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Put a pot roast in the oven and watch what happens. There is something about the smell of roasting meat that turns a grumpy husband into a purring husband. Aroma therapy. It works every time! In this EASY recipe for Cranberry Pot Roast, beef chuck roast is seasoned with salt and pepper and browned on all sides. It’s nestled in a mixture of fresh cranberries, port wine, onion and beef stock, then braised for 3 hours in the oven. When it comes out, the incredibly tender roast melts in your mouth while the deliciously reduced cranberry port sauce adds a bright burst of flavor and tanginess. I love this served over Horseradish Mashed Potatoes or Mashed Cauliflower with Roasted Garlic ….so delicious!
Those of you who live here know how lucky we’ve been with our long warm summer, and our incredibly brilliant fall. And overnight, mother nature flipped a switch, and suddenly it’s winter, bone chilling winter. When the temperatures drop below freezing, it’s time to pull out the dutch oven and turn on the oven. Tis’ the season of roasting, baking and braising…aroma therapy.
For a few short weeks fresh cranberries will be available at the grocery stores. Most of them in our area come from the coast, but our local Main Market Co Op offers wild foraged cranberries from right around here.
When picking out meat for pot roast, chuck roast is the perfect cut of meat for roasting and braising because of its uniform marbling through out the meat. Always try to use, local organic and grass fed if possible. Make sure to season the roast generously with salt and pepper and brown all the sides really well.
Make sure to use a heavy bottomed dutch oven with a lid that has a good seal.
Seasoning and browning the roast is the KEY to a good roast, sealing in all the juices and creating that delicious crust everyone loves so much – so be patient and do this part well, and the recipe will absolutely reward you!
Place it into a 350F oven, for 3 hours.
When it comes out it will be tender, juicy and the meat will pull apart easily. The cranberries and port will have thickened into the most tangy and delicious sauce.
I hope you love this Cranberry Pot Roast as much as we have- such a cozy recipe, perfect for lazy Sundays, or small holiday gatherings.
Happy happy, Merry merry. -xoxo
Cranberry Pot Roast
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 3 hours
- Total Time: 3 hours 30 mins
- Yield: 4 1x
- Category: Main, beef recipes, holiday recipes
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Pacific Northwest
Cranberry Pot Roast – a simple festive recipe for beef roast, baked with fresh cranberries and roasted in the oven- tender, juicy and flavorful! Perfect for the holidays or a simple Sunday super.
- 1–2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 1/4– 2 1/2 pounds beef chuck roast- organic, grass fed, local if possible
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 large red onion
- 4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
- 1 large carrot
- 1 celery stalk
- 12 oz bag fresh cranberries ( or 4 cups)
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme ( or rosemary)
- 1 cup ruby port -a red port( do not use tauny port) the very inexpensive kind-found at most grocery stores, or sub a rich deep red wine ( like cab) and increase the sugar by 1 tablespoon)
- 2 cups beef stock
- 4 Tablespoons sugar ( or maple- see notes)
- 2 Tablespoons whole mustard seeds ( or whole grain mustard)
- Pre heat oven to 350F
- Heat oil in an oven proof dutch oven, over medium high heat. Rub chuck roast with salt and pepper on all sides, and brown all sides very well. Be patient here and get a good crust!
- While meat is browning, dice the onion, garlic, celery and carrot
- Once meat is nicely browned on all sides, set aside on a plate.
- Add onion, celery and carrot, to the same pan, turn heat to medium and sauté until they soften, about 5- 6 minutes.
- Add cranberries, ruby port, beef stock, sugar, thyme or rosemary, and mustard seeds and give a stir.
- Nestle meat into the middle, bring to a simmer, cover tightly and place in the oven.
- Bake for 3 hours ( or longer if a bigger cut of meat) Meat should be fork tender, and cranberry port sauce, reduced. If Sauce seems too thin, continue baking uncovered, or simmer on stove top, uncovered until it reduces and thickens a bit.
- Serve over mashed potatoes, mashed cauliflower or whipped sweet potatoes with a little cranberry sauce over top.
I’ve tried reducing the sugar, and it is just WAY too tart. I know it seems like a lot, but the fresh cranberries need this amount to balance it all out.
