Instant Pot Classic Pot Roast
Juicy, melt-in-your-mouth beef, tender vegetables and an ultra flavorful gravy make for the perfect Pot Roast recipe! Classic comfort food meets family friendly dinner, made with the ease of the Instant Pot.
This Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings is the perfect comfort food! Recipes like my Instant Pot Beef Barbacoa and Instant Pot Sausage Tortellini Soup are great for when you want an ultra-comforting family meal that’s ready incredibly fast. This is one of my Pressure Cooker recipes you’ll definitely want in your recipe box!
POT ROAST RECIPE
Comfort food recipes like this Pot Roast recipe are essential in the colder months. Instead of having to remember to make and set your slow cooker in the wee hours of the morning before you leave for work, you can have a mouthwatering pot roast in less than an hour and a half, most of which is hands off time!
I know, I know, an hour and a half doesn’t really sound like a quick weeknight dinner. And in a lot of cases, it’s not. Unless you get home from work at a fairly early hour. BUT, it’s still faster than cooking all day, or for 3 hours in the oven.
I tend to think of a pot roast dinner as weekend meal, so that’s when we enjoy this. Usually on a Sunday night, so we can enjoy the leftovers for dinner on Monday night!
A lot of Instant Pot pot roast recipes say it’s ready in an hour. But that doesn’t usually take into account the prep time, and time to let the pressure release.
For this recipe, I tested cooking the meat and veggies all at once, and cooking it in stages, and we much preferred the texture of the vegetables when they were cooked in stages. When they’re all tossed in together, the vegetables were very mushy and sort of disappeared.
HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT POT ROAST
- Brown the beef. I like to brown my chuck roast, but I don’t do it all the time, and it isn’t necessary. If you sear the meat, you’ll need to scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon when you add the beef broth. Otherwise those browned bits that are stuck on there will cause your pressure cooker to not come up to pressure.
- Add all liquids. Once your beef is ready, add in the broth, seasonings, garlic, and horseradish. Add potatoes and thyme.
- Pressure cook. Seal and pressure cook for 45 minutes.
- Let pressure release. Perform a natural pressure release (by doing nothing) for 10 minutes, then turn the valve to “venting” and release any remaining pressure.
- Add vegetables and cook. Add carrots, celery, and onion, then pressure cook again for 15 minutes.
- Pressure release. This time let the pressure release on it’s own for 15 minutes, then turn the valve to “venting” to release any remaining pressure.
- Remove meat and vegetables. Shred the beef, and let it all sit on a plate.
- Make slurry. A slurry is the combination of cornstarch and a cold or room temperature liquid. Whisking the cornstarch and water until smooth, then stirring it into the cooking liquid will thicken it without any clumps.
- “Saute” to thicken liquid. Cook, stirring often, until the slurry has thickened the liquid into a loose gravy consistency, or until thickened to your liking.
- Serve beef and vegetables drizzled with plenty of cooking liquid.
ADDITIONAL COOKING TIPS
Since this pot roast is cooked in a moist, high pressure environment, you want a cut of meat that’s rich in connective tissue and marbled fat. When cooked in a pressure cooker, or for long periods of time, those tissues and fat transform even the toughest beef into the most melt-in-your-mouth tender morsels. My personal favorite, in terms of flavor, texture and cost effectiveness is a boneless chuck roast. I buy them when they’re on sale and keep them in the freezer. If your budget is more open, beef brisket is another good option.
Taking the time to sear and brown the beef adds a ton of flavor, but isn’t absolutely essential. I love to brown my beef, since I love that extra deep flavor it adds… but I’ve made this several times without taking that extra step, and it still tastes delicious.
As written, the vegetables are tender, but not fall apart in your mouth tender. If you prefer a softer texture to your pot roast vegetables, feel free to add them in the first pressure cook time, with the beef and liquid. Then omit the entire second pressure cooking time and move straight into the “thicken liquid” steps.
VARIATIONS OF THIS RECIPE
- RED WINE – for a deeper, more complex flavor, try swapping 1/2 cup of the beef broth for a dry red wine. Use the wine to deglaze the pot, then add in the beef broth.
- ONION SOUP MIX – if you have a packet of onion soup mix, feel free to use it. Just omit the dried minced onion and reduce the salt to 1/2 tsp.
- DRIED HERBS – not everyone has fresh herbs on hand, so if you need to, you can substitute the fresh thyme for 1 tsp dried thyme leaves.
