Instant Pot Pot Roast – mouthwatering tender beef roast with vegetables smothered in the most luscious and flavorful gravy. This easy to make pot roast recipe cooks in a fraction of the time with the help of your pressure cooker!
Pot Roast is the ultimate comfort food classic! Although I’ve been making a similar pot roast recipe in the oven or on the stove top for years, I wanted a super quick version I could make during busy weeknights.
This hearty Instant Pot Roast tastes like it’s been simmering for hours, although it only takes a bit over an hour to get perfectly juicy and tender. The pressure cooker seals in the flavors resulting in a delicious and super flavorful dish.
What is the Best Cut of Beef To Make Pot Roast?
Pot Roast is made with tough cuts of lean meat that have lots of connective tissue. Think of the parts of the animal that have a lot of movement, like the shoulder and legs. These cuts are perfect for braising and stewing.
- Chuck: Boneless Chuck Roast, Chuck Shoulder Pot Roast, Shoulder Steak, Beef Chuck Arm.
- Brisket: Use the Flat or the Point or Deckle cut.
- Beef Round: Rump Roast or Bottom Round.
QUICK FACT: Braising is a cooking method that uses both wet and dry heat. First, the meat is seared over high heat (dry) and then cooked with liquid over low heat (wet).
How To Make Instant Pot Pot Roast
I like to break the recipe into 3 easy steps. For specific instructions please refer to the recipe at the bottom of the page.
1. Sear the Meat and Saute the Vegetables:
- Season the meat and set the pressure cooker to “Saute”. When the instant pot is hot, sear the beef roast on both sides.
- Remove the meat from the pressure cooker and set aside.
- Add the onions, celery, carrots, garlic and tomato paste.
2. Deglaze, Pressure Cook and Do a Natural Release:
- Add the wine and scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to remove the brown bits that are stuck at the bottom.
- Add the broth, seasonings and fresh herbs and return the meat and any collected juices to the instant pot.
- Select “Cancel/Warm”. Close the lid and set the pressure valve to “seal”.
- To cook select “Manual” (high pressure) and set the timer.
- When the cooking is done, let the pressure release naturally for 20 minutes.
- Release any remaining pressure and open the lid.
3. Thickening the Gravy:
- Remove the pot roast and vegetables from the pressure cooker.
If you are going to serve this pot roast with potatoes, this is the time to add the potatoes and pressure cook for about 6-8 minutes. If not, proceed by thickening the gravy.
- Make a slurry with water and cornstarch.
- Select “Saute” and when the sauce starts boiling stir in the slurry. The gravy will start thickening. Set the pressure cooker to “Cancel/Warm”
What About The Potatoes?
I wish I could tell you that you can cook the potatoes at the same time you cook the meat but the truth is, you would end up with a potato mush (no, not mashed potatoes but a messy mush of potatoes.
For this reason, after the pot roast is cooked and removed from the pot, you will add the potatoes, close the lid, set the vent to seal and pressure cook for about 6 to 8 minutes (depending on the size of the potatoes). The potatoes will cook in the pot roast broth/gravy which give the potatoes a wonderful flavor.
While the potatoes are cooking, you can slice or shred the beef roast.
If you are wondering, I cook the carrots with the beef because of the flavor they add to the beef pot roast. The carrots become very tender, be careful when removing them from the instant pot.
How Long To Cook The Roast In The Instant Pot
- The time varies depending on the size of the beef roast.
- For thawed out beef between 3 and 5 pounds, you should cook the meat on high pressure for about 64 to 80 minutes.
- Calculate about 20 to 22 minutes per pound of beef.
Can I Cook Frozen Beef Roast in the Instant Pot?
- Yes, you can cook frozen beef in the pressure cooker however, do not sear the frozen beef. Sear the vegetables and skip searing the meat.
- Cook the frozen pot roast for about 30 to 33 minutes per pound.
Notes and Tips for Making the Best Pressure Cooker Pot Roast
- Season the beef with plenty of salt and ground black pepper. It is a big piece of meat and needs plenty seasoning.
