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What to Serve with French Dip Sandwiches

When you’re making something as delicious as a French dip sandwich, you’d better serve some tasty side dishes to go with it. Complete your meal with savory and fresh sides when you can’t decide what to serve with French dip sandwiches.

A cover image for what to serve with french dip sandwiches.

What is a French Dip Sandwich?

French dip sandwiches are piping hot sandwiches consisting of thinly sliced beef served on a toasted hoagie, French roll, or baguette with gooey melted cheese. Pair the sandwich with au jus, a flavorful dip made from the juices accumulated by cooking the beef. And that’s where the sandwich gets its name – toasty sandwich meets juicy dipping sauce.

Despite its name, the French dip sandwich did not originate in France. It was invented in L.A, albeit by a French man, and the creator originally made the sandwich by happy accident with roasted pork (yep, that was the original meat of choice). 

Air Fryer French Dip

Make our easy air fryer French dip sandwiches with tender, juicy skirt steak and homemade au jus in less than 30 minutes for a deliciously quick dinner idea for your mealtime rotation.

Air fryer french dips being dipped into au jus.

What is the Best Meat for a French Dip Sandwich?

Thinly sliced roast beef is the star ingredient in a French dip sandwich. Top-round or bottom-round roasts are a popular choice because they are lean and flavorful cuts of meat. And many recipes call for chuck roast to make French dip sandwiches, perfect for slow cooking or braising the beef in au jus; I also love using skirt or flank steak for another variation.

What to Serve with French Dip Sandwiches?

For French dip sandwiches with crunchy bread, I typically enjoy crispy sides, like French fries, chips, or a bright, fresh salad. But since the sandwich is rich and savory, it also pairs well with light and tangy dishes and fresh fruit.

The Best Side Dishes for French Dip Sandwiches

1. Au Jus

Serve French dip sandwiches traditionally with a side of the flavorful dip known as au jus (“with juice,” referring to the drippings left over from roasting the meat). Use the liquid the beef cooks in or make your own on the side. It’s perfect for dipping the sandwich and adding flavor and moisture to the crunchy bread with each bite.

  • 4 cups beef stock
  • 1 tablespoon sherry wine
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme

For a tasty variation, dip the sandwich into homemade beef gravy.

2. Sweet Potato Fries

A close up of sweet potato fries and sauce.

Easy air fryer frozen sweet potato fries are a simple side dish ready to go in 15 minutes! And the sweetness of the sweet potato fries complements savory French dip sandwiches. However, if you prefer homemade sweet potato fries, check out our tips for how long to cook sweet potatoes in the air fryer.

3. Roasted Potatoes

Make perfectly seasoned and irresistibly crispy roasted potatoes in the oven, and since they’re so versatile, you can pair them with anything, including sandwiches!

4. French Fries

Serve crispy homemade french fries with your French dip sandwich and complete the meal. But don’t forget the dipping sauce – this is the best ranch dressing ever!

5. Dill Pickles

Homemade dill pickles serve as a tangy accompaniment to cut through the richness of beefy sandwiches – serve them as a topping or a zesty side dish.

6. Onion Rings

A plate of crispy onion rings with a small dish of ketchup on the side.
Photo Credit: Feed Grump

If you’re making a list of French dip sides, onion rings have to be on the list. And they are a delightfully crispy alternative to french fries for a salty addition to the meal.

7. Mashed Cauliflower

Mashed cauliflower is a tasty, low-carb alternative to mashed potatoes. Like regular mashed potatoes, you can serve mashed cauliflower with Sunday pot roaststewroasted chicken, and French dip sandwiches!

8. Homemade Potato Chips

Crispy homemade potato chips are super easy to make in the air fryer, and the chips are perfect for when you’re craving a crunchy snack or side with your meal.

9. French Onion Soup

A comforting bowl of soup, like tomato, hamburger vegetable, or French onion soup, is a delicious side with French dip sandwiches. Plus, you can forgo the au jus and dip your sandwich straight into the soup. Hey – don’t knock it until you try it!

More Side Dishes for French Dip

10. Avocado Tomato Cucumber Salad

Avocado cucumber tomato salad in a serving bowl.

Our salad is brimming with fresh herbs, juicy tomato, crisp cucumber, and creamy avocado. Olive oil and lime finish the avocado cucumber tomato salad for a perfect side dish when you don’t know what to serve with French dip sandwiches.

