This French dip sandwich recipe is our absolute favorite! Just the smell alone is amazing, but it’s also awesome because it’s made in the slow cooker (or Instant Pot). The meat is so tender it just falls apart and melts in your mouth.
French dip sandwiches are a comfort food at it’s finest. They are also great for feeding a crowd because they are always a hit!
Crockpot French Dip Sandwiches
Seriously? Had I really forgotten all about french dip sandwiches? I’m not even exaggerating. French dip sandwiches are something that I haven’t had a lot of, but the few I’ve had were always made with sliced roast beef or deli slices. Not my style. This time I kicked things up a notch with a slow cooker french dip sandwich recipe.
I think that’s probably why I never thought french dip sandwiches were worth remembering. This french dip sandwich, though, it’s killer! It kind of reminds me of our famous pot roast sandwich, but man that au jus is seriously wonderful.
A while back I said I needed to use some beef broth and posted about what to make on Facebook. Lisa from Gourmified suggested french dips! Aha! Genius. I was hooked on the idea, but I knew I wanted to make fresh bread and I wanted it to be good, tender, moist roast beef and nothing from the deli. I set out to make it and let me tell you, DELICIOUS!
The pot roast just falls apart in the slow cooker and it makes the most amazing au jus for dipping. The secret to a tender, juicy pot roast is to let it cook low and slow. You can actually use your Instant Pot to really speed things up, so I’ll add notes in for that as well.
But the real winner isn’t just the meat, it’s the combination of the meat, the HOMEMADE HOAGIES, yes homemade, and the au jus for dipping so don’t try to cut any corners. We added a little cheese to this version because why not?!
French Dip Sandwiches Ingredients
To make the BEST french dip sandwich recipe, you need surprisingly few ingredients. Here’s what all we put into this Crockpot french dip sandwich recipe:
- Tri tip
- Soy sauce
- Beef broth
- Bay leaf
- Dried spices
- Hoagie rolls
- Swiss cheese
Jump down to the recipe card for all the measurement for each ingredient.
How to Make French Dip Sandwiches
This french dip sandwich recipe couldn’t be simpler since your Crockpot does all the hard work. Here are the basic steps to making slow cooker french dip sandwiches:
- Add all the ingredients to a Crockpot.
- Cover and cook on Low for 8 hours.
- Uncover, then shred the meat with two forks.
- Pop the lid back onto the Crockpot and let the shredded meat cook for another hour.
- Distribute the meat between the hoagie rolls and top with Swiss cheese.
- Place sandwiches under the broiled to melt the cheese, then enjoy!
Can I Make Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches?
Yes, very easily! Here’s how to make this Crockpot french dip sandwich recipe in an Instant Pot:
Follow steps 1 and 2 as listed in the instructions, then place lid on Instant pot with steam valve closed.
Switch Instant Pot setting to “manual” and set for 70 minutes on “high” pressure
Once finished cooking, do a quick release.
Remove the roast from Instant Pot, and proceed with steps 4-8 of the instructions.
What Kind of Meat Should Be Used for French Dip Sandwiches?
We’ve tried them all, and our favorite by far is tri tip! The flavor is so beefy and it soaks in the flavor of the soy sauce and spices so well. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
If you can’t find tri tip, or it is just too pricey, chuck or rump roasts also works great.
Tips for Making the Best French Dip Sandwiches
After the meat has been shredded and distributed among the hoagie rolls, make sure to save the juices the meat cooked in! You can dunk the french dip sandwiches into the juices. If desired, strain the juices through a mesh sieve to filter out any bits of dried spices.
We like our french dip sandwiches with Swiss cheese, but you’re welcome to use provolone cheese as well. Both are tasty options.
Lastly, if you wind up with leftovers, you can easily freeze the shredded meat and enjoy it later. It can be used to make lots more sandwiches, or it can be used in soups and stews.
Slow cookers sure make life easy, but they also make life delicious! When you make this slow cooker french dip sandwich recipe, your house smells like heaven and the whole family is going to be dying for you to say that dinner is ready! Oh, and don’t skip the au jus!
More Slow Cooker Recipes:
- Chili Sauce and Grape Jelly Slow Cooker Meatballs
- Slow Cooker Pot Roast
- Asian Sticky Slow Cooker Ribs
- Crockpot Chicken and Rice
- Slow Cooker Potato Broccoli Corn Chowder
- Tender Crockpot Whole Chicken
- Slow Cooker Korean BBQ Beef
- …All of Our Slow Cooker Recipes!
French Dip Sandwiches
- 3 pound tri tip
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1- 15 oz can beef broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 Teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- [Easy Hoagie Rolls Recipe]
- Swiss cheese slices
- Remove and discard the fat from the roast. Place the trimmed roast in a crockpot on low.
- In a medium bowl, combine soy sauce, beef broth, bay leaf, pepper, rosemary, thyme, and garlic powder. Pour mixture over the roast.
- Cover, and cook on Low heat for 8 hours.
- Take the meat out and shred it, then let it cook 1-2 hours more, or until meat is very tender.
