Slow Cooker Pot Roast

There’s nothing like a braised pot roast with meltingly tender chuck roast and classic chunky vegetables infused in a savory, aromatic broth. Oh, and did I mention you just toss everything into a slow cooker? Yep, it’s that easy to make!

Slow cooker pot roast with a large serving spoon

A Simple, Classic Pot Roast – Made Easy In A Slow Cooker!

When it comes to classic comfort food, it’s hard to beat this slow cooker pot roast. It serves up juicy, tenderized meat that falls right apart, along with chunky, good-for-you vegetables that fill you up in the best way possible. And I’m all about using my slow cooker as a secret tool for (super easy) succulent dinners that make it seem like you’ve been cooking all day.

Pot roast is often a star addition to a holiday table between Thanksgiving and Christmas. But this version is such a set-it-and-forget-it type of meal after you sear the big hunk of meat, which makes it perfect for any Sunday dinner… I’d say from now until Spring! So grab your crock pot and I’ll walk you through everything you need to know on how to make the perfect pot roast.

Ingredients for slow cooker pot roast on a table

Ingredients For The Best Pot Roast Recipe

A classic pot roast doesn’t need much really – just the right cut of meat, veggies, and a meaty broth. But it’s the fresh sprigs of herbs plus searing the meat that gives this recipe a flavor boost. Here’s my take on it.

  • Chuck Roast: I recommend sticking with beef chuck roast for a few reasons – keep reading to see why!
  • Carrots & Celery: Just peel and slice into large chunks for a hearty vegetable mix.
  • Potatoes: Typically, pot roast is made with baby potatoes, from white potatoes to Yukon golds. But small red potatoes are a great alternative.
  • Onion: You can toss the large onion chunks into the slow cooker raw, or give it a quick saute in the skillet to give it a caramelized, toasty flavor.
  • Garlic: Four cloves may seem like a lot, but trust me, there’s room for more if you love garlic as much as I do.
  • Beef Broth: Make sure to grab low-sodium beef broth, as there’s plenty of salt on the beef.
  • Red Wine: Cabernets or Pinot Noirs are great options, just make sure it’s a full-bodied wine on the drier side. And if you’re alcohol-free, swap the wine out for extra beef broth.
  • Fresh Herbs: Rosemary, thyme, and bay leaves work beautifully together when seasoning beef – especially when they’re fresh, not dried.

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

What’s The Best Cut Of Beef For Pot Roast?

Brisket or rounds are reasonable options for a good pot roast. But let me tell ya, chuck roast is the way to go for a great pot roast. Not only is it economical, it’s marbling will do you some good. Meaning, there’s plenty of fats that keeps the entire piece extra-juicy and tender as it cooks low and slow. Bonus – the fatty juices seeping through the meat will help create one mouthwatering broth.

How To Make Pot Roast In A Slow Cooker

Yes, you can make this in a Dutch oven, but a slow cooker or Crock Pot works just as well and cuts out a few steps to make the process a bit easier. Who doesn’t love that?

Searing chuck roast in a pan for pot roast

Season and sear. Heat some oil in a cast iron skillet, season the chuck roast with salt and pepper, then sear it on both sides before adding into the slow cooker. Trust me, taking this extra step will develop that nicely browned crust we all love on big chunks of meat.

Adding pot roast ingredients into a slow cooker with herbs

Add everything into the slow cooker. Some people like to add the veggies below the meat, but I find that they get way too soft that way. So just add them on top of the meat, then pour the beef broth and red wine over everything. Let everything cook on low for 8 to 9 hours (I prefer cooking on low). But if you’re on a time crunch, bump it up to high for 5 to 6 hours.

Slow cooker pot roast with a fork

It’s ready to serve! Remove the chuck roast from the slow cooker, then slice or shred it, depending on how you want to enjoy it.

