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If you asked me what meal I hated most as a child, that even ended up with me getting a little swat to the behind, it was my mom’s slow cooker braised beef roast and carrots. Both of my parents worked hard, had full-time jobs and coached youth sports before I started to play. I’d tag along with one of them to practice, or hold down the home front with the other. When my mom wasn’t able to be there for dinner, she always made sure my dad and I were well fed.
She’d make it easy for us, whether that be portioned out leftovers or something in the crockpot like wild rice soup or a beef roast similar to this. Even though it was a great meal, there was something about the smell, as well as the mushy texture of the carrots that I turned my nose up at.
One day I decided to try and pull a fast one on my dad instead of hating every bite. As he was finishing up a phone call, I quickly headed to the bathroom and dumped the carrots and most of the beef into the wastebasket. Clearly at 5 years old I didn’t quite understand that the smell wasn’t going to be absorbed by the tissues I threw on top of it.
Unfortunately for me he went to the bathroom after getting off the phone, and my heart sank. I heard him mumble “What is that smell?”….. I knew I was in trouble. A quick swat to my behind and no bedtime snack was the price I paid.
And then there I was last week, taking my first bite of this slow-braised beef with carrot mash, feeling like I had just hit the comfort food jackpot. It had cooked for about 6 hours, the meat so tender, practically falling apart as I pulled the chuck roast out (which tends to be a tougher cut if you don’t let it cook super slowly).
Another reason why for the most part, I haven’t felt deprived as I go along this autoimmune protocol journey. Real food is just damn delicious food.
Part of the success lies in searing the garlic-rubbed meat to hold all the juices in, which I was able to do all in one-pot because I used my new KitchenAid Multi-Cooker. You can also do something similar with beef brisket in the Instant Pot.
Leeks, thyme and olives impart so much flavor into this beef dish, and the carrots as they roast. Quick tip: woody herbs like rosemary like thyme are great for slow cooker meals because they can withstand the heat, and also have more savory notes than let’s say dill which adds brightness.
Instead of leaving the carrots in the withered segments they had “melted” into, I simply mashed them, no extra fat needed because they soak up that of the beef.
I couldn’t help but make a simple sauce/gravy out of those extra bits of leeks, garlic and juices that had collected at the bottom pan either. All I did was add a little tapioca starch to thicken it.
This one-pot meal makes great leftovers too, something that I’m coming to rely on so much more with AIP because you can’t just grab some crackers, cheese, nuts & wine.
You know I’ve talked about those single lady dinners before. And although I do miss the convenience of that and some of my favorite things, I relish the way I feel after I nourish myself with all the nutrient-dense food I’m eating.
And big thanks to KitchenAid for letting me try out their new Multi-Cooker (image below) – whoa, talk about blown away. It does EVERYTHING. But better yet, its one of the easiest appliances to run that I’ve owned despite all of the bells and whistles. I would compare it to a Mac computer – looks super fancy, yet so intuitive and easy to get started with, no hour long manual reading needed.
It has settings like saute, sear, soup, yogurt, risotto, rice, boil/steam, simmer, slow cook low and high and you can also just set it at a certain temperature to cook at. It even has an arm that you can attach to it to periodically stir your soup, casserole or whatever deliciousness you’re cooking up. Seriously genius. I made rice for Brian in it and it turned out perfect. Now I can get rid of our rice cooker and free up precious kitchen space. And I’m making coconut yogurt later this week!
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I loved smelling this cook in my house all day! This recipe was a hit with my family! That’s saying a lot because my husband tends to hate pot roast! Thank you so much for making AIP easy!
Yay, glad it was loved by the whole family!
So good! Will definitely make again!
yay, so glad you liked the recipe!
Low for 6 hours and beef looks slightly medium. Do I need to cook longer or is this okay?
You could probably go a little longer so that’s it’s really tender. But nothing wrong with medium if you like it that way!
