This easy stovetop pot roast shows you how to make a moist, tender beef pot roast with gravy from scratch on the stovetop. It cooks up so tender and delicious and makes Sunday dinner a breeze.
Ken, being the meat and potatoes man that he is, will, more often than not, ask me to make stovetop pot roast. Not surprising, right? Simple and delicious. Nothing fancy.
Put this hometown, old-fashioned pot roast on the stovetop with mashed potatoes, carrots, or corn with my homemade gravy in front of my husband and he’s one happy camper! Such a hearty, satisfying, and well-rounded meal. What’s not to love?
This stovetop pot roast recipe is an old reliable one that guarantees a hearty, meaty meal that everyone loves. It’s is the ultimate definition of comfort food. It’s like a warm hug.
And making an old-fashioned pot roast on your stovetop could not be easier. So tender and brimming with flavor, this is one stovetop beef pot roast you’ll be proud to serve your family often.
This easy pot roast recipe was inspired by another slow-cooked beef roast recipe on Kitchen Divas. I love to serve up this mashed potato casserole as a side dish along with the veggies cooked with the meat and this delicious homemade cobbler at the end!
Stovetop Pot Roast Ingredients
The best thing about this stovetop roast beef and gravy recipe is that the ingredient list is simple. Everything you need should be easy to find at the grocery store.
- beef roast
- chicken broth
- garlic powder
The full list of ingredients with quantities is in the recipe card, further down on the page.
How to Cook Stovetop Pot Roast and Gravy
Making this meal was a labor of love for my grandmother and mother, and it became one of mine too! So easy to make, it’s definitely a love that requires little labor.
If you want to make this recipe in the oven or slow cooker, the instructions are a bit further down on the page.
Step 1: Prep the Beef
Start by giving the meat a rinse and pat dry with a paper towel. Then sprinkle with a teaspoon or so of salt and pepper over the top and sides of the beef.
Next, sprinkle the garlic powder and press or rub the seasoning into the beef using your hands.
Step 2 Sear the Meat on the Stovetop
Add the oil to a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, such as a Dutch oven, and place over medium to medium-high heat, heating the oil until it shimmers or a drop of water dances when added to the pot.
Place roast on one side of the pot and it should sizzle right away. Do not let go of it yet. Lift it up and down a few times, until it no longer sticks to the bottom of your pot.
Then let go and allow it to brown without moving it; a few minutes per side. Make sure each side of the meat has browned, even the ends!
Step 3: Add the Ingredients
When the meat is browned add a carton of chicken broth, sliced onions, and carrots to the pot.
Step 4: Cook on the Stovetop
Cover the pot and simmer between 3.5 to 6 hours over low heat on the stove.
Step 5: Remove and Rest
Remove the meat from pot, and place it on a plate or serving platter. The meat will be fork-tender and will likely fall apart, so be careful when removing it.
Remove strings or net that holds the roast together, and allow it to rest while making the gravy.
Step 6: Make the Gravy
In a small bowl or cup, combine water and cornstarch. Stir until dissolved. Set aside.
For smooth gravy, strain leftover juices and return the fluid back to the pot. If you don’t mind pieces of onion in the gravy, straining is not necessary.
Turn the temperature on the stove up to medium-high and bring the remaining juices to a boil and add the cornstarch mixture. Use a whisk and stir constantly.
Reduce temperature to simmer and stir regularly until gravy thickens. Season with salt and pepper.
After at least five minutes, if gravy doesn’t thicken to your liking, mix in a little more cornstarch and water in a small bowl or cup and add it to the gravy.
Whisk while simmering and wait a few more minutes.
Serve with mashed potatoes and carrots, corn, or anything else your heart desires!
How to Make Pot Roast in Oven
If you’d prefer making this recipe in the oven instead of the stovetop, it’s easy to do. I suggest using a Dutch oven because with it, you prep the beef on the stovetop and then put the entire pot straight in the oven.
It’s ok if you don’t have one because the roasting pan has been the standard way of making a delicious, juicy pot roast in the oven and it never disappoints! You will just need another pot to use to sear the beef on the stovetop first.
Follow the same instructions as above to prep and sear the meat (steps 1 and 2).
