Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef

by aimee @ shugarysweets on May 9, 2013

Another slow cooker dinner recipe! Balsamic Shredded Beef is perfect when you crave comfort food but don’t want to turn on the oven!

Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef: comfort food without turning on the oven! Moist, tender beef! #slowcooker

I think I’ve mentioned it once or twice that I love my Slow Cooker! We seriously use it for dinner recipes 3-4 times a week. With after school activities as well as homework, the dinner hour can be quite hectic!

It’s funny though. I remember having babies in the house and thinking the dinner hour was hectic. I guess you always think the grass is greener! Life is certainly much busier now that the kids are older. Not to say it wasn’t crazy back in the day, it was just a different crazy. An exhausting, running after toddlers and feeding babies kind of crazy.

So this slow cooker thing? It’s been a part of my life for many many years! Ironically enough, I still use the same slow cooker I got as a wedding present, almost 18 years ago! It’s ugly as heck, but it works just great.

Let’s get back to this beef though. I used a 5 lb roast, you can certainly use a smaller roast and scale back the ingredients for the sauce if you’d like. Or, keep the sauce the same and have a nice gravy to put over potatoes! Better yet…make the big roast and freeze half of it after cooking so you have a second dinner ready to go in your freezer!

Balsamic is one of those ingredients I never really cooked with much in the past. Then a couple years ago I made THIS balsamic pork tenderloin. My life was changed. These two dinners are now on my favorites list and get rotated into our menu once a month! I hope you rotate them into your dinner menu soon!

Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef: comfort food without turning on the oven! Moist, tender beef! #slowcooker

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Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

Yield: serves 8

Ingredients

  • 4-5lb beef chuck roast
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed

Instructions

  1. Whisk together all the ingredients and add to the bottom of a slow cooker. Add roast. Covere and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove roast and shred with a fork, return to juices.
  2. Serve and enjoy. The gravy is delicious with mashed potatoes too!
http://www.shugarysweets.com/2013/05/slow-cooker-balsamic-shredded-beef

Balsamic Glazed Pork Tenderloin is one my favorite meals! Made in the slow cooker, it’s easy and delicious! Perfectly paired with marinated cherry tomato salad, too.

Balsamic Glazed Pork Tenderloin: juicy, fork tender pork tenderloin made in your slow cooker #crockpot #dinner www.shugarysweets.com

Slow Cooker Sausage and Peppers is a delicious meal to make for a crowd! Have some nice, crusty rolls to serve it on, or a rice would be delicious too.

Slow Cooker Sausage and Peppers: delicious, hearty meal made in your #crockpot #dinner www.shugarysweets.com

Want a two-for-one deal? Make dinner once by cooking up a big roast in your slow cooker. Use the meat to make Beef Enchiladas one night and French Dip Sandwiches another night!

frenchdipenchiladas

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{ 101 comments… read them below or add one }

Eva @ Eva Bakes May 9, 2013 at 9:34 am

This looks awesome! We need to use our slow cooker more, and I don’t cook nearly enough with balsamic vinegar. I want to pick a roast at the store this weekend and try your recipe next week!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 9, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Let me know if you try it Eva!
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Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust May 9, 2013 at 9:38 am

I remember thinking: when she gets to Kinder, life will be easier and slower.

HAHAAHAHHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA.

I love your slow cooker meals, and my family is going to love this one!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 9, 2013 at 12:18 pm

I know it. We always think the next phase will be easier!! enjoy the recipe Dorothy!
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Cassie | Bake Your Day May 9, 2013 at 9:40 am

This looks amazing, Aimee! I love shredded beef and pork in the slow cooker. I wish I had some right now!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 9, 2013 at 12:18 pm

Thanks Cassie!!
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Elaine @ Cooking to Perfection May 9, 2013 at 11:15 am

This looks fantastic! I love using my slow cooker, especially when I have to work and don’t want to make dinner when I get home. Definitely need to give this recipe a try!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 9, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Thanks Elaine! My slow cooker is definitely overused, but I love the convenience!
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Jess May 9, 2013 at 11:36 am

This looks mouth watering! YUMMY!
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Jess @ On Sugar Mountain May 9, 2013 at 11:36 am

It’s getting warmer rather quickly and I know I’m not going to want to turn my oven on soon – this is an awesome dinner idea Aimee! And over those mashed potatoes? Comfort food to the MAX :D
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Jocelyn @BruCrew Life May 9, 2013 at 11:39 am

I agree life does seem a whole lot busier now. Now I wish I hadn’t been so eager to get past the busy baby stage :-) All your crock pot recipes have me inspired to pull out mine for this summer.
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 9, 2013 at 12:23 pm

I know. I remember people telling me to enjoy the moment it goes so fast. How very very true…
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Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking May 9, 2013 at 2:10 pm

Oh my goodness, this looks SO mouthwatering, Aimee! Definitely a must-make for me. We should all remember to use our CrockPots this time of year!