I LOVE this recipe!! So far made it twice and it’s been a hit with everyone!! Quick question, what happens to the leeks after cooking? Do you mash them with the carrots??
so glad you like the recipes! yes, you can mash them with the carrots.
I found this awesome recipe from another blogger’s post and now I can’t find that one :( :(
I make this recipe loads of times – it always turns out brilliantly. I love that it’s so effortless – a bit of searing and browning and then in the slow cooker. And the olives work beautifully with it. All the family look forward to when I make this, and now the weather’s getting colder I’ll be using my slow cooker more and cooking this more often. Great recipe!
Is it good without olives? My dad hates them!
Hi Susan! Yes, this recipe is still delicious without olives. However, I would add more onions, and increase the salt by 1/4 teaspoon, at least. Enjoy!
Hey Amanda! Love this recipe :) Your photography is so gorgeous. I featured this on my Paleo AIP holiday recipe link post!
thank you Michelle!
Thanks, Amanda! :) You were right – I wanted to make sure it was cooked in time for dinner, so I put it on high for 1 hour, then left it on for another 5.5-6 on low. It was terrific!
yay, so glad you liked the recipe! xo
Just what I was looking for! Love that it includes olives! I have it in the slow cooker now, but I used a 3.2lb roast and some extra carrots, seasoning, etc. Will it need to cook for longer than the 5-6 hours? Thanks for the recipe!
Hi Cindi! I would say 6 1/2 to 7 hours will get you to a tender, juicy pot roast because of the extra meat. You can certainly check it at 6 though, and if it falls apart, you’re ready to enjoy!
This was delicious! My husband hates olives and carrots, but he loved this roast and even ate some of the carrot mash.
So great to hear! And always love when even the men dig into the vegetables :)
Hi, I was wondering if there could be a way to make the carrot mash as a side dish for a separate meal. Could I just use the slow cooker and cook down the carrots, or is there a quicker way? Thank you!
Hi Teagan! You could steam the carrots until very soft and tender with fresh thyme, then mash them with 2 tablespoons of olive oil or butter. Hope that helps!
Oh Amanda, these photos and this dish are just stunning. Brava my friend!!
Gosh, thanks Alanna. Not nearly as gorgeous as your photos, but that’s what practice is for! Meat can be so tricky to capture. Countdown is on until my visit to San Fran!
this recipe looks delicious! I have a new pressure cooker that I am looking to start using more. Any idea as to how this would work in a pressure cooker?
Hi Krysta! I don’t have a pressure cooker so haven’t made it that way, but maybe using this chuck roast pressure cooker method, not the ingredients, would be a start? http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/pot-roast-in-an-electric-pressure-cooker.html
Let me know if you end up trying it! xo
Amanda, I just got the multi-cooker from KitchenAid and can make this!!! This looks sooooooo good!!! Pinned and making this!
While I agree with all said above, I’m curious about the actual cooking of it. I’m really wanting to start this eating.
When you say don’t let it touch the bottom, are you saying make sure all the carrots or at least enough of the carrots are underneath so the meat doesn’t touch? Why is that? I’m curious not at all being condescending. And no more liquid is added at all?
Hi Kathy! Yes, I mean make sure it’s nestled on top and with carrots surrounding it so that air has a chance to circulate around the meat. The other thing this does is let the natural juices of the meat drip into the carrots, which gives them SO much flavor! The recipe calls for adding 1/4 cup water because as it cooks, more water will be produced from the steam. So if you add more, things might get a little soggy – the sugars won’t caramelize in the carrots and the crispy edges of the meat.
Hope that helps and you enjoy!
YUM! I LOVE a nicely braised beef dinner – this one is no exception. Looks fantastic!
Ha, your story about childhood meals sounds very familiar (I also tried the sneaky food dumping trick too and never got away with it!). This looks absolutely delicious though and proves that you can still make delicious + nourishing food, whatever dietary restrictions you have!
