Looking for a More Interesting Roast Beef
February 2, 2018 11:24 AM   Subscribe

I am in the mood for slow cooker roast beef. Chuck roast cooked until it's just about falling apart, smothered in some sort of nice sauce. Trouble is I'm bored of the plain ol' brown gravy and carrot/potato combo. Is there a more interesting take on slow cooker roast beef I can try?
posted by FakeFreyja to Food & Drink (27 answers total) 48 users marked this as a favorite
You can use Korean influenced flavors. This is for short ribs, but could be adapted to chuck roast easily enough. This is more of a marinade, that might be a bit more adaptable.
posted by furnace.heart at 11:30 AM on February 2, 2018 [3 favorites]

I'd wonder if spiking the braising liquid with something more interesting might work well. Yuzu koshō comes to mind; I've used it as a add-in to stews with Japanese flavors to good effect.
posted by Making You Bored For Science at 11:32 AM on February 2, 2018

Ropa Vieja!
posted by dis_integration at 11:35 AM on February 2, 2018 [3 favorites]

Carbonnade a la Flamande - basicly it is Belgian beef stew made with a ton of onions and a lovely Belgian beer that makes it a bit sweet and a bit sour. I don't necessarily endorse this particular recipe but I bet you could find one that is slow cooker compatible/adaptable.
posted by mmascolino at 11:41 AM on February 2, 2018 [2 favorites]

This slow cooker Italian pot roast with or without polenta is incredible. It's basically a change up of the spices, not technique. I never make any other pot roast.
posted by Elsie at 11:46 AM on February 2, 2018 [3 favorites]

You could do BBQ this way; I do pork bbq in the slow cooker all the time but beef would work fine.
posted by The otter lady at 11:48 AM on February 2, 2018 [1 favorite]

A few years ago a relative and her kids made jars of "Mexican hot chocolate" powder with ground chili pepper in it as Christmas gifts for everyone in my household. It was nicely blended and made with quality ingredients, but not quite to anyone's taste.

So I started mixing it with salt, pepper, vinegar, and a touch of liquid smoke to use as the sauce for ribs I made in the electric crock pot and it turned out absolutely phenomenal, for both pork and beef. I'd expect that it would work well for a roast cut done in a slow cooker also. I would assume you can probably just use plain hot chocolate and mix in the ground chili.

(Note that "chili powder" as found in American supermarkets is a mixture of several spices and isn't the correct ingredient, I wouldn't expect... looking in my spice rack what I've got that seems appropriate is labeled "ground red pepper". Or you could probably go with fresh or dried whole peppers minced up, I suppose.)
posted by XMLicious at 11:50 AM on February 2, 2018 [3 favorites]

Simple and easy flavorful crockpot beef, great for eating as is, or shredding and putting into a roll with melted mozzarella or other melty cheese:

Insert garlic cloves in cuts made into the beef, add a jar of pepperocini (marinated yellow peppers) including the liquid. Cook in crockpot 6-8 hours
posted by IpsoFacto at 11:52 AM on February 2, 2018 [1 favorite]

XMLicious' sounds like a twist on mole.
posted by rhizome at 11:56 AM on February 2, 2018 [2 favorites]

Check out recipes for braised brisket. There are slow cooker adaptations. Also, you could try making corned beef or pastrami.
posted by SemiSalt at 11:56 AM on February 2, 2018

This Jamaican beef stew is really good. I replace the steak sauce with Pickapeppa sauce and splash some more Pickapeppa on when its in the bowl.
posted by General Malaise at 12:04 PM on February 2, 2018 [2 favorites]

have heard good things about the infamous mississppi roast but i've never tried it. the ny times recipe replaces a lot of the packaged ingredients but you can go oldschool with the ranch dressing mix and a thousand pounds of butter or whatever
posted by kerning at 12:24 PM on February 2, 2018

slow cooker shredded beeves: combine a roast in the slow cooker with canned french onion soup and some au jus gravy mix. cook until tender, then shred and serve on buns.
posted by cosmicbandito at 12:33 PM on February 2, 2018

One of my favorite flavors to pair with beef is ponzu sauce.

I'd cook the roast simply flavored (salt and pepper, no bbq sauce etc.) and dip in the ponzu or serve it with the sauce drizzled on top. Look up "beef tataki" or "beef carpaccio" recipes for inspiration. Potential toppings/sides: scallions, shredded daikon, onions, garlic, arugula or other greens, tomatoes...Have it with white rice and it could be a nice beef bowl.

