Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Classic Slow Cooker Beef Pot Roast – What's Next? A Jell-o Mold?

I’m not sure why I’ve always had such a bad attitude towards slow cookers. It does a great job turning out delicious braised dishes like this “7-bone” beef pot roast, it’s efficient, and could not be easier to use. So, then why have I used my crock pot fewer times over the last decade than ice skates? By the way, I don’t ice skate.

It probably has something to do with going to culinary school, and judging everything from the point of view of the professional kitchen. They’re certainly not something you learn about at a cooking academy, or see in the back of a restaurant, and are generally associated with the dreaded, “housewife cooking.” This is the same reason we can’t serve jell-o molds.

There’s no chef slur quite as hurtful as having your food called “housewifey,” which is ironic since most of us were first taught about food and cooking by housewives. I’ll have to work through these deep seated slow cooker issues with my therapist, but in the meantime I will say that I’m glad I dusted off the old crock pot and used it for this succulent pot roast.

The real secret here is making sure you sear the meat before the long, slow braising. The slow cooker does a great job of cooking the meat, but unless you brown the beef thoroughly beforehand, you’re missing out on a lot of flavor. I hope this entices you to drag out your crock pot, and get your housewife on soon. Enjoy!



Ingredients:
2 tbsp vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste
AP flour as needed
1 “7-bone” beef pot roast (about 5 pounds)
8 oz sliced mushrooms
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp butter
1 1/2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
3 carrots, cut in chunks
2 ribs celery, cut in chunks
a few springs of rosemary and thyme
*Cook in slow cooker on high for 5-6 hours, or on low setting for 8-10 hours

94 comments:

Kath said...

What a gorgeous pot roast, John! I have browned meat before putting it in the slow cooker, but have not prepared the vegetables the way you did. It's brilliant. Thanks for the great video!

Jane said...

Chef John,

I just gave my crock pot away, (years of neglect) and want to know if I can use this same recipe and roast it in a low/slow oven?

LaMagicaZucca said...

Ottimo questo piatto..complimenti!!

Monica said...

just like Mum made it!

rich said...

ive made many pot roasts, both in my dutch oven and in the slow cooker. im just wondering....how does this "7 bone" cut compare to the normal rump roast or chuck roast (flavor and price)?

Pantalone said...

Delicious! The carrots go in with the onion, tomato paste and mushrooms at first saute, right?

Chris K. said...

Back in my prep cook days, it was my job to spank in the flour. That made the pastry chef really angry and the dishwasher started calling me Spanky. True story. Really!

Chef John said...

Pantalone, actually no, check the video again, carrots go in with celery.

Chris K, I believe you. ;)

Pantalone said...

Got it, thank you. I was wondering, where did those come from? Maybe update the ingredient list, but in any case, time to dust off the ol' crockpot ... :-)

Chef John said...

Sorry! Didn't realize they were missing from ingredients!

Jenna said...

I lurve my crock pot! Aside from browning my beef (& I don't use flour when I do), I do my pot roast differently. I put chunks of raw onion, carrot, potato and celery on the bottom, throw in a few cloves of whole garlic then put my beef on top and pour about 1 3/4 cups stock over. Pop the lid on, set it to low and let it go all day long (12-14 hours). I do not remove my bones because IMHO they add flavor as it cooks. Also, I am a fan of prepping the crock the night before so when I get up in the morning I can just plop it in the base, turn it on and go! Is a fantastic dinner with a loaf of no-knead bread! It's a toss between this and my pulled pork for my favorite from the crock!

GSpice said...

Hey Chef John, just wondering where you get those tubes of tomato paste? I hate wasting half of those little cans.

Novice said...

I was waiting for cayanne and then you saiid it chef......lol.

Food Junkie said...

Slow cookers are indeed awesome for cheaper roasts. Pork roasts in particular are so amazingly good in the slow cooker I may never bother with conventional roasted pork again. I will definitely try this variant. Incidentally stocks or broths are super easy in the slow cooker. They don't reduce down much but the initial flavour extraction works well and you can simmer it down on the stove if you need to concentrate it.

joseph said...

since the braising and sauce preparation were done in a skillet,
isn't the crock pot simply a substitute for a dutch oven on the stove at a low simmer?

>_>

Asian Malaysian said...

Chef John, just like to make clear that my comment on the youtube clip was an off the cuff remark after one too many beers and no offense whatsoever was intended t. Sorry and the pot roast does look delicious.

Chef John said...

No worries AM!

Anonymous said...

Hello and thank you for this great video.It looks so delicious.
Want to ask one thing though , is it possible to cook it in the oven in a pot as we don't have a slow cooker?If so what is the temperatures and for how long to get the same results?

I'm a beginner , but have already tried out several dishes from this website.
Thank you all!

procrastineer said...

