A Beef Picnic – Smoked Pot Roast Recipe

A Beef Picnic Smoked Pot Roast

​While the star and main dish of most barbecues and pork picnic roasts is pork, whether it be in rib, pork shoulder roast, pulled pork butt, pulled pork sandwiches, dog, or another form, smoking meat isn't only about pork and one mustn't overlook beef. Even beyond steak, beef can be a fantastic option for smoking in many of the same ways you'd go about smoking other cuts of meats. For example, while the chuck steak is often roasted in a pot (hence, pot roast), it's also perfect for dropping onto a smoker.

Smoked Pot Roast Recipe

If you've ever wanted to spice things up at your next barbecue or picnic and are on the lookout for new beef recipes, then try this easy recipe for a smoked pot roast.  We'll cover everything you'll need plus how to cook it, so let's get started.

What You Need For This Easy Recipe

In order to follow this recipe and smoke your own pot roast using this cooking method, you'll need to grab a few ingredients and tools first. They are:

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    Beef round (3 lbs).
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    4 tablespoons hot paprika.
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    4 tablespoons kosher salt.
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    4 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper (large grind).
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    2 tablespoons garlic powder.
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    2 tablespoons onion powder.
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    2 tablespoons dill.
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    2 tablespoons coriander.
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    2 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes.
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    1 tablespoon brown sugar.
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    2 large onions.
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    2 cloves garlic.
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    4 carrots.
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    4 russet potatoes.
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    4 stalks celery.
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    Fresh rosemary, thyme, and sage (a few sprigs each).
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    2 tablespoons vegetable oil.
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    1 quart beef broth.
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    Charcoal smoker.
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    Hickory wood chunks or chips.
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    Aluminum foil.
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    Paper towels.
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    Large container or pan.
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    Metal baking rack.
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    Meat thermometer.
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    Aluminum baking pan.

Step-by-Step Recipe

Once you've gotten everything together, you're ready to start the recipe.

Step 1: Season the Meat

The key to a good smoke is to season your meat the night before. This lets your beef absorb more of the spices and dries the outside of the meat, leading to a crispier crust and more developed flavors.

Mix up your spice rub using the above listed ingredients and apply liberally to the outside of your meat, rubbing into every crevice until fully coated. Place your baking rack into a container or pan, then set your beef on top. Store in the refrigerator uncovered overnight.

Step 2: Light the Smoker

Around half an hour before you're set to cook, take your beef out of the fridge. Pat the outside dry with paper towels, then let it sit and warm up as you begin lighting your smoker. Additionally, if you're using wood chips instead of chunks, soak them in hot water at this time.

Fill your smoker with charcoal before lighting it, closing the lid and adjusting the air vents to get it to burn hot. Once the smoker has had a chance to heat up and coals have burnt to a lower temperature, add on your wood, fill the water tank, and place on the grate, closing it up again to let smoke and steam build up.

Adjust your vents once more to keep the temperature around 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

Prep The Vegetables Smoke The Meat

Step 3: Prep the Vegetables

While you might be smoking the meat, it's still a pot roast. To keep true to the name, you'll be roasting the beef near the end of cooking. During this time, you can make good use of your resources and cook some vegetables to go along with your barbecue.

Peel the carrots, potatoes, garlic, and onions before chopping them into chunks along with the celery. Keep them in a plastic container or bag for the time being.

Step 4: Smoke the Meat

With your preparation taken care of, it's finally time to smoke the beef. Place your meat onto the smoker grates and close the lid. As your meat cooks, make sure to monitor the levels of charcoal, wood, and water left in the smoker, refilling as needed and adjusting the air vents to maintain the target temperature.

While cooking, be careful not to let the outside of the beef burn. If it's starting to become too dark or spots are beginning to burn, wrap the outside of the meat loosely in aluminum foil and continue cooking like that. Around two hours in, begin checking your meat's temperature. Once​ ​the internal temperature of the meat ​hits 160 degrees Fahrenheit or so, you'll be ready to move on to the next step.

Step 5: Smoke the Vegetables

Once your meat has hit the right temperature, you can start cooking your vegetables. Just add about two tablespoons of vegetable oil to a large skillet and heat over medium heat until shimmering. Then, add the vegetables with a pinch of salt, sautéing for a few minutes until lightly roasted.

Add beef stock and your fresh herbs to the pan and continue cooking, scraping up any browned bits of vegetable that stuck to the bottom of the skillet. Once the stock begins to simmer, transfer the contents of the skillet into an aluminum baking pan. Place the pan into the smoker and let it cook alongside your meat, absorbing the smoky flavor for the next thirty minutes or so.

Step 6: Roast the Meat

After about a half hour, take your beef and place it inside the pan on top of some of the vegetables. Baste the top of the meat in the stock before covering the pan with aluminum foil. Continue cooking your meat this way until the internal temperature reads 190 degrees Fahrenheit. Once you hit that, your meat is done.

Step 7: Rest the Meat

When you take the beef off the heat, wait at least half an hour before digging in (for even better results, an hour or longer). This lets the meat relax as the residual heat spreads throughout the dish. The end result will be a more tender, juicy piece of beef.

Step 8: Serve the Meat

Once you've given your beef a chance to rest, it's time to eat. With meat that's so tender it's nearly falling apart and deliciously smoky roasted vegetables on the side, this dish is sure to be a hit at your next picnic. Add some bbq sauce for your guests and a glass of red wine to go with the meat. Slice off pieces, shred it for sandwiches, or any other way you like it, your smoked pot roast will taste great.

A Hit Among Friends Beef Pot Roast


By following this guide, you should have no problem making your own smoked pot roast that's sure to impress your friends and neighbors at any get together. The step-by-step easy pork recipe is simple enough and the total cook time isn't too long. If you liked this recipe, make sure to leave a comment down below to let us know, as well as any tips you've got related to smoking or roasting beef.

And remember to share this page (and your leftovers) with a friend in need of a serious barbecue boost.

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Smoked Pot Roast For A Beef Picnic (202 downloads)

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Pot Roast?

​What is the Best Cut of Beef for Pot Roast?

​How Long Does it Take to Smoke a Beef Chuck Roast?

​What Temperature Do You Smoke a Chuck Roast?

​How Do You Serve Pot Roast?

Each Share Saves a Steak From Being Cooked Well Done