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Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions

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Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions filled with beef, melted cheese and au jus (beef broth) for dipping. The perfect weekend crock pot recipe!

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions filled with beef, melted cheese and au jus (beef broth) for dipping.

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich

Sometimes the only thing I want for dinner is a hot sandwich. This Crock Pot French Dip sandwich satisfies that craving and those caramelized onions at the end make it amazing!! And is there anything better than dipping a sandwich in that delicious au jus? I think not!

Crock Pot French Dip

These sandwiches make the perfect game day meal, start this early in the morning (or night). You’ll need 9 to 12 hours, depending on the size of your roast. Serve them as sliders by serving them on dinner rolls. The onions take about half an hour, you can prep them ahead so they will be ready when it’s time to eat.

This recipe is from my friend Lori’s cookbook The Recipe Girl Cookbook: Dishing Out the Best Recipes for Entertaining and Every Day (affil link). This roast smells amazing simmering all day and the sandwiches are delicious,  My husband LOVED them!

I didn’t have to do much to her recipe to make it light, I just used whole grain bread (whole wheat baguette or whole grain rolls) and portion control and they were perfectly satisfying. I highly recommend making the onions and peppers, in my opinion they make the sandwich!

The recipes in her book are perfect for entertaining and she includes menu ideas from everything from football parties, romantic dinners for two, holiday parties, tailgating parties and more, or you can just serve them up any night of the week.

Because this can make several servings depending on the size of the roast you purchase, and the appetites of your guests the nutrition is based on one sandwich using a whole wheat baguette.

What To Serve with French Dips?

I have the 6 Quart Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget Programmable Slow Cooker (affil link). I love it because you can adjust the time you want it to cook, and it automatically turns to warm when it’s done. It also has a probe for meat that automatically shuts off when done. I hated my old crock pot, it burnt everything and my food had a weird taste. This crock pot is so great, I actually own two!

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions filled with beef, melted cheese and au jus (beef broth) for dipping–the perfect weekend crock pot recipe!Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions filled with beef, melted cheese and au jus (beef broth) for dipping–the perfect weekend crock pot recipe!Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized OnionsSlow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions

More Sandwich Recipes:

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich

4.85 from 20 votes
If this slow cooker french dip sandwich filled with beef, melted cheese, caramelized onions and a beef broth to dip in sounds appealing, you NEED to make these!
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: American
Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions filled with beef, melted cheese and au jus (beef broth) for dipping.
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 9 hrs
Total: 9 hrs 20 mins
Yield: 18 (Varies)
Serving Size: 1 sandwich (see below)


For The Beef:

  • 3 to 4 lb beef round roast, trimmed
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, or 1 tsp dry
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dry
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 to 3 14.5 oz cans Swanson's low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 10 whole peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 large onion, cut into chunks

For the Caramelized Onions (makes about 1 cup):

  • 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt

For the Peppers (makes about 2 cups):

  • 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded and sliced into strips
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cored, seeded and sliced into strips

For the Sandwich:

Sargento Reduced Fat Provolone or Mozzarella Slices
  • whole wheat baguettes or rolls, cut into 2 oz pieces


  • In a small bowl mix garlic, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper. Rub the spice mixture onto all sides of the roast, then place in the slow cooker. Pour the broth into the side of the roast then top with onions.
  • Add the Worcestershire sauce, peppercorns and bay leaf to the broth.
  • Cover and cook on low until the meat flakes apart easily with a fork, about 9 to 12 hours, depending on the size of your roast.
  • An hour before the meat is done, prepare the onions and peppers.
  • In a large nonstick skillet heat the oil over medium heat.
  • Add the onions and salt and cook until golden, stirring often, reducing heat as needed if the onions are burning or browning too quickly, about 30 to 35 minutes. Add 1 tbsp to the pan if it becomes too dry. The onions should turn golden and the flavor should be sweet.
  • Transfer to a serving bowl, then add the peppers to the skillet and cook stirring often until soft, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Remove the meat from the slow cooker to a cutting board and shred with a fork or slice with a knife.
  • Strain the broth through a fine sieve then place in a gravy separator to remove any fat. Pour 1/4 cup broth into each small ramekin.
  • Preheat the oven to broil. Split the bread open and top with 2 ounces of beef. Top with onions, peppers and cheese and broil until the cheese melts. Place on a plate with broth for dipping.

Last Step:

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Nutrition based on: 2 oz whole wheat baguette, 2 oz cooked beef round, 1/4 cup beef broth, 1 slice cheese, onions & peppers.


Serving: 1 sandwich (see below), Calories: 308 kcal, Carbohydrates: 31 g, Protein: 29 g, Fat: 9 g, Saturated Fat: 3.5 g, Cholesterol: 40 mg, Sodium: 620 mg, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 1 g


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179 comments on “Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwich with Caramelized Onions”

  1. Made this for dinner last night. It was amazing. My husband loved it and I know he will be asking for this regularly. The only change I made is I used unsalted beef stock, we watch our salt due to kidney issues. This is simple and delicious!!!

  2. Made this recipe on Sunday and it turned out great! After checking 4 different stores, the only roast I could find was a 5lb. flat iron roast. 😳I slow cooked for about 9 hours, and the meat just about fell apart to the touch. I didn’t even need forks to shred it, I just pushed it around with a pair of tongs for a few minutes and it shredded itself! It tasted delicious. The au jus didn’t come out as rich/flavorful as I expected, based on what I’ve had in restaurants. I wonder if using stock instead of broth would make a difference? Or maybe it was the cut of meat. Ended up adding a little bit of salt to the jus though which made it pretty tasty. I also recommend some horseradish cream as a condiment, although that makes it slightly less “skinny.” For a first attempt at French Dip, I’m pretty happy with how it turned out!

  3. Avatar photo
    Melissa Wooten

    I made this recipe during the quarantine period. It was so delicious and my house smelled amazing! We are a family of 4 and we used the leftovers for quesadillas and lunches. I did cook on high for less time. I plan to make again.

  4. Love this recipe! I made it in the instant pot and cooked it in high 55 minutes and it was so tender and perfect.

  5. My me and my husband love this recipe I was wondering if this could be done in the instant pot instead of the crock pot? If so how long do I cook it for and do I need to change anything in the recipe? 

  6. What makes the blue plan higher in points for this recipe? I plugged the recipe into my app and it is the same for blue and green plan.. 10 points.

  7. Can’t wait to make this! Do we use eye of round, top round, or bottom round? Also, to what internal temperature do we cook it?

    1. Answered my own question:
      Used a trimmed and tied bottom round and cooked it on low to an internal temperature of 180f. By the time it had finished resting, it had reached 185f. I think it could have gone up to 190f, but probably not any higher or it would have dried up.
      The roast was perfectly moist and flavorful. Cooked for about 6 hours. A slow cooker with a temperature probe is a must for me- no guesswork!
      Will definitely make again- next time I will not add salt to the onions, and might even use sweet onions instead of a yellow ones.

  8. This was the first time I tried this recipe. Followed the instructions as written but didn’t use the peppers and next time I will caramelize more than 3 onions. This French dip is so good. Definitely will make this time and time again for visiting out of state company or a game. My very picky husband liked it a lot and the smell of it cooking in the crockpot was so good.   

  9. This was delicious! I halved the recipe and added a horseradish spread. The whole family loved it, that’s a rarity with my picky kiddo. Thank you!

    1. I’ve realized after drying roasts out time and time again they really only need a few hours. 8-9 is pretty long. I only did mine 3-4 hours. I’d say 5 at most depending on the size. 

  10. Meat was a bit dry. Used 4 lb. plus just under 32 oz. beef broth and cooked 9 hours. Only the top of the meat was not submersed by the broth. The meat was definitely done so maybe less time cooking? A little disappointed. Definitely needed the au jus!

    1. I’ve dried out so many roasts over the years. Unless you have an enormous roast it only needs 3-5 hours depending on size. Don’t give up on this recipe. Try again for less time 😊

  11. Avatar photo
    Debbie C DiNoto

    When you are cooking the onions, you state to add one tablespoon if the onions are dry. Tablespoon of what?

  12. I see a lot of questions but no answers. Would be nice if we could get those. Some of us have same questions.

  13. Looks amazing! How does one deal with leftover beef and broth? How long will it last in the refrigerator? Can it be shredded and then frozen? Thanks!