Tender Roast and Veggies – We’re Movin’ On Up!



Have you ever sat back and thought of what you would do differently if you ever came into some serious money? Mama used to do that a lot when we were little. She’d talk about how, if she ever won the lottery, she’d buy us all a house and a new car for each person. She never talked about anything for herself, she just wanted to be able to do more for us.

I’m not sure when I started thinking of what I’d do differently if I ever came into money, but it was never quite as grand as Mama’s vision – I think “coming into money” meant far different amounts for both of us. But I have said for some time now that if I ever got rich, I’d have pot roast once every week.

You see, it has always been one of my very favorite meals and I have vivid memories of having it at home as a child, of my Grandmama and Grandaddy cooking it for me when I went to visit them, and of eating it at my Papa Reed’s farm. Folks always knew how much I loved it and the moment I walked in the door I knew by the smell what was for dinner.

I know most people don’t see pot roast as a meal of luxury but having that much meat in one meal was always a treat for us. When we were little, it seemed like the roast just went on and on like Jesus with the fish and loaves.

Now, as the one doing the cooking, I can’t believe how incredibly simple it is to make the roast I loved so much as a child. I’ve been awfully busy lately with all of the wonderful opportunities in my life and I’ve relied more and more heavily on my slow cooker to help out with supper. Add to this that the grocery store down the road from my house always has the most lovely roasts each time I shop there and you know where I’m going with this!

I told my husband a few weeks back “Do you realize we’ve had roast each week here lately?”. He nodded and shrugged, clearly not understanding what this meant to me. I just smiled in return, knowing that I had achieved my own benchmark for living the life of the rich and famous.

Eat your heart out, Donald Trump.


For my roast, I keep it simple because I like simple.

Roast, potatoes, carrots, and beef gravy.

An onion would be an excellent addition and I’d gladly add that if everyone in my family except me hadn’t been dropped on their head as a child.

The KEY to having a moist and fall apart tender roast is not to cook it in water. The gravy helps tenderize the meat and makes it sooooo good when allowed to slow cook all day long.

If you’d don’t have canned beef gravy you can use:

  • Cream soup (such as cream of mushroom)
  • Brown gravy made from a powdered mix


Now this big old honkin’ jar of gravy is WAY too much.

You see that can of gravy on the left? That is the size I normally use but I mistakenly got chicken gravy instead of beef – which would have worked every bit as well but I wanted beef and I tend to be a bit stubborn when I set my mind to something (shocking, I know) so I sent my husband after some beef gravy. He came back with this big old king kong sized jar of it. I only need ten ounces though so I’m not going to use it all.

When you go to buy your beef gravy, get one can of the cheap stuff and your roast will be delicious.


Place your roast in the bottom of a slow cooker. Peel and cut up your potatoes and add them as well.

I leave mine in pretty big chunks but you can do whatever cranks yer tractor here.


Peel and cut up your carrots and toss those in.

I usually add more but used what I had on hand.

Note: There is no specific quantity to this. Use five potatoes or ten potatoes, three carrots or seven carrots, it really doesn’t matter. It doesn’t even matter how big your roast is so long as it all fits in your slow cooker. You still only need one can of gravy because everything is going to produce it’s own juices as it cooks to go along with the gravy.


Pour in your gravy

(I’m only using half of that king kong jar)

Cook according to the following chart:

Low – 7-8 hours


High 3-4 hours

I like to cook mine the longest amount of time (four hours on high or eight on low) but you don’t have to.

It will be done and tender after the above times. Any longer you cook it will just make it even more tender.


See how much juice this made? This is after cooking on high for four hours.

Serve it up and wait on Robin Leach to show up at your door.

To read a little about these plates, click here.

Tender Roast and Veggies
  • 1 beef roast *
  • potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Beef Gravy (10 ounce can)
  1. Place roast in bottom of slow cooker. Peel and cut up carrots and potatoes, place on top of Roast. Pour gravy over all and cover. Cook on low 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. Try not to open the lid because it takes about twenty minutes to recover the heat if you do! Note: It doesn't matter how many potatoes or carrots you use, long as it all fits in your crock pot!
  2. I let my guests decide if they want to salt and pepper theirs.

Serve with iced tea and confidence that life is good!

*Look for a roast that has a bit of marbling in it (the white parts, this is fat but marbling sounds so much nicer, doesn’t it?). The fat breaks down during slow cooking and helps to tenderize the meat even more, making for a yummmmy roast from an inexpensive cut of meat.

