Our dad was born and raised in Chicago, and one of our favorite traditions when we visit our family is to go to Portillo’s for their famous Italian beef sandwiches. We have great memories of doing this often with our grandpa and grandma – scrambling for a table, getting everyone’s order, our grandpa saying he only wanted half (but he wanted a whole sandwich), and the joy we all had scarfing down these delicious, messy sandwiches. When we have a hankering for an Italian beef sandwich, and haven’t thought enough in advance to order them frozen from Portillo’s, we make this and feel all the same nostalgia and joy as though we are in Chicago.
These sandwiches are a great football day main dish, and the star of our 2021 Super Bowl Menu. You can prepare the peppers and beef ahead of time and assemble the sandwiches last minute to serve. The best part of this recipe is that you can add and update the condiments however you like. We like our sandwiches served with provolone, giardiniera and a little extra jus for dipping. We can’t wait to hear how you like yours!
Italian Beef Sandwiches
An interpretation of our favorite Chicago subs!
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 2 white onions, sliced
- 2 red peppers, sliced
- 2 green peppers, sliced
- 8 cups beef broth
- 2 tbs salt
- 1 tbs onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp red chili flakes
- 3 lbs sliced roast beef
- 8 french bread rolls
- 8 slices provolone cheese
- giardiniera (optional)
- In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, red pepper and green pepper and sauté for 5 minutes until the vegetables are fragrant.
- Add the beef broth, salt, onion powder, garlic powder and red chili flakes. Stir everything to combine and bring the broth to boil. Lower to simmer and simmer for 30 minutes so the vegetables are completely soft. **
- Separate the beef into individual slices and add the beef to the broth. Let the beef absorb the broth and cook for 10 minutes.
- Prepare the sandwiches. Toast the french bread rolls and melt half a slice of provolone cheese on each side of the bread. Add beef, peppers and onions to the sandwich. Top with giardiniera or any of your favorite condiments. Serve with the cooking broth for dipping the sandwiches.
** At this point, you can turn off the heat until you are ready to serve the sandwiches. You can refrigerate the broth and reheat when you are ready to serve.