One meal…Two ways!

I recently made a goal for myself -to use my slow cooker once a week to help have dinner on the table quickly at least one night. Well this week I totally out did myself…. I made one meal in the slow cooker and re-purposed the leftovers into a completely new meal! I'm still amazed!

On Monday night we enjoyed a traditional roast beef dinner with carrots, onions, potatoes and even a little gravy. From this meal I set aside some roast beef, onions, and some of the drippings to make a beef dip sandwich on Tuesday for dinner. 

I really loved this because we ate the same already cooked food but it felt like two different dinners – no leftover burnout here!

Here is what I did. On Sunday night I had a little prep to do – this could also be done the morning of if you have enough time (a foreign concept for mornings in my household!). I sliced the onions and carrots, browned the beef, sautéed the onions, made the sauce and washed the potatoes. It probably took about 20 minutes with clean up.

Potatoes go brown like apples if you cut them and leave them so there are a few things you could do.

  • Just wash them up the night before and then in the morning quarter them and add them into the slow cooker.
  • Or wash and quarter them the night before and store them in the fridge covered in water. The water creates a barrier between the potato and air and prevents the potato from turning brown. 
  • Of course if you do all the prep in the morning you don’t have to worry about this.

Classic Roast Beef Dinner


  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 3 pounds beef roast such as chuck, round, brisket
  • 3 medium onions, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 pound carrots sliced
  • 1 pound mini potatoes or diced potatoes (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch + 2 tablespoons water


  • Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat, add the beef and brown on all sides, takes a couple minutes each side. 

  • Once browned place in slow cooker. 

  • Add the onions and cook until tender, about 2-3 minutes, before adding the garlic and red pepper flakes and cooking until fragrant, about a minute.

  • Place the onions, broth, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, carrots and potatoes in a slow cooker, cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 3-5 hours. (The beef will be falling apart tender when done!) 

  • The potatoes didn’t fit into my slow cooker so I just quickly cooked them before serving dinner. The great thing was they were already washed and ready to go. I boiled them (about 15 minutes) and sprinkled with parsley.
  • Try to collect the onions and set aside for the beef dip meal (I used a slotted spoon to do this). Remove the carrots, potatoes and beef and slice or shred the beef.
  • Skim any fat from the drippings and reserve 1 cup for the beef dip meal. Pour the remaining drippings in a sauce pan, bring to a simmer, add the mixture of the cornstarch and water and cook until the glaze has thickened a bit.


Shannon RD
Registered Dietitian