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The size of the pieces makes a difference. 1/4" is small enough that it shouldn't take as long to cook as the cubes that are almost an inch .
This is a great "fast" meal. It smelled so good when we came home from work. No problem with the vegetables. Thanks
It's interesting your vegetables didn't get done. I've never had to cook this dish longer than 8 hours, and that's at high altitude (5,000 feet), where things take much longer to cook. Perhaps you don't have the same type of crock pot that I do. Mine is the traditional type with heating coils wrapped around the sides from bottom to top. If you have a crock pot that only heats from the bottom (as some models do), then I could see where this recipe might take longer to cook. I've served this dish to many folks and had great reviews. Sorry it didn't meet your standards. For a "saucier" version, try adding 2 cans of tomato soup diluted with 1/2 cup water. Pour half the soup mixture atop the carrot layer and the rest over the top.
This recipe sure looked good, but, it took 10 1/2 hours before potatoes and carrots were tender(on low setting). It smelled really good but was very bland.