Tomato-Basil Shredded Beef

Here is what is becoming my weekly crockpot/slow cooker recipe. It's just so crazy easy to throw a hunk of meat into the slow cooker in the morning with some sort of concocted sauce and walk away from it, only to come back hours later with the aroma of roasting meat hitting you when you enter the door.

This week I had a super-fast grocery shopping trip where I hit up some sales I found in the flier I get in the mail. The meat and the marinara sauce I used were on sale. Luckily, the sauce that was on sale did not have any canola, soybean, or other highly processed industrialized oil in it, just olive oil, so that worked out. I got the tomato basil flavor because it was the only one in the range that didn't have poor-quality oil or other questionable ingredients. It also had the shortest ingredient list, also a plus! I used my sale items to make an easy shredded beef dish that's a little different than my usual barbeque shredded meat. I really loved the sauce that forms from the beef broth and marinara, which I chose to reduce to make it thicker. The onions, garlic, and tomato pieces are nice accents in the sauce. I kept up with my latest trend of adding lots of different herbs, too.

The only thing that was a bit of a downer was the pot roast shrank a lot! Usually I say 1 lb of meat feeds 4 people, but unfortunately I could only get 4 servings from the whole pound and a half I used. (I weighed it on my own scale at home, so I know it was a pound and a half to start with). I'm not sure why the meat shrank so much, but it could have been some weird phenomenon. I don't usually use rump roast, so maybe this is normal for that cut of meat. I just wanted to warn anyone who makes this recipe to not be alarmed if their roast shrinks. I also didn't want anyone to think I was overestimating servings, then make this for 6 people and end up with not enough to go around. I didn't take an overhead photo, otherwise you could see that the meat filled less than half my plate and was not a tall mound....the angle of my photo distorts the proportions a bit.

Also, it's important to point out the broth should be low sodium and I didn't add any salt to this recipe because I wanted to reduce the juices to a pan sauce. If you add salt, the reduced sauce may be too salty. You can always add salt at the end when you reduce the sauce, but you can't take it out later.

Aside from the advisories I just listed, this is a great dinner. I love the tangy-herb-y sauce that forms from reducing the tomato sauce with the broth. It reminds me of Italian beef, which is so popular where I am from. I served this with buttered steamed asparagus, which were also on sale. I feel like a sale-hunter-gatherer cavegirl this week!

Tomato-Basil Shredded Beef
Printable Recipe

1 1/2 lb beef rump roast (you can use any other beef roast you like instead)
1/2 cup low sodium beef broth
1/2 cup homemade or store-bought marinara sauce (I used a tomato basil one)
1 small onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, coarsely minced
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp black pepper

1. Add the beef to the crockpot/slow cooker. Pour all the other ingredients over the top and cook 6-8 hrs on high or 8-10 hrs on low.
2. Remove the cooked meat to a cutting board. Transfer the sauce to a small saucepan. Reduce the sauce over high heat to one-half the original volume.
3. Meanwhile, shred the beef into bite-sized chunks. My roast had a long grain to it, so I cut 1-1 1/2 inch slices that shredded with little effort. Return the meat to the crockpot while the sauce reduces. I set my machine on "warm" while the sauce was simmering.
4. Pour the reduced sauce over the meat, gently toss to coat, and serve.

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