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Kalyn's Kitchen

Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast (How to Make Pot Roast in a Slow Cooker)

This Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast is a delicious and healthy dinner that’s made in the Crockpot, and this post also has tips for How to Make Pot Roast in a Slow Cooker. And this low-carb dinner is also gluten-free. Use Slow Cooker Recipes to find more recipes like this one.

Click here to PIN Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast!

Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast found on KalynsKitchen.com

When my friend Bonnie told me she had made this Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast and liked it, I immediately realized I wanted to make it again just so I could take better photos! Bonnie was kind enough to say that she didn’t think the old photos were that bad, but trust me, these updated photos give you a much better idea of what a tasty recipe this is! This pot roast is just the thing to cook on low all day in the slow cooker while you’re at work, and dinner will be ready when you get home.

How to Make Pot Roast in the Slow Cooker:

I’m not a pot roast expert, but I’ve made pot roast in the Crockpot enough times to have strong opinions about how it should be done. There are three things I think are important to remember.

  1. First, Brown the meat well before you put it in the Crockpot because browning creates flavor.
  2. Second, don’t use too much liquid for any crockpot cooking, but especially for pot roast.
  3. Third, be sure there is plenty of flavor in the liquids you’re using. All day cooking can make foods bland if there isn’t a flavorful liquid.

I’m using all those tricks in this pot roast recipe. If there are others reading this who use a slow cooker to make pot roast, chime in with some comments about good tips for making pot roast in the Crockpot.

How to Make Pot Roast in a Crockpot and Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast found on KalynsKitchen.com

I used a very thick chuck roast from Costco; here’s how my roast looked after I trimmed it. (I had to cut it in half to get it to fit in my Crockpot.) I save all the scraps in a container which goes in the freezer, and then use them to make beef stock. Rub meat on both sides with steak seasoning and black pepper, then brown the roast well. In a small saucepan, reduce 1 cup beef stock to 1/2 cup. While the meat browns, cut the onions and put them in the Crockpot. When the meat is brown put it in slow cooker on top of the onions, then deglaze the pan with 1/4 cup water, scraping off all browned bits, and add to reduced beef stock.

How to Make Pot Roast in a Crockpot and Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast found on KalynsKitchen.com

Add balsamic vinegar and tomato sauce to beef stock and pour over pot roast. Cook on low 6-8 hours, until meat is tender. I drained all the liquid from the Crockpot and used a fat separator to remove the fat. (This is too much liquid; I reduced the amount in the recipe I’m giving you.) After the fat is removed, reduce the liquid by about 1/3 to make a sauce. You could thicken it, but I didn’t think it needed it. You might think they’d be too done from being in the Crockpot all that time, but the onions were delicious as well as the meat.

Make it a Low-Carb Meal:

This would taste great with Pureed Cauliflower with Garlic, Parmesan, and Goat Cheese for a low-carb meal.

More Tasty Beef Recipes for the Slow Cooker or Instant Pot:

Instant Pot Barbacoa Beef ~ Taste and Tell
Low-Carb Stuffed Peppers with Beef, Sausage, and Cabbage ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli ~ Well Plated
Crockpot Recipe for Southwestern Pot Roast ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Instant Pot Beef Short Ribs ~ That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Green Chile Shredded Beef Cabbage Bowl (Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker) ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Slow Cooker or Instant Pot Beef Recipes Index ~ Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast in the Crockpot

This Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast is a deliciously healthy dinner that’s made in the Crockpot.


  • 3-4 pound boneless chuck roast
  • 1-2 T steak rub (see notes)
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1-2 T olive oil (depends on your pan)
  • 1/4 cup water to deglaze pan
  • 2-3 large onions, peeled and thickly sliced
  • 1 cup beef stock, reduced to 1/2 cup (can use a can of beef broth, but be sure to reduce it)
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar (see notes)
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce (You can substitute one can diced tomatoes, drained well. I might puree the tomatoes.)


  1. Trim as much fat as you can from roast, and cut if necessary to fit into Crockpot. Rub meat well with steak seasoning and black pepper.
  2. Heat heavy pan with small amount of olive oil and brown roast well on both sides. This will take a few minutes; don’t rush the browning step.
  3. While roast browns put 1 cup beef stock in saucepan, bring to a boil and cook until reduced to 1/2 cup, then let cool slightly and mix in balsamic vinegar and tomato sauce.
  4. Peel onions and cut into thick slices. Deglaze pan with 1/4 cup water and add to sauce mixture.
  5. (You can stop at this point and refrigerate browned roast, cut onions and mixed sauce ingredients and then put them in the Crockpot when you go to work in the morning. Don’t refrigerate them in the crockery liner. Having the meat start out cold will add several hours to the cooking time, which will be good if you’re cooking it all day while you’re away.)
  6. Place onions in bottom of Crockpot. Put meat on top of onions and pour beef stock mixture over.
  7. Set Crockpot to low and cook 6-8 hours, until beef is tender. The meat might be partly submerged in liquid after this much time. (If I am home, I might turn the meat once or twice.)
  8. Remove meat from crockpot and cover with foil to keep warm.
  9. Drain liquid from Crockpot and remove as much of the fat as you can with fat separator or skimmer. Cook down liquid by about 1/3, and serve sauce with meat and onions.