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Marcie@Flavorthemoments May 9, 2013 at 2:19 pm

This recipe has my taste buds going crazy! Balsamic with spy sauce and brown sugar sounds amazing! It would pair so well with beef. I love slow cooker meals too — I’m so pinning this!
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Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste May 9, 2013 at 3:47 pm

Oh. My. Lard. This looks INCREDIBLE! Can you come make dinner at my house?
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 11, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Sure thing!! this will feed a crowd, so I’ll bring my family too :)
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Ari @ Ari's Menu May 9, 2013 at 5:15 pm

I love juicy and tender shredded beef! And I love the crockpot and how little effort it requires!
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Nancy P.@thebittersideofsweet May 9, 2013 at 5:33 pm

I have followed one of your recipes making the pork tenderloin in the crock pot and it is super delicious and definitely makes me want to use my crock pot more!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 11, 2013 at 2:51 pm

Glad you enjoyed the recipe! I love using my crock pot!!
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Sarah- the magical slow cooker May 9, 2013 at 5:45 pm

Your a genius! Balsamic! Yumm, I must try this recipe soon. I love my slow cooker too! I’m always looking for new recipes, thanks so much!
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Kristin @ Dizzy Busy and Hungry! May 9, 2013 at 7:40 pm

I am always looking for delicious crock pot recipes. They are definitely a life saver for a busy family! This looks like a winner!
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carrian May 9, 2013 at 9:08 pm

oh. my. goodness. THat looks so juicy!!
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Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts May 9, 2013 at 10:23 pm

We love balsamic in my house, this beef is sounds so good! Lots of great flavor, and dinner waiting for you is always good!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 12, 2013 at 9:37 am

I love having dinner waiting, that’s the best part!!
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Faith @ Pixie Dust Kitchen May 9, 2013 at 11:38 pm

It’s amazing how long slow cookers can last (Or kitchen stuff in general!). My parents just got a new one and they’ve been married 25 years. I LOVE balsamic. I’m going ot pass this on to my parents!
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tanya May 10, 2013 at 8:06 am

Our slow cookies is almost as old, and probably as nasty, but it works! I love having a new go to slow cooker recipe, our lives just keeping getting crazier too! Thanks Aimee! Gorgeous picture by the way!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 12, 2013 at 9:36 am

Awww thanks girl!
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Ashley May 10, 2013 at 11:55 am

This sounds absolutely delicious! I love anything with balsamic : ) I really need to use my slow-cooker more often … I only use it every once in a while on the weekends..
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 12, 2013 at 9:36 am

Definitely pull it out this week and give this beef a try! Especially if you love balsamic :)
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Jessica@AKitchenAddiction May 10, 2013 at 4:05 pm

I would love to have a big batch of leftovers from this to eat throughout the week!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 12, 2013 at 9:35 am

Yeah, the leftovers are pretty amazing :)
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Kathy May 11, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Wow! That looks delicious! My husband would love this with the balsamic vinegar. The mashed potatoes look fabulous too!
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aimee @ shugarysweets May 12, 2013 at 9:35 am

We love a good smashed potato (just add cream, butter, and garlic salt)!!
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Nutmeg Nanny May 14, 2013 at 10:55 am

Oh wow, this looks delicious! I love using my slow cooker for beef, I have to try this :)

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Lindsay May 14, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Has anyone tried it sans sugar??

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Charity July 4, 2013 at 3:58 am

I would love to know how this would turn out without the brown sugar. I’m diabetic and watch my carbs very closely, so omitting the sugar would make this the perfect meal. However, I don’t think I’m willing to risk 5 pounds of meat without hearing how others have faired.