How to Make a Thicker Gravy

If you find that the broth is too thin, you can create an arrowroot powder slurry and stir it with the broth in the slow cooker. This will help create a slightly thicker consistency! But if you’d like it much thicker, remove some of the broth to a saute pan and add the slurry to that on medium-high heat. It will thicken as it heats up. But be forewarned that arrowroot powder can go gloppy and gel-like if you add to much. So it’s always best to start with less on the stove.

Ways To Serve Pot Roast

Although this is an all-in-one meal, you can get creative with pot roast leftovers! Give these delicious dinner ideas a try.

  • Beef up your plate with traditional sides. I’m talking mashed potatoes, sauteed green beans, or roasted Brussels sprouts. Basically all the classic side dishes you’d serve on a holiday table.
  • Shred the beef to make a hearty sandwich. If I wasn’t gluten-free, piling the shredded beef with butter lettuce leaves in-between toasted sourdough would be so good! Otherwise, any gluten-free bread will work.
  • Enjoy the veggies on their own. Now that you have perfectly cooked vegetables, use them as a side dish with any other mains such as my baked chicken breast or turkey meatballs.
Slow cooker pot roast on a white serving plate

Storing Leftover Pot Roast

Like every one-pot recipe, leftovers are more than welcome! Plus, they store extremely well for long periods of time. It’ll be like finding a goldmine in the back of your freezer come winter.

  • To store: Add leftovers into an airtight container and store in the fridge for 4 to 5 days.
  • To freeze: Batch cooked meals always makes for the best freezer meals. Just store in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. You can reheat this in the microwave for a few minutes for an individual serving, or on the stovetop in a pot for a big batch.

Slow Cooker Pot Roast Recipe Video

Watch how this ultra-comforting pot roast comes together in the video below!

More Satiating Slow Cooker Recipes

If you haven’t hopped on the slow cooker bandwagon – I think it’s time. It’s the easiest way to make all sorts of meats, whether it be chicken, beef or pork, ultra tender and mouth-wateringly good.

This pot roast is just what you need to gather friends and family around the table. If you make it, let me know how it turned out! I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below.

A slow cooker with pot roast in it

Slow Cooker Pot Roast

5 from 14 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 8 hrs 10 mins
Total Time: 8 hrs 20 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan
The best pot roast dinner made easy in a slow cooker or crock pot with meltingly tender chuck roast and vegetables infused in an aromatic broth.

Ingredients

Slow Cooker Pot Roast

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil, *see note
  • 3 ½ pounds beef chuck roast
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, cut into large chunks
  • 4 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 ½ pounds baby potatoes (white or yukon gold), quartered
  • 2 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 cup red wine, *see note
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves

Optional to Thicken Gravy

  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
  • 3 tablespoons water

Instructions 

  • In a large cast iron skillet, heat the oil on medium-high heat. Season both sides of the beef roast with salt and pepper, and sear for 4 to 5 minutes on each side to give it a dark brown crust. Transfer the roast to a 6 to 7-quart slow cooker.
    Cooking beef in a skillet for slow cooker pot roast
  • Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, potatoes, rosemary, thyme, and bay leaves to the slow cooker. Pour the beef broth and red wine on top. Add the lid and cook on low for 8 to 9 hours or on high for 5 to 6 hours.
    Adding potatoes into a slow cooker for pot roast
  • Remove the sprigs of rosemary, thyme, and the bay leaves. Then remove the roast and shred or slice it up.
    A slow cooker with pot roast and herbs
  • If you'd like to thicken the broth to more of a gravy consistency, stir together the arrowroot powder and water in a small bowl. Pour it into the slow cooker and stir everything together until it starts to thicken.
    Pouring arrowroot mixture into slow cooker pot roast
  • Serve the meat and vegetables on a platter with some of the gravy (you can serve extra gravy on the side)
    A white plate with slow cooker pot roast

Lisa’s Tips

  • Avocado oil: Anytime I’m searing or using very high heat I prefer to use avocado oil as it has a higher smoke point. But if you don’t have avocado oil, you can use extra-virgin olive oil. 
  • Red wine: I’m using a pinot noir in this recipe, but a good cabernet sauvignon or merlot works great too. If you prefer to keep it alcohol-free, just add more beef broth.
  • Arrowroot: This should always be added at the very end of cooking, as it doesn’t stay thick as long as cornstarch or regular flour. And always add it as a slurry, to prevent clumping or a gloppy texture. 

