This simple 3 packet roast is amazing! It takes just 7 ingredients and about 10 minutes to make a delicious meal everyone will enjoy. AND you can make it in your crock pot, instant pot or in the oven. PLUS, we provide freezer meal directions too!
3-packet slow cooker roast is a classic comfort food that is perfect for a winter day. This dish is made with the roast of your choice, beef broth, 3 packets of seasoning, and a bit of cornstarch slurry for thickening the juices into a delicious gravy.
It can be cooked in your crockpot, electric pressure cooker, or in the oven. And, for those super busy days, you can make this into a make-ahead freezer meal too.
It’s an amazingly simple recipe that gets rave reviews and pleases even super picky eaters.
Our Crock Pot 3 Packet Pot Roast Video
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What Ingredients Do I Need to Make 3 Envelope Pot Roast?
For this recipe, we are just making the roast and gravy. And it takes 7 ingredients. You will need:
- A 3-pound roast of your choice. Rump roast, chuck roast, or bottom roast all work.
- Beef broth. You can use beef broth or beef stock. Or you can make your own or you can purchase premade. Whatever works for you.
- 1 packet Ranch dressing mix. You can use a premade packet or you can make your own homemade ranch seasoning.
- One packet of brown gravy mix. And homemade brown gravy mix is also very simple to toss together if you prefer to make your own.
- 1 packet Italian dressing mix. This is the kind you use to make salad dressing, not the general Italian seasoning mix. There is also a simple DIY for making your own homemade Italian dressing mix if you feel inclined 😊
- Butter. And you don’t need much. Just a little to brown your roast before cooking. This is NOT a mandatory step, but it adds amazing flavor if you can swing a few extra minutes.
- Cornstarch. You only need a tablespoon. And you’ll mix it with a couple of tablespoons of COLD water. You will use this to make an amazing gravy from the broth your roast cooked in.
What Equipment Do I Need to Make Three Envelope Roast?
This roast can be made in your crock pot, instant pot, or oven, and it's perfect for a quick and easy weeknight meal. Plus, we've included freezer meal directions so you can make it ahead and have it ready whenever you need it.
Other than your cooking implement of choice. Slow cooker, instant pot, or oven. You just need a pan for browning, a large fork to turn the roast, and/or freezer bags if you are making it into a freezer meal.
What Should I Serve with 3 Packet Roast with Gravy?
When it comes to making any sort of roast, you have lots of options for your side dishes. And you can even add part of them right in the dish/pot with your roast and cook it all at once.
Washed, whole potatoes, carrots, and onions can be layered under the roast. Slow cooker or instant pot methods work best for this, but you can add them to your oven dish as well. Just be sure to cover the roast if you want tender vegetables.
Your cooking directions don’t need to vary, just make one single layer under the roast and cook per the printable directions.
And you can also have several other options for side dishes. And several of these you can make right in a second slow cooker if you choose. Talk about super simple supper ideas!
Here are just a few side dishes that are slow cooker recipes.
- Crock Pot Mashed Potatoes
- Simple Slow Cooker Baked Potatoes
- Crockpot Green Bean Medley
- Slow Cooker Green Beans and Ham
- Crock Pot Corn on the Cob
- Slow Cooker corn casserole
- Creamy crockpot corn
- Buttery Slow Cooker Brussel Sprouts
- Crockpot Cabbage
- Slow Cooker Carrots
Add some crockpot dinner rolls and your choice of a dessert…even a slow cooker dessert and you are in business!
PS: These yummy crockpot side dishes work with almost all our slow cooker main dishes too!
How to Make 3 Packet Pot Roast Recipe Step by Step
Making this 3-packet roast varies a bit using different equipment. But don’t worry! None of them are difficult. Let’s walk through each, then you can decide which pot roast recipe works for your time and available equipment.
Making Slow Cooker Pot Roast
Oh course, this is my favorite method. And it isn’t just because I’m used to using my crockpot all the time. I am, of course, but that isn’t the reason.
My reason for preferring to use the slow cooker for making ANY pot roast is how very tender and juicy your meat remains. Sure, you get the same juiciness from an electric pressure cooker, but the steps and time to make roasts is a bit longer.