Chef John, is that a All-Clad pan you are using for searing and stir frying?

Tamar@StarvingofftheLand said...

Okay, since you're in the mood to channel your inner housewife, I have an actual, genuine request -- A Food Wish, I think it's called.

How 'bout you break out the pressure cooker? It's kinda like a slow cooker on steroids. I love mine, but I suspect you could do more with it than I do.

Yes?

Anonymous said...

Can i use type FISSLER under pressure pan? i haven t a slow cooker!

Jim Domanski said...

Hey Chef John,
Maybe I missed it in one of the posts but I don't have slow cooker..so if I were to do this in the oven, would 250F for 4-5 hours work? Longer time? Higher time?
Jim

Chef John said...

Tamar, I've only recently acquired a PC (for shilling as you'll see), and did a chili video that came out pretty nice. http://foodwishes.blogspot.com/2010/10/beef-chili-thats-great-under-pressure.html

But, I do need to do some more adventurous things with it, maybe an oxtail bolognese? Anyway, thanks for the reminder!

Chef John said...

For all of you that are wondering about cooking this in the oven: Yes! You can if you have a tight fitting lid. You can roast this at anywhere from 225 to 325 until fork tender. Don't worry amount time, just check once and a while and when tender remove.

Andy said...

Hey chef,
Just wondering what you mean by anchovies being "Italian MSG". Thanks!

Bobolink said...

So does this mean we can expect a Foodwishes video recipe for a Jell-o mold in the near future? ;)

Mike said...

we started this at our shop at lunchtime and WOW! we had customers asking what we were making by 5 pm.
So tender (we had some small sirloins we cut up and seared.) The carrots were a gift from a good customer who came in at about 4:30 so that was great. We had many comments that we should give up the photo biz and open a diner. The difference between dumping all the components into a crock pot and walking away is so DRAMATIC. That I am so stoked on the rewrite of all the slow cooker cook books...that I am looking for the investment group online. Don't forget to demand your cut.
Mike

Chef John said...

Andy, it refers to the anchovies giving recipes that same savory Umami flavor effect as MSG does.

Rodge said...

Slow Cookers have a "green side":
They help keep your kitchen cool during hot summer days and use less energy than an oven.

Anonymous said...

Quite some time ago, in search of the perfect pot roast, I discovered Food Wishes. The recipe used a heavy Dutch Oven and stove top braising. It was a great success. I love the idea of a crock pot, but is it as good? What say you John?

Chef John said...

I think so, but you tell me! :-)

philogaia said...

I'm glad to see you doing crock pot, Chef John. I'm in the camp of having thrown out the crock pot years ago (having bought the throw it all in and turn it on line.) Recently I bought a small one again for certain things like chickpeas for hummus. I've found that it is a great tool for braises taking less energy than the oven or stovetop. I also invested in a pressure cooker and while each gives a different result, both are great so I choose depending on when I need dinner done. We Americans are behind much of the world in conserving fuel. The crockpot and PC can help bridge that gap.

B&B Brugge said...

wow yummy food and beautiful video. really amazing this post and that's delicious look. great sharing

Anonymous said...

So when are you going to use a crock pot to prepare some spareribs, all rubbed up and with a Dr. Pepper braise sauce?

Anonymous said...

I made this for dinner last night and it was absolutely delicious!!! I can't believe I made it!! (If I can say that without sounding conceited) Thank you for the recipe!

<3 Emily

Anonymous said...

I just made this. It is so easy and it taste so good... Are you going to make more recipes with crockpot cooking? I'm Hoping you made a chicken crockpot recipe soon.

Anonymous said...

To anyone who has made this delicious pot roast, about how many servings will this make? thanks!

Chef John said...

about 6

Anonymous said...

Hey Chef John,

You are awesome. You know I have made a few things in the Crock and I have come to conclusion(call me crazy) that the distilled-ish, mechanism smell of the crock gets into the food in a way that makes me feel sick to my stomach EVERY TIME! It is always the same. It is the same smell that my facial steamer machine had. I am so sensitive to smells it's the worst thing ever to me. I am bummed, because I do like the ease of the Crock.

Carlye Jean Rankin said...

I found the video link on allrecipes.com this morning and loved how you showed the cooking process. I had a roast thawed out and wanted to know what to do with it and this recipe was amazing. You are a wonderful teacher! Thank you so much! I look forward to dinner tonight!

Chuckles said...

I have read the posts this recipe has gotten and hope to try it soon. But the one question I might have missed answered is: What other cut of roast can be used?
Thanks.

GPLongwood said...

We bought the meat before we found your recipe. We have 2 pounds cut into 1-1.5" chunks. First: Can we prepare it the exact same way as you did the 7 Bone ?and Second: If we cook it on the low setting, how much longer do you think it will take? We will be away from the house a bit.

