Italian Beef Sandwiches with Giardiniera are juicy, melty, drippy and mouth-watering delicious! Serve with extra napkins! Tender, slow cooker shredded Italian beef is piled on toasty hoagie buns with gooey provolone cheese and topped with sharp giardiniera pickled veggies. These are sandwiches at the next level, perfect for game day or to feed a crowd, but easy enough for a weeknight with amazing leftovers!
- Your Slow Cooker Does the Work! - Prep it and forget it, after all day in the crockpot your Italian beef will be incredibly tender! It gets loads of flavor from a quick sear on the stovetop before heading into the slow cooker with lots of onions, garlic, red bell pepper and Italian seasoning. Load that juicy shredded beef onto hoagie buns with cheese and top it with extra zing from a jar of pickled vegetable giardiniera. Yum!
- This Recipe Spun Off of my Go-To Simply Perfect Beef Roast, but who doesn't love it in sandwich form? These Italian Beef Melts can be eaten on hoagie rolls or slider buns for a juicy, messy, melt in your mouth crowd-pleasing favorite! We love these Italian Beef Sliders for the Super Bowl with easy extras like Veggies and Dip and Chips and Guacamole!
- Olive Oil
- Beef Roast - I like to use a 3 to 3.5 pound chuck roast or similar cut, whatever looks the best. A chuck roast is a tough cut of meat, perfect for slow braising in the crockpot to get it fall-apart tender! Remove as much fat as you can from the meat with tongs after it has finished cooking.
- Salt and Pepper - Salt is very important here! This is a large cut of meat so season it generously on all sides.
- Onion - Onion adds lots of flavor when slow cooked all day. I like to slice it in half moons so I can see the onion pieces in the finished shredded beef.
- Red Bell Pepper - Adds a pop of color and extra Italian flavor to the beef.
- Garlic - Lots of fresh minced garlic gives the beef that classic Italian flavor. You can also substitute 1 teaspoon garlic powder.
- Italian Seasoning - Dried herbs give these beef sandwiches their Italian flare!
- Beef Stock - The work horse in the slow cooker, beef stock turns your beef roast into juicy, tender perfection! Be sure to load up your hoagies with plenty of the dripping shredded beef, that savory juice soaks into the bun for a deliciously messy sandwich. Enjoy with plenty of napkins!
- Hoagie or Slider Buns - You can use any type of buns to suit your occasion. I like big hoagie buns to soak up all that liquid from the meat. For a party, you could use a pack of Hawaiian buns, slicing the entire thing in half and loading it up with the beef and cheese. Then bake it, add giardiniera and then cut into perfect party sized Italian Beef sliders!
- Provolone Cheese - The perfect melty Italian cheese, provolone is best, but mozzarella or even slices of white cheddar will work.
- Giardiniara - A jar of that tangy zesty pickled veggies, Giardiniera makes these shredded Beef Sandwiches Italian! I've chosen to keep the giardiniera as a topping rather than add it to the crock pot so everyone can add the amount they like. I also like to keep it uncooked, adding a crisp cold contrast to the hot tender beef. There are several options when it comes to the type and brand of giardiniera. Some are packed in oil, some are more of a vinegar pickle brine. Personally, I love them all, but find one that you like! If the jarred veggies are in large pieces, just pull some out and give them a rough chop.
Step 1 - Sear the beef roast before adding it to the crockpot for maximum flavor! Heat a large Dutch oven or skillet over medium heat with olive oil. Season the beef roast well on all sides with salt and pepper. Allow it to sear in the hot oil until it turns a deep brown color, about 5 to 6 minutes per side.
Step 2 - While the beef sears, slice your veggies.
Step 3 - Transfer the seared beef to the crock pot and add in the onions and bell pepper. Evenly sprinkle with the minced garlic and Italian Seasoning. Add another pinch of salt to season your veggies.
Step 4 - Add the beef stock and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours.
Step 5 - When the beef is done, use tongs to pull out and discard as much of the fat as possible while shredding the meat. Beef can be kept in the slow cooker on the Warm setting until ready to serve.
Step 6 - To make the sandwiches, preheat the oven to 350°. On a sheet pan, pile your hoagie or slider buns with the beef, including a bit of the liquid, and top with cheese. Bake about 4 to 5 minutes until the buns are toasted and the cheese is melted.
Step 7 - Serve topped with Giardiniera. You can serve it on the side in a bowl so guests can add their desired amount.
