Stretch a Roast

by Merissa on November 4, 2011

in Thrifty Living

Stretch a Roast. How to stretch a roast into several meals.  Learn how to save money and utilize an entire roast without getting tired of it!

Stretch a Roast

I have seen several articles with recipes on how to cook up a whole chicken and make it stretch into several meals.  I decided to write a post on how I stretch a roast into several meals, without getting bored of the same leftovers.  In this economy, it is important to use up everything that you have.  Many people waste a lot of food, just by throwing it away, when they are tired of eating it.  Sometimes you put it away in the freezer, with good intentions of using it later....but I prefer to use it up right away, if possible.  This is an example of what I recently did with a family size roast.  We butcher our own beef and I usually get my roasts cut to 2-3 pounds each, so that is the size that I used.  It was a nice, meaty roast, not a bone in one.

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Here are some ways we can stretch a roast:

1st day: Put the roast in the crockpot (frozen) in the AM with plenty of water and seasonings (I use the steak seasoning blend).  Cooked it all day and that evening, for our first meal, we had shredded roast on buns and used the broth the roast simmered in for dipping (french dip sandwiches).

2nd day: Again used the crockpot and made a beef/vegetable/noodle soup.  I used approximately 1/2 of the beef that was left, one small summer squash (leftover from garden), fresh mushrooms, carrots, leeks, onion, celery and potatoes.  You can use any combination of vegetables that you like or have on hand.  I added in some beef broth seasoning and water.  Let it cook together on low, all day in the crockpot.  About an hour before serving it, I added in some small alphabet noodles that I had on hand.

3rd day: Here is a recipe that I got from an old friend and it is a great way to serve up the leftover shredded beef with a Chinese twist.

Mix together is a sauce pan until boiling:

  • 2 T. sugar
  • 4 T. soy sauce
  • 4 tsp. minced green onion
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • dash of pepper
  • 2 T. seasame seeds
  • 1 T. cooking sherry
  • 1 T. sesame oil

(I added in about 1/4 - 1/2 cup beef broth, also, as I had more that 1 lb. of meat)

then add in: 1 lb. of the leftover cooked meat (roast)

Cook until meat is warmed through.

Serve over rice.

After serving these meals for three nights in a row, we still had enough leftover of the soup and meat/rice mix to have lunches for two days.

Hopefully this will give you some ideas on how to stretch a roast, the next time you cook one up!

Until next time, Julie

Linked to the Barn Hop and Homemaking.

Looking for more ideas on saving money?

Julie is Merissa's mom and she's committed to living a frugal and simple lifestyle. Julie grows her own herbs in her garden and enjoys making things at home. You can now find her home remedies and ideas here at Little House Living.

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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Frugally Sustainable November 4, 2011 at 1:03 pm

This is really great:) I love stretching our meat! It’s such a fun challenge!

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2 Frugally Sustainable November 4, 2011 at 1:03 pm

This is really great:) I love stretching our meat! It’s such a fun challenge!

Reply

3 Pat November 4, 2011 at 1:24 pm

You know… I don’t think I’ve ever done that. I’ll usually take the roast out of the water and serve with veggies and if there is any leftovers…we’ll have sandwiches for lunches until it is gone. ..and I’ve always tossed the water. What was I thinking?
If nothing else, I could strain it for beef broth to make a soup stock later, duh!

Thanks for posting this.

Pat

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4 Angela October 21, 2013 at 3:13 am

Why add water to a roast particularly as it has moisture in it being put in the slow cooker/crockpot when frozen.
I leave mine on low from4pm to 7am and it cooks in its own juices from which I then make a gorgeous thick rich gravy. This as a leftover can be thinned into a soup.

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5 Merissa October 21, 2013 at 6:39 am

We add water to make extra broth for future meals and soups.

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6 Pat November 4, 2011 at 1:24 pm

You know… I don’t think I’ve ever done that. I’ll usually take the roast out of the water and serve with veggies and if there is any leftovers…we’ll have sandwiches for lunches until it is gone. ..and I’ve always tossed the water. What was I thinking?
If nothing else, I could strain it for beef broth to make a soup stock later, duh!

Thanks for posting this.

Pat

Reply

7 Jacinda @ Growing Home November 8, 2011 at 11:29 am

These are our family’s favorite ways to stretch a roast too!

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8 Jacinda @ Growing Home November 8, 2011 at 11:29 am

These are our family’s favorite ways to stretch a roast too!

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9 Amy November 10, 2011 at 8:51 pm

I like these ideas! We will often stretch ours by throwing in a sandwich night or (in the summer) a steak salad night.

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10 Amy November 10, 2011 at 8:51 pm

I like these ideas! We will often stretch ours by throwing in a sandwich night or (in the summer) a steak salad night.