And as always, thanks so much for your recipes. We thoroughly enjoy watching and preparing your creations:-)

Chef John said...

Yes you can, but I can't give you a time. Simply cook until the meat is tender! You can't go wrong unless you don't cook the meat enough.

Xenia said...

SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD...I can go on forever. I made this last night for my boyfriend and he almost proposed ;)

Mslayne2 said...

I made this for Christmas and it was FABULOUS!! Your a genius!!

MariahJ said...

Amazing recipe. A nice break from other roasts I've done. The mushrooms give it something different. Thanks!

Margaret Grunseich said...

@GSpice, you don't have to throw away half the can of tomato paste! You can do several things: use what you need from the can, then pop the can into a ziplock bag and the whole thing in the freezer - lasts forever and takes just a few minutes to defrost. Or you can measure out by the tablespoon, freeze on wax paper on a baking sheet - when frozen, put the little mounds of tomato paste in a ziplock, take out as needed!

Anonymous said...

Best roast I ever made. The meat was super tender, the gravy was great, and the carrots and onions were so tender and sweet. I had to cook it in the oven as I did not have time for the crock pot. I will never cook a roast any other way. Thanks, Chef John.

Donna said...

Donna Laporte said,

Wow, so good, so delicious, rich taste, and beautiful. I had thoughts of being seated in a French restaurant enjoying this dish! I have never considered roast made in a crock pot for company fare, but I would be proud to serve this to anyone. I savored each bite and took pleasure in the texture and flavor of each beautiful veggie. I am crazy about this fabulous dish! Have made many pot roasts and not one can compare to this. The browning of meat made all the difference, yum,yum! This dish is a must for a cold winter eve.

AnnieM said...

can your slow cooker pot roast be cooked on med instead of high and cooked longer? Or will this dry it out or make it tough?

Chef John said...

Should be fine on med.

Ruth person said...

I almost never use beef broth. I find it is wayyyyy too "heavy" for even a pot roast. I am religious about browning the meat first. Trust me, it makes a HUGE difference. I also find that whatever vegetables I use release more than enough liquid so that only about 125mL (about 1/2 cup) of BBQ or teriyaki sauce is required.

The Me in We said...

Chef John, you are a household name here! When I'm using a tip of yours or one of your recipes, I tell my husband that I'm "doing it Chef John style", LOL My youngest sons watch the vids with me and always say "hello!" and "enjoy!" to you.

That bit of fangirling aside, Just wanted to also say I made this roast Sunday night and it got rave reviews and will now officially be the way pot roast is done in my house. The flavors that surface when doing just a little extra prep work on the meat and veggies, plus that added bonus of the tomato paste added a wonderful surprise to an already comforting dish. Thanks!!

Chef John said...

Thanks for making me part of the family experience!! :)

Brenda said...

Chef John, we've made this recipe twice now and love it! I am wondering though, is there a simple way to thicken the sauce so it's a bit more like gravy? We love the taste, but find it a little thin when served over mashed potatoes. Thicker sauce or not, this will remain THE pot roast recipe in our house for many years to come! Thank you! :)

Chef John said...

just add more butter and flour to the pan to make a roux, add that to the SC

Anonymous said...

You rock chef John....I made the pot roast for my wife's birthday diner. She loved, loved, loved it. I added a bit of red wine and thickened the gravy with corn starch and served it over spaetzle. YUM! I may get lucky with this one.

cookinmom said...

Don't forget the horseradish!?!???

George said...

Hello Chef John,
I just put the roast in the crock pot the only issue was when I went to the store they didn't have any 7 bone in only boneless steaks and boneless roasts I bought the big thick roast, I hope it turns out ok, was wondering if I should have bought the thinner cut.

Chef John said...

As long as it's beef chuck you will be fine!

Crouching Tigress said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Crouching Tigress said...

Stupid question but could you use a rice cooker as a slow cooker/ crock pot to cook a pot roast? I would greatly appreciate an answer Chef, I don't wanna go where the spiders are looking for my crock pot if I don't have to O__O

Chef John said...

Sorry, never had a rice cooker. not sure!

Crouching Tigress said...

Oh... thank you anyway Chef

Anonymous said...

What can be used in replace of the broth.

Crouching Tigress said...

You could use water Anonymous or if you can get your hands on a bouillon base use some of that. In school, my chef said it is a product that can add the flavor of chicken, beef, or veggie but it’s a pretty salty product, so like all things always in moderation.

Oh by the way Chef John, I tried your recipe in our rice cooker and came out fantastic ^__^ so no worries about spiders for me, lol

Erin Jones said...

hello Chef John!!!...Just watched your video on the 7 bone pot roast in the crock pot, I was wondering, when making the gravy, is there anything else I can use besides mushrooms? kids hate them....going to try your recipe for Thanksgiving...

Chef John said...

