What is Beef Bottom Round Roast? A Guide to This Budget-Friendly Cut

Beef bottom round roast, also known as rump roast, is an economical cut of beef that, when cooked properly, can be incredibly flavorful and tender. This lean cut comes from the round primal of the cow. With the right technique, it makes a perfect Sunday roast or pot roast dinner.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about bottom round roast, including:

  • Where it comes from on the cow
  • Its characteristics and flavor profile
  • How to cook it for maximum tenderness
  • Serving suggestions and recipe ideas
  • Helpful tips for buying, prepping, and storing

Let’s dive in and unlock the secrets of this underappreciated cut of beef!

Overview of Bottom Round Roast

  • Other names: rump roast, round tip roast, boneless bottom round roast

  • Location on the cow: the bottom round primal

  • Characteristics: lean, moderately tough, inexpensive

-Flavor profile: beefy, savory, slightly tangy

  • Best cooking methods: braising, pot roasting, slow roasting

Where Bottom Round Roast Comes From

To understand this cut, it helps to visualize where it comes from on the cow. Bottom round roast is cut from the round primal area of the hindquarters, specifically the bottom round.

The round primal extends from the rump to the rear leg of the animal. It contains muscles that get a lot of use, so roasts from this area tend to be leaner and less marbled than other cuts. They require moist cooking methods to become tender.

Bottom round is the lowest portion of the round. It sits right above the leg and hoof. This hard-working muscle supports much of the cow’s weight, making it sinewy with a good deal of connective tissue.

When sliced into roasts, bottom round offers good value for an evenly shaped, lean cut ideal for braising dishes.

Characteristics of Bottom Round Roast

Here are some key traits of this affordable cut:

  • Lean – Bottom round roasts are low in fat with little marbling throughout. This makes them a healthy option.

  • Moderately Tough – The significant connective tissue requires moist cooking to break down.

  • Good Value – As a less prized cut, bottom round roast costs less per pound than loin or rib cuts.

  • Mild Beef Flavor – With minimal fat, the meaty flavor comes through.

  • Uniform Shape – Bottom round offers compact, evenly shaped cuts perfect for roasting.

Flavor Profile

While naturally lean, bottom round roast has a pleasantly mild beefiness when paired with the right seasonings and cooking technique:

  • Savory – The beef flavor comes through nicely despite less marbling.

  • Tangy – Spices and broth give it a subtle tang.

  • Satisfying – When cooked right, it’s moist and fork-tender with good beef character.

  • Versatile – Pairs well with various herbs, spices, marinades, and sauces.

How to Cook Bottom Round Roast for Maximum Tenderness

Choosing the right cooking method is key to bringing out the best in this lean cut. The connective tissue in bottom round requires low, moist heat to break down.

Here are some excellent techniques:

  • Pot Roasting – Brown the roast then braise it with liquid in a covered pot for 2-3 hours until a fork slides in easily.

  • Slow Roasting – Roast seasoned meat at 300°F for about 1 hour per pound. Baste it as it cooks.

  • Pressure Cooking – An electric pressure cooker tenderizes it in 1-2 hours. Natural release is a must.

  • Slow Cooker – Cook on low heat for 8-10 hours. The extended time guarantees a tender outcome.

  • Sous Vide – Vacuum seal and cook in circulating water at 135°F for at least 24 hours.

Serving Suggestions and Recipe Ideas

Bottom round roast deserves a spot at the dinner table. Here are serving suggestions and recipe ideas to take it to the next level:

  • Pot Roast Dinner – Slowly braise it with veggies like potatoes, carrots, onions, and celery.

  • French Dip Sandwiches – Sliced thin on a crusty baguette, it’s perfect with au jus dipping sauce.

  • ** Roast Beef Hash** – Dice and combine with potatoes, peppers, and onions. Fry it up for breakfast.

  • Roast Beef Salad – Chill sliced meat and serve on top of mixed greens with blue cheese and vinaigrette.

  • Italian Beef Sandwiches – Layer thinly sliced roast with provolone cheese on a hoagie roll.

  • Beef Stroganoff – Tender chunks are ideal in this classic sauce of sour cream, mushrooms, and onions.

Tips for Buying Bottom Round Roast

Keep these tips in mind when selecting a bottom round roast:

  • Look for uniform shape and thickness. This ensures even cooking.

  • Seek roasts with good marbling throughout. Some intramuscular fat improves flavor and tenderness.

  • Check that the cut has a deep red color with little to no graying.

  • Pick a size suited for the number of people you plan to serve. Estimate 1/2 pound per person.

  • For maximum tenderness, choose Select grade over Choice, which has less marbling.

Prepping Bottom Round Roast

Proper prep is vital for optimizing the flavor and texture of bottom round roast:

  • Trim excess fat to prevent burning during searing. Leave a thin layer for moisture.

  • Pat the roast dry before seasoning so spices stick better.

  • Season generously with salt, pepper, garlic, and herbs at least 40 minutes before cooking.

  • Sear quickly over high heat to develop a flavorful crust before braising.

  • Tie with kitchen twine to maintain shape and cook evenly.

Storing and Reheating Leftover Roast

Like any meat, proper storage preserves flavor and texture:

  • Allow roast to cool completely before refrigerating.

  • Wrap tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Exclude air to prevent drying out.

  • Use refrigerated leftovers within 4 days for best quality.

  • Freeze extras in an airtight container up to 4 months.

  • Reheat gently in the oven or microwave until warmed through. Add broth or au jus to keep it moist.

The Value and Versatility of Bottom Round Roast

While less coveted than pricey prime rib or tenderloin, economical bottom round roast has much to offer. When prepared with care using moist heat and ample seasoning, it can deliver satisfying tenderness and subtle beefy flavor.

This versatile cut pulls duty at Sunday suppers but also shines in sandwiches, salads, and countless other dishes. With proper cooking and storage, you can enjoy tasty roast beef all week long.

Bottom round is an ideal choice for home cooks looking for an affordable, lean roast suitable for feeding a crowd. By mastering the basics of selecting, preparing, and braising this humble cut, you can serve up serious beef flavor without breaking the bank.

ButcherBox Bottom Round How To


What is a beef bottom round roast good for?

The bottom round is one of three cuts butchered from the round primal. It includes the rump and hind legs of the animal. This is a lean, relatively tough cut of meat and is best when cooked low and slow in preparations such as pot roast or jerky.

What’s the best way to cook a bottom round?

Cover roast evenly with thin coat of oil followed by seasoning blend. Place roast in a roasting pan fitted with a rack. Roast 15 minutes, drop oven temperature to 325°F and continue roasting 1 1/2 hours or until internal temperature reaches 125°F (for medium rare).

Are chuck roast and bottom round the same?

Chuck pot roasts have more fat, and therefore more flavor, than those from the round. Beef round roasts suitable for pot roasting are round tip, round rump, bottom round and eye round roasts. Most beef round and chuck pot roasts can be used interchangeably, with only slight adjustments in cooking time.

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