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Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce

As far as I’m concerned, there is little in this life that is half as good as pot roast. Call me crazy, but that first bite of tender beef falling apart on your fork is one of the things that makes me want to be a carnivore for life. I have a million recipes for good pot roast. There are millions of others out there. But when the good folks at Jones Creek Beef offered to let me try some of their AH-MAZING all-natural grass-fed chuck roasts, I knew I needed to find a way to make that meat sing!

I looked around online to try and find some new way of preparing pot roast that I hadn’t tried before. I found SO many ideas, and I decided to try and combine a few to make them my own. The (very delicious) result is this Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce. This is a slow-cooked recipe that does require a bit of prep, but the results are so very worth it.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Here’s what you’ll need:

Spice Rub

2 T espresso powder
1 T cocoa
2 T chipotle powder
1 t cayenne pepper
1 T season salt
1 t curry powder
1 T black pepper

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Sauce

2 large yellow onions, sliced
2 T olive oil
1 C blackberry wine
1 C balsamic vinegar
8 garlic cloves, whole
1 Knorr beef stock pot
1 T peppercorns
2 bay leaves
4 T tomato paste
1 C frozen blueberries
1/2 C brown sugar (optional)

2 lb Jones Creek Beef chuck roast
1 lb new potatoes
8 parsnips
8 carrots

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing
Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing


One thing to remember is that cooking with grass fed beef is slightly different than normal, so here’s my advice:

First, lower the cooking temperature. Grass-fed beef is leaner than its grain-fed counterpart, so you need to cook it at a slightly lower temperature for 30-50% less time. Otherwise, you cook off the fat, and it becomes dry, tough and unappealing, AND it loses many of its nutrients. This is the main reason I chose to use a slow-cooker for this recipe. I was able to keep a nice low cooking temperature for a long time without losing quality.

Second, you need to make sure you start out with your roast at room temperature. It’s a good rule for all meat, but it’s especially important for grass-fed beef. It means it will take less time to reach the ideal internal temperature while cooking, and it’ll help it stay juicy and delicious.

Now that that’s out of the way, let me tell you how to create this awesome meal.

Begin by combining the ingredients for your spice rub. Mix them together and then use your hands to massage it into your roast.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Make sure you get it into every nook and cranny. I know it sounds weird to use coffee and chocolate in a pot roast, but honestly, once you try it, you’ll understand! It’s SO delicious! A word to the wise – I love to use a little extra heat in the spice rub, so there’s quite a lot of spice. You can taste this in the finished product, so if you don’t like a bit of spice, use less of the chipotle and cayenne. You can switch them out for a bit of smoked paprika so you get the great flavor without the heat.

In a large pot, add the olive oil and sliced onions. Saute them until the onions are nice and golden brown. Then remove them from the pan.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

In the same pot, add your roast and sear it on all sides. You want a nice crust on the outside. The spice rub will make it look like you’ve burned your roast, but I promise it’s fine. Once you’ve got it nicely browned on all sides, remove from the pan.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Add the onions back into the pan and then add your blackberry wine and balsamic vinegar. I use Manischewitz Blackberry Wine, but you can use any you like. You can actually use any sort of berry wine you prefer, but I love the blackberry for its sweetness. Let the liquid simmer until it reduces by about 1/3.  Then add the garlic cloves, the beef stock, peppercorns, bay leaves, tomato paste and the frozen blueberries.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Stir it all together until everything has combined to make a nice thick sauce. Pour the mixture into your slowcooker and then place the whole roast right in the middle. Add in your vegetables on top, place the lid on and then set the cooker to low. Cook for 6 – 8 hours.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Remove your veggies and roast and set them aside. Taste your sauce. Add the brown sugar if you feel it needs it, and make sure to stir it in well. Now you’re ready to plate and serve.