When it is seared, transfer to a roasting pan if necessary and add the rest of the ingredients. Cover and place in a preheated oven at 325° F and cook for 2.5 – 3 hours or until the roast is tender and cooked all the way through.
When it’s ready, remove it from the oven and let rest on a platter. Use the drippings in the pan to make the gravy as indicated above.
How to Make Slow Cooker Pot Roast
Beef slow cooker meals are the ultimate convenience and this slow cooker pot roast recipe is done by following these easy steps:
Sear the meat first using the instructions in the main recipe.
After searing, sauté onions for a few minutes and add garlic for thirty seconds before placing the meat and vegetables inside the slow cooker.
Deglaze the pan used for browning, and add the mixture to the meat in the slow cooker.
Adjust cooking liquid by about half if using a slow cooker. You can always add more if needed while it cooks.
Choose a LOW setting on the slow cooker as cooking this cut of beef on HIGH heat can cause the meat to become overcooked and very stringy.
Add vegetables during the last hour of cooking, if desired.
Adjust seasonings to taste before serving this tender and flavorful slow cooker pot roast.
- Carrots: Cook separately in butter for a delicious simple side dish to serve with stovetop pot roast.
- More vegetables: Additional vegetables of your choice can be added during the last 15-30 minutes of cooking time.
- Creamy mushroom: Add two cans of condensed cream of mushroom soup to the pot along with the vegetable broth for a creamier version of stovetop pot roast.
- Potatoes: Add potatoes to the pot in the last 30-40 minutes of cooking
- Chicken broth: Swap it out with a package of onion soup mix and water for a burst of flavor.
- Beef: Swap it out for a tender pork roast.
- Garlic powder: Swap it out with fresh, minced garlic.
How to Make Ahead, Store and Reheat
Make ahead: Preparing a stovetop pot roast the day before is super easy and tastes even more delicious than eating it the day of.
Store: When making ahead, keep the ingredients in the pot you cooked it in or place it into an oven-safe baking dish complete with all pan juices or braising sauce. Cover and keep refrigerated up to 5 days before serving.
Reheat: When ready to reheat, cover the entire oven-safe pan with tinfoil and heat in a 325-degree oven for 30 minutes.
Freezer: You can store leftovers in the freezer for up to 3 months when stored in an airtight container.
When searing the meat on the stovetop, use a deep pot to reduce the oil from splattering.
To easily sear the meat you may need to lean the roast up against the side of the pot if you have to!
The amount of cornstarch you need to add to the gravy will depend on the size of the meat, and the amount of drippings.
Simmering the stovetop beef roast is key. NEVER rigorously boil it.
Do not add cornstarch directly to the liquid when making the gravy. It must be mixed and dissolved in water first.
It’s a good idea to mix ¼ cup of cornstarch with 2-3 tablespoons of water and place it on standby beside your gravy, so you won’t have to mix it up in the middle of making the gravy.
What Cuts of Beef are Best for Pot Roast on Stove?
Cooking long and slow economical cuts of beef is key to producing the most tender, flavorful irresistible beef roast.
Roast beef refers to a chunky hunk of beef that’s in the shape of a square, rectangular, or sometimes cylindrical. Whichever pot roast you choose, overall, the shape does not matter.
These cuts range in size from one to 10 pounds. That means you can feed a family of two or a multitude of people.
Common Beef Pot Roast Cuts
- chuck roast
- chuck eye
- boneless blade
- boneless bottom blade
- top blade
- boneless cross rib
- seven bone
- shoulder steak
- arm steak
What you want is a tender, flavorful stovetop pot roast that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, and will exceed everyone’s expectations at the same time
HINT: You can transform the cheapest cuts of beef into a restaurant-quality beef pot roast. Slow roasting or braising is the best method of preparing a fall-apart pot roast. And it’s done by slow-cooking it on the stovetop or in a slow cooker.
Butchers generally recommend buying extra as people’s consumption can vary. Buy a little more than needed and you can use the leftovers to create incredible dishes.
When buying boneless cut of beef, on average most people will consume between six and eight ounces per meal. If buying bone-in beef, allocate 12 ounces per person.
When calculating the amount, keep in mind it’s based on a raw, uncooked cut of roast beef.
