A tender, fall-apart roast takes hours to simmer on the stovetop or in the oven – and that's viable for a lazy Sunday when the family is just hanging around the house, but not for a busy weeknight or weekend that's jam-packed with family activities. The perk of a Crock-Pot, though, is that it does all that simmering work while you can go about your regularly scheduled activities or even leave the house for an eight-hour workday. When you return home, famished and ready to feed your family, the roast and its accompanying tender vegetables are all ready to be plated and served.
The best roasts come from tough cuts of meat that need low and slow cooking to become tender. Chuck roast is often the top pick for a good slow-cooker pot roast; however, you can also make a roast from brisket or bottom round cuts. Choose the tough cut that's on sale at the grocery store for a budget-friendly meal.
Total Time: 8 hours, 15 minutes | Prep Time: 15 minutes | Servings: 6
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- 2 medium onions, quartered
- 1/2 pound (approximately 25) baby carrots
- 1 pound baby red potatoes, halved
- 1 tablespoon garlic, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 3-pound beef chuck roast
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- In the Crock-Pot, combined the cornstarch and water, whisking until smooth. Add the carrots, onions, potatoes and garlic; season with salt and pepper.
- Place the chuck roast on top of the vegetables. Add the Worcestershire sauce to the top of the roast.
- Cover and lock the Crock-Pot. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
- Serve the roast with vegetables and pan juices.
- To avoid fatty, greasy pan juices, trim your roast to remove excess fat before adding it to the Crock-Pot.
- If you have some extra time and want to turn those pan juices into a flavorful gravy, start by making a roux of equal parts butter and flour – approximately 2 tablespoons of each – in a small saucepan. Strain the juices from the Crock-Pot through a sieve into the saucepan, and whisk to incorporate it into the roux. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired, and then pour it over the meat, potatoes and vegetables for an extra oomph of deliciousness.
- If you don't like mushy vegetables, add the carrots and potatoes approximately 1 hour before the roast is done cooking. Leave the onions, though – they not only flavor the roast, but become melt-in-your-mouth tender as they cook alongside the meat.
Kelsey Casselbury has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Penn State-University Park. She has a long career in print and web media, including serving as a managing editor for a monthly nutrition magazine and food editor for a Maryland lifestyle publication. She also owns an Etsy shop selling custom invitations and prints.