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Classic grilled Reuben sandwiches, with corned beef, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese, the best part of leftover St. Pat's day corned beef!

Reubens, grilled Reuben sandwich cut in half and stacked.

Every year after St. Patrick's Day I want to make grilled Reuben sandwiches with the leftovers, and every year there are no leftovers.  Not this year because I hid some corned beef so Meathead wouldn't eat it all.  I had enough for two loaded reuben sandwiches.  Finally, after all these years.

Reubens, two sandwiches, cut in half and stacked.

When I was a kid, I loved Reubens.  When we went to a local "joint" near Chicago called Harvey's, I almost always ordered the Reuben.  Mounds of corned beef, melty Swiss cheese and sauerkraut.  No sauce came on these and over the years I grew to like 1000 Island dressing on my Reuben.  Now I like a swipe of the leftover horseradish mustard sauce.  I think sauce is a preference or a regional thing.

How to make a grilled Reuben sandwich

Reubens, process photo, heating corned beef, buttered bread and Swiss cheese.

Step 1: In one pan, heat the corned beef and then a mound of sauerkraut.

Step 2: Butter one side of each slice of bread and place on heated skillet and top each with a slice of cheese.

Reubens, process photo, heated corned beef and sauerkraut and assembled for grilling.

Step 3: Pile corned beef on two slices, then some of the sauerkraut and maybe some sauce of your choice.

Step 4: Top with other slices, cover and cook on low until all melty.

I don't know why I waited for leftover corned beef to make these, I certainly could buy good corned beef at the store or a deli.  After making these two Reubens, I am definitely going to make them more often.  Hope you had a great St. Patrick's Day, and if by chance you still have some corned beef, make a Reuben, you won't be sorry.  Best, Kelly ??☘️

Reubens, close up of grilled Reuben sandwich, stacked.

You can check out how I make corned beef and cabbage with these two recipes, one in the Instant Pot and one on the stovetop, both delicious and include instructions for making the horseradish cream sauce.

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UPDATED March 1, 2019: no changes to original recipe, just made things look a lot nicer.

Reubens, grilled Reuben sandwich cut in half and stacked.

Reuben Sandwiches

How to make a classic grilled Reuben sandwich with corned beef, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese. My favorite way to use leftover St. Patrick's Day corned beef.
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 sandwiches
Calories: 649kcal


  • 4 slices dark rye (pumpernickel) or marble rye bread
  • Butter, softened
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • Thinly sliced corned beef, about a ½ lb. or more, your preference, the more the better, I say!
  • Good quality sauerkraut, rinsed and drained (I prefer the kraut in bags in the refrigerated section)
  • Optional: 1000 Island dressing, Russian dressing, Fry Sauce, or whatever (I used horseradish cream sauce I had leftover, perfect!)


  • You'll need two skillets.  In one skillet, place the corned beef and heat, flipping occasionally until heated through and some pieces are lightly browned and crispy.  Push the corned beef to the side and add a large mound of the rinsed and drained kraut.  Heat and flip the mound a couple times.
  • Meanwhile, butter one side of each piece of bread and place on a heated grill pan.  Top each slice with 1 slice of Swiss cheese.  The bottom should get nicely toasted, but not burnt, and the cheese should start to melt.
  • Pile corned beef on two slices of grilled bread/Swiss.  Top with a generous amount of sauerkraut.  Add sauce of choice, or not, and then top with remaining two slices of bread/cheese.  Heat on low and cover with a lid if you can to make sure it's all melty.
  • Cut in half and serve.

Recipe Notes

You can find the recipe for the horseradish mustard cream sauce here.


Calories: 649kcal Carbohydrates: 38g Protein: 32g Fat: 41g Saturated Fat: 14g Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g Monounsaturated Fat: 14g Cholesterol: 101mg Sodium: 2364mg Potassium: 561mg Fiber: 5g Sugar: 8g Vitamin A: 359IU Vitamin C: 36mg Calcium: 373mg Iron: 5mg
Did you make this recipe? Please comment, rate it and share! And mention me on Instagram @thehungrybluebird or tag #thehungrybluebird so I can see!

Recipe Rating


Saturday 13th of November 2021

Melty delicious


Wednesday 17th of November 2021

Yep, they sure are!


Friday 1st of March 2019

Quite possibly the greatest sandwich ever devised by mankind.