Sunday Pot Roast was never a recipe my mom ventured to make when I was growing up. It wasn’t until I met my husband and moved to the States when I was introduced to the traditional Pot Roast dinner (thanks to Ina Garten’s Pot Roast recipe). And since my husband loves it so much, it has become a staple recipe in my house. It’s also a hearty and comforting recipe to share with family and friends during those cold winter months.
But the thing is… it just takes So. Much. Time. Until now!
If you feel the same way and want to figure out how to cook a chuck roast fast, you are in the right place, my friend.
This Instant Pot Pot Roast Recipe can be made in half the time as compared to the traditional Dutch oven method! And it tastes just as hearty and delicious, if not better! So long are the days slaving over the stove to get Sunday dinner on the table.
How To Cook A Roast In A Pressure Cooker
The method for electric pressure cooker pot roast comes together in 3 folds.
First, preheat the pressure cooker by selecting Saute on HIGH and add the vegetable oil. While the oil is heating, season the beef chuck roast with salt and pepper. Add to the Instant Pot and brown the meat for 3-4 minutes on each side. Transfer the meat to a plate and cover with foil (or parchment paper) to keep warm.
PRO TIP: If your meat is large and/or uneven in size make sure to follow the directions I used in Ina’s Pot Roast recipe and tie the beef chuck roast before seasoning and placing it in your Instant Pot. This will prevent it from spreading too much and losing those valuable juices.
If you watch the how-to video in the recipe card below you will see that I failed to do that. The end product was still good, but it would have been easier to manage in the end if I had tied it at the beginning. Here is a helpful video to show you how to tie beef.
Second, add the onion, garlic, broth, and thyme, and give it a stir making sure to scrape the brown bits at the bottom. Put the meat back into the pot and secure the lid. Select Manual, making sure the steam release handle is set to Sealing position, and cook at HIGH pressure for 60 minutes.
When cooking is complete, use natural release for 10 minutes and then quick release the remaining steam. Add in potatoes, carrots, and parsnips, making sure to submerge them in the cooking liquid. Select Manual and cook at HIGH for 10 minutes. When cooking is complete, use a natural release for 10 minutes and then release the remaining steam.
Finally, remove the roast and shred it with 2 forks. Place the vegetables on a serving plate and top them off (or place on the side) with shredded beef. If preferred, use a spoon and scrape the excess fat in the leftover juices and use an immersion blender to mix the juices to use as gravy to drizzle on top. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley and serve!
Need ideas to put your Instant Pot to good use? Check out all my Instant Pot recipes that are perfect for beginners like me.
I found the ideal beef roast pressure cooker time per pound is 20 minutes. I cooked my 3 lb chuck roast recipe for 60 minutes, and it was the most perfect, fall apart chuck roast I’ve ever had!
Pot Roast Variations
Cooking pot roast in a pressure cooker for a traditional Sunday roast is always a hit, but there are a few variations to make it more interesting:
Change up the seasoning: Along with the salt and pepper, add some dried herbs and spices to the surface of the beef roast. Add 1 teaspoon each of dried oregano, rosemary, and thyme for a more savory kick. A few bay leaves added to the cooking liquid add a lovely, slightly aromatic flavor, too!
Blend or strain gravy: I found there are two methods to make the gravy.
How To Make Roast Gravy
- To blend (preferred method): Remove the beef roast and vegetables from the pressure cooker and scrape off the excess fat from the remaining liquid in the Instant Pot. Then, simply use your immersion blender to blend the sauce together, creating an emulsified gravy.
- To strain: Remove the beef roast and vegetables from the pressure cooker and scrape off the excess fat from the remaining liquid in the Instant Pot. Then, strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a saucepan over medium heat and simmer until reduced and slightly thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
PRO TIP: For a thicker gravy, make a roux in the saucepan by cooking 2 Tablespoons each butter and flour over medium heat for about 1 minute. Then, scrape off the excess fat from the remaining liquid in the Instant Pot and strain into the saucepan with the roux. Cook until slightly thickened, 4-5 minutes.
