This Simple Pot Roast Recipe might be simple, but it is not ordinary or boring. I realize I have been posting a lot of simple or basic recipes lately - something for which I am completely unapologetic. Meatballs, cookies, muffins: while they may be ordinary, normal, everyday recipes, this is the kind of food I cook this time of year - the kind of food I crave this time of year - always, really but especially when it's cold outside. Every once in awhile I get carried away and make some wild recipe I've been dying to try, but for the most part, I make pretty homey, comforting, familiar food. Craveable food. If it's chilly or especially snowy outside, this is one of the first recipes I think of. When in doubt, make pot roast. That's my theory. Or motto? Either way, it's always a good choice.
A few notes on the way I make my pot roast
Pot roast: such a terrible name for such a delicious thing. It takes like 10-20 minutes to prep, then you forget about it for hours! And it's unbelievably inexpensive. This is probably my son's favorite meal. He requested this and my Potato Gratin (AKA "those good cheesy potatoes") for his birthday dinner two years in a row.
Yes, you will find coffee in the ingredient list for this simple pot roast recipe. I started adding coffee to my roasts at some point, and if I have some leftover in the coffee pot, I use it. If not, I don't. I have this distant, hazy memory of my dad making a stewed rabbit dish with coffee when I was a little girl and it was so delicious. Your roast won't taste like coffee, but it adds something - a darkness and depth to the sauce that is really special. It also gives the roast (along with the searing) a dramatic, super-dark color on the outside.
Also, the wine is optional, but again it adds something, an acidity that I think you'd miss if you left it out. You can use red or white, or none at all, but maybe add a splash of balsamic or red wine vinegar to the cooking liquid. Once I used a Guinness beer that we had lingering in the fridge and it was so good. Surprisingly good. Heck, I've even used marsala in a pinch. Anyway, alcoholic beverages are optional, liquid is not. Whatever you choose, make sure you have a total of 4 cups liquid.
And finally, something that sets my simple pot roast recipe apart - I don't add veggies. I know - crazy, right? I prefer to serve separate, fresher, more vibrant veggies rather than soggy, mushy, overcooked ones. See below for some of my favorites.
What to serve with this simple pot roast
I used to always serve it with peas and/or corn, but as my kids have grown, I find I make it with more grown up veggies. I love to serve it with mushrooms, cooked in butter, broth, and wine, until the liquid evaporates and they become almost glazed. Give the same treatment to some beautiful pinkish-lavender shallots and you have an updated, super elegant, Frenchified classic.
Serve it with mashed potatoes, egg noodles, creamy polenta, rice, or some good crusty bread. You have to have something to soak up that flavorful sauce.
Speaking of the sauce, if you want to thicken it and make it more gravy-like, a recipe follows. This step is optional, and completely a matter of personal preference. (I love gravy).
***Simple Pot Roast Originally posted 1/22/2014: updated 10/27/2019 with new photos, updated recipe card, and updated SEO and other behind-the-blog-scenes mumbo jumbo.
Hi Guys! Wow, this simple pot roast recipe post is originally from 2014! That's nuts. Also nuts, I still make this recipe and we haven't gotten sick of it. It is still one of my son Aidan's (now 16 years old) top requested meals.
An excerpt from the original post: "So, when I woke up on the first day of my "spring" semester to a winter storm warning, my kids' school already canceled, and mine closing early enough that I made the decision to stay safely at home with my kids, I decided pot roast was the only logical answer." this was when I was finishing my degree at George Mason and man does this take me right back to those exciting but stressful days!
The past several times I've made it I've used the most beautiful, bone-in chuck roasts from my friends at Hayfield Farm. In case you missed the Beef and Barley Soup, go check it out. Perfect fall/winter comfort food.
Also, as you can see in the photos, I used the Virginia's Heritage Blend that the folks at Virginia Wine sent to me in celebration of Virginia Wine Month. With the craziness of this month, I didn't get around to hosting a Harvest Party, but I certainly celebrated Virginia's bounty in this recipe by using Hayfield Farm's beef and this beautiful wine.
I hope you'll give this one a try, I've gotten rave reviews over the years from friends and family who have made it a regular part of their meal rotations too - makes me so happy!! Let me know if you do, and make sure to Pin the recipe for later by clicking on any of the images in this post.
Happy Roasting! xo - AnitaPrint
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