What’s the best dinner for a busy weeknight? The kind that is ready for me the minute I walk in the door.
I may work from home, but that doesn’t mean that I am able (or willing!) to cook dinner every night. And while I’m the queen of quick meals, sometimes I’d like to eat something that requires more time to develop complex flavors, something with a stick-to-your-ribs heartiness. And especially as the Polar Vortex made life chilly (at least here on the East Coast) nicely through even mid-April (yes, it snowed when I got back from PaleoFx in Austin!), a warm, comforting meal was just what this foodie ordered.
It is tough sometimes to get dinner on the table, especially in the day-to-day rush that so many of us experience. That's why I sometimes like to rely on my slow cooker to do the work for me! At the end of the day, this one-pot meal provides a tasty, nutrient-dense meal that everyone will love.
This simple weeknight pot roast relies on tough cuts of meat that benefit from long and slow cooking to melt the gelatinous connective tissue. Searing the meat before adding it to the crockpot creates a deeper, more intense flavor, which is key for braised meats since they can become bland and boring. Not this roast, though! Simple spices, some red wine or balsamic vinegar, and lots of onions and garlic blend together to pack a flavorful punch. Serve over some mashed cauliflower for a perfect all-American dinner.
- 1 tablespoon bacon fat or coconut oil
- 1 1/2 pounds beef pot roast, brisket, or stew meat
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 medium onions
- 4-6 cloves garlic
- 8 small potatoes, roughly chopped
- 13.5 ounces diced tomatoes (no salt added)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup red wine or balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon oregano
In a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat, melt the cooking fat and allow the pan to heat up while you prepare the meat. Season all sides of the meat generously with salt, pepper, and garlic. When the pan is hot, sear the meat for 1-2 minutes per side or until it begins to brown slightly.
While the meat browns, roughly chop the onions and smash the garlic. If you're using carrots instead of the potatoes (or in addition to, if you like), peel and roughly chop them now. Place all of the vegetables into the slow cooker, then once the meat has finished browning on each side, place it on top of the vegetables.
Top the meat and vegetables with the tomatoes, water, and wine. Add the remaining salt, pepper, garlic, and oregano.
Set the slow cooker to low and cook 6-8 hours. Finish it on high for an hour with the lid slightly open if you prefer to reduce the braising liquid before serving.
Serve over mashed cauliflower/cauliflower purée