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Julie @ Outtakes on the Outskirts May 17, 2013 at 8:39 am

I made this yesterday and it is DELICIOUS! My husband and I loved it. Thank you for sharing!

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aimee @ shugarysweets May 29, 2013 at 3:59 pm

So glad you enjoyed the recipe Julie!!!
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Julie @ Julie's Eats & Treats May 22, 2013 at 11:46 am

Oh my gosh I heart anything with balsamic in it. I HAVE to try this with my next roast!!!
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Mackenzie May 23, 2013 at 11:56 pm

This seriously looks so amazing! I LOVE balsamic anything! (well, almost anything) ;) Great recipe!

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kilee May 27, 2013 at 11:10 pm

I love anything in the slow cooker! This meat looks amazing!

Kilee
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Martina May 29, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Wow, I think we were separated at birth! I’ve often joked if it wasn’t for the slow cooker we’d have starved years ago. Kids now 7 & 4 and still using it. Had to replace it last year, it was a wedding present also! Nearly had a conniption fit when it broke down. It took just 24 hours to source & replace! :-) Will deffo try this recipe thanks for sharing!

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aimee @ shugarysweets May 29, 2013 at 4:00 pm

Haha!!! Enjoy the recipe Martina!
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Karyn May 31, 2013 at 7:17 pm

Thank you for a wonderful recipe. I made this yesterday and it was a hit! We are enjoying the leftovers. I’m going to have to start with a larger roast next time so i have extras for freezing.

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Katie P. June 7, 2013 at 12:39 pm

I’m going to follow in your footsteps – I also tried balsamic vinegar for the first time with that pork tenderloin recipe (or one very similar anyway). I passed that recipe on to a friend, who has made it four times in the last month (yes, that’s once per week – she has five children and a husband who demand it that often!)! After I make this one, I’ll share this recipe with her too. :)

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Laura June 10, 2013 at 10:31 pm
Vanessa July 6, 2013 at 8:37 am

Can it be frozen or does it need to be thawed?

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aimee @ shugarysweets July 6, 2013 at 5:34 pm

I usually use a thawed roast, so that the flavors don’t get diluted with the juices as much. However, if you add some time on to your cooking time, you certainly could use a frozen roast. You may also want to add extra seasonings… ENJOY.

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ginger July 20, 2013 at 4:05 am

I normally dont leave comments but I made this today for dinner and it was AMAZING. I made it and put it over noodles. Your brain thinks your going to bite into a beef tip and gravy then your taste buds are like woot woot back the truck up…whats this sweet goodness you gave us. Thanks for sharing.

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Winnie July 22, 2013 at 8:40 pm

This looks really amazing! I think my family would love it. Pinned!

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Sara July 30, 2013 at 9:21 am

Hey Aimee,

I am looking for a recipe to use for hot sandwiches. Do you think this would be good for a hot beef sandwich or do you think the flavor is to bold for sandwiches and is better with potatoes?

Thanks!

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aimee @ shugarysweets July 30, 2013 at 10:35 am

It wouldn’t be bad, but it is great with potatoes. Here is a french dip sammie recipe: http://www.shugarysweets.com/2011/10/slow-cooker-french-dip-sammies

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Lisa July 31, 2013 at 4:37 pm

I absolutely love this recipe!!! I am making it again and am wondering how much adding carrots and cubed potatoes to it (like a traditional pot roast) would change the flavor) and when should I add them? Thank you!! =)

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aimee @ shugarysweets July 31, 2013 at 9:39 pm

Hmmm, I’m not sure how it would be with the veggies in there! You could try?!

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Joey Sim August 1, 2013 at 2:28 am

Hello, just wondering if we could use pressure cooker for this? if so, how long do you think it will take. Will appreciate for you answer. Cheers, thank you.

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aimee @ shugarysweets August 1, 2013 at 8:28 am

I’ve never used a pressure cooker so I have absolutely no idea. So sorry!!

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Debbie August 1, 2013 at 8:12 pm

I tried this tonight for dinner and it was outstanding. We loved it! I was afraid it would be too sweet, but it had just the right amount of sweetness. I served it on a hoagie bun with the juice on the side for dipping. Next time I will add more red pepper, but that is just personal preference. Thanks for the great recipe :~)

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aimee @ shugarysweets August 1, 2013 at 9:53 pm

So glad you enjoyed your dinner Debbie! A little red pepper sounds perfect to me too!!!

