Reuben Sandwich

4.67 from 3 votes

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The Reuben is the ultimate grilled cheese sandwich! Slices of rye bread packed with tender corned beef, tangy sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and my homemade tangy Russian dressing, it’s a surefire way to satisfy those midday cravings. Plus with St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, you now have another idea for using up leftover corned beef brisket.

halves of reuben sandwich stacked with toothpick to secure

What is a Reuben Sandwich?

A Reuben sandwich is an American classic sandwich made of corned beef, melted Swiss cheese, tangy sauerkraut, and Russian dressing on grilled slices of rye bread. a traditional Reuben is served hot or cold with a side of potato chips or a dill pickle spear. Yum!

Tips for Making the Best Reuben Sandwich

By following these tips, you can make a delicious and mouth-watering Reuben sandwich that will satisfy your cravings.

  1. Use fresh and high-quality ingredients: The key to a delicious Reuben sandwich is using fresh and high-quality ingredients. Choose good quality rye bread, freshly sliced corned beef, and Swiss cheese.
  2. Sauerkraut is an essential ingredient in a Reuben sandwich. It adds a tangy and slightly sour flavor that complements the corned beef and cheese. However, if sauerkraut isn’t your thing, leave it out.
  3. Warm the corned beef and sauerkraut: Warming the corned beef and sauerkraut in a pan or in the microwave will help to release their flavors and make the sandwich more flavorful.
  4. Homemade Russian Dressing: My homemade version of Russian dressing is so tasty and hands down better than store bought dressing. You can use Thousand Island dressing instead, or a combination of both!
  5. Add some heat: If you like spicy food, add some heat to your Reuben sandwich by adding a little bit of hot sauce or sliced jalapeños.
  6. Experiment with different cheeses: While Swiss cheese is the classic cheese for a Reuben sandwich, you can also experiment with other types of cheese such as cheddar or provolone.
ingredients for making a reuben sandwich

Ingredients Needed For a Reuben Sandwich

This sandwich is sure to make your taste buds sing! Here is a list of everything you need to make a great Reuben Sandwich:

  • Russian Dressing or Thousand Island Dressing– The secret sauce that adds a zingy kick to your sandwich.
  • Softened butter– Spread generously on the bread for that perfect golden crisp.
  • Rye bread– You’ll need 2 slices of bread per sandwich. The hearty base that holds all the delicious layers together. Dark rye bread is fine to use if you prefer a stronger flavor in rye bread. Also consider thicker slices of bread for your sandwich.
  • Thinly sliced corned beef– Tender, flavorful, and the star of the show. Reheat in the skillet before adding to the sandwich for a toasty option.
  • Swiss cheese slices or shredded– Melty, creamy, and adds a hint of nuttiness.
  • Well-drained sauerkraut– Provides a tangy contrast that cuts through the richness of the other ingredients.

Reuben Variations:

  • For a twist, swap out the corned beef for pastrami or turkey for a lighter option.
  • Experiment with different types of cheese like Gruyere or cheddar for unique flavor profiles.
  • If you’re not a fan of sauerkraut, try substituting it with cole slaw for a crunchy texture.
reuben sandwich stacked  on cutting board

How to Make Reuben Sandwiches

For full recipe details, including ingredient measurements, see the printable recipe card down below. Here is step by step what you can expect when making a Reuben Sandwich:

1. Preheat Large Skillet

Heat a large skillet over medium heat.

2. Assemble the Sandwiches

Butter one side of each piece of bread. Spread Russian dressing on the other side of each slice of bread. Evenly divide and layer cheese, warm corned beef and sauerkraut on four of the pieces of bread on top of the Russian dressing. Top with other four pieces of bread, butter side out. 

If you want to add a second slice of Swiss cheese, go for it! I won’t tell.

3. Grill Sandwiches

Place each sandwich in the hot skillet and grill until golden brown and cheese begins to melt, about 4 minutes. Flip over and brown other side another 3-4 minutes, keeping an eye on it so it doesn’t burn.

If you have a Panini Press, that would also work great for grilling a reuben sandwich.

4. Serve!

Remove from heat, cut sandwiches in half and serve.

2 halves of a reuben sandwich in woman's hands

Reuben Sandwich Storing Directions

Store any leftover ingredients separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

Can I freeze a Reuben Sandwich? While you can freeze assembled Reuben sandwiches, it’s best to freeze the components separately and assemble them when ready to eat for optimal freshness.

Make Ahead: You can prepare the ingredients ahead of time, but it’s recommended to assemble and cook the sandwiches just before serving for the best taste and texture.

What to Serve with a Reuben Sandwich

Your choices are endless as far as sides to pair with a warm (or cold) reuben! Here are a few of my favorites:

More Sandwich Recipes to Try!

This classic Reuben Sandwich recipe makes the perfect sandwich! The printable recipe card is below. Have a great day, friends! 🙂

If you make this recipe, I would really appreciate it if you would give it a star rating and leave your review in the comments! If you have a picture of your finished dish, post it on Instagram using the hashtag #laurenslatest and tagging me @laurens_latest.

reuben Sandwich
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4.67 from 3 votes

Reuben Sandwich Recipe

The Reuben is the ultimate grilled sandwich! Rye Bread slices piled high with delicious corned beef, sauerkraut, swiss cheese and my lovely homemade Russian dressing.
servings 4
Prep Time 7 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes


  • 1 cup Russian dressing or Thousand Island Dressing
  • 4 tbsp butter softened
  • 8 slices Rye Bread
  • 1 lb corned beef thinly sliced
  • 8 oz Swiss cheese slices or shredded
  • 1 cup sauerkraut well drained


  • Heat a large pan over medium heat.
  • Butter one side of each piece of bread.
    spreading butter on rye bread slices
  • Spread Russian dressing on the other side of each piece of bread.
    Russian dressing spread on rye bread slices
  • Evenly divide and layer cheese, corned beef and sauerkraut on four of the pieces of bread on top of the Russian dressing.
    ungrilled reuben sandwiches
  • Top with other four pieces of bread, butter side out.
    reuben sandwich grilling in skillet
  • Place each sandwich in pan and grill until golden brown and cheese begins to melt…about 4 minutes. Flip over and brown other side another 3-4 minutes, keeping an eye on it so it doesn't burn.
    grilled reuben sandwich in skillet
  • Remove from heat, cut sandwiches in half and serve.
    2 halves of a reuben sandwich in woman's hands



Serving: 1sandwich | Calories: 720kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 48g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 144mg | Sodium: 2196mg | Potassium: 547mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 831IU | Vitamin C: 36mg | Calcium: 573mg | Iron: 4mg
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: Irish
Keyword: Reuben, St. Patrick’s Day
4.67 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating

2 Responses
  1. David

    5 stars
    Love this recipe, and LOVE me some Reubens! We’ve been using Ken’s thousand island dressing….but now I’ve gotta try your Russian recipe. Local legend has it that the Reuben was created in my hometown! Omaha NE. Hey, where did you get the bamboo skewers from? been looking for something like that to hold together club sandwiches etc.
    thanks again Lauren!

    1. Lauren's Latest

      Thank you David! And yes, definitely try the Russian Dressing…it’s a game changer! The bamboo skewers you can get on Amazon HERE.