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    Classic Reuben Sandwich

    Let’s talk about Reuben… Cheeesy, Goooey, Crunchy, Ooozy!! It’s not just your regular sandwich. This is a true classic made possible by an eclectic mix of ingredients that work together beautifully and harmoniously. It’s piled high with fall apart, succulent corned beef, tangy sauerkraut, nutty Swiss cheese and Russian dressing. All that in between butter slathered marbled rye bread, pressed or grilled until toasty brown and buttery crisp… Mandatory treat when you have leftover corned beef after St. Patrick’s day!

    reuben sandwiches stacked up

    How many of you make sure to cook some extra corned beef St. Patty’s day so there is enough left for your favorite Reuben? At the Beisers’ there are some food traditions, and this is one of them. March comes and we not only look forward to our usual corned beef and cabbage, but salivate over our Reuben the next day. And why not, March is National Reuben Month!

    More about Reuben

    two reuben sandwiches on a wooden cutting board

    When you think about Reuben, you think about NYC delis and kosher style delicatessens. This epic sandwich has many legends about its origin and who invented this creative marvel of a sandwich. Wikipidia is full of different people claiming the Reuben. Topping the list is one Reuben Kulakofsky, a Jewish Lithuanian born immigrant living in Omaha, Nebraska. New Yorkers claim Arnold Reuben, the German Jewish owner of Reuben’s Delicatessen invented it. Both stories claim it was first created in the 1920’s or 30’s.Now fast forward 2020, do we really care about the ownership rivalry, or would we rather take a huge bite into this giant pile of complete bliss?


    sliced marble rye bread

    The usual Reuben culprits:

    • Corned beef – That juicy, tender, succulent, leftover you will have from your St. Patrick’s day dinner. There is nothing like home cooked corned beef. In case you don’t have this in your house you can buy it from the deli section of your grocery store.
    • Rye bread – And only rye bread. That sharp flavor from the caraway seeds is a must for this one.
    • Swiss cheese – Mild and nutty cheesiness.
    • Sauerkraut – Which is simply pickled cabbage, essential for a Reuben.
    • Butter – To toast the crispy outside.

    For the Russian Dressing

    • Mayo – The base.
    • Chili Sauce – For some slightly spicy tomatoeyness.
    • Horseradish – A little bit of zing.
    • Sweet pickle relish – To balance everything out.

    Now, let’s make these Reubens!

    First, mix all of your ingredients for Russian dressing and set aside.

    Butter one slice of each bread slice. Place butter side down. Now we are ready to build these hefty sandwiches. Layer all remaining ingredients on four of the bread slices. My preferred order is Swiss cheese, corned beef, sauerkraut, then finally top it off with a good dousing of Russian dressing. Place the remaining slices, butter side up on top and we are ready for cooking.

    reuben sandwiches prior to cooking

    Pre-heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Unless you have a huge pan, you will be cooking in batches. My pan was big enough for two at a time. Gently lay the sandwiches in the skillet and grill 3-4 minutes, until golden brown. Carefully flip and grill the other side 3-4 more minutes. Remove and serve!

    reuben sandwiches in a cast iron skillet


    This one you can chow down just by itself. It’s hearty, it’s big and it’s filling!! But if you want something on the side, you can have potato chips or fries, maybe some potato salad, or some coleslaw. And some people will definitely like a bite of dill pickle alongside with their favorite Reuben. Don’t forget a few spare napkins!! Yes, you will definitely need those while digging through these saucy sandwiches!


    Some people prefer Pastrami over corned beef. Instead of being boiled it is smoked. It’s yum!! People who aren’t fans of sauerkraut can replace it with some coleslaw. In fact, there is variation with pastrami (or sometimes turkey) and coleslaw together, which is called the “Rachel” version.

    reuben sandwiches stacked up

    Another great Reuben variation, which is very popular here in Florida, is replace the corned beef with some fish like Grouper. It’s Yummooo!!

    This March, celebrate this American classic in your very own home. It’s easy, especially when you have leftover corned beef, half the work is done! Just buy a loaf of rye and a couple of Reuben essentials and get excited for the next day’s lunch!! Yes… this sandwich is worth getting excited for!!

    Classic Reuben Sandwich, on my Gypsy Plate… enjoy!!!

    reuben sandwich on the gypsy plate
    reuben sandwiches stacked up

    Classic Reuben Sandwich

    Yield: 4 sandwiches
    Prep Time: 5 minutes
    Cook Time: 10 minutes
    Total Time: 15 minutes

    Ah, the classic Reuben... Make this irresistible deli delight in your very own home. It's fast, easy and oh so satisfying!



    • 8 slices rye bread
    • 1 lb corned beef, sliced
    • 1 cup sauerkraut, drained
    • 8 slices swiss cheese
    • 4 Tbsp butter, softened

    Russian Dressing

    • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
    • 2 Tbsp chili sauce
    • 2 tsp horseradish
    • 2 tsp sweet pickle relish


    1. First, mix all ingredient for Russian dressing in a bowl and set aside.
    2. Heat your corned beef. This is optional, but as it is a fatty cut of meat I like it hot. 45-60 seconds in the microwave should do.
    3. Butter one side of each bread slice and place butter side down.
    4. Atop four of the slices, layer cheese, corned beef, sauerkraut and dressing. Place remaining bread slices on top, buttered sides up.
    5. Preheat skillet over medium high heat. Lay sandwiches in skillet and grill 3-5 minutes per side, until golden brown and crispy.
    6. Remove and serve hot!
    Nutrition Information
    Yield 4 Serving Size 1
    Amount Per Serving Calories 925Total Fat 73gSaturated Fat 28gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 38gCholesterol 205mgSodium 2189mgCarbohydrates 27gFiber 4gSugar 5gProtein 40g

    Nutrition information calculated by Nutritionix.

    Did you make this recipe?

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    long pin of classic reuben sandwich
    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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