Hint: After searing the beef on the stovetop, add a bit of the beef stock to the hot pot to deglaze it, scraping up all those little brown bits of flavor with a wooden spoon before adding it and the rest of the stock to the slow cooker.
- Dutch Oven Shredded Beef - After searing the beef roast, you can continue to make and cook the entire recipe in your Dutch oven instead of in a crock pot. After searing the roast on the stovetop, add all other ingredients as instructed, COVER, and bake in the oven at 300° for about 8 hours. Check on your roast after 6 hours to make sure you still have enough liquid and your roast isn't drying out or burning.
- Spicy Italian Beef - If you want to kick up the heat, serve your Italian Beef with Hot Giardiniera.
- Kid friendly - The peppers and onions in this recipe have been cut large, so if kids don't like them, it's easy to pull out just the beef with tongs. My kids love sandwiches glued together with lots of melty cheese! I've kept the giardiniera as a topping instead of adding it into the crockpot, so everyone can add as much or as little as they like, or none!
- If you LOVE slow cooked roasts, try my Rich Molasses Braised Beef Roast, it's sweet and savory delicious!
I used a 6 quart slow cooker for this recipe, while searing the beef first in an enameled cast iron Dutch oven. Any large skillet or soup pot will work for the sear. The entire recipe can be made in a Dutch oven if you don't have a crock pot, see instructions above.
Make Ahead Instruction - The beef roast can be seared and all ingredients added to the crockpot and then kept in the fridge a day in advance of cooking it. Or, the roast can be completely cooked, then cooled and stored in the fridge a day or two in advance and can be reheated in the crockpot.
Leftover Storage - Store leftover shredded beef in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. As the meat cools, a white layer of fat will form on the top. Just scrape it off with a spoon and discard in the trash. If storing a fully made sandwich, try to eat it the next day. Transform your leftover shredded beef into this delicious Ragu Pasta Bake!
Freezer - Leftover Italian beef can be cooled in the fridge first, then frozen for up to 4 months. Thaw overnight and reheat on the stovetop, microwave, or slow cooker.
Really take the time to pick through and pull out the fat with tongs as you shred the beef. The fat from the beef is great in the cooking process to get that meat tender and juicy, but getting a fatty bite in your sandwich is really the worst!
The answer is yes and no! Yes, you can, it will work and your Italian beef sandwiches will still be tender and delicious. But, searing the meat before adding it to the crockpot REALLY adds tremendous flavor! It is an extra 10 minute step, but if you have the time, it's worth it!
Yes, the actual Italian Shredded Beef itself is completely gluten free. Serve on a gluten free roll.
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Italian Beef Sandwiches with Giardiniera
For the Beef
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 3 pound beef roast (chuck roast or similar cut, about 3 to 3.5 pounds)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 12 grinds fresh black pepper
- 1 onion sliced
- 1 red bell pepper sliced, and then slices cut in half
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 4 cups beef stock
For the Sandwiches
- hoagie or slider buns
- provolone cheese
- giardiniara for serving
- Preheat a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat with olive oil. Season the beef roast on all sides with salt and pepper and sear until dark brown. About 5 to 6 minutes per side.
- Meanwhile, chop your veggies.
- When the beef is fully seared, transfer it to a slow cooker and add in the peppers and onions. Evenly sprinkle in the garlic and Italian seasoning and add another pinch of salt to season the vegetables.
- Optional step, add a bit of the beef stock to the hot skillet to deglaze the pan you seared the beef in, scraping up any bits of flavor with a wooden spoon before adding all the beef stock to the slow cooker.
- Cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours. Shred the beef with tongs. Use tongs to pull out and discard as much of the fat as possible. Hold in the crockpot on WARM until ready to serve.
- Preheat the oven to 350°. On a sheet pan, assemble the beef on hoagie or slider buns making sure to include some of the broth and top with provolone cheese. Bake about 4 to 5 minutes until the buns are toasted and the cheese is melted. Add giardiniera and serve.
- Leftover Storage - Store leftover shredded beef in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. As the meat cools, a white layer of fat will form on the top. Just scrape it off with a spoon and discard in the trash. If storing a fully made sandwich, try to eat it the next day.
- Freezer - Leftover Italian beef can be cooled in the fridge first, then frozen for up to 4 months. Thaw overnight and reheat on the stovetop, microwave, or slow cooker.
- Discard the Fat - Really take the time to pick through and pull out the fat with tongs as you shred the beef. The fat from the beef is great in the cooking process to get that meat tender and juicy, but getting a fatty bite in your sandwich is really the worst!