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Slow Cooker Pot Roast With Gravy

It doesn’t get any more classic than pot roast and gravy in the slow cooker. The savory smells of flavorful meat, carrots, and potatoes wafting through your kitchen will tempt just about any appetite and bring waves of nostalgia. Try this classic meal with a few extra ingredients for the most delicious made-from-scratch gravy!

white plate with serving of pot roast, carrots, potatoes and gravy topped with parsley

What’s To Love About Pot Roast With Gravy

If you’ve ever tried a pot roast you did NOT love, it could be that the meat was dry or without enough gravy. Let me assure you, that is not the case with this recipe! You will love that this pot roast gravy is free of extra additives that you might find in a store-bought packet and the additions of red wine and tomato paste give such a robust depth of taste.

With the slow cooker, this pot roast turns out fork-tender every time and it can cook for up to 10 hours on low! It is so simple to combine the ingredients at the beginning of the day and enjoy your results in a delicious one-pot meal.

Ingredients Needed

  • Chuck roast – I prefer to use a chuck roast for a classic pot roast recipe because it has more marbling (fat) and tends to be more flavorful. It also shreds easily! If you need to, you can use a leaner cut like rump roast but the results may vary from mine. 
  • Herb and garlic seasoning – This is one of my most used simple seasonings. The perfect blend for meats and veggies!
  • Sweet yellow onion – Yellow onion will usually turn even sweeter the longer it cooks. Take one-half of an onion and cut it into quartered sections, also called petals.
  • Garlic – Smash 2 cloves of fresh garlic or use a jarred minced variety for simplicity.
  • Baby carrots – For time’s sake, I chose baby carrots to easily add to the slow cooker, but regular carrots will also work!
  • Gold potatoes – Stick to gold or yellow potatoes since russet potatoes tend to break down too much with the longer cooking time. The gold potatoes can be halved or quartered if they are larger. This should be somewhere between 4-6 potatoes.
  • Cornstarch – Thicken the gravy without using flour or other pre-packaged additives.
  • Tomato paste – Just a small amount of tomato paste is the perfect element to create a slightly acidic, rich flavor to the gravy.
  • Red wine – The hint of red wine really compliments the fat and flavor of the chuck roast. You could also easily omit or sub for additional beef broth.
  • Beef broth – Creates a delicious gravy base!
  • Tapioca pearls  – Tapioca pearls are a great thickening ingredient! The starchy round pearls will dissolve into the liquids throughout the cooking time. You may have tried them in desserts, but I encourage you to test them out in savory dishes as well! 

How To Make Slow Cooker Pot Roast With Gravy 

  1. Place the roast in the bottom of the slow cooker. Sprinkle the seasoning across the top of the roast, then add in the onion, garlic, carrots, and potatoes.
  1. Add in the tomato paste and sprinkle tapioca pearls across the top.
  1. Make a cornstarch slurry by whisking cornstarch with 1/4 cup water until smooth.
  2. Whisk cornstarch slurry with the red wine and beef broth and pour the mixture into the slow cooker.
  3. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours until fork tender.

Recipe Substitutions and Variations

  • If you use a larger roast to increase servings, cut it down into 2-3 pieces for even cooking.
  • You can brown your roast prior to slow cooking if you prefer (I did not in this recipe). I haven’t noticed a huge difference in browning vs. not browning for a pot roast recipe but you may wish to test it out for added flavor!
  • Use baby carrots to save peeling and chopping time, or use regular carrots for a stronger flavor. Simply wash them, leave the peel on, and chop them into large chunks.
  • You could add other root veggies like turnips and parsnips if you like. Just remember to use vegetables that are firmer and won’t cook too quickly.

What to Serve With Pot Roast & Gravy

A pot roast meal is filling enough to serve all alone, but a warm brown bread or dinner roll would be perfect to soak up all the scrumptious extra gravy you’ll surely want to ladle onto your plate.

