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*waves* Came here because of the spotlight, but I've been experimenting with my crock pot for a while now. I've got a lovely big one that my dad gave me for Christmas, and I've got 6 people to feed from it. It usually works out very well. I've done chicken and beans and vegetarian dishes (two of my little ones have decided they don't like meat this month...LOL...the kids are 6, 4, 3, and 20 months). But every time I put a beef roast in it dries out horribly. The pork roast is only a little better.

It's tender but there's no juice in it. I've tried browning it first. I've tried not browning it first. I've tried cooking it on low. I've tried cooking it on high. I've tried putting it in with no liquid. I've tried putting it in with liquid. I'm not entirely sure what else to try.

Any suggestions?


( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:03 pm (UTC)
Does it cook too fast, maybe? Try this blog post from A Year of Crockpotting blog: http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/2008/08/help-my-crock-pot-cooks-too-fast.html

Are you using the right size meat for the crockpot you're using? If you have a huge crockpot, and the roast has a LOT of room around it, that might be the issue. It shouldn't overflow or need to be shoved in there super-tight, but it should still take up about 3/4ths of the pot at least. If the meat has room on the side and on top, that could be the cause.
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:08 pm (UTC)
I have this problem sometimes as well. I think it´s the meat itself. I bought a bunch of chuck roasts and they all did this. I cut some of the same meat up for stew and soups and they were fine.

Pork loin can be dry. I have better luck with pork shoulder, which is super cheap. It shreds up well and is very tender.

I have three kids. It it is frustrating to have a house that smells delicious and then have to get a couple of pizzas.
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:09 pm (UTC)
You need to add liquid to a roast. Beer, wine, broth, water, your choice. A cup or two should do it, depending on what is in the pot.
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:31 pm (UTC)
I put my roast in with a cup of tomato juice, and a few Tbsp of water. The acid in the juice tenderizes the meat without adding a strong flavor of its own. I know that lifting the lid of the crock is a no-no, but if it's a large roast, I'll sometimes flip it over very quickly, halfway through, so both sides get fully submerged.
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:36 pm (UTC)
i add at least a cup of liquid, and i try to cover the top of the roast with chopped up onions and garlic, that give their liquid to the roast as they cook.
Sep. 24th, 2009 11:41 pm (UTC)
I brown it first and then I add sauteed onions, which I have prepared in same pan as meat that is browned. I then add
Pacific brand Beef Broth....has some garlic, onion etc. in it...
I have yet to have any dried out meat.
I love chuck eye steak for this type of dish.
It is just a bit lower on the rib than ribeye, but absolutely to die for the crockpot.
Ask your butcher about it.
It has lovely flavor and a lot of nice juiciness.
BTW add any veggies half hour before meat is finished.
They maintain their integrity that way....
Sep. 25th, 2009 12:07 am (UTC)
I've had this problem frequently. For me, sometimes the cut of meat is just too lean. Sometimes it's cooked too long/too hot.

I get the best results using the cheapest cuts of meat I can find.

Good luck!
Sep. 25th, 2009 08:29 pm (UTC)
sometimes the cut of meat is just too lean.
that is why I suggested chuck eye steak.....it is just right as far as lean to fat. That is a huge issue.
Chuck eye steak runs about as much as good hamburger.
I just love eating it as is, or using in any recipe that calls for roast. The steaks are cut thick.....
Sep. 25th, 2009 12:48 am (UTC)
Some good suggestions have come up already. Make sure you're not using lean meat; it's the fat cooking in the Crock-Pot that makes a roast tender and juicy.

I don't find that most roasts need much liquid added, but some condensed soup, or ketchup and mustard, or half a bottle of beer (no more), or a small amount of stock is fine. Vegetables or fruit will also provide some liquid, especially juicy ones like tomatoes. Lots of liquid isn't going to make your roast moister, just wetter.

