Bone In Chuck Roast Recipe: How to Make the Best

Nicole Austin

Let's explore the benefits of bone in chuck roast, and how to get the best results.

When searching for the perfect chuck roast recipe, I like to consider multiple factors — who I am serving, how long I have to prepare the meat, and what flavors I’m looking for.

Bone-in chuck is often considered more flavorful and richer in juices than its boneless counterparts. I find it to be very delicious and tender, and I love that it’s affordable when feeding a large family.

Bone in chuck, however, is more challenging to carve and takes longer to cook, which can influence preference.

Bone In Chuck Roast Photo

When it comes to pot roast, you can choose between bone-in or boneless. Most grocers typically carry boneless chuck roast, but bone-in roast can be found at the butcher or in the butcher section of your grocery store. 

If you’re planning a meal in advance, you can always call ahead to order the cut you want.

Let’s explore some common questions surrounding chuck roast, and highlight a couple great recipes for cooking the perfect dish!

What Cut of Beef is Chuck Roast?

Chuck roast is a popular beef cut that is sourced from the shoulder of the animal.

It creates a large, tough steak that requires a slow cooking method to ensure a tender result.

Chuck roast’s location on the animal's body means that it is composed of several connective tissues and heavily exercised muscles. This makes for much tougher meat than other areas may boast.

However, the composition of this roast cut also means it is very flavorful. There is a lot of marbling, which helps retain moisture and flavor.

The roast will remain very tender when cooked correctly in a “low and slow” method like braising, slow cooking, or roasting. Adding other flavors in the liquids you choose as a base for cooking, such as wine or beef stock, will enhance and improve the natural flavors.

You can also season this cut easily with herbs and spices, or cook it with sturdier root vegetables like potatoes or carrots.

Pot Roast Seasoning Guide Picture

Bone In Chuck vs Boneless

Bone in vs boneless is the great debate regarding many different cuts and offerings of meat.

There are a few differences in the cooking time and result between bone-in and boneless, and we can help you explore those.

Bones are good insulators, keeping the meat around them at a lower temperature. While this results in a longer cooking time as the meat heats up more gradually, it also helps prevent overcooking.

The downside is that the meat takes a long time to cook, taking up a good portion of your day for a large cut. 

This can make it hard to figure out what time dinner will be ready, and make last-minute decisions nearly impossible.

If you like to decide what to eat more on the fly, boneless is best for you.

There are also other factors to consider when deciding between bone-in and boneless. 

If you prefer your meat medium to well done, the bone can help make the meat in that area more tender and juicier.

For rare to medium rare, leaving the bone in can result in a chewier finished product or leave the bone areas too raw.

Smoked Beef Brisket Picture

Chuck Roast vs Brisket

Brisket is a large, tough steak that comes from the animal’s lower chest. It has some distinct characteristics that make it taste and feel a certain way.

Brisket has a large amount of marbling. This means that it is also very tender.

The flavor is rich and strong naturally, making it a very desirable cut with a very specific profile.

Because it is so predictable, naturally, it makes it easy to complement a variety of seasonings.

Brisket can come in various cuts and thicknesses, and the exact cut or size will dictate how you prepare it.

For example, a large cut of meat that is very thick will do well in a smoker cooked slowly (smoked beef brisket, anyone?), whereas a smaller cut of meat will work best in the oven or a slow cooker.

While some aspects of chuck roast and brisket may be similar, there are some differences:

  • Price. Chuck roast is typically more affordable than brisket. Obviously the exact price will change over time and will depend on your local area.
  • Availability. Chuck roast is available in most grocery stores year-round. Brisket is not always carried at local stores and may require a visit to the butcher or specialty meat shop.
  • Fat Content. Chuck roast contains more fat than brisket, and is therefore more tender and flavorful. As a leaner meat, brisket contains less fat.
  • Cooking Methods. Chuck roast can be roasted, braised, or cooked in a slow cooker (or crockpot). Brisket is best when prepared at a low temperature and with a slow method as well, but the approach varies based on the size of the meat. It can take several hours and may involve other methods such as smoking.
  • Flavor and Texture. Chuck roast is the more tender of the two meats and has a rich flavor. Due to high fat content, it is also a juicier meat. Brisket can be smoked or braised, and these methods enhance the flavor and texture. Brisket is a firmer meat that feels like it melts in your mouth when prepared properly.

