single bowl of pot roast with mashed potatoes

Simple Pot Roast

  • Author: Anita Parris Soule | Cook on a Whim
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 hours
  • Total Time: 5 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: dinner
  • Method: stove top, oven
  • Cuisine: american


Simple and perfect, this pot roast is all about the beef and the dark, flavorful gravy. Give this recipe a try and see why it is a favorite among my family and friends.



For roast:

  • 2 1.5 lb chuck roasts (or one big 34 lb roast)
  • 2 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup wine, beer, or about 1/4 cup balsamic or red wine vinegar
  • ½ cup brewed coffee (optional)
  • plenty of salt and pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 whole garlic cloves

For Beurre manié (a fancy French term for flour and butter mashed together to thicken the sauce):

  • 2 tablespoons soft butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour


Preheat oven to 300.

Season beef generously with salt and pepper and a drizzle of vegetable oil. Heat a heavy bottomed pan until it’s very hot. (you also might want to throw open the doors and windows and turn on your exhaust fan)

Add beef and allow to get very brown before flipping and browning other side. When I’m using two roasts, I do this in batches. Don’t overcrowd the pan or you won’t get a good, hard sear.

Remove meat to a plate and pour off any excess fat from the pan. Add liquids, bay leaves, garlic cloves and bring to a boil. Return meat and any juices to pot and place in oven. Cook, partially covered for 4-5 hours until meat is extremely tender.

Carefully remove meat to a platter, and skim off as much fat as you can from the liquid in the pot. (if you have a fat separator/gravy separator contraption, now is a good time to use it!)

If you want to thicken the sauce, place pot over medium heat, mash together the butter and flour on a small plate or in a small bowl and whisk the paste into the boiling liquid. Allow to bubble until it reaches your desired thickness, a few minutes is usually sufficient. Taste for seasoning. I never add extra salt, between the saltiness of the stock, and the salt on the beef I find it’s not necessary, but just check. Add salt and pepper if you think it needs it.

Before adding meat back to sauce, remove any large chunks of fat, and break meat up a bit. I don’t like to shred it, but feel free to shred if that’s what you like. I prefer to break it into fairly large pieces.

Serve with mashed potatoes, polenta, egg noodles, or just some good crusty bread and any veggie of your choice.

Peas and corn are always a hit around here. Also, mushrooms cooked in butter and wine are always a good choice.

Garnish with fresh herbs if desired.

Keywords: pot roast, beef, dinner

%d bloggers like this: