From the tender beef to gooey cheese to the rich au jus, Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches are the ultimate beef sandwich and come together with only minutes of prep!
One of my family's all-time favorite meals is French Dip Sandwiches.
Made with super tender beef piled on a garlic-toasted bun, smothered in gooey cheese, and served with a side of rich au jus for dipping, it is easy to see why a French Dip Sandwich gets a person excited for dinner.
And thankfully, it couldn't be easier to make these beloved beef sandwiches using the Instant Pot.
Just like my recipe for Instant Pot Pot Roast, the Instant Pot works its magic in record time to create tender, juicy, melt-in-your-mouth beef that is the ultimate base for a French Dip Sandwich.
With only minutes of prep work for the cook, and rave reviews from the family, these Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches are sure to become a family favorite.
Ingredients for French Dips
- Beef Roast: I strongly recommend chuck roast for this recipe. A bottom-round roast, sirloin roast, or top-round roast will not become as tender as a chuck roast.
- Beef Broth/Stock: Use low-sodium beef stock to help control the added sodium in this recipe. There is a lot of liquid in this recipe--do not be tempted to cut back on the amount used. Not only does it create a delicious dipping sauce for the French Dips, but it also keeps the beef super moist and the cooking time was calculated using the full 4 cups of beef.
- Onion & Garlic: Garlic and onion add to the flavor of the au jus and beef.
- Soy Sauce: Don't be tempted to omit the soy sauce from these French Dip Sandwiches, that extra flavor adds just the right umami flavor.
- Buns: Use hoagie or sub rolls for an authentic French Dip, but in a bind use hot dog or hamburger buns. Parenting Tip: Use hot dog buns for smaller appetites!
- Provolone Cheese: Use thick sliced provolone cheese for a thick, gooey layer of cheese. Of course, Swiss can be substituted.
How to Make Instant Pot French Dips
Step One: Sear Meat
Searing the meat adds texture to the final shredded beef. Feel free to skip this step if you are on a time crunch.
- Turn the Instant Pot to the saute function, add in a bit of oil, and let heat for a minute.
- While the oil is heating, season the roast liberally with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Add the seasoned roast to the inner pot and sear on all sides until golden. This will take 2-4 minutes per side.
- Turn the Instant Pot OFF by hitting cancel and remove the seared beef to a plate.
Step Two: Deglaze Pan
In order to prevent a burn notice, it is crucial to scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of the inner pot. This is easiest if you remove the roast first.
- Add in 1 cup of the beef broth and thoroughly scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of your pressure cooker--do not skip this step or you may end up with a burn notice.
Step Three: Add in Remaining Ingredients
- Add the remaining beef stock, sliced onion, garlic, and soy sauce to the inner pot.
- Nestle the seared beef into the stock.
Step Four: Pressure Cook
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and turn the valve to seal.
- Set to cook on high pressure for 20 minutes per pound.
- After the cooking time has elapsed, allow at least 10 minutes of natural pressure release before finishing releasing pressure.
Step Five: Shred Meat
- Remove the roast from the pressure cooker, place it in a large bowl, and turn the Instant Pot back to saute to allow the cooking liquid to boil and evaporate slowly while assembling the sandwiches.
- Shred with 2 forks or a handheld mixer.
Step Six: Assemble French Dip Sandwiches
- Spread buns with butter and toast in the oven until golden. This helps to keep the sandwiches from getting soggy.
- Once the buns are toasted rub with a garlic clove to give the buns a delicious hint of garlic flavor.
- Top buns with shredded beef and sliced provolone cheese and return to oven briefly to melt the cheese.
Step Seven: Strain and Serve
- After removing the sandwiches from the oven, turn off the Instant Pot.
- Strain the reduced cooking liquid and serve on the side with toasted French dip sandwiches.
I love to pair French Dips with a side of Oven Baked Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, or Instant Pot Corn on the Cob. But regardless of what side dish you serve these sandwiches with, your family will agree, that they are out-of-this-world delicious!