- Remove meat from broth, reserving the broth.
- Distribute the meat on hoagies and top with swiss cheese.
- Place under a broiler until the cheese is melted and the bread is toasted.
- Use reserved broth for dipping!
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Wowowowoowow! These were AMAZING!
I even made the hoagie rolls too! Sometimes I just amaze myself…with the help of you of course!
Thanks for a great meal idea and recipe!
You go girl!! That is impressive! I’m so glad you enjoyed both recipes!
I commented a couple of years ago, but just wanted to update. I gave my daughter in law a choice of two recipes for dinner this week. She selected this one because she said she always loves it. I usually use mozzarella instead of Swiss, though. Always a family favorite after four years! Thanks again!!
You’ve made my day Sheila! Thank you so much!
Definitely use low-sodium soy sauce and maybe even low sodium broth. Give yourself the flexibility to control the salt. If you don’t have low-sodium broth/soy I would recommend NOT putting it back in the juice after shredding. I tasted after shredding and it was good…. After soaking in the juice it was pretty darn salty.
Outside of that – Danggggg good. The flavors were perfect. Using a Tri-Tip (and shredding it) is unique for a french dip but it will probably be my go-to now. The texture and tenderness of the Tri-Tip is perfect for a sandwich.
Thank you so much for the feedback Mike! And isn’t that tri tip so dang good? Thank you for the tips on the salt too!
Can I make this on the stove?
Hey Jessica! It would better in the oven on 225 for 8 hours. On the stove top, it won’t cook down tender enough.
do you use regular or low-sodium soy sauce?
I like to use low sodium so I can control the saltiness a little better, but either would work.
I would use a sprig if fresh rosemary, it will stay on the twig and not get lost in the jus.
That is a great idea!
I’m making this tonight and I’m wondering if anyone has any tips for filtering the rosemary out of the broth when you transfer the drippings from the crock pot to a separate dish? I always run into this problem when I make pot roast because I use the drippings to make gravy and I can never get rid of all the little rosemary needles. So I have a feeling I’m going to run into the same issue tonight, even though i’m not making a gravy, I still prefer not to have the rosemary needles left in the dipping sauce.
I like to use a fine mesh strainer in a situation like this. Sometimes a few sneak through, but it should catch most of them!
I’m just making these now! And the hoagies are rising 🙂. However, I’m just wondering how big a can of beef broth is in the US. I’m in Canada so I don’t know if it’s different 😊. Thanks!
These look delicious!
Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen
We used to make these at a restaurant I worked at in college! They smell so good!!
I love a blast from the past when you make a recipe!
I am this today for dinner. It was a huge hit…even our 18 month old grandson loved it!
Thanks for the recipe!
So happy to hear that!
Looks so tasty and I see it’s very easy to prepare.
We made a pot roast in the insta pot last Sunday we cooked it for 70min. It was a pretty sirloin it was so tough. It had great flavor. But what. Dissapointment
I love French dip I also like grilled onions and mustard on it. It’s yummy. Can’t wIt to try this. I will buy my hoagie buns. Lol
Oh no!!! Was the pressure valve turned the right way? I’ve done that before and the meat was so tough!
What is a tri tip? I do not recognize the term. Thanks.
A tri tip is a cut of beef. Your local butcher can help you or you can substitute a beef roast.
Your blog is beautiful and this looks amazing! Definitely adding it to my meal plan. Do you have a link for the bread?
Thank you so much! Here you go, https://ohsweetbasil.com/easy-hoagie-rolls-recipe.html
Any suggestions for making a smaller amount? Maybe cut it in half or thirds? Would I just half/third all of the ingredients and cut the cook time down a bit?
Hi Danielle, you can certainly cut it down and cut the time down a little, but what really works well is just cooking it all, cooling and freezing in sealeable bags for future use.
Thank you so much for the delicious recipe! I made it yesterday for a large group and doubled the recipe. It was a hit! I will definitely be making it again.
Katie, I’m so glad you all enjoyed it! Cade just requested I make them again so I’m glad you reminded me!
I would love to get your bread/hoagie recipe! Where may I find it?
Thanks in advance!
This looks delicious and I can’t wait to try it! Just waiting for the bread recipe! 🙂
Making it this weekend to post!
I would LOVE to have your hoagie bread recipe!
Love to get the hoagie recipe
What size and what kind of roast are you recommending? This looks AMAZING!!!
We use a 3 lb roast but anywhere around there is great
Ok looks good, but where is the bread,beef recipe??
Is that a 13 pound tip roast or 1- 3 pound? How many aprox. will this feed.
Think she means 3 lbs. – prob. feeds 4-6.
This looks great! My husband is thanking you profusely.
I just adore French Dips and I'd love to get my hands on one of these babies right now!
mmmm. I love a good french dip!! Haven't had one in a while
I love french dip! You're right though, a lot of french dips are not worth remembering. My fiance has a beef-ban in our house, so whenever he goes out of town I whip one up. I can just imagine how delicious yours must have been with the fresh bread.