Pot Roast with Dumplings

One of the meals that we had many different times in Europe was meat with some sort of dumpling. It would often be beef, but we also had it with pork, turkey, deer, and goose. We have enjoyed this recipe several times and it is easy to prepare and truly delicious. Rather than make our own dumplings, we use packaged biscuits which become soft and gooey when steamed. Because the biscuits are cooked in the same pot that the beef simmers in, they soak up a lot of flavor. This is definitely the type of dish that can be modified easily by adding different vegetables like onions or peppers, but we like the simplicity of the dish as we prepared it. Because it is slow cooked, the meat comes out fork tender and the sauce thickens up nicely, but if you want it thicker, you can certainly add some cornstarch to it.

Pork and Potato Dumpling in Europe


  • 3 lb Chuck Roast
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 28 oz Can of Diced Tomatoes
  • 32 oz Package of Beef Stock
  • 2 Cloves of Fresh Garlic – minced
  • 8 Whole Cloves
  • 1 tbsp Parsley – chopped fresh or dry
  • 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 package of Refrigerated Biscuits
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Brown the Roast


Heat a cast-iron Dutch oven with the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Season the beef on both sides with salt, pepper, and the garlic powder. Brown the roast in the oil for about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Add the beef stock, tomatoes, garlic, red pepper flakes, and additional salt and pepper to the pot and stir to deglaze. Heat until it starts to simmer and then reduce the heat to low and cook slowly for 2 to 2 1/2 hours until the sauce has thickened slightly and the beef is tender. Arrange the biscuits over the roast, covering it completely, and sprinkle with the parsley. Put the lid on the Dutch oven, cover tightly, and cook for 15 minutes, shaking the pot periodically. Remove the meat and biscuits to create individual servings, covering the beef with the sauce.

Add Ingredients and Simmer
Cover with the Biscuits
After the Dumplings have Steamed
Beef with Dumplings


Chili Mac – Traditional Comfort Food, Non-Traditional Recipe

This is one of our favorite winter time recipes.  This might not be what you typically think of when you think of chili mac, but it is really, really delicious. 🙂  There is something about the tang of the vinegar combined with the spice of the chili powder that makes this dish stand out.  Obviously you could use macaroni noodles, but the spaghetti noodles work so much better because they simply add a layer of flavor because they aren’t as thick as macaroni noodles.  It is also a one pot dinner where we use a short cut to make it easier, but you certainly could make the chili from scratch if you’d like.  If you’re willing to give it a try, we think it might become one of your favorite recipes as well.

Cooked Chili Mac
Cooked Chili Mac


  • 1 lb Lean Ground Beef
  • 3 – 15 oz Cans of Chili (you’re favorite brand)
  • 4 tbsp Chili Powder (half hot and half regular if available)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Granulated Garlic Powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper (optional)
  • 3/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 8 oz Thin Spaghetti Noodles (half of a 1 lb package)
Chili Mac
Chili Mac


Add the ground beef, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper to a large sauce pot and brown the ground beef on medium-high heat.  Browning the ground beef with the spices will allow the meat to absorb the flavor as it cooks.  Add the three cans of chili, retaining the cans.  Stir the ground beef with the chili.  Fill each chili can three-quarters of the way to top with water, swirling the water as you fill them to get any additional sauce from the sides of the can.  Add the vinegar and the water from the three cans to the pot.  Stir in the cayenne pepper and bring to a boil and then reduce the heat low.  Cover and simmer for 2 to 3 hours.  Increase the heat to medium-low and add the spaghetti noodles in small batches to the pot (you can break the long noodles into shorter pieces, if you prefer), stirring them in as they are added.  If you add the noodles all at once or in large handfuls, they will stick together and not fully cook.  If there isn’t enough liquid to cover the noodles, add enough hot water to ensure that the noodles have enough liquid to absorb.  Cooking the spaghetti noodles in the liquid from the chili will allow them to absorb all of the spices and flavors from the chili while they cook.  Cook the noodles until they are at the desired tenderness.

Brown the Ground Beef
Brown the Ground Beef
Ground Beef and Chili
Ground Beef and Chili
Bring to a Boil
Bring to a Boil
Add Spaghetti Noodles
Add Spaghetti Noodles
Ensure Noodles are Spread Out
Ensure Noodles are Spread Out