a healthy rueben sandwich


Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to all you Irish Lovers out there!  A friend recently asked me how the celebration of the green leprechaun has become akin to that of the Super Bowl?  I had to think of the dark days of Lent and the “free pass” you get on St. Patty’s Day.  Indulge in senseless guilt-free frolic. Wear green, act silly, eat corned beef.

The part about “guilt-free” goes one step further if you take the classic rueben sandwich, our favorite Saint Patrick’s Day fare, and make it with Turkey Pastrami!  I decided to share this recipe because it’s my family’s all time favorite sandwich.  We don’t actually eat very many sandwiches at all, but ask and we’ll tell you that not a single of us can resist the temptation to enjoy a rueben sandwich – whenever the opportunity presents itself!


a healthy rueben sandwich


The rueben sandwich is a classic and like most classics (food and otherwise), the beauty lies to a great extent in it’s simplicity.  There are only 5 ingredients!  Well, I add the sliced dill pickle, so that makes 6!


5 simple ingredients make up the rueben


I love the architecture of a rueben! It definitely matters, A LOT, in what order the ingredients are stacked to make the perfect rueben.  We have a running debate in our home about the order of ingredients to build the perfect burger.   Well, I’m here to tell you that with the rueben, it matters even more! So here is the secret…


Basically, two identical sandwiches are built on each slice of the bread, then they are combined to make the tall delishousness of the stacked, grilled rueben sandwich!

So, here are the steps…


stack the rueben ingredients on both sides of the bread


  •  Spread both halves of the rye bread with 1 tsp of dressing (I like chipotle ranch)
  • Top both sides with 4-5 thin slices of turkey pastrami, loosely folded.
  • Add a slice (or two) of swiss cheese to each side of the sandwich.
  • Layer about 2 Tbsp sauerkraut on top of the cheese.
  • Place thinly sliced dill pickle on top of the sauerkraut.
  • Now, put the two sides together.



place both sides of rueben sandwich together.


OK, get ready to grill it!  I like to use olive oil in a cast iron skillet – just my preference. The even heat of the cast iron warms the sandwich all the way through without over doing it on the bread.  Grill one side, then flip it over, adding an additional spoonful of olive oil, and continue grilling on low heat on the other side until the cheese melts and the whole sandwich is warmed through.



rueben sandwich served with veggie chips, a pickle and a cold beer.


We will enjoy a little celebration of the Irish this week, guilt-free of course,  and it will be with the classic Rueben Sandwich, a bit lighter and healthier with turkey pastrami.

Erin go Bragh!!




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