If you have a hankering for some fresh veggies, utilize a different cooking method while your slow cooker is busy. Sauté some Green Beans with Garlic or quickly prepare Instant Pot Corn on the Cob. A fresh Caesar salad with extra croutons would also be a fantastic addition!

looking down into slow cooker full of pot roast, carrots, potatoes and gravy

Storing and Reheating

Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat single servings in the microwave. 

This pot roast and gravy recipe also stores well in the freezer! I recommend portioning out single servings to include appropriate ratios of meat, veggies, and gravy. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

You will be so glad you saved some to enjoy later! 

side view of white plate with serving of pot roast, carrots, potatoes and gravy topped with parsley

Slow Cooker Pot Roast With Gravy FAQs 

  • Which roast is best for the slow cooker? In my opinion, chuck roast is the best for slow cooker pot roast because it is a tougher, muscly cut of meat which means it has a lot of flavor! It also has a higher amount of fat content than other large cuts of meat so it will break down into perfectly tender meat after extended time.
  • Do you put water in the slow cooker to cook a roast? This varies somewhat depending on what type of recipe is being used, but for a classic pot roast and gravy recipe, there should be liquid surrounding the roast. In this case, there is a small amount of water for the cornstarch slurry and a combination of a broth and wine mixture for a super flavorful gravy.
  • How do I thicken pot roast gravy? In this recipe, the cornstarch and tapioca pearls will be the thickening agents for the gravy during the slow cooking (rather than at the end like many other recipes). Tapioca pearls will dissolve to create a smooth liquid, but the added cornstarch will make it a little bit thicker. You could use one or the other, but I like the way they work together to give me a perfectly thickened gravy that is not grainy. 
white plate with serving of pot roast, carrots, potatoes and gravy topped with parsley

Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Gravy

Jennifer Draper
It doesn’t get any more classic than pot roast and gravy in the slow cooker. The savory smells of flavorful meat, carrots, and potatoes wafting through your kitchen will tempt just about any appetite and bring waves of nostalgia. Try this classic meal with a few extra ingredients for the most delicious made-from-scratch gravy!
5 from 22 votes
Save
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 hours
Total Time 10 hours 15 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 5
Calories 520 kcal

Equipment

  • Slow Cooker
  • skillet (optional)

Ingredients
  

  • 2- pound chuck roast
  • 1 tablespoon herb and garlic seasoning
  • 1/2 sweet yellow onion cut into quartered pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 8 oz baby carrots
  • 16 oz gold potatoes halved or quartered if large
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 1/4 cup tapioca pearls

Instructions
 

  • Place the roast in the bottom of the slow cooker. Sprinkle the seasoning across the top of the roast, then add in the onion, garlic, carrots, and potatoes.
  • Add in the tomato paste and sprinkle tapioca pearls across the top.
  • Whisk cornstarch with 1/4 cup water until smooth.
  • Whisk cornstarch slurry with the red wine and beef broth and pour into the slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours until fork tender.

Notes

  • Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat single servings in the microwave.
  • Freeze single servings by portioning out appropriate ratios of meat, veggies, and gravy. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • If you use a larger roast, be sure to cut it down into 2-3 pieces for more even cooking.
  • If you are concerned about vegetables overcooking for 8-10 hours, you can always add them later in the cooking time. Or, if you want to include all ingredients at once, just be sure to put larger carrots and potatoes into the slow cooker since they will take longer to soften.
  • I don’t recommend cooking this recipe on high.
  • Red wine can be omitted or subbed for additional beef broth.
  • Optional step: If you choose to brown the roast, place 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter in a skillet. Rub the seasoning over the roast and brown the roast on both sides. Place the roast in the slow cooker and follow consecutive steps.

Nutrition

Calories: 520kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 39gFat: 21gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 125mgSodium: 779mgPotassium: 1347mgFiber: 5gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 6429IUVitamin C: 22mgCalcium: 127mgIron: 7mg
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Important nutritional disclaimer

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51 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Make this tonight , came out excellent! The meat & veggies were so tender , my new go to recipe .

  2. Hello. I didnt see anywhere how the onions were cut or when to add. just did a rough chop. Im assuming you add them into the slurry.

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