What Can I Serve it With
As you can see in the pictures, I served my pressure cooker pot roast recipe with bulgur pilaf. However, you can also serve it with various whole-grain side dishes and/or one of my creative and easy vegetable side dishes (such as Whole Roasted Carrots, Sauteed Asparagus and Mushroom or Garlic Green Beans) or salads (like Asparagus Salad or Butter Lettuce Salad).
Need more inspiration for pot roast sides? Be sure to check out our post on What To Serve with Pot Roast for even more recipe ideas.
Expert Tips & Tricks:
- Want to ensure this quick chuck roast recipe is cooked evenly? Allow the meat to rest on the kitchen counter for 30 minutes before cooking. This helps take the chill off.
- For the best sear, pat the beef chuck roast dry with paper towels prior to seasoning. The dry surface and hot oil give you that extra crispy brown crust, which packs in so much flavor.
- Looking for pot roast with potatoes and carrots? Simply omit the parsnips and replace them with an equal amount of carrots.
- Beef Broth vs. Chicken Broth: As you’ll see in the recipe below, I used chicken broth as the liquid in the recipe. I personally find that my homemade chicken stock produces a lighter pot roast recipe. However, if you prefer beef broth feel free to swap an equal amount of it in place of chicken broth.
- Best Cuts of Beef for Pot Roast: For this easy Instant Pot chuck roast I’ve got some help from this post on TheKitchn. Feel free to refer to the image below for a visual to help you guide through the best cuts to use to make this instant pot roast recipe.
- Chuck – The top pick for pot roast! It is cut from the shoulder, making it the toughest and most affordable piece of meat. The marbling (aka fat) is outstanding, which makes a fall apart chuck roast. Also called Chuck Roast, Arm Roast, Shoulder Roast, or Cross Rib.
- Round – Cut from the back leg of the steer, this is actually a tough, but lean cut of meat. Even though lean meat is a good thing on occasion, that’s not what we want for a pot roast. Fat helps the meat breakdown into a more tender dish, giving you that silky, delicious texture. Also called Eye Round Roast, London Broil, or Round Tip Roast.
- Sirloin – Cut from the back, near the hip bone all the way down to the belly (or flank), it is a bit tougher. Top sirloin is good for steaks and grilling, but it’s the bottom sirloin we are looking for, which is better for roasting. Also called Beef Rump Roast, Bottom Round Roast, Tri-Tip Roast, Ball Tip Roast, or Flap Roast.
- Brisket – Cut from the breastbone, this is another very tough piece of meat, yet one of the most flavorful. When cooked the right way, it breaks down into a delicious dish. Although popular for BBQ or smoking, it makes a beautiful Sunday roast, too.
- What pressure cooker should I use? I prefer to use my Instant Pot (affiliate link), but any pressure cooker you own will work. Feel free to use your Electric Pressure Cooker, Power Cooker, Presto, Power Cooker XL, or Crock-Pot Express. Just make sure to follow the manufacturer’s cooking technique, as it varies between each brand.
Pot roast is simply a braised beef dish made by browning a roast size piece of meat and slow-cooking it for hours on the stovetop in a flavorful liquid, with or without vegetables. Tough cuts are preferred, because of the long cooking time, meaning the meat has a chance to become mouth-watering tender. But this slow cooking time gets cut in half with my Instant Pot.
If your chuck roast is too big to fit into your pressure cooker and to sear in one piece, you can cut it into 2 or 3 pieces and sear them individually.
Cooking a frozen roast in an Instant Pot is actually quite easy. Place the frozen roast in the pressure cooker with the trivet underneath, to allow the heat to penetrate the entire surface of the roast, and add an additional 20 minutes to the cooking time. Frozen to pull-apart tender in no time!
The best time to add the potatoes and additional vegetables is at the end of the pot roast cooking time, which will prevent the vegetables from overcooking and turning to mush. After the 1 hour cook time, add the vegetables and continue to cook on HIGH for an additional 10 minutes. Perfectly cooked Instant Pot pot roast and potatoes every time!
Other Beef Recipes You Might Also Like
- Beef Vegetable Soup
- Brisket Tacos
- Brown Gravy Recipe
- Meatballs and Potatoes
- Homemade Beef Stroganoff
- Stuffed Cabbage Soup
- See all of my Easy Beef Recipes for dinner and meal planning
If you try this Pressure Cooker Pot Roast recipe or any other recipe on Foolproof Living, please take a minute to rate the recipe and leave a comment below. It helps others who are thinking of making the recipe. And if you took some pictures, be sure to share them on Instagram using #foolproofeats so I can share them on my stories.
