How to Cook Bottom Round Roast

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cooked bottom round roast

Bottom round roast is a lean and flavorful cut of beef that is perfect for slow cooking methods, like braising or slow cooking. However, it also works well on the grill, in an air fryer, or on the stove. If you want to make pot roast or beef stew at home, you can use bottom round roast for the job. It’s affordable, and with the right cooking techniques, it offers tenderness in every bite. 

What Is A Bottom Round Roast?

A bottom round roast is a lean cut of beef cut from the hindquarters of the cow, also known as the round section. The round area hosts both the top round and bottom round cuts, with the top round the more tender of the two.

Because it’s not as tender, bottom round is one of the more affordable cuts of steak. Despite not being as texturally appealing as other steaks, bottom round can be cooked with multiple cooking methods that tenderize the meat, resulting in tender and flavorful steak. 

Bottom round roast works well for dishes like beef stew or pot roast, but it can also stand on its own as the star of the dinner plate.

The Health Benefits of Beef Round Roast

While many steak cuts, like ribeye and filet mignon, are known for their fat content that keeps them tender, bottom round roast is just the opposite. This cut is one of the leanest cuts of steak, meaning that it has little fat content compared to other steaks. If you’re looking to reduce fat in your diet, bottom round could be a good steak to incorporate into your weekly menus.

Bottom round roast is still beef, so it comes with many of the health benefits you’d expect from other steaks, like being rich in protein, having high iron content,  and being an excellent source of amino acids. Beef, in general, is also loaded with must-have vitamins and nutrients, like magnesium, vitamin B6, zinc, vitamin B12, and niacin.

What to Look for at the Store

Bottom round roast is usually easy to spot, as it’s typically labeled precisely as bottom round roast in the meat section of the grocery store. To find the best roast, look for bright red coloring, which indicates healthy, fresh meat. Also, ensure that the tray is free of drippings, aside from the small amount that may be in the tray’s absorbent diaper.

You can also determine the meat’s freshness by pressing gently on the clear packaging wrap into the steak. Quality, fresh bottom round will have a slight bounce when pressed into, quickly returning to its original shape. The steak should also feel firm and cool when you press your finger into the wrapping.

raw bottom round roast

Essential Tips for a Tender Beef Round Roast

We give you the details for cooking bottom round roast with multiple cooking methods below, but here are a few tips to optimize your results.

  • Give it plenty of time: Bottom roast is a cut that needs extra time to cook to reach its full potential. That’s not to say that you can’t cook it quickly if needed. Just don’t expect it to be as tender as it could be if you cook it on the stove for 20 minutes versus roasting it in the oven for an hour or more.
  • Let it rest: Resting time is crucial for most beef, including bottom round roast. Rest it for 45 minutes at room temperature before cooking to help it cook evenly. Then, rest it for 10-15 minutes after cooking to allow the juices to reabsorb into the meat for maximum flavor and texture. 
  • Use the per-pound rule: Generally speaking, a bottom round roast takes about 20-30 minutes per pound to cook. This can be an easy way to get a ballpark estimate of how long to expect your roast to take, although you’ll still want to use a meat thermometer for the best accuracy. 

Different Methods of Cooking a Bottom Round Roast

You can cook a bottom round roast using the following cooking methods. Before you start cooking with any method, remove the roast from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 45 minutes to help the roast cook evenly. Then, season the steak with your choice of spices.

In the Oven

Preheat the oven to 225 degrees and a large skillet over medium-high heat. After seasoning the roast, brush the top with a light layer of olive oil. Sear the roast for 2-3 minutes, and use tongs to turn the roast to continue searing until all sides are golden brown. 

Transfer the roast to a roasting pan, cover with aluminum foil, and place it on the middle oven rack. Roast for 20-30 minutes per pound, usually about 2 hours for a 4-pound roast. Rest at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving. 

On the Grill

Preheat the grill to high heat. Brush the top of the roast with oil after seasoning. Move the roast to the grill and sear for 2-3 minutes on all sides, rotating the roast with tongs. Lower the grill’s heat and lid, roasting for about 30 minutes per pound. Before serving, rest the roast at room temperature for 10-15 minutes.

On the Stove

You can start a bottom round roast on the stove to get a tasty, crispy crust on the outer layer. However, to cook it fully, you’ll need to finish it in the oven. To use this method, refer to the instructions for cooking a bottom round roast in the oven. You’ll start by searing the roast in a hot skillet and finish by transferring it to the oven on low heat, allowing it to finish cooking internally.

In Crock Pot

Bottom round roast is ideal for the Crock Pot, which cooks it slowly throughout the day until it’s ready to put on the table for dinner. Place the roast in the slow cooker and pour 1 cup of beef broth per pound of roast into the pot (Example: 3 cups of broth for a 3-pound roast). Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 8-10 hours. At the halfway mark, turn the roast to the other side. Reserve the broth and cooking juices to pour over the roast when serving. 

In Air Fryer

Bottom round roast works best in air fryers with temperature settings that go as low as 200 degrees. Preheat the air fryer to 375 degrees. After seasoning, brush oil on the top of the roast. Cook the roast for 5 minutes. Then, turn it to the other side and cook for another 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to 200 degrees, and cook for 20-30 minutes per pound until it reaches an internal temperature of 130 degrees. Let the roast rest at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving. 

How To Store Cooked Bottom Round Roast

Bottom round roast is larger than your typical steaks, so you may end up with more than you need for one meal. In that case, you can store it in the refrigerator to finish over the next few days.

After cooking your roast, allow it to cool for up to one hour at room temperature. Then, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you don’t have a large enough container, slice the steak first before storing. Reserve some of the cooking juices to drizzle over the steak to prevent it from drying out.


As you can see from the different cooking methods you can use for bottom round roast, this cut of beef is versatile. It’s a great cut to choose when you have time for a slow cooking method, like oven roasting or Crock Pot cooking, but grilling, searing, and air frying bottom round roast can all be used as part of the cooking process, too.

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