French Dip Sandwiches

These indulgent, slimming-friendly French Dip Sandwiches are a great meal whether you’re counting calories or following Weight Watchers!

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

If you haven’t had the pleasure before, a French Dip Sandwich is a warm glorious mess of pulled beef, usually with melted cheese in a sub roll. It is served with a pot of the juices from the meat which you dip the sandwich into.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

The sandwich has been popular across America for decades, and in the past few years has found its way over to the UK. Like many popular American dishes it is heavy on the calories and fat, but it is such a tasty dish we knew just a few tweaks would make it slimming friendly!

For the full list of ingredients and comprehensive instructions, please see the recipe card at the end of this post. Before you scroll, there’s important stuff in the blurb 👍

This recipe makes enough for 4 sandwiches and a ramekin of gravy to go with each. If you like extra gravy, just double all the ingredients except for the beef, rolls and cheese.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

For this recipe we used lean brisket with any visible fat trimmed. That being said, as this recipe is slow or pressure cooked for a decent amount of time, most cuts of beef will work. You could use any roasting joint, topside, silverside, even braising steak – just make sure it is trimmed lean and the pieces aren’t too small or thin. You want to be able to pull it apart with a fork when it is done!

Want to make extra beef? Go ahead! The timings remain the same for double the beef, just make sure it is cut into a few pieces.

As for serving suggestions, we suggest either our amazing Rustic Potato Wedges or Homemade Oven Chips. Basically anything you can dip into the delicious gravy works well!

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

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French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

What do I need to make these French Dip Sandwiches?

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The most important tool to make these French Dip Sandwiches is either a slow cooker or a pressure cooker. The meat needs to be tender and falling apart once cooked, and both of these kitchen tools can achieve that.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

If you don’t have a pressure cooker or are looking to upgrade, why not invest in the Instant Pot? The beauty of a multi cooker like the Instant Pot is that you can use it for slow cooking as well as pressure cooking!  In our opinion it is far superior to the other electric pressure cookers around. You can read our review and find out more about the Instant Pot here.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

You can purchase an Instant Pot on Amazon here.

We have lots of other recipes you can try with a pressure cooker too!

Instant Pot Duo V2 8 Litre 7-in-1

To make the gravy for these French Dip Sandwiches you will also need a hand blender. The one we used for this recipe is available on Amazon here.

This is a great choice because the hand blender attachment is metal which doesn’t stain and can be used in hot liquids. It also comes with a whisk and a mini food processor attachment, great for making our Hummus!

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Instant Pot/Digital Pressure Cooker Method

Step 1

Take your beef and trim all the visible fat. The easiest way to do this is with scissors. It is a little time consuming but important to keep this dish slimline. Cut the now lean beef into a few smaller pieces.

Step 2

Roughly slice the onions. They don’t need to be finely chopped.

Step 3

Add the beef, onions, garlic, onion granules, Worcestershire sauce, stock cube, diet coke, balsamic vinegar and mustard powder to the Instant Pot.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 4

Lock the lid onto the pot, make sure the release valve is turned to the ‘sealed’ position and press ‘Pressure Cook’. The pressure should be set to normal and you will need to set the time to 50 minutes.

Step 5

When the Instant Pot beeps that is is finished, move the release valve to quick release (watch your face and hands, there will be hot steam!). In this time cut your rolls in half and grate the cheese ready to assemble the sandwiches.

Step 6

When the pressure is fully released take the lid off the pot and carefully remove the pieces of beef. Place them into a separate bowl and shred the meat with two forks. Place some foil over it to keep it warm.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 7

Take your hand blender and whizz up the onions and liquid left in the Instant Pot. If you like your gravy thicker you can switch your Instant Pot to ‘Saute’ and reduce it down further.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 8

Assemble the sandwiches by cutting the rolls in half and splitting the beef and cheese between the four rolls. You can put the rolls under a hot grill for a minute to melt the cheese if you want – just make sure not to burn the bread!

Step 9

Pour the gravy into ramekins and serve with the warm sandwiches.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Slow Cooker Method

Step 1

Take your beef and trim all the visible fat. The easiest way to do this is with scissors. Cut the beef into a small pieces. Chunks are about the size of a match box work well in the slow cooker.

Step 2

Roughly slice the onions. They don’t need to be finely chopped.

Step 3

Add the beef to a frying pan sprayed with low calorie cooking spray. Fry the beef for a few minutes to brown the surface.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 4

Once the beef is cooked, remove it from the pan and set aside. Now add the sliced onions with a little water and soften them over a low heat for a few minutes.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 5

Add the onions, beef, garlic, onion granules, Worcestershire sauce, stock cube, diet coke, balsamic vinegar and mustard powder to the slow cooker.

Step 6

Set the slow cooker to high and place the lid on. Cook for around 6 hours.

Step 7

When the slow cooking is complete, carefully remove the pieces of beef. Place them into a separate bowl and shred the meat with two forks. Place some foil over it to keep it warm.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 8

Take your hand blender and whizz up the onions and liquid left in the slow cooker. If you like your gravy thicker you can reduce the liquid further in a saucepan on the hob.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Step 9

Assemble the sandwiches by cutting the rolls in half and splitting the beef and cheese between the four rolls. You can put the rolls under a hot grill for a minute to melt the cheese if you want – just make sure not to burn the bread!

Step 10

Pour the gravy into ramekins and serve with the warm sandwiches.

French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Can I freeze these French Dip Sandwiches?

The beef and the gravy can be frozen separately ready to use in sandwiches later.

suitable-for-freezing-recipe-card

Please remember to do the following;
– Freeze it as soon as it is cold enough
– Use a container or bag that is suitable for freezing.
– Defrost thoroughly before reheating.

