Classic Reuben Sandwich

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Every time I travel with my family, we always end up reminiscing about our favorite home-cooked dishes. On one such trip to our neighbors’, the conversation turned towards the classic Reuben sandwich. Our neighbor had just returned from a culinary journey in New York and couldn’t stop raving about the deli-style sandwiches she had tried. This immediately transported me back to my family kitchen where the aroma of a freshly grilled Reuben would often waft through. However, this time, I decided to add a twist and pair it with a crockpot taco soup, making it a delightful fusion that everyone cherished.

Now, I know you’re curious. How does the classic taste of Reuben blend with the spiciness of taco soup? Well, let me guide you through this culinary journey, where I not only introduce you to the Reuben sandwich but also share how you can prepare this mouth-watering dish and serve it with a side of taco soup.

Understanding the Classic Reuben Sandwich

A Reuben sandwich, often a favorite in many households including mine, is a delicious grilled sandwich that prominently features corned beef on rye bread. While it’s a regular item on the menu of many Jewish-style delicatessens, it’s interesting to note that it isn’t technically kosher due to the combination of meat and cheese.

So, what really goes into a Reuben? The traditional Reuben consists of thinly sliced corned beef, Swiss cheese, and sauerkraut on rye bread, all coming together with the rich taste of Russian or Thousand Island dressing. It’s a symphony of flavors that’s hard to resist.

How to Prepare Reuben Sandwich

Ingredients for Reuben Sandwich

  • 8 slices rye bread
  • 1/2 cup Thousand Island dressing, with a splash of taco seasoning (optional for that added kick)
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese
  • 8 slices deli sliced corned beef
  • 1 cup sauerkraut, well-drained
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened for grilling

Directions for Reuben Sandwich

  1. Start by preheating a large skillet or griddle over a medium flame.
  2. Evenly spread the Thousand Island dressing (with taco seasoning if you’re opting for the twist) on one side of the bread slices.
  3. On four of these slices, layer a slice of Swiss cheese, followed by 2 slices of corned beef, then 1/4 cup of sauerkraut, and top it off with another slice of cheese. Cover these with the remaining bread slices, ensuring the dressing side is facing inwards.
  4. Butter the top of each sandwich before placing them butter-side down on the griddle. Now, butter the exposed side.
  5. Grill until both sides boast a golden-brown hue, which usually takes about 5 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions about Reuben Sandwich

What’s the history behind the Reuben Sandwich?

The Reuben sandwich’s origins are a bit disputed, but it’s believed to have been created in the early 20th century, either in Omaha, Nebraska, or New York City. Regardless of its birthplace, it has since become a deli classic beloved by many.

Can I use a different type of meat for the Reuben Sandwich?

Traditionally, corned beef is used, but variations like pastrami can also be delicious. Some even use turkey for a lighter take on the classic.

Is there a vegetarian version of the Reuben?

Yes! You can replace the corned beef with tempeh or seitan, and use vegan cheese for a completely vegetarian version. Don’t forget to check the dressing for any non-vegetarian ingredients too.

Why is my Reuben Sandwich soggy?

Using undrained sauerkraut or too much dressing can make your sandwich soggy. Always ensure your sauerkraut is well-drained and be moderate with the dressing.

How do I pair the Reuben Sandwich with taco soup in a crockpot?

Prepare your taco soup with ground beef in the crockpot, letting it simmer for about 4-6 hours. Serve the soup as a side or even use a splash of it as a dip for your Reuben for a unique flavor fusion.

How long does it take to cook taco soup in a crock pot?

For a richly flavored taco soup, let it cook on low in a crock pot for about 6-8 hours. If you’re short on time, 3-4 hours on high should suffice.

What are the essential crock pot taco soup ingredients?

Ground beef, beans, corn, tomatoes, taco seasoning, and broth are the essentials. Feel free to get creative and add ingredients like bell peppers, onions, or even a splash of beer!

Can I freeze my Reuben Sandwich for later?

Yes, you can assemble the sandwich without grilling, wrap it in foil, and freeze. When you’re ready to eat, thaw it in the fridge, then grill as instructed.

How do I ensure the meat in my Reuben is warmed throughout?

If you find that the center isn’t warm, you can lightly microwave the assembled sandwich for about 20 seconds before grilling. Be cautious not to overdo it, as this can affect the bread’s texture.

Reuben Sandwich

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Sandwich
Cuisine American
Servings 4


  • 8 slices rye bread
  • 1/2 cup Thousand Island dressing
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese
  • 8 slices deli sliced corned beef
  • 1 cup sauerkraut drained
  • 2 tablespoons butter softened


  • Preheat a large griddle or skillet over medium heat.
  • Spread one side of bread slices evenly with Thousand Island dressing.
  • On four bread slices, layer one slice Swiss cheese, 2 slices corned beef, 1/4 cup sauerkraut, and a second slice of Swiss cheese. Top with remaining bread slices, dressing-side down. Butter the top of each sandwich.
  • Place sandwiches, butter-side down on the preheated griddle; butter the top of each sandwich with remaining butter. Grill until both sides are golden brown, about 5 minutes per side.
  • Serve hot.
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