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Kim August 4, 2013 at 5:54 pm

We have the balsamic beef in the crock pot now…it smells divine!!!! Can’t wait till it’s done cooking.

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Sue August 4, 2013 at 10:52 pm

Hi, I was just wondering if you could use other types of roasts such as a bottom round roast/ I just bought one on sale and wanted to use it. Thanks, Sue

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aimee @ shugarysweets August 5, 2013 at 9:22 am

A bottom round would be great!

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April August 8, 2013 at 9:37 pm

I made the Balsamic Beef tonight! OUTTA SITE!! It came out great. M first Pinterest recipe I’ve made! Thanks so much for sharing it!

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Ashley Cabelka August 16, 2013 at 5:37 pm

I marinated this in the sauce for one hour then cooked it on low for 3 hours and it is tough, definitely not able to shred it. What am I doing wrong? It was a smaller roast, only 3.5 lbs, but the adjusted cooking time should have helped. I can’t for the life of me get a tender roast in my crock pot (and I bought a different one just to make sure it wasn’t my crock pot). :(

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katie August 23, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Hmmm….I don’t think 3 hours is nearly enough time to cook even a small roast. Try to do 6 hrs on low. I’ve made many crock pot roasts, and never had a problem but I’ve always let mine go all day while I’m at work. Gonna try this one this weekend!

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aimee @ shugarysweets August 23, 2013 at 9:17 pm

No, I would say regardless of the size of roast, you want to cook it 6 hours minimum. Better off longer to get that nice shred!! Enjoy.

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Erica October 12, 2013 at 4:57 pm

I had a 3.5lb round roast and I still did almost 7 hrs. It was moist and tender but definitely couldn’t have shredded it with a fork. It was the first time for me too doing a full roast and don’t know if I it was the cut or if I just have a super slow slow cooker. Also, is the gravy more like a jus? I assumed I would have a thicker sauce consistency but it was jus-like thin.

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aimee @ shugarysweets October 12, 2013 at 5:35 pm

It is more like an au jus. It could have been your cut of meat for sure, but 7 hours it should have shredded! not sure what to tell you!

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Chandra September 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm

Making this tomorrow. I am using a deer roast instead of a beef roast. Can’t wait to try it though.

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aimee @ shugarysweets September 17, 2013 at 4:56 pm

Sounds delicious. Enjoy the recipe, let me know what you think!!

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Chandra September 18, 2013 at 6:23 pm

I am not a big deer fan but this was awesome. I didn’t have red pepper flakes so I used jalapeño flakes. Both kids had seconds and thirds. Thank you for the recipe. It’s definitely a keeper.

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Christina Giovenco September 18, 2013 at 8:08 am

Made this last night and it was amazing! I used a 2lb chuck roast (for 2 of us) and had plenty of leftovers too. The flavors were sensational. Thanks for a great go to recipe!

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Pauline Gudas September 21, 2013 at 4:16 pm

This looks incredible. I have to make it this week. Putting chuck roast on the grocery list!!

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Julie September 22, 2013 at 4:57 pm

Made this tonight and it was awesome!!! I had no leftovers it was that good!!

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Wendy September 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm

Made this for Sunday dinner! Oh my goodness! It was amazing! I didn’t have any beef broth so I used a packet of brown gravy. The smell of the vinegar in the beginning was a bit strong but after simmering all day, the house smelled amazing! My 21 yo son had thirds and ate the meager left-overs the next day for lunch! Thank you so much for a new recipe in my rotation!

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Corinne September 30, 2013 at 9:54 pm

I have made this dish several times now and it’s always amazing!! I have made it with pork tenderloin instead of beef on several occasions and we love it more that way! So good and tender. I use the excess juices to make gravy and it’s so delicious! Thanks for a great recipe!!

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Rachel Eldredge October 2, 2013 at 7:44 pm

What a yummy twist on roast! We enjoyed this recipe, and I linked to it on my blog to share with others. Thanks for sharing it!

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aimee @ shugarysweets October 3, 2013 at 12:09 pm

So glad to hear you enjoyed the dinner recipe!

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Sylvia October 11, 2013 at 6:42 pm

This looks and sounds so good. It’s on my “to do” list.

