I have a secret. The Instant Pot can make pot roast magic.
My family loves the taste of pot roast, but for budget reasons we rarely purchase beef roast. It’s hard to swallow $5-8/lb meat for a family of voracious eaters. There’s nothing like spending $25 on ONE dinner with hardly any leftovers.
I guess I should pleased that everyone loved it enough to polish it off… but all I could see were dollar signs.
When I finally purchased my first Instant Pot, I heard everyone raving about how delicious pot roast was. Many recipes called for cutting your large roast into 1-2″ chunks and cooking for 30 minutes (otherwise, it would take 90 minutes to achieve a tender roast).
So on a whim
because I’m lazy, I decided to try using stew meat. It was half the cost of buying a roast… and it was already cut into chunks for me. And you know something?
It worked. AND was insanely good.
I have since cooked my Instant-Pot-Stew-Meat-Pot-Roast for tons of company, including a special dinner for 15 guests. I smiled as everyone raved about how delicious and tender my pot roast was. They all quizzed me: “What did you put in this?!”
So every time I would say, “Well, I bought some stew meat….” and their jaw would drop open in disbelief.
I’m calling this a WIN!
Budget-Friendly Pot Roast with the Instant Pot
A few friendly tips:
- If you can’t do nightshades (or are AIP), substitute the tomato sauce for 1 cup of broth and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar. The acid of the vinegar will help tenderize your meat.
- Once your Instant Pot is finished cooking, I recommend allowing the pressure to release naturally or it could make the beef chewy. However, I will say that I have done a quick release more than once because we’ve been in a hurry and my meat was still fall-apart tender.
Overwhelmed by all the talk about Instant Pot accessories? Our comprehensive list tells you what you really need AND how to use them.
Want To Make A Freezer Meal?
I buy a large 4 pound package of stew meat from Costco (~$3.50/lb) and then divide the meat into these fantastic round containers.
I add my ingredients and stir to combine. Then I label and freeze.
When it’s time to cook, I can either thaw overnight, or I can pop it in the IP to cook directly from frozen (removing from the container, of course).
Get all my tips on how to make freezer meals — it saves my sanity!!!
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