French Onion Pot Roast is an all-in-one dinner with tender beef cooked in a rich onion soup broth. Complete with cheese and toasted baguettes!
Half hearty Pot Roast Recipe and half cozy stew, this French inspired dish is sure to be a new favorite recipe for holidays and cool winter nights! French Onion Pot Roast is an easy, inexpensive one pot meal that you can serve for Sunday dinner or throw in the slow cooker for busy holiday weeknights.
This French Onion Pot Roast recipe uses budget friendly chuck roast to get all the beefy flavor you love in a five-star French onion soup without the high price. The beef is fork tender, and the onions cook down to be rich and soft.
The gooey, bubbly gruyere cheese melted over French Onion soup is the best part. Yes, we all love the beefy broth and caramelized onions, but that cheesy toast is where it’s at. If you want to keep French Onion Pot Roast budget friendly, swap the gruyere for a less expensive Swiss or provolone. Check out the deli case too, sometimes they will have fancy cheeses, like gruyere or Emmental, for a fraction of the cost in portions just big enough for this recipe!
More Pot Roast Recipes
French Onion Pot Roast is hearty, more like a stew than a soup or a pot roast. The beef becomes so tender while cooking so you can break it apart easily before toasting the bread and cheese. If you are serving a small group, set half of your French Onion Pot Roast aside for leftovers the next day. Add the sliced baguette and gruyere right before serving so it stays crisp.
You will want to serve French Onion Pot Roast over Mashed Potatoes to soak up the beefy broth, along with some Dinner Rolls on the side so you don’t miss a drop. For a simple and French-inspired full course holiday meal, try French Bread Rolls, Green Bean Almondine, and Spinach Gratin.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Try white onions for a more traditional French Onion soup or use Vidalia Onions for a less potent, slightly sweet onion flavor. For a spicier, sharper onion flavor, use a mixture of half red onions and half yellow onions.
Turn this soup into a stew by adding large chunks of carrots, sweet potatoes, or red potatoes to the broth before placing in the oven. You can also stir in kale, broccoli, cabbage, or spinach during the last 30 minutes of cooking.
Use other fancy, but easier to find, cheese that melt easily like Swiss cheese, provolone cheese, Havarti cheese, or Muenster cheese to save money and still get flavor!
Add up to 1 cup dry red wine, dry white wine, sherry, or brandy with the broth to add more traditional French flavors. For red wine, try a Pinot Noir or Merlot. For white wine, use Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris.
Slow Cooker French Onion Pot Roast
- Season the roast with salt, pepper, and thyme. Rest while you gather the rest of your ingredients.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the beef and brown deeply 3-4 minutes each side.
- Place roast and remaining ingredients, except baguette slices and cheese, in the slow cooker.
- Cover with lid and cook for 7-8 hours on low, or on high heat for 3-4 hours, until meat is fork tender.
- Turn oven to broil. Arrange baguette slices on a baking sheet and top with cheese.
- Broil bread until edges are browned and cheese is melted.
- Serve French Onion Pot Roast with cheesy baguette toasts.
Instant Pot French Onion Pot Roast
- Season beef on both sides and allow to rest at room temperature.
- Heat oil in Instant Pot on Saute Function. Once oil is hot, add beef and brown on both sides for 3-4 minutes each.
- Remove roast and set aside. Deglaze Instant Pot with 1 cup broth, scraping off any brown bits.
- Return beef to pot and add the remaining ingredients, except bread and cheese.
- Close and secure lid and seal pressure valve. Cook on Manual High Pressure for 15 minutes per pound (45-60 minutes).
- Naturally release pressure.
- While pressure is releasing, broil cheese on baguette slices until browned and bubbly.
- Serve pot roast topped with toasted cheesy baguette slices.
Easy, Classic French Recipes
How to Store French Onion Pot Roast
- Serve: French Onion Pot Roast is best served as soon as you toast the bread so it doesn’t get soggy. You can keep this pot roast at room temperature for up to 2 hours.
- Store: Store the cheese toast and French Onion Pot Roast separately. Keep the pot roast in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The cheese toast is good for about 2 days in a plastic storage bag in the refrigerator.
- Freeze: Once cooled, place French Onion Pot Roast, without the bread and cheese, in a sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight, heat in the oven, and broil with bread and cheese before serving.
- 3-4 pound chuck roast
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- 4 yellow onions , halved and thinly sliced
- 4 cups beef broth
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 French baguette , cut into ½ inch slices
- 1 cup gruyere cheese , shredded
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
- Season the chuck roast with the Kosher salt, pepper and thyme.
- Add the vegetable oil to a pan and heat. When it ripples and is hot add in the roast and brown, deeply, for 4-5 minutes on each side.
- Add onions, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, and thyme and cook, covered, for 3 – 3 ½ hours.
- Remove from the oven and remove thyme sprigs.
- Turn oven to hi-broil.
- Shred the beef in very large chunks.
- Top with sliced baguettes and Gruyere cheese.
- Place the pot into the oven, uncovered, and broil until the cheese begins to bubble and brown, about 1-2 minutes.
- Serve immediately.
Photos used in a previous version of this post.