Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches Recipe

Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches are a delightful treat that combine tender, flavourful meat with the convenience of slow cooking. Perfect for gatherings or a family meal, these sandwiches are not only delicious but also incredibly easy to make. Let’s dive into this mouth-watering recipe.

Ingredients

  • 3-4 lbs beef chuck roast
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 packet Italian salad dressing mix
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 6-8 hoagie rolls
  • Sliced provolone cheese
  • Optional: pickled vegetables, for serving

Instructions

  1. Preparation of the Beef:
    • Season the beef chuck roast with salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder.
    • Place the seasoned roast into the slow cooker.
  2. Creating the Flavourful Broth:
    • In a bowl, mix the beef broth with Italian salad dressing mix, oregano, basil, and red pepper flakes.
    • Pour this mixture over the beef in the slow cooker.
  3. Slow Cooking:
    • Cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5 hours, until the beef is very tender and shreds easily.
  4. Shredding the Beef:
    • Once cooked, remove the beef from the slow cooker and shred it using two forks.
    • Return the shredded beef to the slow cooker and stir to combine with the juices.
  5. Assembling the Sandwiches:
    • Toast the hoagie rolls lightly.
    • Pile the shredded beef onto the rolls.
    • Top with slices of provolone cheese. Optionally, you can place the sandwiches under a broiler for a minute to melt the cheese.
  6. Serving:
    • Serve the sandwiches hot.
    • Offer pickled vegetables as a tangy accompaniment, if desired.

Pros and Cons of Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches Recipe

Pros

  1. Convenience and Ease of Preparation:
    • Slow cookers allow for a ‘set it and forget it’ approach, making this recipe ideal for busy individuals or those who prefer minimal hands-on cooking time.
  2. Flavour Development:
    • Long cooking times at low temperatures in a slow cooker lead to a deep, rich flavour in the beef, as the spices and herbs have ample time to infuse.
  3. Tender Meat:
    • Slow cooking the beef chuck roast ensures that it becomes exceptionally tender, making it easy to shred and enjoyable to eat.
  4. Versatility:
    • This recipe can be easily adapted to different tastes with additional spices, varying types of cheese, or different bread options.
  5. Feeds a Crowd:
    • The recipe is ideal for serving larger groups, as it makes a generous amount of food with little active preparation time.
  6. Leftover Potential:
    • Leftover Italian beef can be repurposed in various other dishes, such as tacos, salads, or stews.

Cons

  1. Time-Consuming:
    • Despite minimal active preparation time, the recipe requires several hours to cook, which might not be ideal for those needing a quick meal.
  2. Energy Usage:
    • Long cooking times mean extended use of electricity, which may be a concern for energy-conscious individuals.
  3. Limited Crispness:
    • Since slow cookers trap moisture, the meat doesn’t develop a crispy exterior, which some might miss.
  4. Monitoring:
    • Although slow cookers are generally safe, leaving any cooking appliance unattended for long periods might be a concern for some.
  5. Soggy Bread Risk:
    • If the sandwich is not assembled properly, the juices from the beef can make the bread soggy. Toasting the bread or serving the juice on the side can mitigate this.
  6. Dietary Restrictions:
    • This dish may not be suitable for those on low-sodium diets (due to the Italian dressing mix and broth) or those avoiding red meat.
  7. Equipment Dependency:
    • The recipe requires a slow cooker, which might not be available in every kitchen.

Pros and Cons of Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches Recipe Method

Pros

  1. Ease of Use:
    • Slow cookers are user-friendly and ideal for beginners or those who prefer simple cooking methods.
  2. Time Management:
    • This method allows for preparing the meal in advance, making it perfect for those who want to come home to a ready-to-eat dinner.
  3. Flavour Infusion:
    • Slow cooking ensures that the beef is thoroughly infused with the flavors of herbs, spices, and seasonings, enhancing the overall taste.
  4. Tenderizing Effect:
    • The low and slow cooking process tenderizes tougher cuts of meat, like chuck roast, making them juicy and easy to shred.
  5. Safe Cooking:
    • Slow cookers are generally safe to leave on while you’re away, reducing the need for constant supervision.
  6. Energy Efficiency:
    • Compared to ovens, slow cookers are more energy-efficient for long cooking durations.

