Recipe: Mississippi Roast

Recipe: Mississippi Roast

I’ve mentioned that I worship at the feet of Julia Child, and anyone who’s been to my house can attest to the bookshelf in my kitchen that’s full of cookbooks from fine-dining establishments. But I’ll let you in on a little secret: I think there’s a time and a place for the flavor packet, and often that time is Wednesday morning and that place is the Crock-pot on my kitchen counter. Julia is spinning in her grave.

I first heard about Mississippi Roast from an article in The New York Times. The food writer scoffed at using packed ranched dressing and gravy mix, so he “improved” the recipe by making it significantly more complicated. At least it seems more complicated to me.

I think the point of Mississippi Roast is that it takes about 5 minutes—and only 1 minute if you don’t brown the meat. The “improvements” require small amounts of ingredients that many people don’t have on hand and increase the prep time. When I use my crock pot, I want to keep prep time to a minimum.

The instructions that I use come from Robin Chapman, the “inventor” of the Mississippi Roast, which she shared on Good Morning America.

Robin Chapman’s Mississippi Roast

3–4 pound roast, your choice of cut (I use whatever is on sale that week)
1 stick butter
1 package au jus gravy mix
1 package dry Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix
Pepperoncini peppers, number to your liking, and a little juice (I use sliced peppers from a jar; they melt almost fully into the gravy as they cook.)


1. I sear the roast before putting it in the slow cooker, but this isn’t necessary.
2. Put roast in slow cooker. Add other ingredients.
3. Cook on low until tender.

I started checking at about 6 hours. The first time, I cooked it too long and the flavor was good, but the roast was dry and stringy. Cook until it’s just tender. Then turn the heat off and let it rest. I like to serve this with roasted cauliflower.