Make sure it’s piping hot before serving!

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French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

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French Dip Sandwiches | Slimming & Weight Watchers Friendly

Votes: 4
Rating: 4.5
You:
Rate this recipe!

Servings

Prep Time

Cooking Time

portion 20 minutes 50 minutes

Calories

WW

Carbs

454kcal 13

Smart Points (Flex/Freestyle)

Coming Soon

Per portion Per portion Per portion
Gluten Free icon
Looking for Slimming World Syns?

We agreed with Slimming World to remove their trademarked terms from our website

FIND OUT WHY

INGREDIENTS
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INSTRUCTIONS
Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker
  1. Take your beef and trim all the visible fat. The easiest way to do this is with scissors. It is a little time consuming but important to keep this dish slimline. Cut the now lean beef into a few smaller pieces.
  2. Roughly slice the onions. They don't need to be finely chopped.
  3. Add the beef, onions, garlic, onion granules, Worcestershire sauce, stock cube, diet coke, balsamic vinegar and mustard powder to the Instant Pot.
  4. Lock the lid onto the pot, make sure the release valve is turned to the 'sealed' position and press 'Pressure Cook'. The pressure should be set to normal and you will need to set the time to 50 minutes.
  5. When the Instant Pot beeps that is is finished, move the release valve to quick release (watch your face and hands, there will be hot steam!). In this time cut your rolls in half and grate the cheese ready to assemble the sandwiches.
  6. When the pressure is fully released take the lid off the pot and carefully remove the pieces of beef. Place them into a separate bowl and shred the meat with two forks. Place some foil over it to keep it warm.
  7. Take your hand blender and whizz up the onions and liquid left in the Instant Pot. If you like your gravy thicker you can switch your Instant Pot to 'Saute' and reduce it down further.
  8. Assemble the sandwiches by cutting the rolls in half and splitting the beef and cheese between the four rolls. You can put the rolls under a hot grill for a minute to melt the cheese if you want - just make sure not to burn the bread!
  9. Pour the gravy into ramekins and serve with the warm sandwiches.
Slow Cooker
  1. Take your beef and trim all the visible fat. The easiest way to do this is with scissors. It is a little time consuming but important to keep this dish slimline. Cut the now lean beef into a small pieces. Chunks are about the size of a match box work well in the slow cooker.
  2. Roughly slice the onions. They don't need to be finely chopped.
  3. Add the beef to a frying pan sprayed with low calorie cooking spray. Fry the beef for a few minutes to brown the surface.
  4. Once the beef is cooked, remove it from the pan and set aside. Now add the sliced onions with a little water and soften them over a low heat for a few minutes.
  5. Add the onions, beef, garlic, onion granules, Worcestershire sauce, stock cube, diet coke, balsamic vinegar and mustard powder to the slow cooker.
  6. Set the slow cooker to high and place the lid on. Cook for around 6 hours.
  7. When the slow cooking is completed carefully remove the pieces of beef. Place them into a separate bowl and shred the meat with two forks. Place some foil over it to keep it warm.
  8. Take your hand blender and whizz up the onions and liquid left in the slow cooker. If you like your gravy thicker you can reduce the liquid further in a saucepan on the hob.
  9. Assemble the sandwiches by cutting the rolls in half and splitting the beef and cheese between the four rolls. You can put the rolls under a hot grill for a minute to melt the cheese if you want - just make sure not to burn the bread!
  10. Pour the gravy into ramekins and serve with the warm sandwiches.

If you make this recipe, snap a pic and hashtag it #pinchofnom — We love to see your creations on InstagramFacebook, & Twitter!

RECIPE NOTES

We use a fan assisted oven for all of our recipes. Need help converting the temperature for your oven? 

Click here for our oven temperature conversion guide.

If making this recipe Gluten Free please make sure to check the ingredients that you’re using

Especially things such as; 

- Stock cubes
- Soy sauce - substitute with Tamari.
- Worcestershire sauce - substitute with Henderson’s Relish.
- Etc.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Although pinchofnom.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Under no circumstances will pinchofnom.com be responsible for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information.

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If you use or re-create our recipes we kindly ask:

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  • You don't reproduce the recipe in full
13 Comments
    1. Hi Fran,

      For this recipe we used lean brisket with any visible fat trimmed. That being said, as this recipe is slow or pressure cooked for a decent amount of time, most cuts of beef will work. You could use any roasting joint, topside, silverside, even braising steak – just make sure it is trimmed lean and the pieces aren’t too small or thin. You want to be able to pull it apart with a fork when it is done!

      Hope that helps! 🙂

    1. Hi Julie,

      For this recipe we used lean brisket with any visible fat trimmed. That being said, as this recipe is slow or pressure cooked for a decent amount of time, most cuts of beef will work. You could use any roasting joint, topside, silverside, even braising steak – just make sure it is trimmed lean and the pieces aren’t too small or thin. You want to be able to pull it apart with a fork when it is done!

      Hope that helps, thanks for getting in touch! 🙂

    1. Follow the slow cooker recipe, but when it calls for adding to the slow cooker, place all the ingredients in a lidded pot suitable for the oven. Cook in a preheated oven for 4 hours at 180c 🙂

  1. Hi, just wondering if i freeze the extra and defrosted them later in the week would the gravy and beef be ok heated in the microwave?
    Just wondered if i could take this for lunch for work i’ve got access to a microwave but no oven 😊

    1. Hi Jeanette,

      Yes, the meat and gravy is good to freeze, and then reheat in the microwave once defrosted. Perhaps bake and take the roll separately so it doesn’t get soggy!

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