Grilled Reuben Sandwiches

Side view of a grilled Reuben sandwich.

To me, any grilled sandwich recipe is a winner. For whatever reason, I detest a cold sandwich! That said, Grilled Reuben Sandwiches are by far and away my favorite! Delicious pastrami corned beef, pumpernickle bread, Swiss cheese, seasoned sauerkraut and the special Reuben dressing.

My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

Grilled Reuben Sandwiches Recipe

Upclose shots of Grilled Reuben Sandwiches.

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’….Shall We?? 🙂

So are you a corned beef fan like I am? My husband is Irish (yep, he’s a red head born on St. Paddy’s Day so of course his Mamma had to name him PAT.) so I love making him corned beef for his birthday every year.

We always seem to have some of that tender, shredded corned beef leftover and that’s when I get to make something else I adore: Grilled Reubens!!

I like to make my corned beef in the oven as well as my Instant Pot. Instant Pot Tender Corned Beef with Irish Potatoes is super fast and easy and the corned beef comes out SO TENDER and DELICIOUS – absolutely mouth-watering.

Besides making grilled sandwiches with the leftover corned beef, we have also really come to enjoy making Corned Beef Fritters with Reuben Dipping Sauce and Reuben Egg Rolls. (And the egg rolls can be fried in a skillet or baked in the oven.)

3 good reasons to love this recipe –

  1. You get to enjoy CORNED BEEF!!!
  2. Grilled sandwiches are WAY better than cold sandwiches since everything is hot, golden brown and melt-y inside.
  3. Such awesome flavor combinations here, not to mention good textures.

What ingredients do you need to make Grilled Reuben Sandwiches?

  • Leftover cooked and shredded corned beef (or sliced deli corned beef, also known as pastrami)
  • Pumpernickle-rye bread (it’s pumper nickle bread with that dark rye swirl in the center of each slice)
  • Sliced swiss cheese
  • Seasoned sauerkraut
  • Reuben dressing
How to Make Grilled Reuben Sandwiches.

How to Make Grilled Reuben Sandwiches in 3 Easy Steps

  1. Preheat a greased griddle or large skillet over medium high heat.
  2. Assemble the sandwiches by spreading each slice of bread with mayonnaise. Place the bread mayo-side down into the hot skillet, then build the sandwiches. Spread the Reuben dressing onto the bread; top with a slice of cheese, sauerkraut, and a pile of pastrami corned beef, as desired. Add the second slice of bread on top to finish each sandwich.
  3. Grill the sandwiches on both sides until nicely golden brown and hot throughout. Serve at once with extra dressing for dipping, if desired. Divine!

Can I Make Grilled Reuben Sandwiches in My Air Fryer?

You sure can and we do it all the time! Assemble the sandwiches the very same way but instead of using a skillet or grill pan, place them onto the air fryer basket or even directly onto the air fryer tray – either one works great.

Set the air fryer to 350 degrees F. and cook for 5 minutes per side, or until golden brown and melt-y in the middle.

We can cook 2 large sandwiches in our air fryer (the Cuisinart TOA-60) or 4 small sandwiches. It works perfectly.

Recipe Tips for Making Grilled Reuben Sandwiches That Are Over-the-Top GOOD –

  • First things first. The corned beef is very important. It must be tender and shredded and fully cooked. Or, hit up your favorite deli and grab some thinly sliced pastrami (corned beef). This works great.
  • AND, you gotta use pumpernickle-rye bread. No other bread will do.
  • The swiss cheese must be sliced (not shredded) so that as it melts, it drips down onto the sides of the sandwiches when being grilled.
  • The sauerkraut must be seasoned and really cooked throughout so the moisture has been removed. There is absolutely NOTHING WORSE than SOGGY SAUERKRAUT on a grilled Reuben sandwich since that always makes the bread get soggy, too. YUCK.
  • Make the Reuben dressing yourself. It’s easy and so delicious. Don’t use that icky bottled Reuben dressing – so disappointing.
  • Using mayonnaise instead of butter for cooking the grilled Reubens is a secret step that provides the ultimate browning and crispy-ness. If you don’t have mayo on hand, you can use butter.
Side view of a delicious grilled Reuben sandwich with cheese and pastrami.

Favorite Salad Recipes for Serving with Grilled Reuben Sandwiches –


Printable Grilled Reuben Sandwiches Recipe – 

Side view of a grilled Reuben sandwich.

Grilled Reuben Sandwiches

To me, any grilled sandwich recipe is a winner. For whatever reason, I detest a cold sandwich! That said, Grilled Reuben Sandwiches are by far and away my favorite! Delicious pastrami corned beef, pumper nickle bread, Swiss cheese, seasoned sauerkraut and the special Reuben dressing. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 sandwiches
Calories: 592kcal


Grilled Reuben Sandwiches

  • 1 lb. cooked and shredded leftover corned beef may substitute deli pastrami (aka corned beef) in place of the leftover corned beef
  • 8 slices Pumpernickel rye Bread
  • 4-8 slices Swiss cheese depending on how much cheese you want on each sandwich
  • 1 15 oz. can sauerkraut very well drained
  • mayonnaise for spreading on the bread to grill the sandwiches

Reuben Dressing

  • 1 cup Hellman's mayonnaise
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tsp. dill relish
  • 2 tsp. sweet relish
  • 1-2 tsp. freshly grated horseradish not cream-style horseradish!
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar may substitute red wine vinegar


Make the Reuben Dressing

  • In a small bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients; reserve.

How to Cook Sauerkraut for Making Grilled Reuben Sandwiches

  • In a skillet over medium high heat, add a bit of oil. When the oil is hot, add the well-drained sauerkraut to the skillet. Cook the sauerkraut until all the moisture in the sauerkraut has evaporated and it's nicely golden brown; stir in a tiny pinch of sugar.
    **NOW the sauerkraut is ready to be part of a grilled Reuben sandwich, but NOT BEFORE this step.

Assemble and Grill the Reuben Sandwiches

  • To prepare the Reuben sandwiches, preheat a greased griddle or large flat skillet over medium high heat.
  • Spread mayonnaise over the slices of bread, just on one side. Place the bread, mayo-side down into the hot skillet. Now, it's time to build the Reuben sandwiches. Dress the bread with the prepared Reuben dressing, then add a slice or two of Swiss cheese; top with sauerkraut and finally the corned beef, adding more dressing on top, if desired. Top with the second slice of bread to complete the sandwich.
  • Grill the Reuben sandwiches until they are nicely toasted and golden brown on each side and the ingredients in the center are hot and melt-y.
    Serve at once with more Reuben dressing on the side for dipping, if desired.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Irish
Keyword: corned beef, Grilled sandwich recipe, pastrami, Reuben sandwich, sandwich recipes


Calories: 592kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 94mg | Sodium: 2457mg | Potassium: 555mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 589IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 337mg | Iron: 5mg

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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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yum, going to make this for Father’s day!!!

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