Using Frozen Beef
One of the many reasons I love using my Instant Pot to prepare these French Dip Sandwiches is that I can prepare this recipe using a frozen chuck roast.
To prepare this recipe using a frozen chuck roast, skip searing the meat and cook for 30 minutes per pound.
Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches
If you don't have an electric pressure cooker, you can still enjoy Easy French Dip Sandwiches with the help of a slow cooker.
- Sear the meat in a heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat on the stove in 1 tablespoon oil.
- Once seared on all sides, place the roast into the slow cooker with the broth, garlic, onion, and soy sauce.
- Cook on high for 6-7 hours or low for 9-10 hours.
- Shred the meat and assemble the sandwiches as the recipe directs.
In order to keep the beef from drying out, it is best to store any leftover shredded meat together with the leftover au jus. Store them together in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in a freezer-safe container, leaving 1 to 2 inches for expansion, in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To prepare a French Dip Sandwich using the leftover beef and au jus, allow the meat to defrost in the refrigerator if needed. Then warm the beef with the au jus in a saucepan over low heat on the stove or in a heat-safe dish in 1-minute intervals in the microwave until warmed through. Strain off the liquid from the beef, reserving for dipping, and assemble the sandwiches as directed.
More Instant Pot Beef Recipes
- Instant Pot Pot Roast
- Instant Pot Mississippi Pot Roast
- Instant Pot Ground Beef
- Instant Pot Chili
- Instant Pot Italian Beef
- Instant Pot Beef and Barley Soup
- Instant Pot Beef Stroganoff
- Instant Pot Beef Stew
These French Dips are picky-eater-approved, satisfying, and easy to make! I hope that you enjoy them as much as my family! Please be sure to leave a comment and review below if you gave these Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches a try.
Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches
- 3 pound chuck roast
- salt and pepper
- ½ tbsp oil canola or olive oil
- 4 cups beef broth
- 3 garlic cloves divided
- 1 small onion thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 8 hoagie buns
- 1 tbsp butter optional
- 16 slices provolone cheese
- Liberally season the chuck roast on both sides with salt and pepper.
- Turn Pressure Cooker to Saute, add oil, and let heat. Once the oil is heated, add the beef to the inner pot and sear on each side until golden, about 2-4 minutes per side.
- Once the roast is evenly seared, turn the instant pot off and remove the roast to a plate.
- Pour in 1 cup of the beef stock into the inner pot and scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the inner pot.
- Pour in the remaining 3 cups of stock. Add in 2 garlic cloves, sliced onions, and the soy sauce to the pressure cooker. Return the beef back to the inner pot.
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and be sure the vent knob is pointed towards sealed. Set to cook on high pressure for 20 minutes per pound. For a 3-pound roast, this is 60 minutes.
- Once the cooking time has elapsed, allow the pressure cooker to naturally release for AT LEAST 10 minutes, but 15-20 minutes is best, before manually releasing pressure.
- Remove the roast from the inner pot and place it into a large mixing bowl and turn the pressure cooker back to saute. (Hit Cancel/Off THEN Saute). Let the cooking liquid reduce with the instant pot open, while you shred the beef and toast the buns so that it intensifies in flavor and reduces slightly.
- Use 2 forks or a hand-held mixer to shred the beef.
- Place the rolls, opened, on a sheet pan. Spread a light layer of butter or drizzle with olive oil. Toast for 5 minutes in a 400-degree F oven or carefully and quickly using a broiler until just browned. Remove rolls from the oven and rub the garlic clove over inside of the roll.
- Layer meat and 2 slices of cheese on each roll and return to the oven until cheese melts, cooking for about 3 minutes.
- Turn off the saute function on the inner pot. Lade up the au jus into bowls, straining first if desired. Serve with the french dips.
This post was originally published in 2017 but was updated in 2020 with a new video and tips.