Traditional Reuben Sandwich

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The Traditional Reuben Sandwich – A pile of corned beef, slices of Swiss cheese, Frank’s Kraut and Thousand Island dressing grilled between two slices of your favorite rye bread until the cheese is perfect and melty.  What more could anyone really ask for in a sandwich? It’s the whole package.  

Reuben Sandwich

Being from Omaha, where the Reuben Sandwich originated, there is no better way to bring in National Reuben Month than with a Traditional Reuben Sandwich.


Thank you to Frank’s Kraut for sponsoring this post.  Know that the opinions in this post and the love for their sauerkraut are all my own.  Please support the brands that make An Affair from the Heart possible.


Where did the Reuben Sandwich Originate?

Some folks in other places may argue where the Reuben Sandwich originated.  I am holding true to the fact that it was created right here in my hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, at the well known Blackstone Hotel. A Jewish Lithuanian-born grocer, named Reuben Kulakofsky, was the maker of the first Reuben Sandwich. 

Reuben attended a weekly poker game held at the Blackstone Hotel between the years of 1920-1935.  The group came to refer to themselves as “The Committee.”  The sandwich came into fame when one of the other poker players, Charles Schimmel, the hotel’s owner, put the sandwich on the hotel’s lunch menu.  And the rest, as they say, is history.


The Blackstone Hotel Omaha, NE

The Blackstone Hotel, now known as the Blackstone Center, is located at 302 South 36th Street in Omaha, Nebraska. The hotel was built in 1915, it was declared an Omaha Landmark in 1983. It’s no longer used as a hotel but as offices in a very up and coming area called the Blackstone District.


Reuben Sandwich

March is National Reuben month, but in Omaha, we have a National Reuben Sandwich Day – March 14, of every year. Many of the local restaurants and pubs have their claim to fame Reuben sandwich, and you can get them year round, but March — March is when the Reuben is really celebrated!


Reuben Frank's Kraut

What is the Best Sauerkraut for a Reuben?

Nothing makes a Reuben better than Frank’s Kraut.  My family has only ever purchased Frank’s Kraut, my grandmother, my mother, and now me. 

I have had a long standing relationship with Frank’s over the last few years, and developing recipes for them has been a real honor for me.  We have shared countless sauerkraut and Reuben Recipes over the years, I hope you take some time to see all of the different ways we have used their wonderful kraut, right here on my website. 

Everything from appetizers and salads, from soup to pizza, from main dishes to even dessert!


The Ultimate Guide to Sauerkraut

Check out The Ultimate Guide to Sauerkraut!



Follow along with Frank’s Kraut on their social media to get delicious recipes all year long.  Follow them on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram for all things sauerkraut!



Reuben Sandwich

Many times I purchase marbled rye bread when I make Reubens.  This time I gave my family the option between seeded light rye or pumpernickel rye.  Most of them decided on half and half. 

Good choice!

Reuben Sandwich

Ingredients in a Reuben Sandwich

Building the perfect Reuben is easy! Frank’s Kraut, Corned beef, Swiss cheese, Rye bread, and Thousand Island Dressing.


Homemade Thousand Island Dressingso worth making it on your own!

Some will debate that Reuben sandwich dressing should be a Russian dressing. I have always used Thousand Island Dressing, just like the Blackstone Hotel. Of course, that is the beauty of recipes, you can make it your own. If you choose to use Russian dressing for your Reuben sauce, you do you! 

I myself will continue to make them with my Homemade Thousand Island Dressing!


How to Make a Reuben

The best Reuben sandwich recipe isn’t difficult to make. It’s very much like making the most epic grilled cheese ever!  Once you have your ingredients together, it’s time to start assembling them.


Reuben Sandwich

Begin by slathering dressing on both sides of the bread.  Top one side with corned beef, the other with a couple of thick slices of Swiss cheese.


Reuben Sandwich

Now it’s time to add the Frank’s Kraut! Don’t be shy! Put a big mound of it on!



Reuben Sandwich

Heat your skillet up and butter the outside of both pieces of bread, just like you would for a grilled cheese.  Place in a hot skillet and get nice and golden brown on both sides, and get that cheese all melty and gooey. 

Feel free to dollop on some more Thousand Island dressing before you serve it.


Love it? Pin it!

Don’t forget where you found this recipe! Pin it to your favorite Pinterest recipe board before you go!



Reuben Sandwich

My friends, does it get any better than that?  Dive on in.


So the next time you’re tempted to ask “Where can I find a Reuben sandwich near me?” Don’t look any further than your own kitchen and this recipe for a traditional Reuben sandwich!




How To Reuben-ize Anything

How to Reubenize Anything

Love Reubens? The Reuben actually has a couple of origin stories, it just depends on who tells it. Learn all about Reuben and how to Reubenize anything!



Reuben Sandwich




Who’s ready to dig in? I’m drooling over here — let’s get to the recipe for the best Reuben Sandwich!



Reuben Sandwich close up on a counter
4.84 from 18 votes
Print Recipe

Traditional Reuben Sandwich

A pile of corned beef, slices of Swiss cheese, Frank's Kraut and Thousand Island dressing grilled between two slices of your favorite rye bread until the cheese is perfect and melty.  What more could anyone really ask for in a sandwich? It's the whole package.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Total Time10 minutes
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Blackstone Hotel Blackstone Hotel, corned beef, Frank's kraut, how to make a Reuben, Nebraska, Omaha, Original Reuben, Reuben dressing, Reuben sandwich near me, Reuben sandwich video, reuben sauce, sandwich, Sauerkraut, St. Paddy's Day, St. Patrick's Day, The BEST Reuben sandwich recipe, Thousand Island Dressing, Traditional Reuben Sandwich
Servings: 1 sandwich
Calories: 1040kcal
Author: Michaela Kenkel


  • 2 slices rye bread
  • 4 ounces corned beef
  • 2 slices Swiss cheese
  • 1/4 cup Frank's Kraut
  • Thousand Island Dressing
  • Butter


  • Slather Thousand Island Dressing on both inside of the bread. Top with cheese, then corned beef, then sauerkraut.
  • Butter the outsides of both slices of bread and place in a hot skillet until both sides are golden brown and cheese is melted in the middle.
  • Add more dressing before serving if desired.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 1040kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 48g | Fat: 79g | Saturated Fat: 33g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 36g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 234mg | Sodium: 3266mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 9g

Reuben Sandwich - An Affair from the Heart

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  1. This reuben sandwich looks amazing! Love the two bread options and will go that route so I can have half and half! Thanks for sharing the tradition behind this sandwich. I had no idea!

  2. My mouth is watering just looking at your pictures – Reuben is my favorite sandwich!! Many years ago, I worked at a sauerkraut making company. You think I’d tire of it, but no – dish up more! I love all of your kraut recipes and you can’t enjoy kraut without celebrating this classic meal – YUM!

  3. That sandwich looks amazing. I’m drooling wishing my corned beef was cooked! I’ve never had sauerkraut that wasn’t Frank’s either. Why should I try something else when I know their product is perfect every time.

  4. I’m not a pastrami fan but I love the sauce and kraut for sure! I am definitely Reubenizing so many foods these days!

  5. I love that I found this recipe. I am from Omaha and the history you added about the sandwich makes it even better that I found this. I will be making this tonight for my husband and I cannot wait.


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