I like to add a nice helping of meat with a bunch of veggies beside it.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

The meat is so tender and delicious on its own, but you’re going to want to spoon some of that fab sauce right over it. It not only keeps it moist, but it had taken all the flavor of the beef, the spice rub and the veggies, so it gives the dish a wonderful depth.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing
Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

I have to admit that with this gorgeous grass fed roast and the new way of cooking, I am already a huge fan of this recipe. I will definitely be trying it again! Next time I may leave the veggies, add some mushrooms and serve with some homemade mashed potatoes! However you choose to serve it, I guarantee you’ll love it.

I received the Jones Creek Beef chuck roast at no cost to facilitate this recipe. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

Mocha Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce | A Mother Thing

Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 40 minutes

Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast with Balsamic Blueberry Sauce is a slow-cooked recipe that does require a bit of prep, but the results are so very worth it.

Ingredients

Spice Rub

  • 2 T espresso powder
  • 1 T cocoa
  • 2 T chipotle powder
  • 1 t cayenne pepper
  • 1 T season salt
  • 1 t curry powder
  • 1 T black pepper

Sauce

  • 2 large yellow onions, sliced
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 C blackberry wine
  • 1 C balsamic vinegar
  • 8 garlic cloves, whole
  • 1 Knorr beef stock pot
  • 1 T peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 T tomato paste
  • 1 C frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 C brown sugar (optional)

Roast

  • 2 lb Jones Creek Beef chuck roast
  • 1 lb new potatoes
  • 8 parsnips
  • 8 carrots

Instructions

  1. Begin by combining the ingredients for your spice rub. Mix them together and then use your hands to massage it into your roast.
  2. Make sure you get it into every nook and cranny. I know it sounds weird to use coffee and chocolate in a pot roast, but honestly, once you try it, you'll understand! It's SO delicious! A word to the wise - I love to use a little extra heat in the spice rub, so there's quite a lot of spice. You can taste this in the finished product, so if you don't like a bit of spice, use less of the chipotle and cayenne. You can switch them out for a bit of smoked paprika so you get the great flavor without the heat.
  3. In a large pot, add the olive oil and sliced onions. Saute them until the onions are nice and golden brown. Then remove them from the pan.
  4. In the same pot, add your roast and sear it on all sides. You want a nice crust on the outside. The spice rub will make it look like you've burned your roast, but I promise it's fine. Once you've got it nicely browned on all sides, remove from the pan.
  5. Add the onions back into the pan and then add your blackberry wine and balsamic vinegar. I use Manischewitz Blackberry Wine, but you can use any you like. You can actually use any sort of berry wine you prefer, but I love the blackberry for its sweetness. Let the liquid simmer until it reduces by about 1/3. Then add the garlic cloves, the beef stock, peppercorns, bay leaves, tomato paste and the frozen blueberries.
  6. Stir it all together until everything has combined to make a nice thick sauce. Pour the mixture into your slow cooker and then place the whole roast right in the middle. Add in your vegetables on top, place the lid on and then set the cooker to low. Cook for 6 - 8 hours.
  7. Remove your veggies and roast and set them aside. Taste your sauce. Add the brown sugar if you feel it needs it, and make sure to stir it in well. Now you're ready to plate and serve.

Notes

One thing to remember is that cooking with grass-fed beef is slightly different than normal, so here's my advice:

First, lower the cooking temperature. Grass-fed beef is leaner than its grain-fed counterpart, so you need to cook it at a slightly lower temperature for 30-50% less time. Otherwise, you cook off the fat, and it becomes dry, tough and unappealing, AND it loses many of its nutrients. This is the main reason I chose to use a slow-cooker for this recipe. I was able to keep a nice low cooking temperature for a long time without losing quality.

Second, you need to make sure you start out with your roast at room temperature. It's a good rule for all meat, but it's especially important for grass-fed beef. It means it will take less time to reach the ideal internal temperature while cooking, and it'll help it stay juicy and delicious.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 579Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 1079mgCarbohydrates: 60gFiber: 8gSugar: 27gProtein: 33g

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Sherry Nappa

Sunday 20th of March 2016

This looks sooooo good! I'm going to try your recipe. Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday.

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