Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (2024)

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I LOVE me some Philly Cheesesteak! And while I admit that I haven’t been to either Pat’s or Gino’s in Philadelphia, this slow cooker Philly CheeseSteak Recipe is incredible.

And it’s basically a dump recipe, which is my favorite kind. Just throw everything in the slow cooker. I wasn’t actually able to make them for my family for dinner.

I didn’t have time, so it had to be done on a Sunday afternoon. They were done at about 3 pm, and then I photographed them.

My daughters came in from playing outside and immediately said, “What is that smell??? I want that!”

As soon as I finished taking photos, our family devoured those Philly cheesesteak sandwiches, saying things like, “Oh my gosh, this is so good.”

So yeah… they’re good! And part of our monthly meal plan for quick slow cooker recipes.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Cook Time: Low – 4-8 hours; Pressure setting – 20 minutes
  • Main Ingredients:Green peppers, onion, garlic, thinly sliced steak, and more
  • Servings:6
  • Extras: Add mushrooms, zucchini, and other veggies for added nutrition and new flavors
  • Tips: If you’re buying full steak to cut, remember to cut against the grain so your meat doesn’t fall apart

Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (Instant Pot too)

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (1)

Honestly, I think the slow cooker is the ideal way to make these (or the Instant Pot – that’s what I use now).

You don’t want to use an expensive piece of meat for Philly cheesesteaks. Use something cheap like a top-round roast or a London broil.

As long as it’s thinly sliced, with a little bit of fat, most meats become nice and tender in the slow cooker- perfect for Philly cheese steak!

While those cuts of beef are tough by themselves, they will be melt-in-your-mouth tender after they’re done cooking. And there are 2 reasons for this.

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (2)

First, cut think sliced steak against the grain. This eliminates any ‘stringiness’ in the meat and will make it much more tender when you chew it.

Secondly, the slow cooker will just do its thing – braise the meat.

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (3)

Honestly, this slow cooker Philly cheesesteak recipe is REALLY easy.

Once you’ve got steak slices and cut veggies, you just put them all in the slow cooker or Instant Pot and turn it on. I added the Italian dressing packet because it really gives these a nice tangy flavor.

After they’re done, scoop the meat onto toasted hoagie rolls, top them with mild provolone cheese, and then place them under the broiler for a few minutes to get gooey, melted provolone cheese.

And then devour them!

The sauteed onions and bell pepper and the flavorful meat come together without having to stand over multiple pans on the stove, which is a true blessing.

I love caramelized onions and peppers for Philly cheesesteaks, but spending so long stirring is a pain- the slow cooker has fixed that and kept all the flavor!

But there’s one more thing I should mention. I just couldn’t help myself – you’ve got leftover liquid left… so I just had to dip my Philly cheese steak in it (French dip style).

I highly recommend doing that and not wasting those juices at the end!

Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches - Slow Cooker/Instant Pot

Prep Time15 minutes mins

Cook Time55 minutes mins

Total Time1 hour hr 10 minutes mins

Servings: 6

Author: Brittany Kline


  • 2 green peppers sliced
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced; or 1 tbs garlic powder
  • 2 - 2 1/2 lbs. thinly sliced steak I used top round
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 envelope dry Italian dressing mix
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 beef bouillon cube
  • 6 slices of provolone cheese
  • 6 hoagie rolls


  • Place all the ingredients in the Instant Pot or Slow Cooker (except for the cheese and hoagie rolls).

  • Using pressure cooker setting, seal and cook for 20 minutes. Or cook for 4-8 hours in the slow cooker on low.

  • Let in naturally depressurize for 10 minutes (Instant Pot only).

  • Release the steam and open the Instant Pot (Instant Pot only).

  • Scoop out the meat/veggies into the rolls.

  • Place the hoagie rolls on a cookie sheet and top with a slice of cheese per sandwich (cut in half)

  • Broil for about 5 minutes or until the cheese is nice and bubbly.

  • Enjoy! And feel free to dip the sandwiches in the leftover juice.

Recipe Substitutes

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (5)

Customizing your Philly cheesesteak to suit personal tastes or dietary requirements is remarkably simple and allows for a flavorful experience tailored to each diner.

For those looking to swap the meat, thinly sliced chicken breast or portobello mushrooms make excellent alternatives.

They can provide a leaner or vegetarian option while still absorbing the rich flavors of the dish.

If you still want the beef in your Philly cheesesteaks but want something less expensive than skirt steak or ribeye steak, you can use flank steak or even thinly sliced roast if preferred.

When it comes to cheese, traditional Philly cheese steak options like melted provolone cheese or American cheese can be replaced with whatever cheeses you like best.

For dietary needs, dairy-free or low-fat variants can help fit your lifestyle. I know many families need to make these swaps!

Next, the choice of veggies is entirely up to you; while caramelized onions and sauteed bell peppers are the staples, feel free to introduce others, like spinach, mushrooms, or zucchini, for added nutrition and taste.

