Dutch Oven Pot Roast with Carrots and Potatoes
Dutch oven pot roast with carrots and potatoes gets juicy and fork tender right from the oven. If you have time to skip the slow cooker, it’s worth it for a melt in your mouth meal you’ll be happy to serve again and again.Jump to Recipe
If you’ve been around here any length of time, you know that I’m not a slow cooker person. I won’t rant–but just know that it doesn’t produce the kind of food we enjoy.
And it seems like the #1 food people want to make in a slow cooker is a pot roast. And a lot of pull it off. I’ve tried it but my meat comes out so dry at the end. Yes, it’s tender on some occasions but what’s the trade off? The meat has just been cooked to death.
Why choose a dutch oven over a slow cooker for pot roast
Dutch ovens are made from cast iron and retain and distribute heat really evenly. Plus the tight fitting lid allows moisture to stay inside for the most part and with a few tricks, makes the juiciest pot roast you’ve ever had.
Plan ahead for this dutch oven pot roast
This recipe probably won’t be something you make on a week night if you’re terribly busy–but save it for a weekend, or if you happen to have a snow day at home and you’ll be so glad you put it together.
This roast takes 3 or so hours to cook in your oven.
Add those carrots and potatoes in the last hour of cooking and they are so soft when you’re ready to eat that they beg for a light mash with a little butter and salt.
What cut of beef is best for pot roast?
I almost always choose a chuck roast. Its marbling means the fat slowly melts during cooking and helps ensure the meat stays tender.
Other cuts that can work include a rump or round roast. They just don’t have the same marbling and are a bit tougher than chuck roasts so they may need a slightly longer cook time. Just cook it until a fork inserted in the meat will twist easily.
Tips for a top-notch dutch oven pot roast
- Use a heavy cast iron dutch oven with a lid. This one is my favorite, or a good quality oven-safe pot with a tight lid. Just covering your meat in aluminum foil won’t work.
- Sear your meat first over high heat to start the browning process. Browning meat equals flavor and we need that.
- Add carrots and potatoes to the pot during the last 45 minutes to an hour of cook time so they absorb the broth and get good and soft.
When adding beef broth, know this
You can just use water on your roast if you want to. It will make its own wonderful beef broth as it simmers, but beef broth can be used too.
Choose a broth without additives, MSG or flavorings and never, ever use bouillon cubes or powders. They are so salty you could ruin your roast with them.
>>This is not a rare roast beef recipe. Please take note.<<
I’ve gotten a bit of hate mail from some confused home cooks who make this and then yell that their roast is overcooked at the halfway point.
This is not oven roasted rare roast beef and at no point should you be taking its temperature.
This is a pot roast that’s braised–a technique that uses moisture and long cook times to break down tough cuts of meat like a chuck roast until it falls apart. If you want a rare roast beef, you want a recipe like this one.
Watch me make the full recipe on YouTub
What to serve with pot roast made in a dutch oven
Rolls are a staple with this recipe. Try one of these versions:
- Classic 100 year old yeast rolls
- Small batch yeast rolls
- No yeast dinner rolls
- One hour rosemary hot mix rolls
We love a horseradish cream sauce with our roasts. This one is a favorite though sometimes my recipe is as simple as some mayonnaise and ground horseradish. 😉
Ingredients you can add for a pot roast flavor boost
A pot roast can handle a variety of different flavors. Try these options:
- Swap part of the beef broth for red wine. Never use cooking wines.
- Add herbs like thyme or rosemary. If you want to use these, put them in during the last hour of cooking or the heat destroys the essential oils and their flavor.
- Toss in whole garlic cloves for a hint of flavor.
- Baby or pearl onions are a simple addition. Buy a bag of the frozen ones and add them with the carrots and potatoes.
- Swap the root vegetables for parsnips, turnips or sweet potatoes.