Good luck!
Sep. 25th, 2009 01:47 pm (UTC)
Make sure you're not using lean meat

I think that's the biggest thing. Without knowing what cut, and how marbelized it is, it's tough to tell what the actual cause is.
Sep. 25th, 2009 11:19 am (UTC)
Beer. I detest the taste of beer as a drink, but damn it does wonders in making meat tender/keeping it moist when cooking.
Sep. 25th, 2009 11:42 am (UTC)
I put in the roast, then add a can of cream of mushroom soup and a packet of onion soup mix (or some onion powder and beef bouillon) to make gravy. Once it gets hot, I take the lid off once to stir, but I leave the lid on the rest of the time. I usually cook on high for about 4 hours.
Sep. 25th, 2009 01:16 pm (UTC)
I put about a cup of beef (or chicken) broth and then add about a 1/4 to 1/2 a cup of dry sherry. This really helps to keep the roast from drying and the sherry helps the roast to be tender.
Sep. 25th, 2009 01:58 pm (UTC)
you seared it in a pan first? cover it in dry seasonings and sear for 2 min on each side in butter or oil. i add liquid to the pan, scrape up all the goddies and add those, too.

i would fill halfway up the roast with some type of liquid. sometimes i use water and cheap gravy packets or french onion soup mix.

you'll have to flip it a couple times or the top will dry out.
Sep. 25th, 2009 05:08 pm (UTC)
What I've found helps...
Add liquid, use an acid ingredient (vinegar, lemon juice, etc), and make sure you use a reasonably fatty cut of meat.
Sep. 26th, 2009 06:00 am (UTC)
Another vote for getting a roast that's not too lean. Marblisation is great for producing tender roasts.

Also, I've had great success in brining my roasts (whether beef, pork or chicken) overnight before putting them in the crock pot.
Sep. 26th, 2009 06:31 am (UTC)
A can of coke, or cola or something fizzy (I've heard of gingerale being used) also tenderises the meat. I usually find that the top of my roasts dry out if I'm cooking on high (so I don't)
Sep. 26th, 2009 11:04 am (UTC)
You're using the wrong cut of meat. When you cook meat, if the internal temperature passes 160F, the protein fibers contract, squeezing out water, leaving the meat dry. Crockpot cooking will ALWAYS drive the meat past that point (that's why you always have a lot more liquid at the end of cooking). You need to use meat with a lot of collagen, which melts and turns into gelatin, which lubricates the protein fibers and feels moist in the mouth. These are the classic slow-cooked cuts like short ribs, pork shoulder and other tough-but-flavorful cuts (if it works in classic barbecue, it will work well in the crockpot). Relatively tender roasts like eye round, pork loin and so on will just get tough in the crockpot, no matter how much liquid is in the pot with them.
Sep. 28th, 2009 05:38 pm (UTC)
(Sorry this is a late response.)

Before you go adding a bunch of weird liquids that'll detract from the good ol' flavor of MEAT, try soaking your meat in a brine overnight. Seriously. Brined meat is /impossible/ to dry out. (It has to do with the water molecules in the meat being replaced with salt-water molecules ...)

Read this old post of mine here:


And the beef follow-up:


You'll not be disappointed. Trust me. :)
Sep. 24th, 2013 08:05 pm (UTC)
Crock Pot Beef Pot Roast Always Dried Out
We also have tried everything to make a tender beef roast in the crock pot. Over 30+ years and numerous crock pots the roast always came out tough as shoe leather. We always cooked it per the crock pot guidelines of about 8 to 11 hours on low. However, about five years ago when cooking another beef pot roast the house filled with the wonderful aroma of roast beef as it usually does. This time for whatever reason after only four hours of cooking I stuck in a digital meat thermometer to find in shock the meat was already past beef's well-done temperature of 170 degrees. We had dinner immediately and it was the best pot roast we had to that date. We recently purchased a crock pot with a temperature probe. A few days ago we prepared an eye of round roast (2.89 lbs.) per the crock pot instructions: no pre-browning, coat with steak sauce, then cover with your favorite spices; DO NOT USE SALT. Place roast on a bed of thick onions to keep it out of sitting in any juices and cook three to four hours on LOW; apparently crock pot makers have wised up with regards to length of cooking. Per the temperature probe the internal starting temperature of the roast was 35 degrees. In only two hours and 45 minutes of cooking on LOW it reached the USDA Food Safety Guidelines temperature of 145 degrees. I let it rest for five to ten minutes and then cut very thin slices. The meat was still a little dried out; possibly due to the fact it was very lean. Leftovers eaten cold the next day were great. The next time we will try cooking it to only 140 degrees and see what happens. I have read some chefs recommend pulling the roast out at 130 to 135 degrees and letting it rest for five to ten minutes; the internal temperature will continue to rise; this supposedly provides maximum tenderness. We will see. Experimentation continues.
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )


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