I used a standard 3 1/2 quart Crockpot for this recipe.

I used Szeged Steak Rub and Fini Balsamic Vinegar but there are many good brands.

This recipe created by Kalyn, and it’s been hugely popular on the site!

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
With the fat trimmed well and served with the onions, this Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast is suitable for any phase of the South Beach Diet, and it would also be suitable for most other low-carb eating plans, which may not care about trimming the fat! Balsamic vinegar and onions both have some carbs, so concentrate on the meat and go easy on the sauce if you’re making this for a low-carb diet.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there. Click for Slow Cooker / Pressure Cooker Recipes on my other site!

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, you can sign up for a free membership with Yummly and use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information. Another option is entering the recipe into this Recipe Nutrition Analyzer, which will calculate it for you.

Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast (and How to Make Pot Roast in a Slow Cooker) found on KalynsKitchen.com

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168 comments on “Low-Carb Balsamic and Onion Pot Roast (How to Make Pot Roast in a Slow Cooker)”

  1. Paula, I have TWO of those old crockpots where the base doesn't separate. They seem better for all-day cooking than the newer ones. I actually have eight crockpots (including two tiny ones) but not an All-Clad one. Will have to check that out, lol!

  2. Kalyn, I have 5 crockpots myself so this is right up my alley. My favorite is my newest (All-Clad) and my oldest. The others are prone to burn/overcook food around the edges. Oldest is gold and the pot does not separate from the heating element. Do you have one of those? Still works fabulously but a pain to clean.
    Love the onions-on-the-bottom idea.

  3. Frieda, thanks for that tip about salting the meat and letting it sit overnight. That makes a lot of sense; I'll definitely try it.

    BevvBevv, definitely use the crockpot if you're super busy. I used to use it all the time when I was teaching school!

  4. Thank you so much for all your lovely recipes! I have you on my RSS feed because of your many fabulous SB items, but this post was particularly timely as literally five minutes ago today I decided that my only method of survival as a first year teacher is to pull out the crock pot!

  5. Your roast looks fabulous! I just recently made a pot roast in my dutch oven (which one of my readers made in a crock pot) and it is really good.

    A tip I learned is to salt your meat and let it sit overnight in the fridge. This tenderizes the meat throughout. I then cut back or omit salt throughout the recipe. This recipe made a fantastic shepherd's pie…I'm sure yours would too!

  6. A lot of the flavor from the pot roast is the liquid that comes out of the meat. You don't want to add more liquid, because it just dilutes that flavor. You reduce the broth by putting it in a pan on the stove and cooking it until it's reduced by half or so. That concentrates the flavor, including the broth that's come out of the meat.

  7. I'm confused. How do you "reduce" the broth? Why not just mix twice as much powder with that amount of water?

  8. Anonymous, I haven't tried sirloin roast, but thanks for the tip.

  9. I've done a sirloin roast in the crockpot. Much less fat to trim than a chuck. It is a little more dry, so you definitely need a little liquid, but it's just as delicious.

  10. Thanks, so glad you liked it!

  11. Made this today. MMMMM!!!!

  12. (I published this comment from my phone and accidentally hit reject, so my apologies that I had to copy and paste it!)

    I made your pot roast today and there are no adequate words to describe how much my family enjoyed it. I will definitely put this recipe in my keeper file! I just found your blog today and I am certain I will be perusing it daily! Many thanks!

  13. Great idea to use a pressure cooker; thanks for letting me know it turned out well!

  14. Having limited time, I followed your pot roast recipe using the pressure cooker and YUM; so fast, tender, and wonderful! Thanks so much for your excellent website!

  15. Carol, good luck this time around. You can do it, and if you stick with it, I know it will work!

  16. i am thrilled to have found your site!!!..this is my second time jumping on south beach and i think this time i have fully accepted i need to eat this way for the rest of my life…i lost 27lbs the first time and this time i need to lose a total of 48lbs to get to a healthy 150lbs i will reach my goal this time…i have been very ill and put on oxygen 24/7, so if i ever want to get off it…there is hope i can get off it in the daytime…anyway this is day 5 and i have already lost 6lbs hooray!!!!…all your recipes look so delicious and such a nice selection of different things you are a gift to those of us who need to get off the sugar once and for all and need variety…thank you so much…i will check in every day…carol fuller

  17. Virginia Bluebell, goad to hear you enjoyed it!

  18. Kalyn, I found your website a couple of weeks ago and I'm so glad! This recipe was delicious, and you're quite right about this: the key is reducing and concentrating the liquids, both before and after cooking. After doing that, the sauce was perfect. Thank you so much for all your hard work posting these recipes- you've certainly made Phase I much, much more pleasant!

  19. Anonymous, I’m sure there are thousands of good ways to make pot roast. You could definitely use liquid in this recipe too.

  20. I’ve actually never added liquid to my pot roasts. I’ve done a “spanish” themed one, but drained the tomatoes used and reserved the liquid to make the spanish rice we had with it. (That was pre-SBD), but even still, I’ve never added liquid and have always managed to have a very juicy and flavorful roast.

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