Pressure Cooker Weeknight Pot Roast Recipe

on Oct 08, 2022 in Main Dishes #pressure-cooker

For me, braised meats and vegetables are second only to soups and stews when the weather cools in Autumn. Using a pressure cooker for pot roast isn't as a good as the "proper" way, but makes the meal manageable on a weeknight. Using pre-packaged, ready-to-cook vegetables helps, too.

A white rectangular platter with chunks of braised beef on the left, a white gravy boat with an ochre sauce inside in the middle, and heap of braised baby carrots, baby red potatoes, and baby onions on the right


  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil of your choice
  • 3 to 5 lb. braising roast (e.g. chuck roast), boneless or bone-in as you prefer
  • 1 tbsp. or more coarse salt
  • 2 tsp. or more freshly ground black peper
  • 14 oz. package frozen petite whole onions
  • 16 oz. package peeled baby-cut carrots
  • 1½ lb. bag skin-on small red potatoes, washed and cut in half
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 to 3 cups broth of your choice (I like equal parts chicken and beef)
  • 1 tsp. Worcerstershire sauce
  • 2 bay leaves, torn in half
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • ½ tsp. dried sage
  • ½ tsp. dried rosemary
  • ½ tsp. dried thyme


Preheat your pressure cooker to medium-high heat for sautéeing (or high on an electric pressure cooker). Generously salt and pepper the roast on all sides. Add the oil to the pot then sear the roast for 3 minutes on each side. Remove the meat to a plate, leaving as much oil in the pot as possible.

Add frozen onions to the pot then sauté until they show some color and are fragrant, around 4 minutes. Remove the onions to a large bowl (reserving for later use). Add the carrots to the pot then sauté until the carrots show some color, about 4 more minutes. Remove the carrots to the bowl with the onions. Add the potatoes to the pot cut-side down then sauté until the cut sides show some color, about 4 more minutes. Remove the potatoes to the large bowl with the onions and carrots.

Add the tomato paste to the pot and cook for about one minute, stirring constantly. Deglaze the pot with 1 cup of the broth, stirring into the tomato paste and scraping the pot to loosen all the brown bits from the pan. Stir the Worcerstershire sauce and herbs into the pot. Return the meat to the pot and add enough of the remaining broth to cover the lower ⅔ of the roast.

Seal the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. Once cooking is done and pressure is released (quick release is preferred), return the onions, carrots, and potatoes to the pot, around the meat as much as possible and atop the meat as needed. Seal the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 5 more minutes.

Once cooking is done and pressure is released (again quick release is preferred), use a slotted spoon to gently move the vegetables to a platter. Next, gently move the meat to the platter (it will likely come apart in chunks, which is fine). Cover the platter loosely with foil.

While the meat rests, take 1 loose cup up the vegetables and 1 cup of the cooked broth and blend together until smooth to make a sauce. Add additional broth as needed to reach your desired consistency. Pour the sauce into a dispensing vessel of your choice (e.g. gravy boat).

Slice the meat across the grain into serving-sized chunks. Allow folks to to plate themselves from the platter, adding the sauce to their meat and vegetables as desired.

Ideas & Tips

  • If you are using store-bought broth, I suggest using either all chicken or sometbing like Better Than Bouillon for beef broth; most store-bought beef broth is terrible
  • If you are using a boneless roast, cut the roast into large chunks and reduce the initial cook time by 10 minutes to make it easy to spoon out the chunks after cooking and to save needing to cut on the platter
  • My kids sometime grouch about the herbs, especially the rosemary; if yours do too, finely chop them before adding them to the broth


  • 2022-10-08: First added to the site, but I have made this recipe countless times for many years
Drew Miller
Half ogre, half human, all dork (he/him)

Howdy folks! I'm Drew. I'm married to Deirdre and am a dad to 6 great kids.

By day, I help engineering teams do their best work and have their best careers, focusing on HTTP APIs, distributed systems, and developer tools & experiences.

On nights and weekends, I enjoy cooking, sailing, reading, tabletop and video games, and exploring wild places.