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Open-Face Reuben

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

This open-face version of a beloved sandwich—a rich, tangy, meaty mix of corned beef, sauerkraut, and melted cheese—makes a satisfying meal. The sandwich may become a little soggy thanks to the sauerkraut, but since you eat it with a knife and fork, that’s not such a big deal. It’ll be delicious regardless.


  • 2 Tbs. mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbs. ketchup
  • 1 Tbs. dill relish (not sweet)
  • 1-1/3 cups sauerkraut, preferably bagged, not canned
  • 3/4 lb. thin-sliced corned beef
  • 4 large 3/4-inch-thick slices rye bread
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 oz. Gruyère, thinly sliced

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 580
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 380
  • Fat (g): 42
  • Saturated Fat (g): 18
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 15
  • Cholesterol (mg): 150
  • Sodium (mg): 1580
  • Carbohydrates (g): 19
  • Fiber (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 31


  • Position a rack 6 inches from the broiler and another rack in the bottom third of the oven. Heat the broiler on high.
  • Combine the mayonnaise, ketchup, and relish in a small bowl.
  • Cut two 12×18-inch sheets of foil. Reserve 1 Tbs. of the liquid from the sauerkraut and then rinse and drain it. Squeeze the sauerkraut with your hands to remove as much liquid as possible and put it on 1 piece of foil. Put the corned beef on the other and sprinkle with the reserved sauerkraut liquid. Draw up the sides and seal each to make a package. Put both packages on a rimmed baking sheet and bake on the bottom rack of the oven until warmed through, about 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, put the bread on another rimmed baking sheet and broil until well toasted, about 1 minute per side. Butter one side of the toasted bread and arrange butter side down on the baking sheet. Spread each piece with 1 Tbs. of the dressing.
  • Divide the corned beef among the bread slices. Top with the sauerkraut and the cheese. Broil on the lower rack until the cheese begins to bubble, about 3 minutes. Move the baking sheet to the upper rack and broil until the cheese browns lightly, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve immediately.


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Reviews (4 reviews)

  • User avater
    Pielove | 02/19/2014

    You wouldn't think that the open-face preparation would make that much of a difference, but without the second slice of bread, you get a layer of bubbly, browned melted cheese. It's also less greasy than the typical restaurant Reuben, and the home-made dressing is miles better. My sauerkraut was very dry, so I didn't drain or rinse it-- I skipped all the packet business and just made the whole thing in the toaster oven. I used less meat and sauerkraut than the recipe called for, but put it all on home-made rye bread. My husband always orders Reubens at delis or diners-- he said "This is way better than those-- honey, I didn't know you could make such a good Reuben". (And we live in a big city with lots of great delis!)

  • ruby66 | 01/18/2014

    I've made these twice. The first as the recipe suggests: open faced. The second time, I used two slices of thinner rye and made them as panini sandwiches - and I did not rinse the sauerkraut. I preferred the panini... fabulous!

  • Modderskitchen | 01/12/2014

    Just made this tonight and my family really liked it. The only thing I would change is to not rinse the sauerkraut. Drain it yes, rinse it no. The sandwich needs the bite of the sauerkraut. But overall it was good and a nice change of pace. I served it with a slaw made of green apple, fennel and daikon with some apple cider vinegar and mirin.

  • user-182826 | 01/11/2014

    awful - used very good products -bad results. Please don't make it

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