Pot Roast with Butternut Squash and Dried Plums
Slow roasted Pot Roast with Butternut Squash and Dried Plums is the best comfort food around. A wonderful choice for Sunday supper, easy to make and leftovers are even better the next day. Methods for oven roasting and slow cooker are shared for this recipe.
It’s been raining for days now….I’m feeling soggy. And tired. There’s something about rainy days that make me incredibly sleepy. And wine, that makes me sleepy too. Last night I had too much wine and today it’s rainy so I just want to lie down and take a little snooze. Anywhere…even on the disgusting airport floor where I am right this minute. A little nap would make me so happy. But instead I’m going to tell you about this pot roast I made early this week that I can’t wait to dig into when I get home. It’s comforting and savory…fall apart tender and just plain amazing.
I love to combine sweet and savory with my braised meats…it’s just a thing I do. The combination and complexity of flavors just makes my tastebuds jump for joy with every single bite I take. That’s why I feel that Sunday dinner should only consist of foods that are cooked low and slow….like this bolognese sauce. Or these slow cooked short ribs. It’s a lazy day…why not make some lazy food. And by lazy food, I don’t mean stroll into the kitchen and whip up a PB&J sandwich. I mean…the food is lazy, you have to help it along and then let it nap…in the oven for a reeeeaallly long time. Just like I want to do on the airport floor.
I’ve made a ton of roasts in my lifetime but this Pot Roast with Butternut Squash and Dried Plums is pure heaven. And don’t fear the dried plums….I know you know what they are (prunes)…but they add something mysterious to the dish and they pair amazingly well with the tender beef that just melts in your mouth. When I developed the recipe I thought about adding raisins but thought they may just dissolve into nothingness. The
prunes dried plums hold up well to the braising so you still get big bites of fruit in every forkful.
Pot Roast with Butternut Squash and Dried Plums is absolutely amazing served on top of a heaping pile of mashed potatoes for an easy, complete meal. The braising liquid creates the perfect sauce that gets all sopped up by the potatoes and it’s so good you will continue to eat until your pants bust open. It’s wonderful for a family dinner and equally perfect for entertaining but let me make a suggestion…wear pants that won’t pop open if you eat too much. Your guests may never return again.
If you’re looking for even more easy slow cooked dinner ideas, try these reader favorites:
- Crock Pot Mississippi Pot Roast
- Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches
- Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
- Slow Cooker Butter Chicken
Pot Roast with Butternut Squash and Dried Plums
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 3- pound chuck roast tied
- Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
- 3 ribs celery diced
- 2 large vidalia onions diced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup tomato paste
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 3 sprigs fresh sage
- 3 cups beef stock
- 2 cups 1/2-inch diced butternut squash
- 6 to 8 dried plums cut in half
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees (or prepare slow cooker)
- In a large dutch oven, heat the oil over med-high heat. Season the roast liberally with salt and pepper. Add the roast to the pan and sear until golden brown, approximately 6-7 minutes. Turn the roast over and repeat searing until all sides are golden brown. Remove the roast from the pot and set aside.
- Add the celery and onions to the pot and cook until softened. Stir in the red pepper and garlic cooking for one minute. Stir in the tomato paste and cook until it becomes a deep burgundy color. Add the red wine and vinegar to the pan to deglaze scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to remove the brown bits. Stir in the cinnamon.
- For the slow cooker, add the beef to the slow cooker at this point and pour the onion mixture over it. Add the bay leaves, thyme, rosemary and sage to the slow cooker. Add the beef stock. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 7-8 hours. When the roast has one hour left, add the squash and plums. Cook for one more hour and then transfer to the roast to a platter to slice. Serve with the squash, plums and sauce.
- For the oven, add the roast back to the pan. Tie the herbs together with kitchen twine and add to the pot. Add the beef stock and cover. Transfer the pot to the oven and roast for 1 hour. Check the liquid level and add 1/2 cup of stock if needed (if the roast is less than half covered, add stock). Replace the lid and cook for another hour. Add the squash and plums (and more stock if needed). Cover and continue cooking for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for 30 more minutes.
- Transfer the roast to a serving platter and allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving with the squash, plums and sauce.