This recipe has been adapted (with changes) from The Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook (affiliate link).
Pressure Cooker Pot Roast Recipe
- 1 3-pound beef chuck roast, pat dry with paper towels on both sides
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil I use grapeseed oil
- 1 large onion halved and sliced
- 4 cloves of garlic peeled and minced
- 1 ¾ cups chicken stock preferably homemade (or beef stock)
- 4 fresh thyme sprigs more as a garnish
- 1 pound baby potatoes halved
- 5 large carrots cut into 3/4-inch pieces
- 3 large parsnips cut into 3/4-inch pieces*
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Season the meat with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Preheat the pressure cooker (I used my Instant Pot – affiliate link), select saute on high. Add in the oil.
- Once the pot is hot, brown the chuck roast, 3-4 minutes on each side. Transfer the meat onto a plate and cover with foil (or parchment paper) to keep warm.
- Add in the onion, garlic, chicken stock, and thyme and give it a stir.
- Put the meat back into the pot and secure the lid.
- Select manual, make sure that the steam release handle is turned to sealing position, and cook at high pressure for 60 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, use natural release for 10 minutes and then release the remaining steam.
- Add in the potatoes, carrots, and parsnips. Be sure to submerge them in the cooking liquid.
- Select manual and cook at high for 10 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, use a natural release for 10 minutes and then release the remaining steam.
- Don’t have parsnips on hand? Use 2 more large carrots instead.
- Can I cook a frozen pot roast in my pressure cooker? You sure can. Cooking a frozen roast in an Instant Pot is actually quite easy. Place the frozen roast in the pressure cooker with the trivet underneath, to allow the heat to penetrate the entire surface of the roast, and add an additional 20 minutes to the cooking time. Frozen to pull-apart tender in no time!
- Two options for making gravy:
- TO BLEND (preferred method): Remove the beef roast and vegetables from the pressure cooker and scrape off the excess fat from the remaining liquid in the Instant Pot. Then, simply use your immersion blender to blend the sauce together, creating an emulsified gravy.
- TO STRAIN: Remove the beef roast and vegetables from the pressure cooker and scrape off the excess fat from the remaining liquid in the Instant Pot. Then, strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a saucepan over medium heat and simmer until reduced and slightly thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
This recipe was originally published in September 2019. It has been updated with additional helpful information on Jan 2021 with no changes to the original recipe.
So so tasty and tender!! We used parsnips, baby carrots, and whole baby Bella mushrooms. Dusted the roast with onion powder, plus the S & P. This recipe is definitely a keeper!
(We will take Stefanie’s suggestion to add Worcestershire next time, just for the added flavor)
This is music to my ears. Thanks so much for coming by and taking the time to leave a review.
Delicious! I add a tablespoon of Worcestershire 1/2 cup of water with the broth. A good dusting of onion powder on the meat rub is great also!
YAY! So happy to hear that it worked for your Stefanie. I am making some as I type this.
It is such an easy and filling meal. My husband loves it!
Thanks for coming by and taking the time to leave a review.
This turns out great every time! We love using the Instant Pot!
Thanks Suzy. So good to know. Cheers!
Using the instant pot makes the meat so tender and locks in the flavor. Love this recipe, thanks!
Can’t agree more Laura. Thanks for your input. Cheers!
Love this! It’s so hearty and filling. Bonus that the leftovers were just as good as the first time we ate it!
So glad to hear that you liked it Julie. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a review.
I am so impressed by how tender and juicy meat turns out in the instant pot! This is top notch comfort food!
I know, right? Instant pot is such a magical tool.
This was our dinner last night and it was one of the few things my entire family ate! Thank you!
This is music to my ears Lauren. Thanks for letting me know.
This is a gorgeous meal Aysegul! That plate is making me so hungry! Can’t think of a better dinner than this, especially on chilly days. You’ve made it sound really easy to make with all those tips. Thank you!
I am so glad to hear that you liked it my friend. It is surely a great way to please a crowd 🙂
Thanks for coming by.