- If using thawed out beef, ALWAYS sear the beef. Browning is an important step that should not be skipped. It adds flavor to the overall dish.
- Do a natural pressure release when cooking meat. The meat will get more tender and have a better texture. Although the recipe below asks for 20 minutes of NPR, try to do a minimum of 10 minutes if you are short in time.
- You can make this Pot Roast in the Slow Cooker also.
- If you do not want to use wine for this recipe, you can use just beef broth (3.5 cups total).
DID YOU KNOW? The cooking method for braising and stewing are the same. However, when braising – you cook a big cut of meat partially covered in liquid like in this Beer Braised Brisket. In a stew the meat is cut into smaller uniform pieces and cooked completely submerged in liquid like in this Beef Stew in Red Wine.
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Instant Pot Pot Roast
- 1 3-pound beef chuck roast
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
- 2 celery ribs, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 4 carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces (about 2-inch pieces)
- 5 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 cup red wine
- 2 1/2 cups beef broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon chicken or beef bouillon granules
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 pounds red potatoes (optional) - *see the notes
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- Season the beef roast with salt and ground black pepper to taste.
- Turn the instant pot/pressure cooker to "saute". Add half the oil and allow it to get hot. Add the beef to the pot and sear for about 3-4 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Remove the beef from the pot and set aside.
- Add the remaining oil into the instant pot (it should still be in "saute" mode), when the oil is hot, add the onions and celery and cook, stirring frequently for about 2 - 3 minutes or until the onions become translucent. Add the carrots and garlic and saute for about a minute. Add the tomato paste and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Stir in the red wine and with a wooden spoon or spatula scrape the bottom of the pot to remove some of the bits stuck at the bottom of the pot. (*see notes),
- Stir in the beef broth, bouillon, bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce and return the meat and any collected juices to the pot. Add the rosemary and thyme. Select cancel/warm.
- Lock the lid into place and set the pressure valve to sealing. Select "manual", high pressure and set the time for 64 minutes.
- Once done, let the pressure release naturally for 20 minutes and then do a quick release. Open the lid.
- Remove the the roast to a plate or cutting board. Carefully remove the carrots (the are very tender). Cover the beef and carrots with aluminum foil to keep warm. Skim some of the fat from the top of the liquid, and remove the bay leaves and the herb stems.
- If pressure cooking the potatoes, you can shred the beef while the potatoes cook. Otherwise, do it as soon as you take the meat and carrots off from the instant pot.
The Potatoes (skip to "Thickening the Gravy" if not cooking potatoes)
- At this point, you are ready to cook the potatoes (optional). Cut the potatoes in half and place them inside the instant pot. It should be enough liquid from the roast.
- Lock the lid into place and set the pressure valve to sealing. Select "manual", high pressure and set the time for 8 minutes. When finished cooking, quick-release pressure according to manufacturer's directions. Open the lid and remove the potatoes.
Thickening the Gravy
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water to make a slurry. Set aside.
- Turn the instant pot/pressure cooker to "saute". Bring the sauce to a boil and add the cornstarch mixture stirring frequently until slightly thickened. If the mixture gets too thick, add more beef broth as needed until desired consistency is reached.
- Serve the beef pot roast, carrots and potatoes with the gravy immediately.
- If you won't be serving immediately, return the shredded beef to the instant pot (I like to keep the meat covered by the gravy as much as possible to keep the meat juicy. Place the potatoes and carrots inside the pot as well (on one side) and keep on "warm" until ready to serve.
- Cut the beef roast in half if the whole piece doesn't fit comfortably in your pressure cooker.
- When deglazing the pot by adding the red wine, it is important to scrape the bottom of the pot to remove as many brown bits stuck at the bottom. Failure to do so can result in a "burn" message later during the cooking process.
- The potatoes will cook for 8 minutes AFTER the pot roast is done. This means the pressure cooker will need to come to pressure again. Please plan accordingly as this can take about 10 minutes.
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