Kathryn, if I ever have children, I’m guessing they’ll probably try it too :) I’m enjoying creating new food while healing, and appreciate your support! xo
Ha! At least you hid it in the trash can! I used to put my beef under my chair at dinner…I think the idea of mashing up the overcooked carrots is genius! Overcooked carrots are the worst texture ever, but mashed up? It’s like sweet mashed potatoes. Also – I TOTALLY want one of those multi-cookers now!
Okay, putting beef under your chair is hilarious! We would have made a good team :) And I’m glad I’m not the only who can’t stand overcooked carrots. I really do love the multi-cooker. Making yogurt in it is so awesome, and it actually keeps a steady temperature instead of being so sporadic.
This looks like such comfort food! Where I live a cold snap and some snow is expected tomorrow, so I thi a beef roast is in order!
I wish I had a generous bowlful of this slow cooked beef right now – it looks very warming, comforting and nourishing. Just what I need!
Thalia, thanks for stopping by! As I try to move into springtime flavors, this seems to be a good bridge. The carrots add freshness and color. Have a great weekend!
Okay, I need this. STAT. In my belly. pinning this right now!
I’d deliver if I could Rachel!
Oh my gosh haha, I totally laughed out loud at thinking about you trying to hid the food with the tissues. I could imagine the look on your dad’s face. Ps. Love the beef in this blog post, we’ve got to make this soon!
Thanks for a ride down memory lane. That’s why you never were thrilled when I had your family over for a beef roast dinner. Love your story telling of your life. Makes me feel like your hear talking to me. Grandma
That’s right :) One of the few meals I didn’t like. Your sauerkraut and dumplings was always my favorite.
I only wish you were right here with me grandma, love you!
What a perfect dinner for a winter day! I used my instant pot to sear the meat and then flipped it over to slow cook mode for a one pot meal. My family loved it! The meat was tender and juicy, and the carrots had all the delicious flavors of the meat. The sauce was perfect. This will definitely be made again and again!
Ok, you totally nailed the white-on-white shot here! Seriously, the lighting is gorgeous and I love how you captured the slight sheen on the meat! Well done and this sounds delicious!
Your beef looks delicious, you cooked it to perfection! Tell me about the Kitchen Aid Multi Cooker, how is it different to a regular slow cooker? What is the size of the cooker insert?
Beautiful!! A similar meal was one of my favorites growing up too..although I am pretty sure there was some sort of weird powdered mix involved (long before we knew better!)
I love a good one pot meal and I’ve been hearing a lot of good things about the KitchenAid Multi-Cooker lately.
It’s amazing how our palates change overtime. This looks like a wonderful meal! And that meat looks incredibly tender!
This is so inviting, beautiful, and delicious. I could eat it all right now.
Enjoyed your story, Amanda, of what you did at 5 years old with your dish. :)
This is pure comfort, delicious food and I wouldn’t turn my nose on it. If anything, I would savor the delicious aroma of the beef, especially when its cooking. Luv that multi-cooker! :)
Cristina, was fun taking a trip down memory lane that’s for sure. Funny how we grow to love certain foods! I think part of that is we know how to impart flavors more now than we used to. The thyme and leeks really add a lot to this dish.
This looks so delicious!!! I love how you’re eating through this…yum!! xx
Rebecca, it feels so good too. I don’t miss a lot of things on AIP, it just gets tough when I want a quick snack. But that’s what leftovers are for now!
This looks super delicious!
I would have traded this for my disgusting beef liver dinners any time you wanted! We took in a cat and I’d try to feed all my liver to the cat, what a God send while it lasted! LOL!
Gah, what a fun story you have too! Hope you enjoy this beef roast and comfort meal :)
This beef looks so perfectly cooked and those mashed carrots must taste amazing with it!
Yum. I love the slow cooker! And yeah, when you have time to sear the meat first it’s great. I love this!
Yes, the searing is so key Marye! That’s why I love that you could do both things, the searing & slow cooking in this multi-cooker.