This recipe for French Dip Sandwiches is the best. It just is. I don’t often say that…like I’m a fairly open-mined person who believes there’s room for a lot of good things at the top. But when it comes to French Dip Sandwich, these are the best. If that makes you uncomfortable, I’m very sorry.

These aren’t your standard deli-sliced roast beef French dip sandwiches; you slow-cook a beef roast all day long until it’s so tender that you can shred it with one hand and a fork. The real beauty is how simple the ingredients are and how easy it is; it comes together in a matter of minutes in the morning and then you don’t have to worry about it for the rest of the day. It’s also one that works great for a make-ahead meal in the freezer, perfect for times when you know you’re going to be busy or after having a baby. You can also make it in an electric pressure, which is a total game changer–I’ve included instructions for all three!

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large, high-sided pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. While the oil is heating, season the roast on all sides with salt and pepper. Sear the roast on all sides,

seared roast in pot

then transfer to the pot of a slow cooker. Sprinkle with onion soup mix

onion soup mix on roast

and add in water

adding water to roast

and beef broth.

Cook for 8-10 hours on low or start it on high and cook for 2-3 hours on high (until it comes to a boil), then turn it to low and cook for another 4-5 hours on low. It’s hard to mess this part up, but you’ll know it’s done when you pop a fork in it and the meat just falls apart.

When the meat is done cooking, shredded it with two forks.

shredded french dip roast

Place the meat on crusty rolls. Top with cheese and broil open face in the oven or for 1-2 minutes or until the bread is golden and the cheese is melty.

French Dip Cheese Pull

And don’t even think about walking away–things can go from lightly toasted to on fire in a matter of seconds when it comes to bread and broilers. Ladle au jus (the juices) into small cups for dipping and enjoy!

dipping french dip

dipping french dip 2

Note about beef roasts: My favorite roasts are top and bottom round roasts. They’re fatty enough to add flavor and moisture, but not overwhelmingly fatty. The classic chuck roast is always a good choice, but they can be quite fatty and trimming the fat can turn into quite a chore (and it can make your au ju very fatty.) The one roast to stay away from is eye of round; it is dry and flavorless.

FREEZER DIRECTIONS: Prepare roast through the searing step. After the meat has cooled, place in a plastic freezer-safe container, cover with onion soup mix, broth, and freeze. When ready to cook, pop it straight into the crockpot, add 2 cups of water, and set to high until simmering, then turn to low; cook for a total of 8-10 hours.

French Dip Sandwiches

INSTANT POT DIRECTIONS: Prepare meat through the searing step (you can sear it in your Instant Pot.) Transfer the roast to a cutting board and slice it into 1″ slices. Place the slices back in the pot and add onion soup mix, broth, and water. Use the manual setting to cook on high for 30 minutes. Allow it to release naturally (so don’t release the pressure valve); it will take about 10 minutes. Remove lid and shred with forks. Serve as directed.

French Dip Cheese Pull

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French Dip Sandwiches

The Best French Dip Sandwiches


Ingredients

1 2.5-3 pound beef roast (see note below)

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 1-ounce packages dry onion soup mix

2 cups water

4 cups (1 box or 2 cans) beef broth

810 crusty rolls or baguette thirds (ciabatta rolls work great)

Swiss, provolone, or mozzarella, shredded or sliced


Instructions

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large, high-sided pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. While the oil is heating, season the roast on all sides with salt and pepper. Sear the roast on all sides, then transfer to the pot of a slow cooker. Sprinkle with onion soup mix and add in water and beef broth. Cook for 8-10 hours on low or start it on high and cook for 2-3 hours on high (until it comes to a boil), then turn it to low and cook for another 4-5 hours on low. It’s hard to mess this part up, but you’ll know it’s done when you pop a fork in it and the meat just falls apart.

When the meat is done cooking, shredded it with two forks. Place the meat on crusty rolls. Top with cheese and broil open face in the oven or for 1-2 minutes or until the bread is golden and the cheese is melty. And don’t even think about walking away–things can go from lightly toasted to on fire in a matter of seconds when it comes to bread and broilers. Ladle au jus (the juices) into small cups for dipping and enjoy!


Notes

Note about beef roasts: My favorite roasts are top and bottom round roasts. They’re fatty enough to add flavor and moisture, but not overwhelmingly fatty. The classic chuck roast is always a good choice, but they can be quite fatty and trimming the fat can turn into quite a chore (and it can make your au jus very fatty). The one roast to stay away from is eye of round; it is dry and flavorless.

FREEZER DIRECTIONS: Prepare roast through the searing step. After the meat has cooled, place in a plastic freezer-safe container, cover with onion soup mix, broth, and freeze. When ready to cook, pop it straight into the crock pot, add 2 cups of water, and set to high until simmering, then turn to low; cook for a total of 8-10 hours.

INSTANT POT DIRECTIONS: Prepare meat through the searing step (you can sear it in your Instant Pot.) Transfer the roast to a cutting board and slice it into 1″ slices. Place the slices back in the pot and add onion soup mix, broth, and water. Use the manual setting to cook on high for 30 minutes. Allow it to release naturally (so don’t release the pressure valve); it will take about 10 minutes. Remove lid and shred with forks.

171 comments

  1. Em, I was thinking you might be the connection….small world!

    And since I’ve totally hijacked this comment thread, I have to add that the FRENCH DIP SANDWICHES ARE DELISH! lol. Everyone needs to try them!

  2. I think I know Jody from Oakley too. . .and I’m guessing you found this AWESOME blog from my sister’s blog who couldn’t resist stealing the link from me.

    Man! Good stuff travels fast and far. . . way to go Sara!

  3. Yes Jody it’s me! I know who you are too, lol. I saw the “Wes, Jody, and Cameron” from Oakley and figured it HAD to be you guys! So who is it that you know that had our blog listed? I’m just curious where the string of people leads and if we have more people in common!

  4. Hi, I’m definitely in a recipe/cooking slump and stumbled upon your wesite from an old friend from high school’s blog. I’ll be sure to check back often.

    Thanks for all your hard work.
    Jody Harris
    Oakley, UT

  5. Hi, I’m definitely in a recipe/cooking slump and stumbled upon your wesite from an old friend from high school’s blog. I’ll be sure to check back often.

    Thanks for all your hard work.
    Jody Harris
    Oakley, UT

  6. Hi, I’m definitely in a recipe/cooking slump and stumbled upon your wesite from an old friend from high school’s blog. I’ll be sure to check back often.

    Thanks for all your hard work.
    Jody Harris
    Oakley, UT

  7. It’s funny that you posted this recipe because I was just asking Treven yesterday if he would like to try french dips and told him that I would look for a recipe. It sounds delicous!

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