Nutrition

Calories: 685kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 55g, Fat: 35g, Saturated Fat: 14g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 19g, Trans Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 183mg, Sodium: 1190mg, Potassium: 1791mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 6942IU, Vitamin C: 28mg, Calcium: 96mg, Iron: 7mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Crockpot Recipe, Pot Roast, Slow Cooker Pot Roast, Slow Cooker Recipe
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63 comments on “Slow Cooker Pot Roast”

  1. Recipes look great,,Can’t wait to try them.

  2. I need the picture of your slow cooker you recommend in the pot roast video.

  3. Hello ,
    I love Yours recipe !
    Let me know please what slow cooker You recommended

    Thank You

  4. I made this for a family dinner recently, and we were so happy with it! Everything was tender and flavorful. I loved that I could get dinner started hours in advance and have a clean kitchen when company arrived. I used the slow cooker function in my instant pot and it was perfect. We started off with a tossed salad using your raspberry vinaigrette, and ended the meal with your chocolate chia mousse. So good. Thanks!5 stars

  5. This was the perfect pot roast! The red wine added such a great flavor. After watching the video my daughter insisted that we cut the carrots ‘fancy’ like Lisa did! This is a recipe we will make again and again.5 stars

  6. My mouth is watering – I can’t wait to make this recipe! I’m just feeding one person and 3-1/2 pounds seems like a lot of meat to buy, even for storing in the freezer. Any chance you can do this in an Instant Pot? If so, how would I change the recipe? Thanks :)

    • I haven’t tested this in an instant pot unfortunately, but I’m pretty sure you can make it in it. But if you’re looking for specific instructions, I would look up an instant pot recipe.

  7. Thanks for the great recipe, Lisa! This was delicious and my husband said it reminded him of his grandma’s pot roast, which he always loved :)5 stars

  8. I love mid winter freezer meals.

  9. Hey, Lisa! It will be my first time hosting Thanksgiving for our family and I’ve been piling up some recipes to cook for the occasion. I’ll make sure to add this to the list. Can I replace the arrowroot with potato starch? Will it make a big difference? Thanks!

  10. Hi Lisa! I’m so excited to try this recipe this weekend. One question: do I have to sear the meat before cooking in the slow cooker? 

    Thanks so much for putting it together. Can’t wait to try it!

  11. I accidentally ended up with a top sirloin cup roast instead of a chuck! Would it still work in this recipe or should I do anything differently? Or not bother at all?! Love your recipes and was hoping to make this for company! 

  12. I’m planning on making this tomorrow but I have a 5lb roast. Do I need to make any adjustments since the roast is a bigger size than what you have?

    • Hi Kim – you may need a little bit more cook time, but otherwise you can follow the recipe as written! If you have extra space in your slow cooker, also feel free to toss in more veggies.

  13. I made this tonite and it was absolutely delish!!  The only thing I am going to do differently is add more carrots to it.. Perfect crock pot recipe for chilly weather and busy days .. Thank you!5 stars

  14. Made this for dinner tonight. It was fantastic! In all my decades of cooking this was the first time a pot roast came out delicious and tender. Thank you!!

