Sunday, May 12, 2013

Slow Cooker Italian Beef Roast with Potatoes & Vegetables

I was going to try to make a pot roast recipe which called for 1 packet of Ranch Dressing mix, 1 packet of Zesty Italian Dressing mix, and 1 packet of Brown Gravy mix.  But the Brown Gravy part scared me. I made this instead...

I put 1/2 of the jar of Tomato & Basil sauce in the bottom of the slow cooker... and then I added in the big beef roast... "plop!"  (Sound effects... cool!)

Then I surrounded the roast with a bunch of scrubbed russet potatoes... that's the Zesty Italian Dressing packet sprinkled on top of the roast...

Then I added in the veggies... I had to leave out the second bell pepper since the slow cooker was getting mighy full.

 I was concered I might violate a slow cooker maximum capacity rule and the "Food Police" might come 'a knockin' on my door, but it all turned out fine...

Then I topped all the veggies and the taters with the other 1/2 of sauce.  I cooked it on high for about 3 1/2 hours and then I cooked it on low for about 3 1/2 more hours.  Slow cookers are rather flexible that way.

Slow Cooker Italian Beef Roast with Potatoes & Vegetables

1 beef rump roast or beef chuck roast (about 3 1/2 to 3 3/4 pounds), remove visible fat
6 to 8 small russet potatoes, unpeeled & scrubbed
1 red onion, coarsely chopped
1 bell pepper (I used red), coarsely chopped
5-6 cloves fresh garlic, paper layers removed
about 3/4 cup grape tomatoes (optional)
1 jar (approximately 24 ounces or 3 cups) tomato pasta sauce (I used Barilla Tomato & Basil)
1 packet dry Good Seasons Zesty Italian salad dressing mix..

Pour 1/2 of the jar of pasta sauce into the bottom of the slow cooker.  Place roast in slow cooker and surround with potatoes.  Sprinkle the dry salad dressing mix over the roast.  Add in chopped veggies, whole cloves of garlic, and grape tomatoes (if using).  Pour the remainder of the pasta sauce over the veggies and potatoes.  Cover and cook for 9 to 10 hours on low (or like I did... 3 1/2 hours on high and then 3 1/2 hours on low).

This week I did my big grocery shopping at Safeway.  I prefer to go to Kroger (City Market) but they are undergoing major construction and I was nearly in tears last week in the "self-check-out-line".  You see, no cash registers were open and I had to check out an entire cart of groceries and the thing just stopped working and I was in a hurry you see because I had pies baking in the oven at home!  Argh!!!!! 

So I went to Safeway with my Value Card, digital coupons, and paper coupons in hand.  I tried really hard to shop the sales but I got confused by a few things.  I paid $10.47 for 3 packages of Oscar Mayer turkey bacon that I really did not need because the ad said "3 for $5.00".  Turns out that was a special for Friday only (and I did my shopping on Thursday)! Doh!

I also would have sworn the label on the shelf said "McCormick Brand Spices... buy 2 and get the 3rd one FREE!"  But it did not get rung up that way.

I also found myself buying some convenience foods I would not ordinarily buy since I was trying to catch the sales.  Got some "Hot Pockets" and "Lean Pockets" and Eggo Waffles.  They won't go to waste and will great for days when I over sleep and need a quick breakfast and don't know what to bring for lunch.

I also bought an extra bag of tortilla chips thinking it was "buy 1 get 1 free" but turns out it was "buy 2 get 2 free". 

Live and learn, right? Changing grocery stores is tough.  But all in all, I did okay... saved 31% on my total bill.  

My beef roast for the Slow Cooker Beef Roast with Potatoes & Vegetables was on sale for $3.99 per pound. 

My big score was Hormel brand BBQ fully-cooked ribs for the guys.  They are spendy... a huge rack of ribs for $19.95... but they were "buy 1 get 1 free".  A super easy dinner for the guys with some canned corn and instant mashed taters.  If you were to go to Chili's Restaurant for this meal, it would have easily been a $60.00 to $70.00 for our family and the portions would have been significantly smaller.

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