Beef Round Roast

Beef round refers to the meat from the hind leg of the animal that, because it is well exercised, is especially lean and tasty. Sirloin tip, a marketing term for round knuckle, is particularly economical and delicious. I buy a whole cryovac packer cut from our local restaurant supplier, around 12 to 15 pounds, and break down into meal-sized cuts. For this roast I use a sirloin tip center weighing about 2½ pounds. Like all of the tougher cuts of beef, this one is best cooked slowly for an extended period of time. To let the flavor of the beef shine through I add nothing to the meat; I just brown it well in a bit of lard before roasting—one could equally well use butter, oil, or bacon fat. Serve it with mashed potatoes and gravy accompanied by a green vegetable for a classic Sunday dinner or with potatoes and carrots roasted in the skillet you browned the meat in.

Note: a meat thermometer is essential to getting the roast done right.


  • Round roast, about 2 to 3 pounds
  • 1 tablespoon lard


Preheat oven to 250° (225° for convection). Dry the meat well. Melt the lard in a 10-inch cast iron skillet over high heat. When nearly smoking, brown the meat on all sides turning with tongs, not a fork, so as not to let the juices escape. It should take you around 20 minutes to get the meat well browned.

Put the browned meat into a roasting pan, preferably one with a rack, and cook to an internal temperature of 135°. Place the roast on a cutting board or platter and cover loosely with foil. Allow to rest at least 10 minutes before serving.


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