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Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions

This Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions is fall-apart-tender and ultra delicious!

a large crockpot of Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions

With no real plans to share this recipe here, I almost didn’t take a picture of our “big red pot” (what we call our beloved oval French oven from Le Creuset) prior to setting it on the supper table for my family. But then, at the last minute, I decided to snap a shot. Because maybe this would be the greatest meal ever…right?!

And you wouldn’t believe what a conversation piece this magnificent pot of beef turned out to be. Our youngest daughter couldn’t stop gushing about it. After nearly every other bite, Tessa would say, “This is the best thing you’ve ever made, Mom”. And then she’d ask for another helping. I know for a fact that that small-framed 5-year-old girl ate more than my 6′-7″ Blake did that evening.

This Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions is so incredibly tender, after braising away in the oven for a few hours, that all you need to do to serve it is simply break up the roast with the back of a wooden spoon. No cutting required. It just falls apart, all loose and juicy and tender. That silky texture is the stuff my supper table dreams are made of.

beef Pot Roast

I have experimented a bit with cooking with hard cider, and this is far and away my favorite meal so far. When the cider is slow cooked with the beef and earthy mushrooms, plus carrots and onions, a most spectacular gravy results. It’s full of rich flavor…slightly creamy and just a bit tangy, with a little touch of warm cloves…utterly delicious. When a 5-year-old says it’s even better than her favorite mac and cheese, you just have to believe it’s one special meal.

Another pot roast recipe I’m dying to try? This Mississippi Pot Roast from Today’s Creative Life!

Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions

Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions

Yield: 6 to 8 servings
prep time: 1 hour
cook time: 3 hours
total time: 4 hours
This Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions is fall-apart-tender and ultra delicious!
5 Stars (1 Review)


  • 3 to 3.5 lb. boneless beef chuck roast
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • 8 oz. medium-sized whole button mushrooms halved
  • 2 large onions chopped
  • 4 large carrots peeled and cut into 1” to 2” pieces
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 bottle 12 oz. hard cider (I really like “Crisp Apple” by Angry Orchard
  • 1.5 c. low sodium beef broth
  • 1 bay leaf


  • An hour before starting to cook, remove the roast from the refrigerator. Rinse it and pat it dry with paper towels. Place on a plate and sprinkle fairly generously all over with kosher salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature.
  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat the bottom of a 5 to 7-quart French oven with a thin film of olive oil and set the pot over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, put meat in the pot and let it cook, without moving it, until it is deeply browned on the bottom and lifts easily from the pot when turned. This should take about 8 minutes or so. Continue to brown all sides of the meat, turning as needed. Transfer meat to a plate and set aside.
  • Add mushrooms, onions, and carrots to the pot and cook, stirring, until softened. This should take about 5 minutes. Stir in thyme and cloves. Then pour in hard cider and beef broth. Stir to release browned bits on the pan bottom. Add bay leaf. Let mixture come to a boil, then return meat and any accumulated juices to pot. Cover pot and transfer to the oven. Cook, turning meat over once about halfway through cooking, until meat is tender and pulls apart easily when prodded with a fork, about 2-1/2 to 3 hours.

There are a couple of different ways you can finish up this beautiful pot roast:

  • For an easy weeknight meal, I will simply break apart the meat with a wooden spoon while it sits in the juices in the pot. The meat should be extremely tender, and not even need to be cut with a knife This is personally my favorite way to eat the roast, all loose and juicy and tender.
  • To achieve a more sliced look, I remove the meat from the pot after it has been in the oven for about 2 hours. Then I slice it against the grain and return it to the pot with slices intact as much as possible, along with any accumulated juices, nestling it back into the veggies and juices. Return the pot to the oven and cook for another 30 to 60 minutes.
  • My family prefers this served over/alongside creamy mashed potatoes, but herbed wide noodles are good, too.


Inspired by the “Yankee Pot Roast Redux” from All About Braising by Molly Stevens, but greatly simplified and adapted from my family’s favorite Classic Pot Roast.

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1 Calories: 999kcal Carbohydrates: 10g Protein: 99g Fat: 63g Saturated Fat: 25g Polyunsaturated Fat: 33g Trans Fat: 4g Cholesterol: 329mg Sodium: 435mg Fiber: 2g Sugar: 6g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Spoonacular. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.
Did you make this recipe?Please leave a comment below. And share a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #afarmgirlsdabbles or tag @farmgirlsdabble!
Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions

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51 comments on “Hard Cider Pot Roast with Mushrooms, Carrots, and Onions”

  1. I’m trying this right now….I looked up using hard cider for a roast in mid stream after seasoning the roast with Spade L Ranch and searing over very high heat burner and pan. I got to thinking that hey I just so happen to have some left over home made hard cider on hand albeit a bit on the dry side, but figure it should work, then I stumbled on this recipe looking to see if it was a usable option I found several to validate, however I altered this recipe a bit just because I was lazy and didn’t want to go get what I was missing …mushrooms, but I had enough of what I usually use in a pot roast and added a few I’ve never used like cinnamon and ginger ….so we’ll just have to see what happens, but I am confident it will come out awesome. Thanks for sharing your recipe it was enough to get me where I needed to go.

