Welcome to my Grandma Dorothy’s! Instant Pot Roast is based on the classic pot roast she cooked for us on Sundays after church. This recipe is packed with flavor, veggies, and tender beef, prepared in the pressure cooker!
Why You’ll Love This Instant Pot Pot Roast Recipe
- Just Like Grandma Used to Make (For Real). One of my most prized possessions is a small notebook of Grandma’s recipes. It contains the comfort foods of my Midwestern childhood and has inspired recipes like Instant Pot Beef Stroganoff and Stuffed Mushrooms. This Instant Pot roast with potatoes and carrots is directly based on my Grandma’s recipe.
- Pot Roast, Made Even Easier. Pot roast isn’t exactly a hard dinner, but this Instant Pot roast recipe is even easier. It doesn’t require any searing or browning, and the gravy is made from the roast’s own cooking juices.
- A Comfort Food Sunday Dinner. It’s savory, luscious, and the gravy makes the already juicy beef all the more scrumptious. (Plus, it will make your kitchen smell homey and inviting as it cooks!)
- Budget-Friendly Meal. Pot roast feeds a crowd, but it’s made with basic ingredients that won’t break the bank. If you regularly spend way more than you planned on groceries (guilty!), adding pot roast to your weekly meal plan is a nice way to offset the fancy gelato that happened to find its way into your shopping cart.
5 Star Review
“Perfect recipe! Was so juicy, tender and flavorful!”— Emma —
More About This Instant Pot Roast
I adapted Grandma’s original roast to be an Instant Pot beef recipe.
An electric pressure cooker such as the Instant Pot is fantastic for speeding up the cooking time for tougher, fattier cuts of meat like chuck roast.
- Instant Pot roast cook time is 60 minutes on high pressure, plus 10 minutes of natural release. This does not include the time it takes the Instant Pot to come to pressure (10 to 15 minutes).
- From there, add the baby carrots, pressure cook for 5 more minutes, then natural release for 10 minutes.
- Add it all together (including the time it takes for the pot to come to pressure), and your total cooking time for pot roast in the Instant Pot is about 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours.
How to Make Instant Pot Roast
- Beef Chuck Roast. Once cooked, chuck roast becomes melt-in-your-mouth tender and full of rich flavor. It’s also a wonderful source of protein, iron, and zinc.
- Garlic. For tasty garlic flavor.
- Rosemary. Earthy, woodsy, and delicious in pot roast. Use fresh rosemary; if you need to substitute dried herbs, I recommend using thyme instead. (Dried rosemary can be a little like eating pine needles!)
- Potatoes. Cooked until tender and flavorful, potatoes help make the pot roast extra hearty and comforting. Potatoes are rich in fiber, which will help keep you fuller for longer.
- Tomato Sauce. The key to a rich and flavorful pot roast.
- Worcestershire. For an umami boost.
- Carrots. I love the pop of color and sweetness that carrots add to a pot roast. Packed with antioxidants and vitamins, they’re also a nutritious addition. You can use baby carrots or cut regular carrots.
- Cornstarch. Using a cornstarch slurry in the juices helps create a thick and luscious gravy.
- Prepare. Cut slits in the roast and stuff with garlic and rosemary. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the water and beef to the bottom of the pot.
- Assemble. Place the potatoes, garlic, rosemary, and salt on top of the beef.
- Pressure Cook. Add the tomato sauce and Worcestershire. Cook pot roast on HIGH pressure for 60 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
- Add the Carrots. Cook on HIGH for 5 minutes more, then let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
- Make the Gravy. With the Instant Pot off, whisk the corn starch slurry into the cooking juices and use the sauté function.
- Finish. Turn the Instant Pot off, and return the beef and vegetables to the pot or arrange them on a serving platter. ENJOY!
- To Store. Refrigerate pot roast in an airtight container for up to 4 days. You can refrigerate it in the gravy or store the gravy separately.
- To Reheat. Rewarm leftovers in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F or in the microwave, spooning gravy over the pot roast before reheating.
- To Freeze. Freeze leftovers in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Meal Prep Tip
Up to 1 day in advance, cut and stuff the beef. Chop the rosemary and scrub the potatoes. Refrigerate until you’re ready to finish the recipe.
What to Serve with Instant Pot Roast
- Grains. A simple side of white rice or brown rice is perfect for soaking up all the deliciousness of your pot roast.
- Vegetable Sides. You’ve already got carrots and potatoes in the Instant Pot with the roast, but Sautéed Green Beans or Roasted Broccoli are excellent veggie additions to your meal.
- Salad. Keep things light with Arugula Salad or Beet Salad.
- Potatoes. Pair your comfort food dinner with some cozy carbs like Garlic Mashed Potatoes or a classic Baked Potato.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Instant Pot. Perfect for making this Instant Pot roast recipe.
