Pioneer Woman’s Perfect Pot Roast for an icy afternoon

I finally made my rounds of the folks whose blogs I read and saw a couple of posts about food. Apparently Mali suggested we post a favorite recipe or two and IB did just that. I have some recipes here and there, but I’ll post my favorite pot roast recipe here. It is not a foodie kinda meal, but it is warming on a day full of snow and ice like today. What I like best about this meal is that you make it early and leave it in the oven for 3 to 5 hours.

I don’t know how I first found out about the Pioneer Woman, but I’d already cooked many of her meals, bought her cookbook and seen her at a distance at the National Book Festival when I caught her on television making a pot roast. I don’t watch morning television, but I happened to be watching it the day she was on one of the morning network shows. She has since gotten her own television program — that I have yet to see.

I follow the directions exactly — except I use a cast iron Dutch oven to cook it in.

Pioneer Woman’s Perfect Pot Roast Recipe


1 whole (4 To 5 Pounds) Chuck Roast
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 whole Onions
6 whole Carrots (Up To 8 Carrots)
Salt To Taste
Pepper To Taste
1 cup Red Wine (optional, You Can Use Beef Broth Instead)
2 cups To 3 Cups Beef Stock
3 sprigs Fresh Thyme, or more to taste
3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary, or more to taste

Preparation Instructions

First and foremost, choose a nicely marbled piece of meat. This will enhance the flavor of your pot roast like nothing else. Generously salt and pepper your chuck roast.

Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Then add 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil (or you can do a butter/olive oil split).

Cut two onions in half and cut 6 to 8 carrots into 2-inch slices (you can peel them, but you don’t have to). When the oil in the pot is very hot (but not smoking), add in the halved onions, browning them on one side and then the other. Remove the onions to a plate.
Throw the carrots into the same very hot pan and toss them around a bit until slightly browned, about a minute or so.

If needed, add a bit more olive oil to the very hot pan. Place the meat in the pan and sear it for about a minute on all sides until it is nice and brown all over. Remove the roast to a plate.

With the burner still on high, use either red wine or beef broth (about 1 cup) to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom with a whisk to get all of that wonderful flavor up.
When the bottom of the pan is sufficiently deglazed, place the roast back into the pan and add enough beef stock to cover the meat halfway (about 2 to 3 cups). Add in the onion and the carrots, as well as 3 or 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary and about 3 sprigs of fresh thyme.

Put the lid on, then roast in a 275F oven for 3 hours (for a 3-pound roast). For a 4 to 5-pound roast, plan on 4 hours.

I serve this with mashed potatoes, but noodles would be good too. Tonight I am adding a turnip to the mashed potatoes just because I have one that needs to be used.

The original recipe is here with photos and detailed directions. You can also print a PDF of it here.

4 thoughts on “Pioneer Woman’s Perfect Pot Roast for an icy afternoon

  1. That sounds delicious! I’ve grown up hearing (on TV) about pot roasts, but never quite knowing what they were. Kiwis roast a lot – we roast lamb (or mutton, when I was on the farm), and beef, and pork, but always in the oven. So pot roasts are quite foreign to me. And I’m not familiar with a chuck roast, but I’m sure my local butcher will help. But I think I will have to give it a try.

    Thanks Dona!


    1. I hope you do try it, Mali — but wait until a chilly day. Chuck roast may be called a blade roast in your neck of the woods. It comes from the shoulder and neck. Let me know if you do try it and what you think. Use a good wine — we used cheap stuff we don’t drink (husband’s fault — he bought it) and it was not as wonderful as it could have been. Also make sure you use fresh herbs.


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