Beef brisket is an expensive cut of beef typically cooked on a barbecue or smoker but makes for an amazing pot roast too. That being said, brisket is expensive and therefore is not my top choice for making this recipe. Incredible results can be achieved with a less expensive cut of beef or any of the other cuts listed at a fraction of the price.
Choosing a leaner cut of beef may mean it dries out easier. You can add some fat or butter to keep it from becoming totally dry, but overall it’s more challenging to get the best results.
To sear or not to sear? Many recipes call for searing the beef. The old adage that browning a beef pot roast is required to lock in all the juices is simply not true. What searing really does is add beef flavor and color to the gravy or sauce. That’s it!
If you haven’t the got time nor the inclination to brown the beef, not to worry it will still turn out brilliantly!
Believe it or not, chicken broth is the secret to making the moistest slow cooker roast beef. Although that may sound kind of strange, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
The gravy is lighter and the pot roast will taste fantastic! Sure, vegetable and beef broths work well. But my experience has taught me that chicken broth is better tasting. Chicken broth miraculously brings out all the flavors of this super moist slow cooker roast beef.
The ideal oven temperature for cooking a beef pot roast in the oven is 325 degrees. It will take between two-and-a-half to three hours, or you can calculate a specific time by allowing thirty minutes of cooking time per pound.
You can cook it in the oven using a Dutch oven or roasting pan. Both will work and work well, guaranteed.
The temperature (internally) should be at least 145 degrees and allowed to rest between 10-15 minutes before serving.
Other Easy Beef Dinner Recipes
As always, it’s a pleasure telling you about my recipes. Drop me a line any time. I enjoy reading the comments. Bye for now!
Mom’s Easy Stovetop Pot Roast
- Dutch Oven or large pot
- 4-6 pounds pot roast we use rump roast
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil or another vegetable oil
- 1 carton (32 oz) chicken broth beef or vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or more to taste
- 1 medium onion sliced or diced
- 4 carrots peeled, sliced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 3-5 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1-2 tablespoons water
- Pull out and measure all the ingredients.
- Rinse and pat meat dry with paper towel. Sprinkle it with a teaspoon salt, pepper and garlic powder. Be sure to cover all sides of the cut of meat.
- Press or rub seasonings with your hands.
- In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, over medium-high heat, place oil in pan and heat until it shimmers or a drop of water flicked in it dances.
- Place the meat on one side of the pot. The roast should sizzle right away. Don't let go of if yet. Lift it up and down a few times until the meat does not stick to the bottom of the pot. Then let go and leave it to brown, without moving it, a few minutes per side. Make sure each side of the roast is browned, even the ends! Lean the roast up against the side of the pot if you have to!
- Once the beef is brown on all sides add a carton of chicken broth.
- Add carrots and sliced onions.
- Cover roast and simmer between 3-½ to 6 hours. It should be fork-tender and just fall apart. Add any vegetables you desire for the last 15-30 minutes of cooking time.
- Remove the meat from pot and place on a plate or serving platter. It will likely fall apart, so be careful when removing it. Remove any strings or net holding the roast together, and allow it to rest while making the gravy.
- Strain the juices left in the pot and return the fluid back into the pot.
- In a small bowl or cup, combine water and cornstarch. Stir until dissolved and set aside.
- Turn the temperature on your stove to medium-high. Bring remaining juices to a boil and add the cornstarch mixture. Using a whisk stir constantly. Reduce temperature to simmer and stir regularly until gravy thickens.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- After 5 minutes, If gravy doesn't thicken to your liking, mix up a little more cornstarch and water in a small bowl or cup, and once dissolved, add it to the gravy. Whisk while simmering and wait a few more minutes.
- Serve with mashed potatoes and carrots, corn or anything else you desire!
- Enjoy every bite!
- When searing the meat, use a deep pot to reduce the oil from splattering. To easily sear the meat you may need to lean the roast up against the side of the pot if you have to! The amount of cornstarch you need to add to the gravy will depend on the size of the roast, and the amount of drippings. Simmering the beef roast is key. NEVER rigorously boil it. Do not add cornstarch directly to the liquid when making the gravy. It must be mixed and dissolved in water first. It’s a good idea to mix ¼ cup of cornstarch with 2-3 tablespoons of water and place it on standby beside your gravy, so you won’t have to mix it up in the middle of making the gravy.