There are no subs for mushrooms! :)

Frenchchick said...

I just made this today, its fantastic. Thank you.

Elina said...

Thank you so much Chef John! Finally the pot roast that tastes like a pot roast after cooking for a half of the day. :-)

Lina said...

Chef John,

Thoughts on when you have more than 1 layer of meat?

Do I layer 2 times lasagna style?

Carrots&celery/meat/mushrooms/
Carrots&celery/meat/mushrooms?

6 layers?

Chef John said...

Doesn't matter as long as it all fits in the SC.

HappyMommy said...

How many servings does this recipe make? Enough for a party of 8, given that I am planning to have lots of sides, salads, and appetizers?

HappyMommy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chef John said...

Probably serves 6.

Faith said...

Just made this - totally delicious!! Had the last-minute urge to add sour cream to my mashed potatoes and it added another awesome level of taste and richness. Can't say enough good things about this whole site!

couple_o_archies said...

Chef John,
Novice crock-pot-user here...
Can I cook it on Medium if I'll be away from home longer (8 hrs)?... I'm suspicious about the High setting.
It seems I've overcooked the past few slow-cooker recipes after upgrading from Mother-in-law's slow cooker to a new Crock-Pot! :0

Chef John said...

Sorry, I can't say. Mine only has high and low!

Alisha Scott said...

Made this last night and it was super good, wouldn't change a thing!

william smith said...

Going to make this again this week. This will be the third time I have made it and everyone loves it. I rarely use my slow cooker, but this recipe is awesome.

Thanks CJ

william smith said...

Going to make this again this week. This will be the third time making it and everyone loves it. I rarely use my slow cooker, but for this I do.

Thanks Chef John

Steve Kennedy said...

This came out very tasty. I made the mistake of leaving the rosemary sprig in the leftovers. After resting it juices for 4 days in the fridge the rosemary became overwhelming. I am making this again tonight, but you can bet that when leftovers hit to storage bowl, the rosemary will hit the garbage.

Judi said...

ERIN:
I can't eat mushrooms, either. I just leave those out and add a few more onions. Mushroom lovers will say it's not the same but that's because they love mushrooms. If you don't like myself, leaving them out works great and doesn't change the great flavor.

DeeV8 said...

I just finished watching your video on Allrecipes.com for this and I have one comment to make about the slow cooker itself. I have done a bit of research on slow cookers before I purchased mine and I found that the ones with the "locking" lids...they are only meant to lock for transport. There is a bit of care/caution to take if you lock it during cooking as it could act like a pressure cooker and when you release the lid could cause burns. Might I suggest to take out the part where you tell viewers to "lock the lid"? Just a suggestion.

Davor said...

Just as I was about to make this, my slow cooker broke. I put it in the oven for three hours at 175 degrees Celsius and it turned out amazing.

Brian Sussex said...

Chef John,

As always love your recipes. I have a question about this beef slow cooker pot roast recipe. What is your opinion on mixing the chicken stock with some guinness stout or just using the stout? I have about 3 cans left over from the last excellent recipe from you. Get back to me Thanks

Brian

Elizabeth G said...

Wow. This was delicious. This is now my go to recipe for a crockpot pot roast.

Matt D said...

A foot of snow on the way....This vid again, made me break out the slow cooker.

concernmum said...

hI,

just learned about your amazing website and the food recipe. Besides ingredients lists, is there anywhere I can find the method steps so I can print it out and follow it in the kitchen? Easier for someone like me with poor memory

TBG said...

The whole time I was watching this I was wondering when the potatoes were going to come in. I then saw you added the roast on top of mashed potatoes. That is actually clever. I've never thought to do that. Oh, I will now.

LaceWigs.me said...

I have made this at least 10 times with a boneless roast ranging from 3-5 lb. Usually 3.5 lbs. Although its very good I can NEVER get my meat as tender as the one shown in the video. I cook it for 7 house and the meat is falling apart yet taste dry and and the texture is like straw bc its over cooked. I cook for for hours and the meat is moist yet is not as soft as I'd like it to fall apart. What am I doing wrong? I cook it on high setting and I have a newer crock.

Chef John said...

You should use the low setting for this. Low and slow is the key to these cuts. Use low, and simply keep tasting and testing until it's done. You need to stop somewhere in between moist and not tender, and tender but dry. The low setting will help.

P.S. We moderate all comments, so you only need to leave it once!

Ashley Wyatt said...

dear chef John,
your blog is maybe the most addictive and delicious online material that i have ever encountered. when i make your dishes i tell everyone around about your wonderful recepies! i have made this pot roast in my slow cooker about 5 times and have made the other stews... really i could go on and on and on. just wanted to say thank you for helping me fulfill my cooking dreams and my families bellies :) !!!!
Ashley Earl

Chef John said...

thank you!!