Pot Roast with Sherry, Onions, Thyme, & Sour Cream

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Sep 19, 2010 at 6:30pm

OK, I gave in, but just a teeny tiny bit. I’m still grilling, but I was so chilly last night and today that somehow a chuck roast found its way into my grocery cart and lo, a pot roast was born. We need some braising birth control around here stat – aka sunshine! warmth! – or I’m going completely over to the dark side of soups, stews, and all things slow-roasted.

In September.

This can’t happen.

This honeymoon baby is pretty straightforward – browned, braised until falling apart, and finished with vegetables. I added sherry to the pot, along with thyme, and finished the pan sauce with a little sour cream. All completely recognizable, with perhaps a bit extra flavor.

There are three keys to a terrific pot roast: 1) season liberally with garlic and salt, 2) brown deeply and thoroughly before adding liquid, and 3) cook as low and slow as you can.

I’ve found that I can achieve the lowest, slowest braise in a 225 degree F oven, even with extra low burners on my cooktop. I also like that it’s out of sight, if not out of smell (what a fragrance!), and I tend to leave it alone for a solid three hours before I start poking at it.

When it’s falling apart tender, it is not only irresistible…but also, of course, done.


Pot Roast with Sherry, Onions, Thyme, & Sour Cream
Serves 6

3-4 lb. chuck roast
2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced into slivers
coarse salt
1 Tbsp. oil
1 medium onion, peeled, trimmed, quartered
1/2 c. dry sherry
1/2 c. chicken or beef broth
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 bay leaf
3 large carrots, peeled, cut into 2×1/2-inch sticks
4 medium red potatoes, quartered
2 Tbsp. sour cream
freshly ground black pepper
handful of fresh parsley, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 225 degrees F. Poke chuck roast in several places with a small sharp knife and press slivers of garlic into the holes. Sprinkle coarse salt generously over roast. Heat a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add oil to pan and brown the roast thoroughly on all sides. Remove roast to a large plate. Add onion to the pan, sprinkle lightly with salt, and saute for 2-3 minutes. Settle roast on top of onion, pour any accumulated juices into the pan, then pour in sherry and broth and add thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, cover, and transfer to the oven.

Bake roast for 3 hours (make sure it’s gently simmering; if not, increase heat a bit), until falling-apart tender. Add carrots and potatoes to the pan and cook for another 30 minutes, until vegetables are just tender. Remove roast and vegetables to a serving platter, cover loosely with foil, and transfer to a warm oven. Skim fat from pan juices, remove bay leaf, and whisk in sour cream. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Slice roast, top roast and vegetables with fresh parsley, and serve with pan sauce.

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Older Comments

  1. By FreshTartSteph on April 17, 2011 at 9:29PM

    Snippets of Thyme - Smell the slow-cooked goodness is a braise of a line, goooood. Awesome, thank you. And...I agree, slow-cooked beef = heaven :)

  2. By FreshTartSteph on April 17, 2011 at 9:27PM

    Thanks MikeKostyo, ha, someone appreciates my silliness, love it. And thank you for compliment on photo - way cool :)

  3. By MikeKostyo on April 15, 2011 at 9:18AM

    "I write about cooking, not vampires." Hahaha. Great line! This looks delicious! I think it's so hard to photograph pot roast, but you mastered it!

  4. By Snippets of Thyme on April 15, 2011 at 5:50AM

    I am such a sucker for slow cooked beef. This dish looks so delicious and your photography is excellent! I can smell the slow cooked goodness.

  5. By heather_sb on October 7, 2010 at 8:49AM

    Just to let you know, I halved your recipe for use with a thinner under blade chuck steak. I cooked it slightly less than 2.5 hours, and added a couple glugs more wine (and a splash of water so it wasn't too strong) throughout cooking since the amount of liquid to start cooked off quicker. It was fabulous. We couldn't get enough, and in fact, we ate the whole thing!

    Cheers and thanks for the great recipe,


  6. By FreshTartSteph on October 1, 2010 at 6:42AM

    @T.G. - yes! And thank you!

  7. By T.G. on September 30, 2010 at 2:39PM

    What an absolutely mouth watering recipe. One more key thing to a terrific pot roast is grass fed beef. I work with La Cense Beef, and the flavor of grass fed beef is incredible. It is lower in calories and fat, and the meat is so very tender.

  8. By FreshTartSteph on September 24, 2010 at 4:32PM

    @heather - I hope it works out well, although I personally think chuck is the king of cuts, always delicious. Good luck!

  9. By FreshTartSteph on September 24, 2010 at 4:31PM

    Hahaha, yes, it's unbelievable that my name ended up in the stratosphere. I get a lot of tweets from folks wondering how Edward & Bella are doing :) And our names aren't even spelled the same way! Funny - although sorry to freak you out. Yes, crusty bread...fabulous.

  10. By Nhiro on September 24, 2010 at 1:31PM

    I read your name and freaked out momentarily. So glad you're not the OTHER S. Meyer. (:

    This dish looks so good. Great with crusty french bread, I bet.

  11. By heather_sb on September 24, 2010 at 12:34PM

    i'd intended to use a recipe for braised brisket to cook my giant chuck under blade steak, which may or may not have worked ... so i'm glad to have stumbled upon this first -- a recipe that actually calls for chuck, and a similar preparation to what i'm looking for. hallelujah.

    cheers and thanks,


  12. By FreshTartSteph on September 22, 2010 at 6:46AM

    Thanks Lauren! My favorite part is the leftovers (which are now gone). I cut the roast in small pieces, add more broth and aromatic vegetables to the sauce, and make a hearty soup. Good stuff.

  13. By lauren on September 21, 2010 at 3:08PM

    Yummy, it looks super tasty.

  14. By FreshTartSteph on September 21, 2010 at 7:44AM

    Thanks Maria, you're so sweet! Esp since I know you'd prefer a good veggie stew :)

  15. By Maria Lichty on September 19, 2010 at 6:40PM

    Great dish to welcome fall!