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Katie @ThePrettyPartyShoppe October 11, 2013 at 6:54 pm

This looks so rich and delicious! It’s on my to do list for the week, thank you! I just pinned it. Love your website! :)
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aimee @ shugarysweets October 12, 2013 at 9:41 am

Thank you!!

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Vicky Griffiths October 21, 2013 at 2:05 pm

Hi,
What’s the potato dish that you served with it? The one in the main pic? It all looks so yummy!

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aimee @ shugarysweets October 21, 2013 at 4:44 pm

That’s just some homemade smashed potatoes!

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Melani October 23, 2013 at 6:31 pm

Aimee,
I have made this twice now and absolutely love it! For some reason the gravy comes out much lighter than yours is pictured and is very thin. It tastes amazing but I wish it were a bit thicker. Is yours a thin sauce or does it thicken? I was thinking of trying to reduce the sauce and then add the meat back to that. Let me know what I’m doing wrong! Thanks,
Melani

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Nolan November 8, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Made this tonight and OH MY GOSH, is it good! Thank you!

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Kim November 10, 2013 at 1:31 pm

I made this the other night with venison instead of beef and it was delicious!
I am doing a round-up of our favorite freezer-to-crock pot recipes, and I was wondering if I could include an image from this recipe in my blog post. (Linking back to this recipe, of course!) Thank you!
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JamieWolfe November 21, 2013 at 9:33 pm

My gluten free husband hasn’t had a roast in a year since his diagnosis…I switched the soy to gluten free soy sauce and otherwise followed the recipe exactly. He just saod this is the best roast he’s ever had in his entire life. THANK YOU!

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aimee @ shugarysweets November 22, 2013 at 1:44 pm

I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe :)

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Jessi December 16, 2013 at 10:11 pm

I made the shredded beef tonight, it was fabulous!

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Dan December 27, 2013 at 8:40 am

My wife is on a highly restricted sodium diet. that means the soy sauce and kosher salt is ‘out’. How critical are they to this recipe? What could i substitute in their place… anything? This looks so good i’d love to make it! Thanks for your thoughts.

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Melanie January 13, 2014 at 8:11 pm

This has quickly become one of our family’s favorites – thanks so much for sharing!
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aimee @ shugarysweets January 15, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Thank you Melanie, glad you enjoy the recipe!

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CindiH January 26, 2014 at 8:28 pm

I made this tonight with sautéed kale and garlic mashed potatoes. Absolutely delicious! My husband is super picky and he loved it. Thanks for the awesome recipe!

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aimee @ shugarysweets January 27, 2014 at 7:38 am

So glad you all loved it :)

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amber January 27, 2014 at 7:36 pm

This was delish! I first served it with some mushrooms & mashed potatoes. The next day, I cooked some with the leftover need broth, kale & wheat pasta. I wish the sauce was a touch thicker but it was so good both ways! Thanks!

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Beth February 22, 2014 at 1:23 pm

Made this last night for my book club. Served it on mashed potatoes, with roasted green beans on the side. And enough leftovers for Sunday meal with my husband. It was great!

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aimee @ shugarysweets February 22, 2014 at 6:48 pm

Awesome!! Sounds like the perfect side dishes too.

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Heather March 3, 2014 at 7:46 pm

I made this tonight it smelled so good all day. It was really tasty too. I did sear my roast first with some dehydrated garlic, fresh pepper, and a little salt in olive oil than I didnt have beef stock so I subbed some chicken stock in the marinade and had a little left so I deglazed the pan with that and poured it over the roast in the crock pot. I made mashed potatoes to go with it. I also mixed a little cornstarch with cold water and added that to the au jus and boiled it till it was a nice gravy and it was perfect. I have quite a bit left over so im thinking they might be good in chimichangas tomorrow………..

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Jasmin July 15, 2014 at 9:40 am

Aarrgghhh…I made this today and my beef was tough, not shreddable :-( I had it on low for 5 hours and it was 4 lbs..help!!!!

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aimee @ shugarysweets July 15, 2014 at 9:52 am

The recipe is for 6-8 hours for a 4-5lb roast. That extra hour (to two hours) really makes a difference!!

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Jasmin July 15, 2014 at 10:14 am

Thanks! I was nervous…let’s see what a few more hours does! THX again!

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Danae July 26, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Planning on making this for dinner soon, but have London Broil on hand instead of chuck roast. Would it still work? Would the cooking time be any different? Thank you!!

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