Another favorite beef method, though I've tried it only with tritip, is to marinate it in soy sauce + olive oil + garlic before roasting. (Not sure whether a slow cooker would get hot enough to get that "grilled soy sauce" flavor, though...)
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 12:44 PM on February 2, 2018 [1 favorite]

I make a French-style beef stew, where I stew in white wine, thyme and garlic, than add Dijon mustard at the end. Any veggies work: I like mushrooms and pearl onions. You can also add a can of crushed tomatoes to switch it up.
posted by Valancy Rachel at 12:46 PM on February 2, 2018

I make a Beef Barbacoa in the slow cooker and then have tacos/burritos/sandwiches/over rice.
My husband says it is his favourite thing that comes out of a slow cooker:
posted by dotparker at 1:17 PM on February 2, 2018 [1 favorite]

Seconding kerning re: Mississippi roast! It is so very easy to make (beef, butter, ranch dressing mix, pepperoncini - definitely use 1/2 the jar, not the wussy 3-4 the recipe tells you to chuck in). Soooo gooood. Now I need to make it again.
posted by sweetpotato at 1:38 PM on February 2, 2018

Budget Bytes has some good recipes for shredded beef, including Beef Ragu and Southwest Shredded Beef.
posted by kittydelsol at 2:30 PM on February 2, 2018

I sometimes throw in a couple unpeeled cloves of garlic, two big blops of Dijon mustard, 1/4 to 1/2 cup red wine vinegar and some anchovies. This is from Marcella Hazan. It makes lots of delicious sauce and is absolutely zero effort. Just toss it all in the pot and turn on the heat. You can squeeze out the garlic cloves at the end. Marcella calls for pancetta, too, which I never have, but it’s still great.
posted by bluebird at 2:32 PM on February 2, 2018 [2 favorites]

I keep meaning to make this Asian style short ribs recipe.
posted by vunder at 2:44 PM on February 2, 2018

A Thai Massaman Beef Curry with its peanuts and potatoes can be really good. You can buy ready-made massaman curry paste.
posted by ShooBoo at 5:01 PM on February 2, 2018 [2 favorites]

My mom studded hers with garlic then browned in cast iron skillet with oil, salt and pepper. Into crock pot with whole mushrooms and quarted onions. Served with creamed potatoes and steamed whole reen beans.
posted by bjgeiger at 6:50 PM on February 2, 2018

Ctrl-F horseradish … wait, what?

No-one's suggested horseradish, the one thing that will un-boring beef? Sheesh.

If you're not down with weeping beautiful burning tears already, start with the mild. If you're not ready for it, hot will make blood come out your nose.
posted by scruss at 8:25 PM on February 2, 2018

Pedro ximenez does wonders for slow cooked beef.
posted by the duck by the oboe at 9:06 PM on February 2, 2018

I have another super-easy one! And it looks like I even have the original recipe written down, even though it isn't actually how I make it. It sounds a little weird, and it looks pretty dubious when you start it, but it's delicious. It's tangy and savory and sweet, and it isn't at all boring.

Zippy Cranberry Potroast

16oz can tomato sauce
16oz can cranberry sauce
1T horseradish
1T powdered mustard
3T apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup red wine, cranberry juice, or water
1T vegetable oil.
3lb roast

Combine first 7 ingredients in Dutch oven, bring to boil, simmer for 5 minutes. Add meat, cover, cook on low for 2-3 hours or until meat is very tender. Remove meat, cook sauce down to desired thickness.

I don't actually measure anything but the cans. I use regular brown mustard instead of powdered, and usually add a good bit more of it and the horseradish than the recipe suggests. I totally didn't remember that the recipe has you add oil, and I never do that. If I'm cooking it in a Dutch oven I brown the roast first. But really, mostly I just chuck everything into a slow cooker and put it on low for 8 hours, sometimes with vegetables thrown in.
posted by Akhu at 8:56 AM on February 3, 2018 [1 favorite]

Pursuant to scruss' comment, Beef on weck (we use pretzel rolls in lieu of kimmelweck).
posted by koucha at 7:51 AM on February 6, 2018

I've got a Mississippi Roast in the slow cooker right now, and it smells amazing. It's making it impossible to work from home as all I want to do is eat something.
posted by COD at 8:35 AM on February 6, 2018

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