Pressure Cooker Pot Roast
Fall-apart tender beef with soft and flavorful carrots and potatoes. A classic comfort food in a fraction of the time.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes (includes cooling time)
Calories: 300 per serving
Oh man. Pot roast. It’s near the top of my list of favorites from among my grandmother’s recipes. Meat that’s been soaking in its own juices until it’s falling apart under the weight of its own flavor. Potatoes, carrots and onion that have been basking in the beef’s afterglow…yeah. I’m pretty pot roast-obsessed.
But while my grandmother’s pot roast had to cook all day, the power of the pressure cooker means that we can go from zero to juicy perfection in just over an hour—ah, the magic of technology. Interestingly, though, not new technology.
As it turns out the first pressure cooker was invented by French OG Denis Papin in 1679. Yep, Papin discovered that by creating a sealed, high pressure environment, the boiling point of water increased, which meant that food cooked faster, as it could get hotter than at water’s normal boiling point. At the time, the invention did little more than score Papin entrance to the Royal Society of London, but pressure cookers grew in availability over time, experiencing a few changes along the way, culminating in our current electric models.
Beyond that, pressure cooking has a host of benefits, most of them stemming from the lower amount of water required to cook. You only need enough water in a pressure cooker to create steam (unlike in a slow cooker, where you generally need to cover whatever is in it in a liquid), so less energy is required to cook. Plus, food remains more flavorful and nutrient dense in a pressure cooker, because vital nutrients aren’t leached out by excessive water.
This recipe requires a deliciously fatty cut of beef—we’re not exactly going to be winning any healthy eating contests* here. But hey, it’s winter, and this is rib-sticking comfort food—with over half of your daily protein requirement and a third of your fat allowance (which pairs nicely with vitamin A in this recipe; nearly half your daily requirement!), this dish will fill you up. And at 300 calories, you have a wiggle room to add some greens (roasted brussels sprouts, anyone?).
Set your pressure cooker to sauté. Add 2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil.
Once the oil is heated, add the roast. Sauté for a few minutes, or until it begins to brown, then flip the roast and fry for a few minutes on the other side.
Sprinkle half the kosher salt (1 teaspoon) on the roast, then flip it and sprinkle the rest of the salt on that side.
Add ½ teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon dried Thyme, 2 teaspoons dried parsley, 2 teaspoons (4 small cloves) minced garlic, 1 quartered onion, 3 cubed potatoes, 1 cup diced carrots, 480 ml (2 cups) water
Close and lock the lid. Hit the Meat/Stew setting and let the pressure cooker work its magic!
When it beeps that it’s finished, allow it to sit for a few minutes before releasing the pressure valve