Classic 3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Pot Roast

5 from 14 votes
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This slow cooker pot roast uses a can of mushroom soup and a packet of onion soup mix to make the best retro pot roast you are ever gonna make! This reminds me so much of Sunday dinner during my childhood!

pot roast on a white plate with vegetables
Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Onion Soup Mix Pot Roast

This recipe came about because onions are totally on recall right now and you can’t buy ANY in the stores! I had taken out a nice chuck roast to make and when I went to put it all together in a traditional slow cooker pot roast, I remembered that there were no onions in my last grocery order thanks to the recall. That’s when it was time to bring out the canned and packaged soups!

can of mushroom soup, onion soup mix and beef broth

Three Ingredient Roast Beef

Ok, ok I USED FOUR ingredients, you busted me! However the classic recipe uses:

  1. a chuck or blade beef roast
  2. a can of mushroom soup
  3. a package of onion soup mix


That is the classic 3 ingredient list. I however wanted a lot more gravy, so I added a cup of beef broth, which for us was perfect. We ended up with a nice amount of gravy for the four of us.

spooning gravy over pot roast

How to Make a Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Nothing beats a hot, pull-apart beef roast that’s cooked low and slow all day! A pot roast in your slow cooker is really the easiest dinner one can make. Traditionally all you have to do is:

  • Sear your beef roast until browned on all sides.
  • Place in the bottom of your slow cooker.
  • Place the vegetables around the roast beef
  • Mix together the soups and the broth (if you are using my 4 ingredient version) then pour over the beef roast and vegetables.
  • Cook on high for 6-7 hours or on low for 8-10 hours.


However let’s go on to the two options you have when it comes to cooking vegetables, which changes up the method you use.

browning pot roast in a skillet

Solutions for Overcooked Vegetables

Chuck roasts are a fabulous, affordable cut of beef that needs to be cooked low and slow and LONG to get the best results. That doesn’t always work for vegetables. You don’t end up with toothsome vegetables when cooking a pot roast that is chuck roast, but there are a couple of solutions that I like to use.

  1. Use whole vegetables. While not perfect and the vegetables will still be very soft, this helps them not turn into a soup around the pot roast. This is the best method if you have to cook them all day (you aren’t able to be home to watch the roast).
  2.  Cook the roast on high for 4 hours or low for 6-7 hours without the vegetables. That’s what I did in this recipe and you can see that I had whole vegetables by the end of the roast. This only works if you are home to add in the vegetables – you are home at lunch during work and can add them or you are making this on your day off. This is the best way to cook this. I poured the sauce over the roast and cooked it on high for 4 hours, then added the vegetables in and cooked for another 2 hours. This was a smaller roast so it worked out well.

por roast and raw vegetables in a slow cooker

More Slow Cooker Recipes

I love my slow cooker so I have a ton of slow cooker recipes! Some of our very favorites are:

cooked pot roast on a white plate with vegetables

I love this recipe for a few reasons, it’s fast and easy but also reminds me of the days when everyone had to “make do”. We rarely have to “make do” nowadays, but the lack of onions in the stores recently reminded me how lucky we are that we barely have to switch out ingredients. Our grandparents were good at stretching a dollar and making do, and this is one of the recipes that my Grandma used to make that does just that.

Happy cooking! Hope you enjoy this retro classic!




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Classic 3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Pot Roast

This slow cooker pot roast uses a can of mushroom soup and a packet of onion soup mix to make the best retro pot roast you are ever gonna make! My version adds in beef broth because we love a lot of gravy!
5 from 14 votes
Prep Time
20 minutes
Cook Time
8 hours
Main Course
Slow Cooker / Crockpot
Karlynn Johnston


  • one 3-4 pounds chuck or blade roast
  • 5-6 medium Russet potatoes washed well
  • 5-6 celery stalks
  • 8-9 medium carrots

Mushroom Soup Gravy

  • 1 package of your favourite dry onion soup mix
  • one 10.5 ounces can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup beef broth


  • Heat a large skillet with a tablespoon of oil. Sear the roast on all sides until browned, then place into the bottom of the slow cooker.
  • Combine the gravy ingredients and pour over top of the roast. Cover with the lid.
  • Cook the roast on high for 4 hours, or on low for 6-7 hours.
  • Remove the lid. Place the vegetables around the roast, place the lid on again and continue cooking for another 2-3 hours on high, and another 3-4 hours on low, until the roast pulls apart and the vegetables are cooked.
  • Remove the vegetables and place on a platter. Ladle the gravy into a gravy boat.
  • Remove the roast and pull apart the beef in chunks. Place on a platter alongside the vegetables.
  • Remove and serve!

Recipe Notes

  • Cooking time will depend on the thickness and toughness of your roast, the size of vegetables, how well your slow cooker seals, etc. All times are approximate and just a guideline in this recipe.
  • You can place all vegetables around the roast at the beginning, pour the soup over top and cook. The vegetables will be softer but you can leave them cooking all day this way.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 749kcal, Carbohydrates: 46g, Protein: 64g, Fat: 35g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Cholesterol: 209mg, Sodium: 1224mg, Potassium: 2103mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 13642IU, Vitamin C: 15mg, Calcium: 117mg, Iron: 8mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

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Site Index Beef roast Blade/chuck roast Carrots Pot roast Slow cooker

Reader Interactions

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  1. Vicky says

    I have a similar recipe that I have been using for years. Instead of beef broth add a jar of beef gravy. This is so good!

  2. Rene says

    Can you suggest alternatives to the mushroom soup? We are not a mushroom family.

    • Homecookingmama says

      I use cream of celery instead of cream of mushroom

    • Karlynn says

      That’s great to hear Cathy!!! You can’t beat the classics!5 stars

      • Chris says

        Due to a freezer labelling mishap I accidentally made this recipe with a pork shoulder roast. It turned out really well!5 stars

      • John Petrizzo says

        Do you reconstitute the mushroom soup before adding ?

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