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Cutting hot pot roast: a shredded mess !

I think I know the answer but I'll throw this out for comment as I'm hacking and tweaking my morning routine:

Though cutting beef chuck into small pieces is slimy and disgusting when raw, it seems to cut much nicer than when it's cooked (especially trying to cut it when hot).

Despite me having invested in a really expensive and fancy cutco knife set, when hot, it tends to shred and not cut well. I've also tried "chopping" which works maybe a tad better, but still not ideal.

I suppose if I let the beef chill in the fridge it would cut better, but I'm trying to squeeze a pressure cooker pot roast into my morning routine before work (yes, pretty ambitious I know :-)

So, as I type this, I guess the answer is clear: cut it raw: that way it will cook faster and the results will be nicely cut pieces.

Just thinking out loud,


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  1. Hi Mike,

    It does help if you let it rest awhile (10-15 min or so).

    Are you cutting against the grain of the meat?

    1 Reply
    1. re: pinehurst

      Yes, you have to let it rest awhile. Loosely tented in foil. Then slice across the grain, but you need a very sharp knife. Or you can pull by hand along the grain for chunks.

    2. Third. It has to rest a bit.

      1. I agree with the others, but I also expect my pot roast to shred some. I like it.

        1. Pot roast is great reheated. Take the roast out of the braising liquid and refrigerate liquid and meat seperately overnight. It will slice beautifully, and then can be reheated in the de-fatted liquid. Just have to think a day ahead!

          3 Replies
          1. re: primebeefisgood

            This is what I do, I refrigerate it in foil, then defat the gravy, slice it neatly and bury the slices in the gravy and let sit all day soaking up flavor. Remove an hour before putting it in a low oven to reheat for an hour.

            1. re: primebeefisgood

              this is what I do also, it is well worth the plan ahead and effort.

              1. re: laliz

                Yes, and you get the bonus flavors from it resting in there. What braise isn't better the next day? It's still delicious if it's messy and not in neat slices, but I like to have both when I have the time. It's so easy with a cold roast.

            2. I think what you have is fork-tender pot roast that lots of people love, but don't manage to achieve. The shreds make nice leftover sandwiches :-)

              1. Based on your other posts about your cooking method of boiling the meat in bone broth in a pressure cooker, I don't think the results you are getting are the same as the other responders are envisioning. I suspect the protein strands are contracting radically and that resting is not going to help.
                I would not describe chuck as slimy but if you are that repulsed by it, freeze the whole raw piece for 30 minutes before cutting it up and putting it in the pot. It will firm up a bit but still be easy to slice and that brief chilling will not make a big difference in cooking time - if you use a natural release on your pressure cooker, I don't think you'll need to add cooking time.

                1 Reply
                1. re: greygarious

                  maybe slimy is an overstatement, and I'm not really repulsed: I just feel dirty afterwords, even with lots of hot soap and water.

                  However, with my fancy knives, I'm enjoying cutting much more than I would have before.

                  I will be starting a separate thread on cutting boards but cutting on a board that's too small and not heavy enough to stay put makes cutting not nearly as fun.

                  After my new counters get installed, I think I'll enjoy the entire process much more.


                2. Aren't those cutco knives serrated? I would use a sharp knife with a straight edge.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: amoule

                    Some are serrated, some are straight edge.

                    I've mostly be using the straight edge chefs knives.

                    I didn't try the serrated on the falling off the meat pot roast but I'm guessing it would tear it apart.


                  2. Are you tying the roast? That and letting it rest should help.

                    1. My pot roasts usually fall apart into large chunk-slices at the touch of a knife, and I'm good with that. I don't see pot roast as a "slicing meat" for plating.

                      1. I vote for letting your pot roast rest about 15 - 20 minutes. I believe resting allows the protein and collagen re-gel so the meat won't shred as much.

                        Why not cook the pot roast the evening before so you can allow the roast to rest properly. Afterwards, you can portion out and refrigerate.

                        1. Just as a follow up, using disposable latex gloves, and cutting the meat BEFORE cooking has really worked well for me. I like doing it that way, and it makes the cooked product in the pressure cooker AWESOME!

                          (Typically, 3 pounds of meat cut in 30 or 35 minutes)


                          Thanks again for all the info,

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: mike2401

                            My brisket recipe calls for slicing part way through the cooking and it is delectable.

                            1. re: mike2401

                              Just a question but, it takes you 30-35 minutes to cut the meat?

                              1. re: JMF

                                :-) after cut up in pieces, cooked 30-35 minutes in pressure cooker. It takes 10-15 minutes for the pressure cooker to attain pressure, depending on how much water I added.