There is nothing like a great Reuben Sandwich all year round and especially on St Patrick’s Day!

Slices of rye bread are topped with melted swiss cheese, tangy sauerkraut, dressing, and lots of sliced corned beef. It’s cooked in a skillet (grilled cheese style) until crisp and toasty!

I love to make Reuben sandwiches at home, it’s one of my husband’s favorite sandwiches!

stacked reuben sandwich on a plate

A Perfect Deli-Style Sandwich

A Reuben sandwich is a great way to enjoy leftover corned beef from your Saint Patrick’s Day dinner, or just a delicious addition to your weekly menu, any time of the year!

What is a Reuben Sandwich?  The origins of the Reuben sandwich can be traced back to around the 1920s, but there’s still a debate about who invented them. Regardless of who created it, it’s an all time favorite sandwich!

Made on rye bread a traditional Reuben sandwich has Thousand Island Dressing (or Russian dressing), Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and of course, corned beef.

For the ultimate corned beef sandwich, skip the deli and make your own slow cooker corned beef. It’s almost effortless to make and you can skip the cabbage and veggies if you prefer. Plus, you’ll have plenty of leftovers to make this sandwich recipe even better!

Ingredients in a Reuben Sandwich

Dressing – We love using Thousand Island dressing on a Reuben sandwich but you can also try horseradish sauce for a little bit of a kick.

Sauerkraut Use sauerkraut in a jar or can, but make sure to squeeze it well so it doesn’t make the sandwich soggy.

Corned Beef You can use store-bought, deli, or leftover homemade corned beef. Thicker slices of warmed leftover corned beef work especially well, you can ask them to cut it thicker at the deli counter. If you prefer, you can use pastrami instead.

Swiss Cheese Place Swiss cheese on the bread when making the sandwiches so it melts as the sandwich is heated. If you’re not a fan of Swiss cheese, try using cheddar, mozzarella, or any other type of cheese you have on hand!

Easy From Scratch!

To make a quick Thousand Island, combine the following in a small bowl:

1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon each of ketchup and sweet pickle relish, 1/8 teaspoon of onion powder, & a dash of Worcestershire. So easy!

open faced reuben sandwich in a frying pan

How To Make A Reuben Sandwich

Making classic Reuben sandwiches is easy, a bit like making a grilled cheese sandwich.

  1. Butter one side of each slice of bread.
  2. Spread dressing on each side of the sandwich (on the inside) and top with a slice of swiss cheese, corned beef, and sauerkraut. Place butter side down in a skillet.
  3. Cook until bread slices are golden, and enjoy!

Serve with additional dressing for dipping, a side of coleslaw, and, of course, dill pickles.

PRO TIP: If you are loading up your sandwich with lots of meat or using thick corned beef, heat the corned beef first.

half of a reuben sandwich on a wood plate

More Ways to Enjoy Corned Beef

stacked reuben sandwich on a plate
5 from 29 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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My Favorite Reuben Sandwich

There is nothing like a great Reuben Sandwich. Melted swiss cheese paired, tangy sauerkraut, and corned beef in between layers of rye bread! 
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 sandwiches



  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 slices rye bread
  • 16 ounces corned beef cooked & sliced
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese
  • 1 cup sauerkraut drained and squeezed dry
  • ½ cup thousand island dressing


  • Butter each slice of bread. Place 4 slices, butter side down, on the table or a cutting board.
  • Spread the slices with 1 tablespoon dressing and top with 1 slice of cheese (or more to taste), ¼ of the sauerkraut and ¼ of the corned beef.
  • Spread remaining dressing on the second piece of bread and place on top of sandwich, butter side out.
  • Place in a skillet over medium low heat and cook until just golden and crisp. Flip and cook on remaining side.
  • Cut in half and serve with additional dressing for dipping.


If you are loading up your sandwich with lots of meat or using thick corned beef, I find it best to heat the corned beef first. This ensures a hot sandwich without the bread burning.
For a nice crispy exterior, try using mayonnaise in place of the butter on the outside of the bread.
5 from 29 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 697 | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 123mg | Sodium: 2458mg | Potassium: 558mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 654IU | Vitamin C: 36mg | Calcium: 341mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. I have never had a Reuben before but they are my husbands favorite sandwich. I made them last night and we both loved them! Thanks for the easy to follow recipe!5 stars

  2. Hi, Holly! We made these last night. We made one for my husband and I to share and one for my grown daughter who was our guest. I made German Potato Salad to serve with the sandwiches, which worked out good since my husband doesn’t care for coleslaw (of any kind) with the Reuben. I always put 1000 Island on both the inner-sides of the bread, followed each with a slice of baby swiss, then top with corned beef and well-drained Saurkraut. Sooo yummy. Unfortunately, my husband is not a huge fan of corned beef, so we just purchase some at the grocery deli. It all works out tho. Thanks for your wonderful post and great pictures! Cheers!5 stars

  3. I don’t like corned beef. I don’t like Swiss cheese. I don’t like rye bread. And guess what, I don’t like sauerkraut. But somehow I love a good Reuben.

  4. Hi, Holly! These Reubens are soooo good! We make them about once every three months. I do, only buy the corned beef in the store tho (for convenience) Thanks so much for sharing!

  5. A nice change from the traditional corned beef and cabbage. Made it last night and probably again tonight. So easy and so good.5 stars

  6. Rueben’s are my favorite sandwich! However, I don’t care for Thousand Island or Russian dressings so I just go my own way with a little garlic aioli! I did see in the comments someone used pepper jack cheese…..definitely trying that!!5 stars

  7. YUM! First time making these sandwiches. Thanks for sharing your method and recipe. I used homemade Thousand Island dressing and Gruyere cheese because that’s what I had on hand. Delicious!5 stars

  8. Very tasty. I’ve substituted the cheese for whatever cheese I’d had in the refrigerator and chicken noodles soup leftovers and it was the best lunch ever.5 stars

  9. Oh. My. GOODNESS.
    I’ve never made Rubens before, but my boyfriend loves them so i figured I would give them a shot. These were THE BEST Rubens I’ve ever had! We used habanero pepperjack cheese instead of swiss to add a little heat. I never comment on recipe posts, but I had to on this one! Definitely sharing this with my friends.5 stars

  10. Oh my… the best Rueben sandwich I’ve ever had was at Katz’s Deli in NY. It was amazing but I think this might possibly top it… I’ve always wanted to recreate it at home and now I know how!

  11. I absolutely love Reuben Sandwiches! It looks and sounds delicious! It’s one of my favorite sandwiches!

  12. I can see why it’s one of your husbands favorite sandwiches! And I love the little pickle you put on top! :)