Lastly, the hoagie rolls! I love toasted hoagie rolls for cheese steak sandwiches, but you can bake the bread or leave it soft and fresh.

The hoagie rolls are also the easiest thing to swap, whether you need gluten-free bread, homemade sub rolls, whole-grain bread, or whatever else.

You can buy or make whichever bread you’d prefer for your Philly cheesesteak sandwich, but I recommend a soft, thick bread to soak up the juices

These simple swaps ensure the dish remains inclusive, inviting everyone to enjoy this comfort food classic.


What kind of cheese should I use for the Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches?

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (6)

Provolone cheese is a popular choice for an authentic Philly Cheesesteak recipe due to its mild flavor and excellent melting qualities.

However, feel free to experiment with a new cheesesteak cheese like American cheese or Cheez Whiz for a creamier texture and different taste profile.

I had never had Cheez Whiz until I visited Philly- I thought it was that canned spray cheese, but it’s so different and more flavorful!

Cheez Whiz is something you should try at least once- it’s almost like “dunking cheese” rather than just melty cheese slices, and it changes the sandwich in a great way.

What is the best cut of meat for a Philly Cheesesteak?

Traditionally, thinly sliced ribeye steak or skirt steak are used in a classic Philly Cheesesteak. However, these cuts can be expensive and may not always fit into everyone’s budget.

Leaner and more affordable options such as top round roast or flank steak are also excellent choices that

Is there a vegetarian version of this recipe?

For a vegetarian twist on Philly cheese steaks, you can use meat substitutes to fit your dietary needs.

Substitute the beef in your cheesesteak sandwich with thinly sliced tofu, portobello mushrooms, or seitan.

These alternatives will still absorb the flavors well and, when cooked in the slow cooker or Instant Pot with the same seasonings, will offer a delightful texture and taste that’s quite satisfying.

Depending on the thickness and what meat substitute you pick, you may want to add it in later so things don’t overcook or become mushy.

How can I make a gluten-free Philly cheese steak?

For those following a gluten-free diet, making this recipe suitable is straightforward. Replace the traditional hoagie rolls with your favorite gluten-free bread option.

Nowadays, many bakeries and grocery stores offer delicious and structurally sound gluten-free rolls that can hold the filling without falling apart.

Additionally, ensure that the Italian dressing packet, the sliced cheese, and any other added ingredients are labeled gluten-free to avoid any cross-contamination.

Simple swaps allow everyone to enjoy a gluten-free version of this classic comfort food without compromising on taste or texture.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (7)

Yes, the beauty of this slow cooker recipe is that it’s perfect for meal prep.

Mix the beef, onions, and bell peppers as instructed, then store them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

You can even put the contents in a freezer bag if you meal prep on the weekend; when you want to eat it, you can defrost it in the fridge the day before or cook a little extra in the slow cooker.

I recommend, if you’re slow cooking from frozen, check in after a half hour to an hour to stir things up and make sure it’s settled.

When you’re ready to cook, pop the cheesesteak mixture in the slow cooker, set the timer, and get ready to assemble your Philly cheesesteak sandwiches like normal.

How can I make my Philly Cheesesteak healthier?

To make a healthier version, consider using lean cuts of beef and whole-grain hoagie rolls.

Ribeye steak can have more fat and be more expensive compared to a classic flank steak that’s lean and cheaper per pound.

Additionally, load up on the vegetables by adding more bell peppers and onions, or even mushrooms, to increase the fiber content and nutritional value of the sandwiches without compromising on the flavor.

The only swap I’m not big on for my cheese steak sandwich is the cheese- I don’t find the low-fat, skim, etc. cheeses the best, but that’s just me.

But do what’s best for your dietary restrictions- you’ll still be able to make a cheesesteak sandwich you’ll enjoy!

How can I make this recipe spicier?

If you’re looking to add a bit more heat to your Philly Cheesesteak, there are several ways to kick up the spice level.

Consider adding sliced jalapeños or pepperoncini to the vegetable mix before cooking.

Alternatively, a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce mixed into the meat and veggies can also elevate the heat.

Adjust the amount according to your spice tolerance and preference for a deliciously fiery twist on the classic.

Final Thoughts

Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (8)

This slow cooker Philly Cheesesteak is more than just a convenient and delicious meal option; it represents a delightful bonding experience for families.

Its simplicity invites even the busiest individuals to try their hand at cooking, ensuring a flavorful, home-cooked meal that doesn’t require hours of preparation.

From the tender, juicy meat to the tangy flavor that the Italian dressing packet adds, every bite is a testament to the joy of sharing great food.

Whether it’s a casual Sunday afternoon or a hectic weekday dinner, these Philly cheesesteaks are sure to bring smiles and satisfied stomachs to your dining table, making them an instant hit with both kids and adults alike.

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Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (9)

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Easy Slow Cooker Philly Cheesesteak Recipe (+ Instant Pot!) (2024)
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