When I think about foods that take me back to childhood, pot roast tops the list. While today’s recipe is warm and comforting, this is not your mother’s pot roast . Think old-fashioned flavor that is boosted by the smokiness of the grill.
I like combining multiple cooking methods to take advantage of the best of each. When you start your pot roast on the grill and then finish it in the oven, you get the best tasting pot roast you have ever had — smoky and succulent.
The real trick to perfect pot roast is a combination of long cooking at a low temperature and moist heat, i.e., braising. Pot roast is typically made with chuck, a very tough cut of meat unless cooked thoroughly which breaks down the connective tissue and makes it meltingly tender. If you have ever had tough pot roast, chances are it wasn’t cooked long enough. I have brought home leftovers from restaurants, reheated them in the oven for an hour or longer and they turn into perfect pot roast.
An important thing to remember is to always start with your protein at room temperature, especially with large cuts of meat. That way a roast will cook more evenly and the outside won’t be overcooked, while the center is still nearly raw. You can cut down on the overall cooking time by as much as an hour if the meat is at room temperature before you start cooking.
In traditional recipes, you start by dredging the meat in flour and browning it in a pan. Because we are starting this on the grill, I have added flour to the vegetables, which then combines with the liquids and meat juices to create a delectable pan sauce. For those of you who are scared of making gravy, this method is foolproof and you don’t have to fuss with it.
If you want to add more barbecued essence to the final dish, you can also cook some vegetables alongside the meat on the grill and add them to the pan when you add the second half of the uncooked vegetables. You will love the flavor they add to the gravy and final dish.
Starting this roast on the grill and finishing it in the oven is the best of both worlds. You get all the smoky goodness of barbecuing and the moist heat of oven braising. The pot roast comes out incredibly tender and flavorful.Recipe by Jane Evans Bonacci the Heritage Cook
- 4 carrots, coarsely chopped, divided
- 4 stalks celery, coarsely chopped, divided
- 2 tbsp flour
- 2-1/2 to 3 lb boneless chuck shoulder pot roast, at room temperature
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 cup low-sodium beef broth
- 1/4 cup dry red wine, optional
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp English Prime Rib Rub spice blend (your local brand or from Penzey’s Spices)
- 1 tbsp dried finely chopped rosemary leaves
- 1 tbsp dried thyme leaves
- 4 large shallots, peeled and quartered
- 2 medium onions, peeled and sliced thickly lengthwise (from root to tip)
- 1 medium red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
- 4 to 6 medium Yukon Gold or red-skinned potatoes, halved
- 1 bay leaf
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Place half the chopped carrots and celery in the center of a covered roasting pan large enough to hold the roast and vegetables, creating a base for the roast to sit on. Sprinkle vegetables with the flour and set aside. (The flour will help thicken the broth slightly, making a sauce to serve with the meat.)
- Season both sides of the beef roast with salt, pepper, garlic, and onion powder. Place over direct heat on the grill and cook until well browned (without burning) on first side, about 10 minutes. Using tongs, flip over and cook second side until well browned, about 10 minutes more. Transfer to prepared roasting pan, setting on top of the carrots and celery.
- Preheat oven to 300°F.
- In a measuring cup, blend the beef broth, wine and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over roast in pan. Combine English Rub and thyme leaves; sprinkle half over roast. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Cover with lid and cook for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 275°F and cook for 2-1/2 hours.
- Remove roast from the oven; carefully lift off the lid and place the remaining carrots and celery, the shallots, onions, bell peppers and potatoes around the roast. Tuck bay leaf between the veggies and roast. Sprinkle vegetables with remaining herb mixture and season to taste with kosher salt and pepper. Add 1 cup water if needed to keep the roast and vegetables moist and make a pan sauce. Cover pan and return to the oven. Continue cooking for another 1 to 1-1/2 hours or until the vegetables are soft and the meat is fork tender.
- Transfer vegetables to a medium bowl. Move pot roast to cutting board, tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes. Carve into slices. Serve with roasted vegetables and pan juices.