How to Make the Best Roast Beef in a Dutch Oven

The best roast beef is browned on the outside, juicy on the inside and bursting with flavor. A Dutch oven is ideal for the long, low-heat cooking method required to achieve these results. Even cheap cuts of beef become irresistibly tender when cooked properly in a Dutch oven. If you use a large cut of beef, you can refrigerate the leftovers for up to four days to make delicious lunches and dinners.

Slow-roasting in a Dutch oven helps tenderize beef.
Credit: Jupiterimages/ Images

Step 1

Place the roast on a clean working surface. Sprinkle herbs and spices, such as minced garlic, onion powder, sea salt, paprika, ground black pepper, thyme and oregano, over the roast and rub them in so they stick to the meat.

Step 2

Cover the seasoned roast with plastic wrap and place it in an out-of-the-way area. Allow the roast to rest at room temperature for about an hour before you cook it to let the meat warm slightly, promoting faster cooking.

Step 3

Turn on the oven and allow it to preheat; a low temperature of around 325 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.

Step 4

Place the Dutch oven on the stovetop and heat a small amount of bacon grease in it until the grease is hot enough to shimmer. Use olive oil if you do not have bacon grease on hand.

Step 5

Uncover the roast and place it in the Dutch oven. Sear all sides of the roast until they are browned and slightly crisp.

Step 6

Remove the roast from the Dutch oven and set it aside. Pour a few inches of beef broth and red wine into the Dutch oven. Scrape the browned bits of meat and seasoning off the bottom of the Dutch oven with a wooden spoon as the liquid simmers, a step called deglazing.

Step 7

Place the roast back in the Dutch oven. Add chopped root vegetables such as carrots, potatoes and onions, to the pan and then place the lid on the Dutch oven.

Step 8

Move the Dutch oven to the center rack of your oven carefully and allow the roast to cook. Use a meat thermometer to check the roast every 30 minutes after the first hour. Remove the Dutch oven from the oven when the roast reaches a safe internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 9

Let the roast rest in the Dutch oven for several minutes before slicing and serving it. Refrigerate leftovers immediately.

Things You'll Need

  • Herbs and spices

  • Plastic wrap

  • Bacon grease or olive oil

  • Beef broth

  • Red wine

  • Wooden spoon

  • Chopped root vegetables

  • Meat thermometer


Using a Dutch oven, especially a cast-iron Dutch oven, allows you to make roast beef on a campfire. To cook your roast this way, set the Dutch oven over a bed of hot coals and place several hot coals on the lid. Remember, campfire-cooked roast beef still needs to reach an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit.


Removing the roast from the oven before it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit results in rarer meat. Though many prefer rare beef, warns that it may harbor harmful germs.

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