There are a GAZILLION Ways to make roast in the slow cooker. I’ve tried many and love them all but this is my fallback standard.

I’d love to hear your favorite recipe in the comments section below!

I’ve decided that the stuff falling through the cracks is confetti

and I’m having a party!

-Betsy Cañas Garmon

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  1. Deanna Hoppe says

    Roast was my favorite as well. My grandma always made roast and homemade yeast rolls when I was coming for dinner. That is until I got married; then she made my husband’s favorite!

  2. Judy says

    I love a good roast & potatoes (throw the carrots in for color, but done right I can actually eat them), but I have never been able to master a good tasting tender roast, like you said growing up this was a special meal. After signing on last week after a friends recomemdation I found this recipe and decided to try it on my family of 7 for Sunday night (this is the one night that I try to have all of my kids, ages 22 to 27). I did throw in the onion, the best roast I have ever cooked in my 30 something years of cooking. It was a big hit with my family so we will be doing this again.
    I am really enjoying your website and I hope to get one of your cookbooks.

  3. Jeanne Dillon says

    Have you ever heard of a dish called “hash”? My grandma lived in TN and when we would visit her she would always make roast, potatoes and carrots. Then the next day she used the left over roast and cooked up more potatoes and made hash, which was more like a soup. My sister and I want to make this, so I was curious if it it was something others in the south might have made or maybe it was just something she did.

      • Jeanne Dillon says

        I am so excited. I can’t wait to get this recipe. My grandma passed away a long time ago and no one in my family knows how to make it. It seems simple, but we just didn’t know what she did. Thank you so much. :)

        • Jo says

          Hey, Jeanne. That’s my daughter’s name too. :) My Mom made hash from left over Sunday dinner roast beef as well, but she had a fall back recipe too so we had hash even if we hadn’t had roast beef for dinner. You peel and slice potatoes, the more people the more potatoes, it really stretches. Fry the potatoes in a large skillet, with or without onions.Carrots will fry up too. When they’re done, drain as much oil as possible. Then put the skillet back on the heat and add one can of roast beef and gravy. Look for it in the canned meat section of the grocery store. The store brand tends to have less meat, I usually get the middle priced. Use the can to add a can of milk, a can of water, or more if needed, and stir to make a stew like, hot bubbling hash with a delicious gravy. I like the beef more shredded, so I mash the beef, but you can leave it chunky too. Salt and pepper to taste. A pan of cornbread is a must to go with this delicious hash.

      • Carrie says

        would love to see the hash recipe…. always have leftovers and after one day of just heating the same dish up, no one eats the rest. So having something different to do with it would be great! Please put it on facebook as that is where I see everything. THANKS!

  4. Christy says

    I made this recipe for dinner tonight. I bought the beef already cubed so all I had to do was open the package, peel and cut potatoes, drop in some baby carrots and dump in the jar of gravy! I laughed with my mom at how easy this was, saying that if it is good, it’s going to be my go to meal. Well, it is going to be my go to meal. YUMMY! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  5. Heidi says

    I have this cooking right now. It smells soooooo good. Winn Dixie had bottom round roast BOGO so I just HAD to make this..

    I ordered your cookbook a few days ago so it should be here soon..I can’t wait!

    Keep up the good work!

  6. says

    I do mine pretty similar. only difference is I add an envelope of lipton onion mix prefer beefy, but have tried others and tend to use baby carrots instead of chopped up carrots. Normally I can not stand veggies and eat them if they are chopped up fine enough in a meal, but this is the one meal where I usually have leftover meat for days while the veggies are gone before lunch the next day.

  7. Debbie Strum says

    You know what? I have no earthly idea how my Mom used to make this since I was always at school when she made it! I’m thinkin’ she cooked ‘low & slow’ without a crockpot. Like you, Christy, it was one of my favorite meals and we could only afford to have it a couple times a year! I recall that she also cooked it with celery and chunks of onion, too! I wonder if she was shocked that I enjoyed all the vegetables! LOL But, the roast itself is what I loved the most! Anyway, I’m so glad that you have shared this recipe with us because it tastes just like what I remember! Thanks, Christy!!

  8. Glenda says

    I have used this recipe many many times except I have not used the addition of the gravy. I will most definitely try it the next time I fix it.. I also put small slits in the top of my roast and put pieces of garlic cloves in them. IF you like garlic this really enhances the flavor all thru this dish. .

  9. Nadara says

    I use any leftovers from a roast and veggies to make a big pot of veggie beef soup including the gravy. I will add some other veggies, shred up the roast and cut up the potatoes and carrots. Add some tomatoes and beef broth and spices and you’ve got yourself a yummy pot of soup to come home to in the crockpot! And, if I don’t want to make the soup right then, I will freeze the leftovers to make it some other time.

