$12 Weeknight Pot Roast

Pot roast is a dinner classic, which you’d typically make on a weekend. It’s actually quite a cheap dinner to make, since it’s made from an inexpensive cut of beef, like a chuck roast.

Normally, it’d take all day to simmer the roast to get a tender texture, since chuck roast is a tough cut.

Luckily, we’ve found a faster way to make this delicious recipe. By using a pressure cooker instead of traditionally cooking methods to cook the roast, you’ll get equally delicious results in a fraction of the cost!

Now, you can make this classic Sunday dinner any night of the week.

The final result!
What you need to know:

Time to cook: 60 minutes (15 active minutes, 45 passive minutes)

Serves: 3 – 4 people.


  • Pressure cooker (Instant Pot or other)
Items to clean: (6 Total, about 5 minutes)
  • Pressure cooker pot and lid
  • 1 Cutting board
  • 1 knife
  • 2 forks (used to shred beef)
  • Tongs or spatula
  • 1 beef chuck roast (about 2-3 lbs)
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup baby carrots
  • 1 cup green beans
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 medium onions
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • Salt & pepper


  • Chop potatoes and onions into large chunks (cut each one into about 8 pieces)20180108_194230.jpg
  • Slice celery, trim the ends off the green beans, and mince the garlic
  • Salt and pepper chuck roast, then sear
    You can sear the meat in a pan OR directly in your Instant Pot.
    • If you’re using an Instant Pot:
      • Click “sautee” button and add oil
      • Once oil is heated, add beef
      • Flip beef once the first side is browned, then do the same thing on the other side (don’t cook the beef all the way through)
      • Once the meat is seared, click “cancel”
    • If not: 
      • Add oil to pan and heat over stovetop
      • Once oil is heated, add beef and brown on both sides (don’t cook it all the way through)
      • Remove from heat once the meat is seared
  • In pressure cooker, place carrots, green beans and chopped celery, potatoes, garlic and onions on top of the seared meat
  • Add beef broth, garlic powder, rosemary, and thyme

    Make sure you place the veggies on top of the meat.
  • Cook at high pressure for 45 minutes 
    • If using an Instant Pot, press “Manual”, then use “+” button to adjust the time. Don’t forget to shut the valve!
    • If not, refer to your pressure cooker’s instructions
  • When the cook time is done, release pressure immediately 
  • Shred the beef with forks and serve!

Here’s the breakdown (assuming you already have multi-use ingredients like spices and oil):

  • Chuck roast – $9
  • 2 onions – $0.60
  • 2 celery stalks – $0.40
  • 1 cup baby carrots – $1.50
  • 3 garlic cloves – $0.05
  • 4 potatoes – $0.75

TOTAL: $12.30 (or $3.10 per serving!)

* Prices depend on region and time of year. This calculation reflects what we paid. 


Pillars of Edibility Rating

Confused on what’s going on in this section? Find out more here.


Taste: 4/5. In our humble opinion, this recipe tasted delicious. For something quite simple to make, we don’t think it could taste any better than it already does.

Easiness: 4/5. This recipe is not exactly hard to make, but it’s not basic either. You’ll require some cooking skills, like searing meat and chopping vegetables. Most of the recipe, however, involves waiting for your pressure cooker to do the work for you.

Affordability: 4/5. This recipe costs about $3.10 per serving. This isn’t particularly expensive, but the cost of the meat drives the cost up more than all the other ingredients together.

Speed: 2/5: This recipe takes about an hour to make, which is quite long when you’re hungry. Most of the time is spent passively, waiting for the food to cook though. You have 45 minutes of wait time to do the dishes! Or, you know, something more fun!

Nutrition: 4/5. We think this recipe is quite well balanced between meats and vegetables. Depending on the broth you use, the sodium could be a little high. How healthy this is will also depend on your diet!

Ways to improve this recipe:
  • Use frozen vegetables instead of fresh
    • Improves speed since you won’t have to chop as many veggies
    • May reduce taste factor
  • Cook in a cast iron pan at a low temp for a long time
    • Slightly improves taste
    • Takes longer and harder to clean up after

Tried this recipe? Let us know if you liked it! 

How would you improve this recipe? 

What kind of recipes would you like us to make next? 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s