Boy, there’s hardly a better comfort food than good old-fashioned pot roast. You can use up an arm roast, a chuck roast, or pretty much any cut of meat you like. Using a pressure cooker almost guarantees a tender meat, and it cuts the cooking time needed to achieve that.
My pressure cooker is an Instant Pot. But if you have a stove-top pressure cooker, the directions are all the same. Pressure cooking (and the addition of some coffee) is the secret to moist, tender pot roast, no matter how tough a cut your meat is. The acid in the coffee breaks down those tough strands, and you don’t taste any coffee flavor.
Also, be sure to take the ten minutes (more, if you like) of natural pressure release: a quick release of pressure leads to dry meat. (Natural release = turn it off and leave the lid on; let it sit. After that, a quick release: move the vent to release the rest of the pressure.) Safety tip: Never try to remove the lid of a pressure cooker until all the steam / pressure is released through the valve, and the pressure pin drops.
Timing: Plan at least 3 hours from start to sitting down.
Amounts: I don’t measure anything by the pound. Our roast is maybe 2 1/2 pounds. Use 4 medium-large potatoes and 5 medium-large carrots (or the equivalents thereof). Just make sure everything fits in your pot without overfilling. For cooking time, chunks refers to a size of 1 – 3 bites, depending on your mouthful.
Tip: When I want thicker gravy, but don’t want to add more cornstarch, I sprinkle in some instant mashed potato flakes to the simmering gravy and stir, adding more until it reaches the desired consistency.
This recipe serves 4, generously.
1/4 cup olive oil
3 stalks celery, with leaves, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1/4 cup cooking red wine
3 pounds beef chuck pot roast, thawed (mine includes fat, and a bone)
1 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
2 cups beef broth, with a tablespoon
1 tablespoon instant coffee
dashes of Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and Tamari sauce
3 pounds potatoes, cut into medium-small chunks
1 pound carrots peeled and cut into chunks
1/4 cup cornstarch mixed well into 1/2 cup beef broth
Directions: Turn the pressure cooker to sauté. Once hot, add in the oil, then chopped onion and celery.
Brown the vegetables, then remove with a slotted spoon to a plate.
Sear meat on all sides, 3-4 minutes per side. Remove meat to the vegetable plate
Pour in red wine and scrape up any browned bits on bottom of instant pot.
Add roast back into pressure cooker, along with the cooked onion and celery.
Mix the instant coffee, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and Tamari sauce into the 2 cups of beef broth. Pour it all into the pot, over the vegetables and meat. Close and seal the lid.
Cook on high pressure for 45 min.
When the cook time has elapsed, allow for pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes, then quick-release the rest of the pressure.
Open instant pot and add in carrots and potatoes. Seal pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes.
Allow pressure cooker to naturally release pressure for 10 minutes before quick-releasing pressure. Remove the lid.
Remove meat, potatoes and carrots (along with the onion and celery, if you wish) to serving dishes; keep warm.
Set Instant Pot to Sauté. If needed, add more beef broth to make gravy. Let it come to a boil, then add broth and cornstarch slurry. Stir constantly until gravy comes to a boil again and thickens. Remove to a gravy boat.