Slow-cooker roast beef

This all-in-one slow cooker roast beef joint means you don’t have to lose your weekend in the kitchen to enjoy a traditional Sunday roast dinner. The beef is meltingly tender and stays juicy. It’s not one for those who like a rare roast, but rather more for pot roast fans.


  • 1–2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1.2kg/2lb 12oz beef brisket joint
  • 2 onions, halved
  • 1.4kg/3lb 3oz medium–large, similarly sized, floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper
  • 6 carrots, peeled and trimmed
  • 4 tbsp cornflour
  • 1 tbsp dried mixed herbs or herbes de provence
  • 1 tsp English mustard powder
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp yeast extract
  • 200ml/7fl oz red wine (optional, see recipe tip)
  • 1 beef stock pot
  • 1 litre/1¾ pint boiling water
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 900g/2lb mixed green vegetables, cooked, to serve


  1. Preheat the slow cooker to the lowest setting.

  2. Place a large, heavy-based frying pan over a high heat. Rub the oil all over the brisket joint, then season well with salt and pepper. Sear in the pan on all sides until well coloured all over. Lift into the slow cooker.

  3. Push the onion halves into the gaps around the beef, then the potatoes, and finally fit the carrots over and around the top. Put the kettle on.

  4. Put half of the cornflour, the mixed herbs and mustard powder in a measuring jug. Use a fork to mash in the tomato purée, followed by the Worcestershire sauce and yeast extract. Gradually pour in the red wine until you have a smooth paste and all the wine is incorporated.

  5. Add the beef stock pot then the boiling water. Pour this mixture all over the beef and vegetables, put the slow cooker lid on and cook for 9 hours. The beef and vegetables should be meltingly tender.

  6. Carefully lift the beef, carrots and potatoes onto a platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Pour everything else into a wide saucepan and bring to the boil.

  7. Mash a small amount of the gravy into the remaining cornflour to make a smooth paste. Whisk back into the rest of the gravy.

  8. Boil until reduced by about a third and thickened to a gravy. At this stage you can discard the onions – or if you love slow-cooked onions, slice and mix with the other vegetables.

  9. Pull apart the beef into large chunks using a pair of forks. Discard any leftover fat. Push the beef to one side of the platter and arrange the vegetables alongside – halving the potatoes as you go.

  10. Season the gravy with salt and pepper, spoon a little over the beef and vegetables, then put the rest into a jug and serve with plenty of green veg and the sides of your choice.

Recipe Tips

Cooking a joint of beef in the slow cooker isn’t hard, but the result can depend on the beef joint you choose. Brisket is a great value cut of beef – perfect for long, gentle cooking in a slow cooker. But silverside and topside work well too.

If you can get 6 medium–large potatoes that each weigh about 225g/8oz – perfect!

If you don’t want to use the red wine, just add the equivalent amount more beef stock.

Slow-cooker roast beef

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