Dutch Oven French Dip: Easy Campfire Beef Sandwiches With Au Jus

Make ahead camping meals can save you tons of time at the campsite! This Dutch Oven French Dip is so simple because you just “dump and cook” on your camping trip!

Prep at home and freeze these simple ingredients to make a fast camping dinner that is full of flavor and short on effort. The richness of the savory beef dipping juice requires a hearty roll to absorb all of the tasty deliciousness in this satisfying camp meal. 

Dutch Oven French Dip Campfire Sandwiches by CampingForFoodies features a blue camping plate and bowl. A sliced beef sandwich in a hoagie roll sits on the side of the plate. Next to it, the bowl is filled with a brown au jus beef broth for dipping. A serving of coleslaw is on the side of the plate which is set on a campfire log with a black cast iron Dutch oven in the background on a sunny afternoon.
Dutch Oven French Dip Campfire Sandwiches by CampingForFoodies

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Prepare In Advance

There are some camp meals I like to do from scratch at the campsite but I also like having a few “dump and cook” options so I can enjoy the more adventurous side of camping. I also like doing prep work at home where I have unlimited water for cleaning up, and, a DISHWASHER!

This French dip recipe is perfect for making at home because all of the ingredients are mixed together and cooked together.

I write on the bag so I know what is in it and how to cook and serve at the campsite. It’s easy to load freezer bags when they are held upright by plastic freezer bag holders. I combine the ingredients directly into my gallon freezer bag working out the air as I close it to seal the bag.

Plastic Freezer Bag HoldersPlastic Freezer Bag HoldersPlastic Freezer Bag Holders

 

Now, just lay the bag flat in the freezer. At the campsite, place the bag in refrigerator or cooler to defrost prior to cooking at the campsite.

Camping Tip: When I am prepping make-ahead freezer meals I like to do a double batch, I make 1 mess and get 2 meals out of it! One meal is for the campsite and one is for home!

Label the bag with the name of the recipe, date I put it in the freezer and cooking instructions. After it freezes I don’t want look at it and say, “Looks like a ‘mystery dinner’ night because I don’t know what is in this bag!” LOL


How To Make French Dip Beef Sandwiches In A Campfire Dutch Oven

This is one of our Dutch oven camping recipes that works well using a tripod directly over your camping fire pit.

French Dip Beef Campfire Dutch Oven Recipe by CampingForFoodies

Just dump the ingredients from the freezer bag into my Dutch oven and simmer over a campfire. These kinds of camping dinner recipes are great for busy camp days, like day-long hikes that get us back to camp just in time to eat.

My personal preference is to use a Dutch oven hanging from a Camp Dutch Oven Tripod when I am making this meal, but, you can also use your Dutch oven on a grill grate or even a camp stove or RV stovetop.


Cooking Campfire Recipes During Fire Restrictions

We most frequently camp in National Forests throughout Arizona. Soooo, we have to adjust our camp menus if fire restrictions are activated.

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These beef sandwiches are awesome campfire recipes because you just “dump and simmer” directly over a campfire, BUT, if you need to change your cooking method because of fire restrictions, you can easily do that and transition to make as one of your camp stove recipes. You can use your Dutch oven right over any propane stove or use a large skillet or pot with a tight-fitting lid. For more tips, check out How To Camp When Camping Fire Restrictions Are Activated!


Substitutions

For the meat

I like cooking with flank steak but you can use any type of beef that you can slice into small strips, I’ve also used chuck roast which creates tender beef slices when it is simmered in the beef broth. If you really want to make it really quick, you can just pick up a pound of deli roast beef and heat it in the warm au jus mix. At that point, you’re not cooking the meat, you’re just heating it.

For the bread

Make sure you get “sturdy” rolls for these beef sandwiches because the whole point of it is dipping these French “Dip” Beef Sandwiches in the au jus (you know, that French term that means “with juice”, did I ever mention I flunked my French language class in high school? Ooops!)

I use hoagie buns but you can use any type of bread that doesn’t fall apart in the dipping liquid. French baguettes or hard rolls work just as well.

For the garlic

My family loves the flavor of fresh garlic. I call for 4 cloves but you can reduce the garlic if you want a milder taste. If you really hate chopping garlic, you can just use garlic powder in a ratio of 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder for each clove of fresh garlic.