So, which is better?

This comes down to preference and what you’re doing with the meat.

Chuck roast may be considered better because it is less expensive, more versatile, and perfect for serving multiple guests.

Brisket is more expensive but has a stronger flavor and a unique tenderness. It is, however, more delicate and time-consuming to prepare.

If the fat content of the meat is the only hesitation you have when deciding which cut you prefer, keep in mind that butchers can always help trim the fat or alternately, include fat trimmings.

Can You Freeze Pot Roast Photo

Bone-in Chuck Roast in the Slow Cooker

If you’re like me, you’re always looking for a hack to make the perfect, healthy comfort food dinner without many extra steps.

I love a simple pot roast in a crockpot or Instant Pot, especially when I use our pot roast seasoning mix to spice things up a bit!

This pot roast recipe has minimal prep, and can be placed in the slow cooker and left untouched until it’s time to serve!


  • Chuck roast
  • Petite potatoes (if you don’t want to dice any) or large potatoes that are quartered
  • Baby carrots (if you, again, don’t want to spend time cutting) or large carrots, washed and cut into thirds
  • Onion, diced
  • Beef broth
  • Garlic (minced in a jar)
  • Seasoning (salt, black pepper, and thyme)
  • Optional: splash of red wine, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, or liquid aminos

Step-by-step cooking process instructions:

  1. Place carrots, onions, and potatoes in the slow cooker pot and stir to combine. Add some salt, pepper, and garlic.
  2. Place beef chuck roast on top.
  3. Pour the broth over the top of the meat. Cover the meat with sea salt, pepper, garlic, and fresh thyme.
  4. Cover and cook for 8 hours on low heat, or until meat begins to fall apart easily when separated with a fork, and vegetables are soft.
  5. Once the meat is done, break it free using a fork or meat shredder claws. Transfer to a platter and rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Some people also like to add other fresh herbs like rosemary sprigs and bay leaves to their crock pot as well for some added wonderful flavor!

Pot Roast Seasoning Guide Photo

Bone In Chuck Roast in a Dutch Oven


  • Chuck roast
  • Kosher salt, pepper, and garlic to taste
  • Flour
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3-4 large onions
  • 2-3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 4 medium to large potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 4-5 large carrots, scraped and cut into 2-inch pieces


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Heat vegetable oil or olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  3. Season beef generously with spices and dredge in flour. Shake off excess.
  4. Put beef in the bottom of the pot and brown on all sides. Remove to a plate, and wipe pot clean.
  5. Add half of the onions to the pot and sprinkle on half the seasoning blend. Place the beef on top and cover with remaining onions and seasoning.
  6. Add prepared potatoes and carrots around the roast. Cover pot tightly and roast for about 3 hours or until fork tender, checking the meat occasionally to ensure it is not cooking too fast.
  7. Remove the meat to a cutting board and slice.
  8. Place on a serving platter and top with onions, using a slotted spoon. Surround with potatoes and carrots.
  9. Boil down the remaining juices by a quarter and spoon over the meal.

Now you're set up to make the best fall-apart tender roast next time, offering the most flavor and satisfaction. Just be sure to leave yourself plenty of time.

Keep in mind that for the best results, you would need to adjust this recipe if you were making a boneless roast instead.

Can You Freeze Pot Roast Picture

Wondering what to serve with pot roast? We’ve got you covere with our list of excellent sides and desserts. We can also help you freeze your pot roast if you have leftovers!

Looking for a great recipe for Italian pot roast? Look no further.

Nicole is a self-published author of fiction novels, and a lover of food and spending time in the kitchen with her six children. She lives in coastal Maine where she loves exploring new recipes especially those that can save time, money and wow a crowd.

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