Cons

  1. Time Consumption:
    • The recipe requires several hours of cooking time, which may not be feasible for those needing a quick meal solution.
  2. Texture Limitations:
    • Slow cooking does not provide a seared or crispy texture, which some people might prefer for their meat.
  3. Overcooking Risks:
    • If left for too long, even on a low setting, meats can become overly soft or mushy.
  4. Size Constraints:
    • The amount you can cook is limited by the size of the slow cooker, which can be a drawback when cooking for larger groups.
  5. Flavour Dilution:
    • In some cases, flavours can become diluted over the long cooking period, especially if too much liquid is used.
  6. Lack of Versatility:
    • While excellent for certain dishes, slow cookers may not be the best choice for recipes that require quick cooking or crisp textures.
  7. Requires Planning:
    • Slow-cooker recipes often require forethought and preparation, as ingredients typically need to be assembled and cooked over several hours.
  8. Kitchen Space:
    • Slow cookers can take up considerable counter space, which might be an issue in smaller kitchens.

Conclusion

Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches are a fantastic option for anyone seeking a hearty and flavourful meal with minimal effort. The slow cooker does most of the work, infusing the beef with a blend of Italian herbs and spices. These sandwiches are sure to be a hit at any table.

Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches Recipe

Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches

Anne
This recipe for Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches features tender, flavoursome beef cooked in a blend of Italian spices and served in hoagie rolls with provolone cheese. It’s an easy, hands-off meal ideal for busy days, family gatherings, or any occasion requiring a satisfying and hearty dish. The slow cooker does most of the work, ensuring a delicious and effortless meal.
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Course Main Course, Sandwiches
Cuisine American Comfort Food, Italian-American
Servings 4
Calories 500 kcal

Equipment

  • Slow Cooker
  • Mixing bowl
  • Forks for shredding
  • Knife and cutting board
  • Optional: Broiler

Ingredients
  

  • 3-4 lbs beef chuck roast
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 packet Italian salad dressing mix
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 6-8 hoagie rolls
  • Sliced provolone cheese
  • Optional: pickled vegetables for serving

Instructions
 

  • Prepare the Beef: Season beef chuck roast with salt, pepper, garlic, and onion powder, and place in the slow cooker.
  • Make the Broth: Combine beef broth, Italian dressing mix, oregano, basil, and red pepper flakes. Pour over the beef.
  • Cook: Set the slow cooker on low for 8-10 hours or high for 4-5 hours until the beef is tender.
  • Shred the Beef: Remove the beef, shred with forks, and return to the slow cooker to mix with the juices.
  • Assemble Sandwiches: Toast hoagie rolls, add beef, top with provolone cheese, and broil if desired for melted cheese.
  • Serve: Enjoy hot, with pickled vegetables if preferred.

Notes

Meat Selection: Choose a high-quality beef chuck roast for the best results.
Cooking Time: Opt for longer cooking times on low for more tender beef.
Cheese Options: Provolone is recommended, but other melting cheeses can be used.
Serving Suggestions: Serve with a side salad, fries, or coleslaw.
Storage: Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently to avoid drying out the meat.
Customization: Feel free to add other herbs and spices to suit your taste.
Dietary Adjustments: For a low-sodium version, use a homemade Italian seasoning and low-sodium beef broth.

Nutrition

Serving: 1000gCalories: 500kcalCarbohydrates: 30gProtein: 45gFat: 30gSaturated Fat: 12gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 130mgSodium: 800mgPotassium: 400mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gCalcium: 200mgIron: 5mg
Keyword Slow-Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches Recipe
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