This is mostly because with the crockpot, you can add the cornstarch slurry BEFORE you cook the roast. Do you have to? Absolutely not. CAN you. Yes! And for me, this saves time. And I can use that time can be used to visit my kids, play with my dogs, love on my grandchildren, or when necessary, do farm chores 😊
Now, on to how to make 3 packet crockpot pot roast with gravy…
Brown the Roast
First, brown your roast over medium-high heat in butter. I like cast iron best but use what you have. DO think about getting a cast iron skillet or two though, you won’t regret the purchase!
Anyway, brown the roast in a bit of butter or oil for 2-5 minutes per side. How brown you get the roast is a personal choice. You can also turn the burner a bit lower, cover it and go do another kitchen chore.
Make the Gravy
Carefully remove the roast from skillet and place the roast in the slow cooker. Use a spatula to scrape the brown bits off the bottom and the sides of the skillet. These add amazing flavor to your gravy. Gently pour the beef broth into the skillet, cover and allow to come to a boil.
While the Broth is Boiling
While the broth is busy doing its thing, do the pot roast prep with the seasoning packets. Simply sprinkle half of each packet on each side of the roast.
Mix the slurry
Now grab a small bowl or coffee cup and add a couple tablespoons of cold water. Now mix in a tablespoon of cornstarch and stir until well blended.
Back to the Broth
Stir the broth, it should be boiling by now. If it isn’t either wait a bit or increase the heat if you prefer. Once the broth is boiling, gently stir in the cornstarch slurry. As you stir it should thicken. Remove from heat and pour over the roast.
Oven Method for Making an Amazing Pot Roast
Making your roast in the oven is the old-fashioned, tried-and-true method. And many times, the old ways are best. Here are the steps.
Prep Work for Oven Pot Roast
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and brown the roast as stated in the slow cooker method above. Remove from heat and sprinkle the roast with ½ of each seasoning packet on each side of the roast.
Cover and bake for 60 minutes for a 3-pound roast. Add 15 to 20 minutes per pound for larger roasts.
Make the Gravy
Remove the pot from the oven. Set the roast aside on a serving tray. Place the skillet over medium-high heat and scrape down the sides and the bottom. Add the broth. Cover and make the cornstarch slurry.
Slowly pour the cornstarch mixture into the boiling broth. Then stir until well incorporated and thick.
Instant Pot Method for Pot Roast with Gravy
The electric pressure cooker method is almost a hybrid of the crockpot and oven methods. But everything takes place in the pressure cooker; you just use more settings.
Sauté the Pot Roast
Set the pressure cooker to sauté and add the butter. Then, once the butter is melted add the roast. Brown the roast on both sides. Now, remove the roast and scrape the bottom and sides to get all the brown bits. Add the broth.
Season the Roast
Sprinkle the pot roast with the seasoning packets, a half packet on each side of the roast. Place the roast in the pressure cooker.
Cooking Time for Instant Pot Pot Roast
Turn the instant pot to manual, and close the lid and the vent. Set to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Then allow it to naturally release for about 20 minutes then do a quick release.
Remove the roast and set aside.
Make the Gravy
Turn the pressure cooker back to sauté. Mix the cornstarch slurry using the previous directions. Make sure to use COLD water or it will lump and be gross.
Then stir the broth well and add the slurry. Allow the sauce to thicken. Return the roast to the pressure cooker if desired. Or serve the gravy on the side.
No matter the cooking method you decide to use, this 3 packet pot roast is delicious! You won’t regret teaching yourself the tips and techniques needed to make this an amazing dish.
3 Packet Roast Printable Recipe
3 Packet Crock Pot Pot Roast with Gravy
- 3 lb beef roast
- 1 packet of brown gravy mix
- 1 envelope of ranch seasoning
- 1 packet of Italian dressing mix
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tble COLD water
- 1 tbsp butter
Slow Cooker Method:
- Heat the butter is a large skillet over medium-high heat and brown both sides of your roast (3-5 minutes per side). Turn burner to medium and remove roast.
- While the roast is browning butter, oil, or spray your slow cooker insert and make your cornstarch slurry. To make slurry mix cornstarch and COLD water. Mix well. Set aside but if you set it aside for too long, just mix it again before using it.
- Scrape down the sides and get all the brown bits and butter together. Add to beef broth and stir until incorporated. Allow to come to a boil.
