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Great Grandma's Easy Pot Roast

Updated: Mar 25

A bowl of shredded beef pot roast alongside creamy mashed potatoes

We all need those dinners that are so easy to put together it almost feels like cheating. But at the same time, you want it to be delicious and if we're talking cold weather meals, definitely comforting too.

My Great Grandma's Easy Pot Roast is so simple yet so flavorful, you'll feel like a kitchen wizard. It is 3 INGREDIENTS, but it tastes so amazing, you'll be astounded at how simple it is to pull together. And did I mention that prep is about 3 minutes too?

This was one of my favorite meals growing up. The smell of it cooking in the oven brings back memories of coming home from school on a cool fall day or thawing inside after a wintery day playing in the snow. It is, as we like to say in the midwest, stick to your ribs kind of food. It warms you from the inside out and makes your belly so happy. As the cook of the house, you're thrilled that it takes minimal effort and ingredients to pull together. As an eater in the house, you're pleased with the comfort food steaming on the plate in front of you.

Give this one a try is you're looking for a delightfully easy and tasty meal for your busy and chilly weeknights. I have a feeling it will quickly become a household staple, just like it has been in mine for decades.

Great Grandma's Easy Pot Roast
Makes ~ 4-6 servings
Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 3 hours

Click the file below to download and print the recipe

**This recipe may include affiliate links for which I may be paid a commissions for purchases made through the link.**

Great Grandmas Easy Pot Roast
Download PDF • 130KB

I recommend reading the recipe all the way through, including the recipe notes at the bottom, before you start cooking.


Special Equipment:

  • Aluminum foil (large and heavy duty preferred)

  • Dutch oven or deep baking dish with a lid*


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°

  2. Place the beef roast in the center of a large piece of aluminum foil that is big enough to cinch up the ends and make a completely closed packet around the meat (see above photos). Use multiple pieces if your foil isn't wide enough.

  3. Sprinkle the contents of the soup mix packet all over top the beef.

  4. Evenly dollop the butter over the soup and beef so there are small pieces of butter all over it.

  5. Take the long ends of the foil and cinch them together then roll up the short ends to meet in the middle. You want a good seal on the foil so as little moisture as possible can escape. If needed, use more foil to get a completely seal.

  6. Place the wrapped beef into a dutch oven or baking dish with a lid. Pour 1 cup of water into the bottom of the pan and cover with the lid.

  7. Bake at 350° for about 3 hours. Check after 1 and 2 hours that there is still water in the bottom of the pan. If there is little to no water left, add more (1/2 - 1 cup). If you're unable to check on it during the cooking process, at 1.5 cups of water to start).

  8. After 3 hours, remove from oven and let rest for 5-10 minutes.

  9. Carefully unwrap the foil, being sure not to get a steam burn as the steam releases. Without removing anything from the dutch oven, dump the beef and all of the juices into the dutch oven including into any water that remains in the bottom.

  10. Either shred in the pan or serve the beef in chunks with some of the jus. Serve with mashed potatoes, rice, egg noodles, or polenta. My personal preference is mashed potatoes!

*Recipe notes + Variations*

*If you don't have a dutch over or baking dish with a lid (or one that is large enough), you can put this in any baking dish and cover really tightly with foil. If you have to go this route, add extra water to the pan and keep an eye on the water throughout cooking as more moisture will evaporate than if you have a lid.

You can use up to a 4lb. roast to serve more people. If you use more than 3lbs., add another 1/2-1 TB of butter.

It is really helpful to have large and heavy duty foil for this, but if you don't have it, just make a larger piece by overlapping two smaller pieces of foil. The goal here is to have as little steam as possible escape during the cooking process so that the beef stays really moist and it renders and cooks in its own juices.

Leftovers are delicious! Eat them just the same as you did the night before or on a roll for a sandwich.

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