Kansas City Style "Burnt Ends" Philly Cheesesteak


A twist on a Philly Cheesesteak featuring Kansas City style "burnt ends" barbecue and traditional cheesesteak toppings like sauteed onions, pickled peppers, and cheese whiz.

Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
5 hrs
Refrigerate Time:
8 hrs
Total Time:
13 hrs 10 mins

Kansas City Style "Burnt Ends" Philly Cheesesteak – New and Exciting?

If the Super Bowl is coming up, you can be sure I'm working on some kind of new and exciting party food. Except, there is no such thing as "new and exciting party food." It's all been done, many times over, so I've resorted to combining two, old classics into something I hope is somewhat new and exciting. The latest example is this Philly cheesesteak featuring a cheater version of Kansas City Style "burnt ends."

A cynic might say that this is just the work of a chef who's bitter his team didn't make it, so he's posting a recipe he knows will drive fans from both cities crazy. Well, I can't confirm, or deny that, but I can tell you this experiment was delicious, and very enjoyable to eat. Plus, how often do we get to buy and use cheese whiz?

As I mentioned, the taste and appearance of the beef was pretty spot on, but in the spirit of full disclosure, the texture wasn't that close to true "Burnt Ends." It was fine for a sandwich, but not something we'd serve, "as is," to an actual KC Pitmaster. You could cook the cubed meat covered, with more liquid, until it's really tender, but I wanted a drier, crustier, baked-on sauce exterior, so I didn't go that route. Either way, I think this will pair very well with a nice, cold beer, and that was really the only mission, which is why I hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


  • 3 ½ pounds beef chuck roast (should be very well-marbled)

  • 3 tablespoons barbecue dry rub

  • ½ cup Kansas City style BBQ sauce

  • 4 sandwich or hoagie rolls

  • 1 (8 ounce) container cheese whiz, or sliced cheese as needed

  • cup sautéed onions

  • cup chopped jarred pickled peppers

  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onions


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

  2. Season beef with dry rub, and double wrap in foil. Place on a sheet pan or in a baking dish, seam side up.

  3. Roast in the preheated oven for 2 1/2 hours.

  4. Let rest for 1 hour. Unwrap and transfer to a cutting board. Reserve all juices. Cut into 1-inch cubes and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add cooking juices, more dry rub if desired, and bbq sauce. Mix well, wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

  5. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).

  6. Transfer into a shallow baking dish and brush generously with bbq sauce.

  7. Roast in the preheated oven until meat starts to char around the edges, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and brush again with bbq sauce.

  8. Reduce oven temperature to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C).

  9. Roast until the "burnt ends" are as tender as you want, about 1 1/2 hours more. Transfer the "burnt ends" onto the rolls, and finish with cheese whiz, onions, peppers, and green onions.

    Philly Cheesesteak with charred beef and cheez whiz
    Chef John

Cook's Notes:

Rolls can be brushed with rendered fat from the roasting pan, and toasted in a 350 F oven for 7-10 minutes if so desired.

If you like to use homemade ingredients try my All-American Barbecue Sauce and Chef John's All-Purpose Steak Ruby and Barbecue Dry Rub for this recipe.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

1582 Calories
99g Fat
81g Carbs
87g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 1582
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 99g 127%
Saturated Fat 41g 206%
Cholesterol 328mg 109%
Sodium 3212mg 140%
Total Carbohydrate 81g 29%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Protein 87g
Potassium 1511mg 32%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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