Dutch Oven Pot Roast with Carrots and Potatoes
- 2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
- 1/2 red onion sliced
- 2 pound chuck roast
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 4 cups beef broth
- 3 large russet potatoes peeled and sliced into 1-inch wedges
- 5 large carrots peeled and sliced into 1-inch thick pieces
- Preheat the oven to 375.
- Put your dutch oven on the stove and heat it over high heat about 5 minutes to sear the meat. (Please watch your pot and monitor the heat. Your pot may only need 3 minutes or 4. Y'all stop trying to burn your houses down because I said 5 minutes) Add the oil and season the meat with salt and pepper on both sides. Add it to the pan. It should sizzle immediately.
- Reduce the heat to medium high, and let the meat sear on one side 5 minutes, then flip. Add the onions and cook 5 minutes more.
- Add the beef broth to the pot--it should come about halfway up the side of the meat.
- Cover and bake an hour and a half, then check the liquid in the pot. Add a cup or so of extra water if needed.
- Reduce the heat to 350 and bake an additional hour, and then add the carrots and potatoes. Bake covered 45 minutes longer or until the meat is tender and the potatoes and carrots are soft.
I got a Dutch oven for the first time and this is the first thing I made in it. Is AMAZING!! Used low sodium beef broth and made gravy at the end. So good! Thank you!
Great job Molly. This version beats a slow cooker hands down!
My son once said, “nothing bad EVER comes out of the orange pan (cast iron dutch oven!!) He is right! I got my first one over 40 years ago and it will outlive me!
That is so true Patty! Your son is a smart fella!
I have made this recipe a few times. Everyone loves it. It is Mom’s Birthday on Thursday and she asked me to make it for her birthday dinner. She will be turning 91. Thanks for sharing the recipe. It is easy to make and turns out good every time.
I’m so glad to hear that Kim. I hope your mom’s birthday is wonderful. 🙂 –Rachel
I am trying this for the first time. I am fairly new at cooking with a Dutch oven, however I very excited. it has made my house smell go good.
I hope it turned out wonderfully for you Jenn!
I’m trying this recipe tonight for husband’s birthday. In past I always use crockpot and it is so dry.. Should there be any special instructions for higher altitude? I’m in Denver area. And my beef chuck roast weighs 3.22lbs. I should I cook longer?
You may need to, yes. I’m not an expert on high altitude cooking but it’s just a matter of cooking the roast until it’s fork tender. I’d recommend doing some Googling to get a better idea of what you might need to do based on your elevation. –Rachel
First time I’ve ever done pot roast in the oven and not a crockpot and I am SOOO glad i chose this recipe!!! BEST pot roast i’ve ever made!!! Directions were simple and adding the beef broth really helped (I always just used water in the crockpot!)
Yes Rebecca! Great job! Crock pot pot roasts just don’t do it. 🙂 I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe. –Rachel
I got a Dutch oven for Christmas since my sis got tired hearing me complain about lackluster pot roast in slow cooker. I searched for simple recipe. this recipe is perfection. I had four plus full meals out of a two 1/2 # roast . simplicity thy name is Dutch Oven! thank you!!
Slow cooker pot roast is so lackluster. I agree with you on that Betty!I’m so glad you’ve come over to the dutch oven side of life! –Rachel
Delicious, tender and juicy. I’ve been making pot roasts for about 60 years, and this was honestly the best one I’ve ever made. I’m going to be using this method from now on.
That such a great compliment Carol!
Hi! I’m trying your recipe in my new Dutch oven today. The chuck roast I bought is almost 4 lbs. should I cook it longer since it’s bigger?
Hey Tami, you will probably need to cook it a bit longer. How long just depends, but just until it’s fork tender. –Rachel
I do not own a Dutch oven at this time!!! I will be purchasing one in the near future …however, will a roast pan work as well for this recipe? thanks!
Unless you can make that roasting pan air and water tight, no it won’t Cindi. I’m afraid you’d end up with a dried brick of meat and I’d hate for that to happen! –Rachel