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11 Beth December 21, 2011 at 9:48 am

We’re having roast tonight for dinner (day 1) and I was going to shred the leftovers for tacos or sandwiches; however, I like your oriental twist and I just recently got my first bottle of fermented soy sauce. It looks like your recipe will be day 2 :).

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12 Beth December 21, 2011 at 9:48 am

We’re having roast tonight for dinner (day 1) and I was going to shred the leftovers for tacos or sandwiches; however, I like your oriental twist and I just recently got my first bottle of fermented soy sauce. It looks like your recipe will be day 2 :).

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13 Roxie December 21, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Your way of stretching a roast is very close to the way I make mine go for 3 or 4 meals. I serve a family of 4. I buy a roast that is as close to 5 pounds as I can get. Almost always it is nearly 6 pounds and bone free. I use a chuck roast for the best flavor and will not pay more than $2.00 a pound. (that is my personal price limit)
I season the roast with a bit of salt and pepper on all sides. Then I take 1 or 2 (depending on size) onions and slice them thin into rings. Lay these onions on the bottom of the crockpot. Then put the seasoned roast on top of this. Now, because my family loves the flavor I add a packet of onion soup mix to a large family size can (or use 2 cans) of cream of mushroom soup. Pour over the top of the roast and cook on high for 6 hours or so. Do not remove the lid.
The first night we have roast, mashed potatoes, gravy, and what ever veggie I happen to have. I make my husband a lunch plate of left overs and take the rest of the roast to the fridge.
The first day of left overs is super simple. About 2 cups of the roast cut up into bite size pieces. I make a gravy with beef broth….add the roast beef to the gravy and serve over rice. We call this ‘beef tips’ and rice. My family loves this with salad and rolls.
The next meal I make is soup. My family loves a vegetable beef soup. I use about 2 cups of meat to make my soup with more beef broth, canned tomato juice and frozen veggies. Serve with corn bread this is very filling and flavorful.
All of these other meals will have enough left over for my husband’s lunch the next day.
Usually there is enough for a few sandwiches too. I have been known to make hash from the last bit of roast.

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14 Roxie December 21, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Your way of stretching a roast is very close to the way I make mine go for 3 or 4 meals. I serve a family of 4. I buy a roast that is as close to 5 pounds as I can get. Almost always it is nearly 6 pounds and bone free. I use a chuck roast for the best flavor and will not pay more than $2.00 a pound. (that is my personal price limit)
I season the roast with a bit of salt and pepper on all sides. Then I take 1 or 2 (depending on size) onions and slice them thin into rings. Lay these onions on the bottom of the crockpot. Then put the seasoned roast on top of this. Now, because my family loves the flavor I add a packet of onion soup mix to a large family size can (or use 2 cans) of cream of mushroom soup. Pour over the top of the roast and cook on high for 6 hours or so. Do not remove the lid.
The first night we have roast, mashed potatoes, gravy, and what ever veggie I happen to have. I make my husband a lunch plate of left overs and take the rest of the roast to the fridge.
The first day of left overs is super simple. About 2 cups of the roast cut up into bite size pieces. I make a gravy with beef broth….add the roast beef to the gravy and serve over rice. We call this ‘beef tips’ and rice. My family loves this with salad and rolls.
The next meal I make is soup. My family loves a vegetable beef soup. I use about 2 cups of meat to make my soup with more beef broth, canned tomato juice and frozen veggies. Serve with corn bread this is very filling and flavorful.
All of these other meals will have enough left over for my husband’s lunch the next day.
Usually there is enough for a few sandwiches too. I have been known to make hash from the last bit of roast.

Reply

15 Dyreka April 16, 2012 at 8:46 am

I always use my leftover roast to make chili. Shredded roast is way better than ground beef in a nice, hearty chili and if you serve the chili over macaroni noodles one night, hot dogs the next and macaroni noodles again the next, you can get several meals out of one roast.

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16 Amanda October 11, 2013 at 12:27 am

Dyreka you forgot to mention HAYSTACKS!!!!!!! Corn chips (whether tortilla chips or fritos is a personal preference) chili, sour cream lettuse tomato, olives cheese and maybe a little bit of ranch.
If I have a beef roast I’ll actually make either a standard pot roast or I’ll add a packet of ranch seasoning and then just shred it and use it with anything from sammies to taco meat or even nacho topping :)

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17 Patty April 20, 2013 at 10:03 pm

I put the roast into the crock pot with a packet of onion soup mix and 3 cups water. I cut up 8 potatoes and 8 carrots, as our family likes to have LOTS of veggies, but little meat. The leftover meat along with the broth gets put into the crockpot the next day with a bag of frozen mixed veggies. I then shred the meat, and add flour to make a thick gravy and we have this ‘stew’ served over biscuits. (My frozen mixed veggies are from leftovers. If/when I have leftover veggies from a meal, I spoon the extras in to a pint size freezer bag. When I need frozen mixed veggies, they are available!)