  2. Love making this – I have two questions – 1.  can this be made in a slow cooker after browning the meat?  2.  I have made this several times and my gravy/sauce has never looked like yours, it looks thick and creamy in the picture, any suggestions?

    1. Did you try it in the slow cooker? We have an office potluck on Monday for Halloween and I thought this would be a great recipe to try… but we don’t have a full kitchen. I’d have to bring in my Crock Pot.

    2. Tried it in the crock pot and it came out pretty well – I think it was 3-ish hours on low and 3-ish hours on high (with transport from my home to the office in the middle haha). Mine too, did not come out at all creamy. I loaded mine in a mug and mixed it up with the garlic mashed potatoes … then it was creamy.

  3. This looks so amazing … I’m taking the meet out of the freezer today so we can have it this weekend. Thank you SO MUCH for taking that quick last-minute photo! 

  4. I’m about to try this recipe. I’m not a very experienced cook, so I should probably be following the recipe exactly. But I really don’t want to go out to the store for some herbs I almost never use. So with that in mind, Brenda, I don’t have any cloves. The substitution chart suggests cinnamon. How do you feel about that? Also I’m out of time to get some thyme ;-), the chart lists basil or oregano as possible subs. Do you think one would be better than the other? I also have some rosemary if you think that might be better. Hoping to hear from you.

  5. I made this a few weeks ago for my parents and they were totally impressed my Dad went back for seconds (which hardly ever happens) and there was barely any left for my hubby who was working late that day. oooops! I am a mom of to boys under 3 and love to have couples and women from my church over for dinner and play dates a couple times a week. I am always on the lookout for recipes that are easy but impressive and this fits the bill like no other! I am making it this weekend as too!

    Sincerely, Brittany

  6. Brenda – this was absolutely delicious – my 15 year daughter and I were salivating all day and I gave half to my neighbors and they loved it and have already asked for the recipe.
    I do have one question – in your picture the sauce/gravy looks thick and mine was not. I made a slurry and added it but yours look more like a thick creamy mushroom soup. I cooked it for 3 hours and like I said it was delicious so no complaints but I was wondering if I might have done something wrong. Mine was more like a broth. Thanks so much for getting back to me.

  7. This smelled so good throughout the day – and it was just as delicious! Will definitely be making it again – next time with bay leaves! Also shared it with neighbors and they loved it as well.

    1. So sorry to not address your bay leaves question earlier! Bay leaves usually have a subtle flavoring, so I don’t think you missed out on a huge piece of the recipe by not having any. But try it next time. I’m so glad you liked this! :)

  8. making this right now but doubled it and now everything will not fit into by cast iron dutch oven – switched it to a big pot and covered with aluminum foil – do you think this will work or do you have any other suggestions. Also, didn’t have bay leaves which I thought I had and it is a snow storm so can’t get out – is there something I should substitute?

    1. Hi Paige – I love to double recipes, too! :) Is your larger pot good & heavy? I think it’s worth a try. You also might want to just try putting half in the the dutch oven and half in a covered pot, then you’ll be able to tell the difference in how they cook?? The dutch ovens are hefty and retain heat so well, perfect for braising those tougher cuts of meat. Please let me know how it turns out! Good luck!

  9. Made this for dinner last night and it was amazing! I loved the flavor and it really was fall-apart tender. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe. This will be my go-to pot roast recipe from now on!

  10. Oh never thought of Hard Cider for a roast, love beer braised roast and can’t do that with a Celiac daughter but can do this. Cooking with booze is great, in the food too. Love a shot of whisky in chili and sherry and beef OMG, the BEST. Thanks for testing.

  11. Oh my goodness… I just made this for lunch today, and I’ve got to say, it was the best pot roast I’ve EVER eaten. Seriously, just amazing. Thanks so much for this awesome recipe!

  12. Christy @ My Invisible Crown

    I get so stuck on the same pot roast. I need to branch out and try something different and this is the one it’s going to be. It looks amazing!

  13. We have been loving hard cider this winter. I don’t know what that says about me, but this looks glorious.

  14. This looks amazing!!! I definitely need to try it, especially since I have a dutch oven. Thanks for sharing. xo