium-high heat and add olive oil. Let it get nice and hot while you generously salt roast on both sides. Cut onions in half, then chop ends off and remove skin.
This part gets really crazy. Be sure to have a spatter screen or paper towel ready to cover your pot with, and make sure all little ones are out of the kitchen to avoid popping oil! Once the pot is really hot, drop the onions in and brown them on both sides, about a minute on each side. Remove from pot and set aside.
Next, thoroughly scrub (but don’t peel) the carrots. Chop them into 2-in. slices. Or, if using potatoes, scrub and chop into uniform quarters. Throw carrots or potatoes into the pot and let brown on all sides, about a minute on each side. Remove carrots or potatoes from pot and allow the pot to get really hot again. Add another tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Pepper the meat to taste, then put in the pot an sear it, about a minute per side. Remove to plate.
With the burner on high, deglaze the pot by adding 1 cup of beef stock, whisking constantly. Stir and get all of the burned, flavorful bits off of the bottom of the bottom. When most bits are loosened, put the meat back into the pot. Dump the carrots or potatoes and onions in too. Next, pour enough beef stock in until the meat is covered halfway. Add the herbs and make sure that they are in the stock so that the juice really soaks up the flavors.
Cover and place in oven for 3 (3 lb. roast) to 5 (5 lb. roast) hours. When the time is up, your house will smell incredible, and the meat should fall apart. Place meat on a cutting board and slice against the grain. Spoon juices on top and add veggies. Serve and enjoy!
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