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18 Wendy August 29, 2014 at 8:37 pm

Patty thank you for sharing the left over veggie tip. I thought I was frugal until I read that, but I truly will be now..ha ha..

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19 Mrs. Abella October 10, 2013 at 10:13 pm

This is similar to what I do with a roast or pork loin that we purchase. I use the broth for soup, we get a few days of meals from it to feed 5 of us, and it really lasts, especially when using rice and making a lasting dish. We dont’ do the chinese one, but we do use a Cuban styled rice dish–hubby is Cuban so it works for us. Also use the broth to cook black beans or red beans for extra flavor to add in with rice and veggies and the meat–it’s great!

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20 The Nerdy Housewife October 10, 2013 at 10:14 pm

I do the same thing with roasts – crock pot all day with water and my magic blend of spices. I do this with both beef and pork roasts. We’ll usually have it for dinner the first round on rolls with BBQ sauce – similar with the leftovers. It’s just the two of us, so a roast lasts a long long time!

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21 Deann October 10, 2013 at 10:51 pm

I add some Barley to my roast in the crockpot, along with the onion soup mix, cream soup, carrots and potatoes. The leftover ‘gravy’ or broth as you will, with the remaining barley is an easy base for a soup or stew and can also be frozen to make up a soup quick another time…

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22 Lori November 12, 2013 at 9:25 am

We are doing the same this week with Pork Loin. Last night I sauteed it in seasonings and put it in the crockpot with a bottle of beer. We used the meat for tacos and I put some in the kids thermoses with cheese for lunch today. Tonight, we’ll use some of the meat for sauerkraut and pork over mashed potatoes (YUM!) and one of my favorite meals of all time. If there is any left, we’ll put it in a skillet with BBQ sauce and have pulled pork sandwiches. Not too bad for a 5lb ($13) cut of meat.

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23 Elisabeth November 12, 2013 at 12:24 pm

I make a meat pie the next day after my first meal of roast, potatoes and veggies.

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24 Michaelann Dahlman November 12, 2013 at 12:41 pm

I Have a question. Where do you find alphabet noodles? I Love them, but haven’t been able to find them anywhere here (BC Canada), or even while shopping in the US, for nearly 5 years now. And I Just love them!

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25 Merissa November 12, 2013 at 12:48 pm

I get mine at the natural foods store! It’s the only place I’ve been able to find them.

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26 Linda Steiger November 12, 2013 at 12:46 pm

So many great ideas for meal ideas on using up a roast. I like the first meal to be with mashed potatoes & gravy plus a veg, and often will reheat it to have an “instant replay” the next night. Getting a little tired of it by then so stick it in the fridge but about 2 or 3 days time then I make Shepherd’s pie using the beef cut up in bits, gravy, sliced carrots & fzn peas. I use the leftover mashed potatoes on the top and bake. I always make extra mashed potatoes knowing a pie is coming. I don’t make my pot roast with water as it thins down the gravy flavor, and often use an envelope of dry onion soup mix on top for extra flavor to the gravy, but if there is any left (along with the gravy) soup is the next thing to make with the final leftovers. Great Post – thank you!

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27 Cindy November 12, 2013 at 6:45 pm

This is how I stretch a roast for several days.
http://www.hegivesusstrength.com/2013/10/beans.html?m=0

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28 Rachel January 11, 2014 at 11:26 am

We used the last bits of our roast to make beef egg rolls. It was SO GOOD.

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29 Sandy January 12, 2014 at 11:33 am

I always bake a roast in the oven the first time around with potatoes and onion and carrot. Leftovers from that are diced very small and lots of raw onion and potatoes added, pan fried to make a delicious hash! Always have some hash left so have a egg scramble with the hash for the third meal. The broth or juice from the original roast is saved for a soup base.

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30 Chris January 12, 2014 at 3:20 pm

Stretching a roast. We vary the meals. Usually dry roast in the oven.. this helps heat the house as we are frugal with using our electric heat. My husband also doesn’t like food from the crockpot. In the summer it goes on the grill. The first meal is used in a traditional meal, the second will either be Chili, Beef Stroganoff or burritos, third might be beef Barley Soup or Stir Fry. I will add that buying a whole boneless roast to use as Sandwich meat is heather & less expense than purchasing slice deli meat. (we will occasionally purchase organic deli meat when we are traveling long distance by car) Cindy from “He Gives Us Strength” I sign up for your email. I like your blog :) Chris

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31 Rachel Gluegirl August 29, 2014 at 8:14 pm

I like to take a bit of the roast shredded or sliced
about 2-4 bell peppers, yellow and green usually
and 1 small/medium purple onion,
slice the peppers and onions into strips and cook in a frying pan add the roast or beef and make fajita’s with soft taco shells.

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