How to Cook a Roast in a Bag

Let the steam dissipate before opening the oven bag.
Let the steam dissipate before opening the oven bag. (Image: michelangelus/iStock/Getty Images)

Faster cooking times, more uniform cooking and quicker cleanup make cooking in an oven bag easier than cooking in a roasting pan, but the cooking process is the same for both. Oven bags enclose the moisture released from meat during cooking to create a contained moist-heat environment, and the hot air circulating through the oven acts as a layer of insulation that keeps the temperature inside the bag at a constant temperature. You have to flour the bag, though, to congeal the fat during cooking and prevent it from bursting.

Things You'll Need

  • All-purpose flour
  • Tongs (optional)

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Heat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit or warmup the slow cooker. Add 1 tablespoon of flour to the bag and shake to coat.

Place the oven bag in a shallow dish or roasting pan. Season the roast to taste and slide it in the oven bag.

Tie the bag closed with the supplied ties and cut five or six 1/2-inch slits in the top.

Cook the roast until it reaches the desired tenderness, or about 1 1/2 hours per pound.

If using a slow cooker, pour about 1/4 cup of water in the crock before placing the roast in it.

Remove the roasting pan from the oven. Let the roast sit for 5 to 10 minutes before opening the bag.

To remove the roast from a slow cooker, slit the bag open and transfer it to a plate using tongs.


  • The Professional Chef 9th ed.; The Culinary Institute of America
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