  15. Loved it! We used the slow cooker setting on our Breville  multi-cooker, picked up a wonderful Chuck roast at our local butcher (grass-fed, pastured Oregon beef), and followed the directions. The only thing we didn’t do was thicken the juices as we like to use them in soup later. We used the ingredients and the times you list, and could not have been happier. Thank you! 5 stars

  16. OMG … Absolutely, Hands Down, the Best Pot Roast recipe I’ve ever made!!!!! My family inhaled the whole thing. There wasn’t anything left, and I had hoped for leftovers. Thank you, Lisa, this was truly a culinary triumph! The roast shrinks a lot just like when you cook corned beef. My suggestion would be when purchasing the pot roast meat before cooking, count on 1 pound of meat per man, 1/2 a pound of meat per woman, and 1/4 pound of meat for small children.5 stars

  17. Thank you Lisa, this was a delicious comfort meal as the weather in SoCal is getting a little cooler. Most people around the country are probably saying, “come on how cold is it really in Southern California ?” …lol none the less your recipes are spot on! 5 stars

  18. This looks delicious and I can’t wait to try it.  Can you cook this on the stove top in a dutch oven?  If so, for how long and what temp?

  19. I love this recipe! I am interested in purchasing a new slow cooker but cannot find the link to the crock pot you used. Can you please share which crock pot you are using? 5 stars

  20. I made this today and it tasted great. I also went and got the cut of beef you suggested, the meat shredded easily and was juicy.

    Thank you for this recipe!5 stars

  21. Made this for my husband this week and he loved it. Thank you for yet another great recipe Lisa!5 stars

  22. Made this for a family gathering on Thursday and didn’t get enough so I’m making it for my husband and me again tonight. I loved the slow cooker pulled pork recipe and had to try this one as soon as I got the email. Great recipe as usual! Thank you so much for sharing!5 stars

  23. Made this Sunday night and had leftovers today. The leftovers get even more flavorful. Thank you for a delicious and easy recipe! My husband really enjoyed this meal!5 stars

  24. This looks yummy! Can you give us instructions for cooking in the oven?

    Thanks!5 stars

  25. This looks delicious! Do you know what settings I could use on the instapot to shorten the time? Or will it not have the same flavor? 

    Thanks for sharing your recipes!! 

    • I’m not sure, as I don’t own an instant pot. But, I believe you can set it on “pressure cook” for about an hour or so. I would double check another instant pot recipe to make sure :)

  26. I was planning on making your barbacoa recipe and had the chuck roast on hand, but felt like pot roast since the weather was actually cool and gloomy in Southern California. Your video coincidently came up in my alerts and I made it for a family gathering. It was great! My husband said it’s now  his favorite pot roast recipe. The meat was a tender! Thanks for the great recipes! 5 stars

    • Thrilled to hear you and your husband loved this slow cooker pot roast! Definitely keep this recipe on hand for the cold weather months :)

  27. Hi Lisa,

    We just put up this dish to cook overnight, but had one question. Is one cup of wine and two cups of stock all it gets? The vegetables are not immersed in liquid. Can you please help?

    Best,
    The Herzberg family – avid fans 🌝

    • Yep, that’s correct. You don’t want all the vegetables to be too immersed into the liquid as it will become very tender as it slow cooks.

  28. Hi Lisa, this looks delish! Do you know what temp and for how long I’d need to cook it in the oven instead of a slow cooker (we don’t own a slow cooker). Thanks!

  29. Hi Lisa!
    I’m so looking forward to the set it and forget it type cooking method. :D Quick question, Does the alcohol in the wine “cook off” during the slow cook time making it ok to serve to my little one?
    TiA

  30. About how much dry rosemary and thyme would you use if fresh is not available? I’m going to try this out this weekend!

  31. Hello,
    Can you make this pot roast in the instapot?

    • Yes, you can. But, I’m unsure of the exact timing as I haven’t made this in an instant pot before. Some people do say you only need about 1 to 2 hours, but I would double check with other pot roast instant pot recipes first!

  32. Hi Lisa – Can I heat up the beef broth  to a boil before pouring in and starting the slow cooker? Would this change the texture of the meat? I don’t like food to sit in low temperature liquid for a long time, which is the case on the “low” setting. 

    • Hi Eloise – I don’t see why not. You might just want to keep an eye on the time and double check if it may be done a bit earlier, given that less time is needed to heat up the liquid.

  33. Can we use cornstarch? If so is it the same measurement? Thanks for sharing.

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