How to Cook a Shoulder Beef Roast

Updated March 23, 2017

Beef shoulder cuts are flavourful and inexpensive but need to be cooked properly so they don't dry out. These fatty cuts can't simply be oven roasted, or the fats will run out, which will toughens the meat. Shoulder roasts do best when they are slow roasted with added liquid in a tightly covered pan. The resulting meat will be fork tender and makes a hearty, satisfying dish when served with roasted vegetables or grilled onions.

Preheat the oven to 107 degrees C.

Sauté the onion and oil together in a large skillet. You may also use the pan you are roasting in, such as a Dutch oven.

Rub the outside of the meat with salt and pepper. Include any other herbs or seasonings you enjoy.

When the onion has begun to soften, brown the meat on each side for 20 to 30 seconds.

Place the meat and onion into the roasting pan.

Pour the stock, wine and any liquid from the skillet into the pan and cover. If the roasting pan does not have a lid, use aluminium foil.

Put the pan into the oven and cook for three hours. At this time, remove the cover and add the carrots and celery to cook for the remaining time.

Continue to cook for another 30 to 60 minutes until the meat falls away with a fork.

Remove the meat from the pan and place on a platter, surrounded by the vegetables. Use the liquid in the pan to make a gravy or strain through a mesh strainer for au jus.


This dish can also be slowly simmered on the hob, but it may require more checking to ensure the liquid hasn't boiled out.

Things You'll Need

  • 10.9kg. shoulder roast
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 2 carrots, cut in large chunks
  • 2 celery stalks, chunks
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ½ cup red wine
  • ½ cup beef stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Skillet
  • Roasting pan
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About the Author

Nikki Jardin began freelance writing in 2009 and focuses on food and travel articles. She has been a professional cook and caterer for more than 20 years. She holds a degree in environmental science from Humboldt State University.