  10. Linda Sallee says

    Our favorite recipe is 1can cream of mushroom;1 can golden mushroom & a can of French onion soup. Pour over beef roast or pork roast &cook on low for 8-10 hours in a crock pot…very yummy & the gravy is scrumptious!

  11. Sherrie says

    What about frozen meat? Defrosted? Have a roast cooking right now, for 6 hours, but it was still frozen. My “fall-back” recipe is also simple …. 1 can of beef broth, salt n pepper to taste, baby carrots, red potatoes and celery. YUM-YUM! ( Hee Haw days)

  12. Joyce Bacon says

    Christy, I was raised on chuck roast with potatoes, carrots, onions, and cream of mushroom soup baked in a 10″ iron skillet with a heavy lid. The mushroom soup with blend with the juices from the beef amking a rich, delicious gravy. Nothing like home cooking.

  13. Erica says

    I love a good beef roast in cream of mushroom soup. it is the only way my daddy made a roast.. I use it on pork roast to.. So good. I will have to try it with the beef gravy next time.

    • says

      There are several factors that could cause this. Usually, it’s slow cooker temp not being regulated. Often this happens with a slow cooker more than 5-10 years old. Other times it may be that the roast needs to cook longer. Cooking it til it’s done is good but the time beyond that is what lets it get tender. Cut of meat usually isn’t a factor because cheap cuts of meat become very tender when cooked slow and low.

      Im sorry you had bad results either way and hope you still enjoyed precious time with your family. :)

  14. Susan says

    Maybe a dumb question, but what is your cut of choice for a pot roast?
    I have always liked sirloin tip. I picked up something the other day, and it was not great. Maybe it was a round roast? I know it was NOT sirloin tip, chuck, or rump. I cooked it in the pressure cooker 40 minutes, and it was not tender enough for me. I am lazy and prefer to just use a fork. If I need a knife, it’s too much like work.
    What’s your suggestion? Thanks.

  15. Kaye says

    I too am waiting for the roast beef hash recipe. My grandmother made it, but I never found out how she did it because the beef was still as tender as the day prior, yet the potatoes were tender also. I know she used onions and diced potatoes, but not sure if she used oil and/or water. I just remember it being tasty, and the aroma filled the entire house. I would really like to be able to taste it once again. As others have said, it had to be simple, but the method is still a mystery.

  16. Melissa says

    Silly question…..do you mix the brown gravy mix with the soup? I went shopping and had brown gravy mix on my mind and bought that instead of the jar. Seriously debating on running in for the jar when I drop my kid off at school. I have been looking forward to today’s meal since Frday!!

  17. Amanda says

    I have no idea how old this post is or if you even read the comments anymore, but I wanted to say thank you. I have a new found hobby of cooking that came about a year too late. I find myself wanting to make dishes that I enjoyed growing up, but no longer have the luxury of calling up mama to ask how to fix them. I chose this recipe earlier tonight and just came back to look at it again. Those are the plates my mama had when I was growing up and it touched my heart. Thank you!

  18. Natalie Fort says

    I made this last night for dinner-it was SO good. I’m a college student so I appreciate recipes that don’t require an extensive amount of ingredients. This was so simple to make and perfect to come home to after a long day of classes and work.

  19. Winona says

    I also was “taught” to put the vegetables underneath the roast however I am not set in my ways :) I didn’t have any beef gravy so I mixed a can of cream of mushroom soup with a can of beef broth! Wish me luck :)

  20. Porky says

    Here is what I do in Northern Wisconsin… Instead of the canned gravy, we cook the roast in beer and onion soup mix, then use the liquid to make gravy with a roux after it is all cooked and falling apart. It never has failed us in over 30 years.. Love it and simple to make in the slow cooker… Still gotta try this way also soon, as the easier the better..

  21. Tracy says

    I have tried this recipe two different times now, once with a bottom round roast and tonight with a chuck roast, and both times the meat has come out tough. I cooked it on high for 4 hours, meat was well done and tough. What am I doing wrong? We pulled some out to eat right now, and am leaving the rest in there to cook on high to see if the meat gets tender. I am guessing since the meat is already well done it won’t get any tender. Please help!! I so want to make this recipe work. I was thinking to try it again but cook it on low this time. Any suggestions would be appreciated!

