This classic Corned Beef Reuben features all of your favorite flavors with no unnecessary frills! Corned beef, sauerkraut, swiss cheese and thousand island dressing is all sandwiched together between two slices of marble rye bread in this timeless lunchtime staple.

A sandwich is placed on a white plate.

Corned Beef Reuben

Biting into a warm Corned Beef Reuben might just be the most satisfying way to spend your lunch break! This sandwich is great for those afternoons when you’re seriously hungry and the usual ham and cheese just won’t cut it.

A Reuben Sandwich is made with slices of marble rye bread. They are the perfect hosts to the warm, gooey, and seriously flavor-packed ingredients that make this famous sandwich so good.

While I love to make these bad boys year-round, they’re especially handy to make right after St. Paddy’s Day if you have some extra corned beef on hand! All you need besides the meat is some swiss cheese, thousand island dressing, sauerkraut, and of course some marble rye bread. Oh, and you’ll obviously need some butter to make that bread oh so toasty and buttery.

Here’s the deal – this sandwich is best enjoyed fresh out of the skillet with a cold pickle and some salty potato chips on the side. Do NOT try to make a reuben ahead of time! The bread will get soggy and ruin that buttery, crisp consistency that makes for the best bite.

Plus, when they’re freshly flipped right out of the skillet, the cheese is still so warm and gooey… Is anyone else drooling?

A spoon with orange dressing on it is placed next to a halved sandwich.

How to Make a Corned Beef Reuben

Heat up your skillet, because it’s time to make the BEST savory sandwich!

  1. Assemble the sandwich. Spread one side of each piece of bread with dressing. Layer 2 slices of cheese on 2 slices of bread. Top with half of the corned beef and half the sauerkraut on each slice, then add the remaining cheese. Complete the sandwich with the remaining bread slices, dressing side down.
  2. Butter and cook. Butter up the outside of the sandwiches. Place them in a skillet that’s been preheated over medium heat. Lower the heat to medium-low, cover with a lid, and cook for about 3-4 minutes. Uncover, flip, and cook on the opposite side until the cheese is melted.
A halved sandwich is stacked on a white plate.

Tips for the Best Corned Beef Reuben Sandwich

Here’s how to make this easy recipe even easier… and more delicious!

  • Serve it hot. This sandwich has a lot of moisture and doesn’t hold up well, so be sure to serve it right away while it’s still warm!
  • Create the BEST flavor for your sandwich when you use Homemade Thousand Island Dressing. It’s incredibly easy to throw together and tastes so much better than the store-bought stuff.
  • To really round your lunch out to perfection, plate your sandwich with a Refrigerator Dill Pickle! The briny pickles pair like a dream with the sauerkraut in the sandwich.
  • Try to squeeze out a lot of the liquid from the sauerkraut before adding it to the sandwich. That way, you don’t run the risk of a soggy sandwich!

When was the reuben first created?

To me, this is truly a fun fact! If you’re serving this sandwich to friends, it’s always fun to know a little something extra about what you’re serving. Legend has it that the first ever reuben sandwich was served during a high stakes poker game in the early 1900s in Omaha!

Another story is that it was first created by Arnold Reuben, the owner of Reuben’s Delicatessen in New York City.

I personally prefer the poker story because it’s more exciting… Either way though, I’m just glad that this sandwich exists and is in my kitchen today!

A sandwich is plated with a pickle and some potato chips.

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A halved sandwich is stacked on a white plate.

Get the Recipe: Corned Beef Reuben Sandwich Recipe

A deli classic, the Corned Beef Reuben is made with layers of tender corned beef, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut and thousand island dressing all piled high on slices of rye bread then grilled until gooey and perfect.
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Ingredients

  • 4 slices marble rye bread
  • 1/2 cup thousand Island Dressing
  • 6 slices swiss cheese
  • 8 slices corned beef
  • 1 cup sauerkraut, drained
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened

Equipment

  • 1 skillet

Instructions 

  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Spread one side of each slice of bread evenly with thousand island dressing.
  • On two slices of bread, layer with 2 slices of cheese on each slice. Top with half the corned beef and half the sauerkraut on each bread slice then top with the remaining cheese.
  • Top with the remaining bread slices dressing side down and brush the outside of the sandwich evenly with 1/2 the butter.
  • Place the sandwiches, butter side down on the skillet.
  • Butter the top of each sandwich and cover with a lid. Turn the heat to medium low and grill until golden brown, approximately 3-4 minutes.
  • Uncover and flip the sandwich. Grill on the opposite side until golden brown and the cheese is melted.
  • Serve hot with extra dressing on the side if desired.

Notes

After draining sauerkraut, wrap in a paper towel and squeeze to release the excess liquid so your sandwich doesn’t get soggy.
Russian Dressing can be used in place of Thousand Island Dressing, if preferred. 
Calories: 624kcal, Carbohydrates: 44g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 41g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g, Monounsaturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 66mg, Sodium: 1600mg, Potassium: 342mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 572IU, Vitamin C: 12mg, Calcium: 533mg, Iron: 4mg