- Whisk. Easy to use and dishwasher safe.
- Slotted Spoon. Easily remove the beef and vegetables without the liquid.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Don’t Skip the Extra Liquid. I added extra liquid to make sure the pressure cooker didn’t trigger a burn warning. I recommend adding 1/2 cup of liquid (water or low-sodium beef broth) to the Instant Pot for a roast. Typically you need at least 1 cup of liquid in the Instant Pot; the remaining 1/2 cup comes from the juices released by the chuck roast and the tomato sauce.
- Use Baby Potatoes—Or Cut Them. If your grocery store doesn’t have baby potatoes, you can use larger potatoes instead, but you’ll need to cut them into uniform sizes to ensure that they all finish cooking at the same time. (Don’t cut them too small, though, or they’ll end up mushy!)
- Don’t Add the Carrots Too Early. It may be tempting to skip a step and add the carrots with the potatoes, but carrots cook faster than whole baby potatoes do and pressure cooking for 60 minutes is way too much for them.
- Allow the Pressure to Release Naturally. Your Instant Pot roast will be more tender that way.
Instant Pot Roast
- 2 1/2 to 3- pound boneless chuck roast cut in half
- 6 cloves garlic divided
- 2 long sprigs fresh rosemary cut into thirds (or 3 shorter sprigs cut in half)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus a few pinches
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 pound baby red potatoes scrubbed and left whole
- 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce*
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 1/2 cups baby carrots** see note
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch plus 2 tablespoons water to create a slurry
- Pat the roast dry and cut 6 1-inch deep slits in the top. Peel the garlic cloves and cut them in half. Stuff each slit with a half clove of garlic and a piece of cut rosemary spring. Season all over with the salt and black pepper. In the bottom of an Instant Pot or similar electric pressure cooker or multi-cooker, pour in the water, then add the beef, nestling the pieces in snuggly.
- Arrange the potatoes on top of the beef. Mince the remaining garlic and scatter on top of the potatoes. Sprinkle the chopped rosemary all over the potatoes and beef. Then, sprinkle a pinch of salt on top of the potatoes.
- Pour the tomato sauce and Worcestershire over the beef.
- Cover and seal the Instant Pot. Cook on Manual/High Pressure for 60 minutes. It will take 10 to 15 minutes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure, then the countdown will begin. When the cook time has elapsed, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then quick release any remaining pressure.
- Carefully open the lid and add the baby carrots on top.
- Reseal the lid and cook on Manual/High Pressure for 5 minutes more. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes (this natural release is KEY for a tender roast). Quick release any remaining pressure. With a slotted spoon, remove the meat and vegetables to a large platter or bowl, discarding any large pieces of fat.
- Make sure the Instant Pot is off. In a small bowl, briskly whisk together the slurry of 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water until smoothly combined. While whisking the cooking juices in the Instant Pot, slowly pour in the slurry. Turn the pot to SAUTE, then cook, stirring frequently, until the juices have thickened into a thin gravy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Turn off the Instant Pot.
- Add the beef and vegetables back to the pot and stir to warm through (the potatoes, veggies, and meat will all break down a little and be tender and delicious). Serve hot, ensuring each serving gets a little bit of everything.
- *Grandma used a 6-ounce can of V-8 juice, which is sold in multipacks. If you are a regular V-8 juice drinker, feel free to swap it here; reduce the Worcestershire sauce to 2 tablespoons.
- **If you add the baby carrots at the beginning, they will be fairly obliterated by the time the roast is done, which is why this recipe directs for you to add them at the end. Growing up, we ate our veggies fairly mushy, so if you don’t mind your carrots very soft (we’re talking completely falling apart), you can add the baby carrots at the beginning for ease. Or use regular carrots, scrubbed and chopped into large (2-inch) chunks; these cook more slowly and can be added with the potatoes. Set your cook time to 60 minutes as directed, let release naturally for 10 minutes, then vent and proceed with the gravy.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate pot roast in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days. Spoon the gravy into a separate storage container.
- TO REHEAT: Rewarm leftovers in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F or in the microwave, spooning gravy over the pot roast before reheating.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months, storing the pot roast and gravy in separate containers. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
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Frequently Asked Questions
If you’d like a veggie-packed pot roast, feel free to include additional vegetables. You could add onions with the potatoes or diced parsnips, green beans, or mushrooms with the baby carrots. You could also add celery stalks to your pot roast if you enjoy them.
If your roast is tough in the Instant Pot, it likely needs to be cooked longer. Chuck roast will become more tender the longer it cooks, so extra time may be needed. However, you can overcook beef in the Instant Pot, so keep an eye on it if you add extra time.
If your beef is frozen, you can still use it for this pot roast but you will need to thaw it first. Let it thaw completely in the refrigerator before beginning the recipe.