Last week I asked my Facebook readers if anyone was interested in a slow-cooker pot roast recipe (since my Facebook status’ are automatically published to my Twitter feed, my readers there were asked, too). The response was an overwhelming “Yes!” on all fronts.
I love a good quality piece of meat roasted in the oven, but there’s a great deal to be said for braising an inexpensive cut of beef in the slow cooker. For one thing, it’s relatively cheap; for another, it’s drop dead easy. Season the roast, add whatever aromatics/vegetables you want, add some sort of liquid, turn on the cooker and walk away for 8 hours. A quick side dish or two later, and you’ve got dinner on the table with very little effort.
And it will be unbelievably tender and delicious…without any powdered soup packets.
This is a very basic recipe. You can dress it up all you like – add vegetables, different seasonings, whatever you want. Remember that you need a more inexpensive cut from the shoulder/arm of the animal – a boneless chuck or arm roast, or a blade roast. These are the tougher, but more flavorful, cuts that do very well with long, slow cooking. Depending on the cut, it will come out of the slow cooker fall-apart tender and may be hard to slice, but hey – that’s not necessarily a bad thing, now is it?
You can serve it as is, or get fancy and make a gravy or wine-based pan reduction out of the cooking liquid, which is just fantastic. But if you’re of the “pot roast and ketchup” school – not that I’d know anything about that (ahem) – this is perfect with a generous serving of homemade ketchup. Yum.
- 2 pound beef arm or chuck roast, trimmed of excess fat
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher sea salt
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups beef stock, preferably homemade
- Pat the roast dry with a paper towel and rub on all sides with the salt, pepper and basil. Place the roast in the slow cooker, and spread the onion and garlic over the top of the roast.
- Pour the beef stock around, not over, the roast and add the bay leaves.
- Cook on low for 8 – 10 hours, or until very tender. Remove the bay leaves, slice and serve with the jus from the crock,if desired.
- Nutrition (per serving): 234 calories, 10.3g total fat, 101.3mg cholesterol, 758.2mg sodium, 674mg potassium, 2.4g carbohydrates, <1g fiber, <1g sugar, 33.1g protein