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 559
- Sugar: 21.3 g
- Sodium: 649.5 mg
- Fat: 19.2 g
- Saturated Fat: 4.7 g
- Carbohydrates: 36.2 g
- Fiber: 6.2 g
- Protein: 58.5 g
- Cholesterol: 167.6 mg
Keywords: Pot roast recipe, beef roast, cranberry recipes, cranberry pot roast, beef with cranberries, holiday roast, christmas roast, thanksgiving roast, chuck roast recipe, easy pot roast, easy beef recipe, holiday dinner recipe
I’ve made this a few times now and it never fails to impress and please
Awesome! Thanks so much!
I’m going to use a 4-1/2 lb roast….it seems to much to double everything? (8 cups cranberries etc.) Maybe 1-1/2 x instead?
Suggestions/thoughts if you will.
I think 1 1/2 x sounds about right!
would chicken broth work here just as well? Thank you!
Yes, absolutely Eva!
Hi Sylvia, family & I love your recipes!
I was hoping to make this but only have dried cranberries available, should I use them as they are or try rehydrating them? Maybe add cranberry juice?
Jasmin, you could use as it, but if they are sweetened, you’ll need to cut back on the sweetener here. Otherwise too sweet.
Hi! Could I use red wine vinegar as a sub for the wine? Is there a better non-alcoholic sub?
I would just skip the wine. Maybe add a splash of vinegar at the end to taste?
Amanda, re your question of what to sub for the wine in this dish. How about red verjus? It is juice of unripenened grapes. I am not sure you could replace the wine in this with the same amount of verjus. But I often use verjus, both white and red, to replace some or all of the wine in some dishes when cooking for family and friends who cannot have alcohol used in cooking.
After browning the roast the pan got really black. Will that impact the sauce? Thinking about moving it to a different pan. Or did making everything in one pan help the flavors?
If truly burnt, switch pans, if deeply “browned”, it should be ok.
Can you sub the Dutch oven for a slow cooker or a regular pot?
Yes, I think either would be fine, but not sure of timing.
Could you sub Splenda for the sugar?
I have not cooked with splenda, so not sure here.
I made this for Thanksgiving today in lieu of turkey and it was simply incredible. Only change I made is that I sprinkled pomegranate seeds on top which really made a beautiful, festive presentation. Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe! It was so good I shared it with my sister.
I want to make two Rosts… Can I put the both of them in the oven at the same time?
I don’t see why not?
Very very good! Savory, sweet, tart… perfectly balanced flavors! Making this again soon.
Another recipe to deceive my family into think I’m a pro chef! This is absolutely fantastic!! Everyone LOVED the roast and the sauce was perfect spooned over mashed potatoes.
Oh, and this was my first roast EVER and no one was the wiser 😉
Thanks Again Sylvia!
Wow Haley!!! That is awesome!
Is there any way to make this using a slow cooker?! What kind of changes would need to be made?
I’m pretty sure you could make it in a slow cooker- but I’m not a slow cooker expert- I’m sure you know more than me here. I’d only be guessing.
Wow – this is an amazing recipe! My family has now requested this roast for Christmas instead of the usual turkey or ham dinner. Thank you so much! I used maple syrup with a cab sav instead of the ruby port and sugar. Served with oven roasted root vegetables. It was perfection.
This recipe looks delicious. I’m going to try it this Sunday. Does the sauce have a beefy taste or just cranberry flavour?
Kind of both!
Delicious! Such an interesting combination and so, so good. I think I like this roast better than a traditional one with brown gravy. I can’t wait to make this for Christmas dinner!
This recipe was fantastic. I made a few modifications based on what I had. Used Pinot noir and maple syrup instead of port and sugar and omitted celery. It was absolutely amazing!! Perfect fall comfort food!
Great to hear!
This looks amazing! Can the recipe be made in an instant pot?
I Haven’t personally tried, but I’m guessing yes. If you do try it, will you let me know your adaptions?
My sister made this pot roast for us for Christmas dinner … it was amazing! After the meal, as my sister was putting away the remaining roast (she had doubled the recipe to feed all of us), I looked at the beautiful cranberry red juices and exclaimed, “that would be amazing in French Onion soup” … so my sister put some in a mason jar for me to bring home. I did make French Onion soup with it and I’d love to blog it … is it okay if I use one of your gorgeous photos in my post? I want to point them to your recipe to make the roast so they can have the juices to make the soup.
I cooked this last Xmas and It turned out absolutely delicious. Easy to cook and fingerlicking! I will incorporate it to my repertoire. I used 4 tableapoona of brown muscovado sugar and 2 of white sugar…just perfect. Many Thanks! You are a great inspiration!
Thanks Maria, glad it turned out!