Pairings

When I’m trying to keep the meal really simple, I just serve coleslaw on the side. If I want to get a little fancier, I’ll bake some frozen, prepared French fries. When I really want to put in extra effort, I make my yummy Polish Potato Salad at home and keep it in the fridge a few days before our trip. If my camp crowd love bacon, I make my family-favorite Potato Salad With Bacon And Chives. I’ve got tons of camping side dishes that can be made in advance or right at your campsite including salads that use a leafy green vegetable or two!

Use my camping menu planner to stay organized when planning meals for your next trip. It’s FREE and you’ll get it delivered instantly to your inbox!

Camping Menu Template Meal Planner Free Printable by CampingForFoodies features a collage of free camping printables including a camping menu planner template, a campfire stew recipe card and a healthy no cook camping salad with text over the image that reads free camping menu template, tips and recipe ideas.

Leftovers

If you have leftovers, consider making Philly cheesesteak sandwiches. Keep the meat in a fridge or cooler in an airtight container. Then, lay out a sliced hoagie bun or French baguette on a piece of foil, spread some butter inside the bun, layer on a few slices of meat and top with a slice of provolone cheese or Swiss cheese. Wrap tightly into a foil pack and heat in an oven or over campfire coals using medium-high heat. You are just heating the meat enough to melt the cheese and toast the bread a bit inside the foil packets.


Similar Recipes

If you have 3 basic ingredients, you are ready to start cooking these Dutch Oven Beef Sandwiches! You just let the beef roast simmer, low and slow, with jarred mild peppers and their juice to create a tangy and slightly spicy meal of shredded beef sandwiches. Check out all of our yummy camping sandwich ideas.

Try this tasty Chicken Fajitas Freezer Meal when you want to just “dump & cook” at camp.

If you like “dump and cook” make-ahead freezer meals that include rich and creamy pasta, try this delicious Pesto Tortellini Bake Freezer Meal.

This Campfire Stew is soooooo delicious! The tomato-based sauce is the perfect backdrop for the beef, carrots and potatoes. You gotta love one-pot camping meals!


Print This Recipe

Dutch Oven French Dip Campfire Sandwiches by CampingForFoodies features a blue camping plate and bowl. A sliced beef sandwich in a hoagie roll sits on the side of the plate. Next to it, the bowl is filled with a brown au jus beef broth for dipping. A serving of coleslaw is on the side of the plate which is set on a campfire log with a black cast iron Dutch oven in the background on a sunny afternoon.

Dutch Oven French Dip

Camping For Foodies Dinner Camping Recipes: These campfire French dip sandwiches are easy to prep at home and quick to cook at camp.
4.91 from 10 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner Camping Recipes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings
Calories: 427kcal
Author: Kim Hanna

Ingredients

Prep At Home

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves minced (reduce to 2 cloves for milder garlic flavor)
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth
  • 1 1/2 pounds flank steak trim fat and cut in thin strips against the grain

For Serving At The Campsite

  • 4 hearty hoagie rolls for serving at the campsite

Instructions

Prep & Freeze At Home

  • Mix all ingredients (except rolls) in gallon freezer bag, seal and lay flat in freezer. Label outside of bag with name, cooking and serving instructions.

Campsite Cooking

  • Defrost freezer bag and dump contents in 12-inch camp Dutch oven.
  • Simmer covered over medium heat of campfire, charcoal briquettes or camp stove till fully cooked through, about 20 minutes.
  • Serve on crusty hoagie rolls with remaining au jus on side for dipping.

Notes

*NOTE: We love cooking over the campfire with our Dutch ovens, but this recipe can be made in a cast iron skillet or other pan with a tight-fitting lid and be made using a camp stove or RV stove.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 427kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 43g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 871mg | Potassium: 725mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 7IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 14mg

Cast Iron Dutch Oven Cleanup

I always say: treat your camp cast iron gear right and it will last for generations! After you have enjoyed this meal, clean and season you cast iron camp cookware. Check out our Cleaning And Seasoning Cast Iron Dutch Oven Cookware post for tips!


More Camping Recipes

Looking for more yummy but simple meal ideas for your next trip? We’ve got tons of them!

If you’re looking for awesome ideas for yummy camping food, you’re in the right place! Here’s our entire camping recipes list.

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Recipe Rating




2 Comments

  1. Love this sandwich and the one with the Philly idea, too. We did this one on a backyard campout. Even my pickiest eaters liked it. I also started using the gallon bag idea. It saves so much room in our cooler.

    1. Kim Hanna says:

      Hi Judy! I’m so glad to hear even your pickiest eaters liked this meal! Saving cooler space is always a plus too, I’m so happy that’s working for you! Happy Camping, Kim