- Add the cornstarch slurry and stir. Add a lid and proceed to your crockpot.
- Place the roast in the bottom of the slow cooker. Or on top your vegetables if you decided to add them.
- Sprinkle with 1/2 of each of the seasoning packets, flip the roast and repeat.
- Check the skillet gravy. If it’s slightly thickened, then slowly pour it over roast. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 10 hours.
- When ready to serve: Remove roast and stir gravy well. Shred roast if desired and serve with gravy.
- See Notes for a much simpler method for making slow cooker 3 packet roast.
Pressure Cooker Method:
- Set pressure cooker to sauté, add butter and then the roast.
- Brown roast on both sides. Remove roast and add broth. Scrape down sides to deglaze.
- Add back roast and sprinkle both sides with 1/2 of each seasoning packet.
- Cover, close and set to 1 hr. 15 mins. Allow to natural release for 15-20 minutes, then quick release.
- Remove roast and turn pot to sauté again.
- Mix cornstarch slurry by adding cornstarch to COLD water. Mix well and slowly stir into broth. Allow to heat through and thicken.
- Slice or pull roast if desired and serve with gravy.
- Note on large roast in the instant pot. My research says to add 15-20 minutes for each additional pound of roast, just like the oven method. Some other recipes I’ve found don’t add quite that much time.
- I don’t believe there is any danger if you don’t follow this timing exactly. You will just have a more rare roast.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Brown roast while the oven is heating.
- Add butter to deep cast iron skillet or Dutch oven and turn heat to medium-high.
- Add roast and brown for 3-5 minutes per side. Remove from heat.
- Sprinkle the roast with 1/2 of each seasoning packet, flip the roast and repeat.
- Place lid on skillet/Dutch oven and cook in preheated oven for 60 minutes (add 20 minutes per pound for larger roasts).
- Remove from oven and place roast on a serving tray or plate.
- Place skillet stovetop and medium-high heat again. Slowly add the beef broth and scrape down the sides and bits.
- Make slurry by mixing water and cornstarch in a separate bowl or cup and mixing well until no lumps remain. Slowly pour and stir into your broth until well incorporated.
- Allow to come to a butter, turn to medium and allow to thicken. Stir every minute or so until thick.
- Pull or slice meat if desired and serve with gravy.
Freezer Meal Prep:
- Sprinkle the roast on each side with 1/2 of each of the seasoning packets.
- Make a note on your baggie that you will need beef broth, cornstarch, and a bit of butter to make this recipe. Freeze flat for up to 3 months.
What is a 3-packet crock pot pot roast with gravy?
This three evneope roast is a simple recipe that’s very versatile. You lightly brown a beef roast of your choice in butter or oil. Then cook it with beef broth, ranch seasoning mix, Italian dressing mix, brown gravy mix. Lastly, you thicken the broth using a cornstarch slurry.
What kind of meat should I use for pot roast?
Pot roast is traditionally made with a beef roast. And beef chuck roast is the one I’ve seen used most often. But you can also use other cuts of beef, such as a rump roast or round roast. And if you want to try something different, you can also use a pork roast.
Can I make this recipe with chicken?
I’ve never tried making a slow cooker chicken dish using this exact method. Very thick chicken breasts might work BUT our 5-Ingredient Chicken Stroganoff recipe uses Italian seasoning. AND I’ve made it using chicken gravy mix and ranch dressing mix when I didn’t have an Italian dressing mix on hand.
Can I substitute other vegetables for the potatoes and carrots suggested?
You absolutely can! The sky is the limit as to the different vegetables you can cook with your 3 packet roast. Any sort of root vegetable will work. Even parsnips or turnips would be great options.
Can I use a different type of gravy mix?
Yes, you can use a different type of gravy mix, such as beef, mushroom, or onion.
Can I use flour instead of cornstarch?
Yes! You can absolutely use flour instead of cornstarch. You can substitute it and use the same method OR you can make a roux gravy. And this takes about 10 more minutes but it is AMAZING!
This 3 packet crock pot pot roast is an excellent example of comfort food. It’s easy to make, the slow cooker does most of the work, and the result is a juicy and flavorful pot roast.
Whether you are cooking for a family dinner or a potluck, this dish is sure to be a hit.