- OTHER VEGETABLES – carrots, potatoes, celery and onion are classic pot roast vegetables, but adding some whole button mushrooms is a great addition. Just add them when you add the carrots, celery and onion.
- OTHER POTATOES – for a recipe like this, you want a waxier potato that holds it’s shape. Red potatoes would be a good substitute. If you can’t find baby potatoes, you can use larger ones, you’ll just want to halve or quarter them.
MAKING POT ROAST AHEAD OF TIME
The great thing about pot roast is that the leftovers tend to taste even better the next day! When making this recipe ahead of time, my advice would be to store the pot roast, veggies and liquid all together, to keep the meat from drying out.
Leftover pot roast should be refrigerated in an airtight container and consumed within 4-5 days.
Leftovers can also be frozen for up to 3 months, although sometimes frozen potatoes can have a different texture and consistency when thawed.
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT FOR THIS RECIPE
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Instant Pot Pot Roast
- 1 1/2 Tbsp canola oil
- 2 lb. boneless beef chuck roast
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp black pepper - divided
- 32 oz reduced sodium beef broth
- 1/4 cup prepared horseradish
- 3 cloves garlic - minced
- 1 Tbsp dried minced onion
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 1/2 lbs baby Yukon gold potatoes - scrubbed clean
- 1 lb. baby carrots
- 5 stalks celery - chopped into 1" pieces
- 1 medium yellow onion - quartered
TO MAKE GRAVY
- 2 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
- 3 Tbsp water or additional beef broth
- Rub chuck roast with salt and 1 tsp of the black pepper.
- Add vegetable oil to Instant Pot and select "Saute". When hot, add beef and cook for 2 minute per side, until browned. Remove to a plate
- Add in beef broth and scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to remove any browned bits. Add horseradish, garlic, remaining 1 tsp black pepper, and onion powder. Stir gently.
- Return beef to the pot, then add thyme sprigs and potatoes.
- Press "Cancel - or Keep Warm/Cancel". Close lid securely and make sure the valve is set to "sealing". Select "Manual" or "Pressure Cook" and adjust the +/- button until it reads 45 minutes.
- When finished cooking, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then carefully turn the valve to "venting" for a quick pressure release. When the steam has all escaped, and the pin has dropped, remove the lid and discard thyme sprig stems.
PRESSURE COOK VEGETABLES
- Add carrots, celery and onion to the pot. Close lid securely and make sure the valve is set to "sealing". Select "Manual" or "Pressure Cook" and adjust the +/- button until it reads 15 minutes.
- When finished cooking, let the pressure release naturally on it's own for 15 minutes, then carefully turn the valve to "venting" to release any remaining pressure.
- When the steam has all escaped, and the pin has dropped, remove the lid.
- Carefully remove meat and all vegetables, leaving the liquid in the pot.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until smooth. Whisk mixture into the hot liquid inside the pot and select "Saute".
- Cook for several minutes, stirring often, about 5 minutes or until thickened to your tastes.
- Shred meat and serve alongside vegetables, drizzled with thickened sauce, and sprinkled with minced fresh thyme or parsley if desired.
- Recipe times does not include the amount of time the Instant Pot takes to come up to pressure, which should take about 10-15 minutes.
SLOW COOKER DIRECTIONS
- Sear beef in a skillet over HIGH heat with canola oil.
- Add beef and all remaining ingredients (except cornstarch and water), cover and cook on LOW for 8-9 hours.
- Remove beef and vegetables to a plate.
- Whisk together cornstarch and water until smooth and whisk into slow cooker. Increase heat to HIGH and cook, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Or liquid can be transferred to a saucepan, add the cornstarch/water mixture to that and heat over MED heat until thickened.
- Return beef and veggies to the slow cooker and serve.
- Sear beef in a heavy bottomed pot (a dutch oven is the classic pot used), then remove to a plate.
- Add beef broth and scrape the bottom of the pot to loosen browned bits of flavor.
- Return beef to the pot, and add all remaining ingredients (except cornstarch and water), then stir gently.
- Cover with lid and bake in a 350°F oven for 2 1/2 - 3 hours, or until beef shreds easily and has reached an internal temperature of 202°F.
- Remove beef to shred, then remove vegetables, adding all to a plate.
- Whisk together cornstarch and water until smooth and whisk into pot. Place pot on the stove over MED heat and cook until thickened to your liking.
- Return beef and veggies to the pot and serve.