More Cucumber and Tomato Salad Recipes:

11. Homemade Coleslaw

Homemade coleslaw incorporates cabbage, carrots, mint, cilantro, scallions, and an umami-rich dressing for coleslaw you’ll want to serve with everything! For another variation, try vinegar coleslaw if you prefer something more tangy to pair with your French dip sandwich.

12. Healthy Potato Salad

Healthy Potato Salad combines fork-tender potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, celery, pickles, and onions in a protein-packed Greek yogurt-based sauce. Creamy potato salad is a popular choice to serve alongside sandwiches.

13. Céleri Rémoulade

Céleri rémoulade is a simple French salad made with celeriac, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, and seasonings. This crisp and tangy salad is perfect as a side, or you can pile it high on your French dip sandwich for a bright and crunchy topping.

14. Cucumber Salad

Pressgurka arranged in a swirl on a plate.

Pressgurka is a quick pickled salad that is a perfect combination of sweet and sour; pair it with savory dishes like meatballs and French dip sandwiches.

15. Air Fryer Zucchini and Squash

Make tender and lightly golden air fryer zucchini and squash! The versatile side dish cooks to perfection, and they’re ready in 15 minutes!

More Air Fryer Vegetable Recipes:

16. Macaroni Salad

Creamy, tangy macaroni salad complements the savoriness of a French dip, and the crunch of the celery and onion provides a nice texture contrast.

17. Potato Croquettes

Potato croquettes, or crispy deep-fried mashed potatoes, are one of the best ways to use leftover mashed potatoes, and they are a perfect crispy side dish.

18. Hasselback Potatoes

A close up of air fryer hasselback potatoes.

Make crispy air fryer Hasselback potatoes in 20 minutes by slicing them accordion-style and slathering them in rich and flavorful garlic butter.

19. Mango Cucumber Fruit Salad

Mango cucumber fruit salad is a light and refreshing side dish full of tropical flavor that goes with French dip sandwiches seamlessly – especially if you prefer a tangier side with more acidity.

Toppings and Condiments for French Dip Sandwiches

20. Lemon Dill Aioli

Lemon Dill Aioli in a small bowl with dill in the background.

Discover the perfect pairing of zesty lemon and aromatic dill in our homemade lemon dill aioli recipe. You’ll want to put this sauce on everything.

21. Sumac Onions

Marinated sumac onions are a tangy addition to grilled meats, kabobs, salads, and sandwiches like a French dip. You can also use the tasty seasoning to make sumac dressing to drizzle over the top of the sandwich.

22. Horseradish Cream Sauce

Horseradish cream sauce in a serving bowl.

Horseradish cream sauce is the perfect addition to entrees like steak, roast, and grilled chicken. Use it as a dip or spread for sandwiches and wraps.

23. Chimichurri with Cilantro

Elevate your French dip sandwich with herbaceous chimichurri with cilantro. It’s an excellent topping for sandwiches, fish, vegetables, and steak. Don’t believe me? We love it with our air fryer skirt steak.

24. Southern Comeback Sauce

This classic Southern comeback sauce is creamy, tangy, savory, and delicious! With ingredients like mayonnaise, ketchup, honey, hot sauce, and Cajun seasoning (use our Slap Ya Mama’s Seasoning recipe), this sauce will add the perfect kick to your sandwich. Oh, and don’t forget a few pickled jalapeños.

25. BBQ Aioli

A small dish of BBQ Aioli.

Transform sandwiches, wraps, and BBQ recipes with savory homemade BBQ aioli – the smoky, creamy sauce will enhance the flavor of whatever you pair it with.

26. Creamy Honey Mustard Sauce

If you love honey mustard dipping sauce, you’ll love this creamy homemade version! It’s packed with flavor – sweet, savory, and tangy all at once, and it would taste delicious as a spread for a French dip sandwich.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best condiments for french dip sandwiches?

Horseradish Cream Sauce: A creamy horseradish sauce adds a tangy and slightly spicy kick to complement the rich flavors of the beef. At a diner I worked at growing up, many patrons dipped the sandwich in au jus and then ranch dressing – it was actually good!

Mustard: Dijon mustard or a coarse-grain mustard provides a savory component to the sandwich.

Mayonnaise: Some people like to spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the bread for creaminess.

Butter: Like mayo, spread butter onto the bread before preparing the French dip.

Au Jus: While it’s not a condiment per se, the au jus is an essential part of the French dip experience. It’s often served on the side for dipping the sandwich or poured over the top for added flavor and moisture.

More Sandwich Recipes:

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A french dip sandwich with au jus in the background.