  22. Kate says

    I just had to thank you for your pot roast recipe! My teenage son LOVES pot roast, but as he’s been allergic to all dairy products since birth, I’ve not been able to cook many of my favorite stand-by recipes. They all have cream of mushroom soup (or cream of something soup), which means I stay on the lookout for dairy-free recipes. So who would have guessed that canned Beef Gravy doesn’t have ANY milk in it?? Not me! But I looked at the ingredients list on the side of the can and it’s safe for my son to eat. Now the roast is in the crock pot (with the addition of one onion cut into wedges) and my kitchen is filled with this incredible, delicious aroma! I know dinner tonight (pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans, and fresh peach cobbler) will be perfect! Gotta love southern cooking!

      • Kate says

        Christy, the pot roast was yummy and made so much delicious gravy that I wanted to use all that juice and leftover meat tonight for hash like my mama used to make. She’d make it in a big frying pan on top of the stove and serve it over white rice. Should I just boil some cut-up carrots and potatoes, then add them to the meat and gravy as it heats up in the pan? I’m so glad I discovered this website. Thank you again!!

  23. Robin says

    I made this tonight, and it’s really good! I added a bit of beef-flavored “Better than Boullion” about 3 hours into cooking, and it added to the flavor. I also used canned whole potatoes, as they don’t take as long to cook, and are great with stews and roasts. I used a handful of baby carrots, and was surprised when some of them were still pretty crunchy. I’ll probably put them on the bottom next time, and then add the roast. My boyfriend always uses ketchup (yeah, he eats like a kid!), and didn’t use a drop of it. Said it was one of his favorite recipes. I’ll be making this one again, thanks for the recipe :-)

  24. Donna says

    Christy, I want to thank you for this wonderful recipe, I tried it this evening, my husband and I had it tonight for dinner it was outstanding I have lived in Texas for 33 yrs. I’m from Massachusetts all my family still lives there, the last time I had a roast this good was when my mom cooked it. I’ve tried but no luck. so it must have been a least 33yrs since I had one this good. Thank you.

  25. Lunette says

    This is our go to Sunday Dinner; however I have always cooked it on the stove. I brown it in a little oil on all sides, then add a cup of water and veggies on top. Cooked it covered on low about 3-4 hours. Then removed meat and veggies and made gravy from the juices! So tender and always done by the time we got home from church! My grown kids still ask for it when they come home! Love your posts and your recipes!!

  26. Peggy Kays says

    Christy, your Pot Roast and Veggies look delicious. I love a good Pot Roast but I never used a crockpot to cook it in. We raised our own beef so I always had a good cut of beef. I used my Miracle Maid waterless cookware to cook my roast. I would put a little butter or oil in the cookware and get it hot, the brown all sides of the beef. I would put the lid on and bring the heat up until the lid would dance, then turn the heat down to seal. My veggies would go in after roast had cooked for an hour and I would make gravy after I dished all meat and veggies into serving bowl. No boughten gravy was used, for it would make it’s own juice, for me to make gravy by just using a little water and cornstarch to thicken. If there were any left overs, it was a small amount so after all was cool, this mixture was put in a container in the freezer and when the container was full of left overs (pork, beef, gravy and veggies) I would make “Must Go Soup”. Everything went into a big soup pot with just water and simmered to blend the flavors. It was so good with cornbread. I always raised a huge garden so the veggies were home grown, for I stayed away from the store canned items as much as I could. Love your stories and your recipes.

  27. Brenda Melahn says

    Christy – whoever dropped your family on their head, must have been related to my family. Not only do mine not like onion, they don’t like gravy … so my question … beef broth instead of water. I normally cook my roast on the stove in water VERY low all day long and it is very tender and good, but I have had a few instances where I wasn’t pleased. I thought maybe it was the beef, now I’m thinking maybe it was the water????

  28. Robin says

    You are a saint! Even though I was dropped on my head as a child (I have pictures to prove it, a big ol, bruise on my forehead where my mom dropped me!), I still love onions in my roast and can’t imagine cooking/eating one without it! I make mine just like you do with the addition of cut up onions AND a packet of Lipton Onion Soup Mix sprinkled all over everything before the lid goes on. Mmmmmmmm, that’s good eatin’!

  29. Dorothy Dunton says

    Hi Christy! We love pot roast! I always use a well marbled chuck roast and we love onions so lots of them go in. I brown the roast in my large roasting pan, add beef stock and some red wine. Cover and cook it in the oven (325 degrees) for a couple of hours, then add potatoes, carrots and onions (sometimes celery). Back in the oven for another couple of hours and it is good to go! Leftovers are the best!


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