Recreate a taste of New York in your own home with this recipe from the food dept. The Reuben sandwich, filled with many layers of beef pastrami, sauerkraut and pickles, is easily achievable at home and will provide much-needed comfort during the colder months.






Skill level

Average: 4.3 (12 votes)


  • 1 x 1.2 kg piece corned beef
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp malt vinegar
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 peppercorns
  • 1 whole orange
  • ½ cup whole egg mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp chili sauce (vary the quantity to suit your taste and the strength of chilli sauce you have)
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped onion
  • 16 slices rye bread, for serving
  • butter, for spreading
  • 1 packet or 400 g can sauerkraut, rinsed and well drained
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese
  • 1 quantity dill and garlic pickles

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


You can start this recipe a day ahead.

Rinse the piece of corned beef and pat dry with paper towel. Place the meat into a large pot with the brown sugar, malt vinegar, onion, bay leaf , peppercorns and orange. Add enough water to just cover the meat and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 1¼ to 1½ hours or until the meat is tender when tested. Remove form the heat and allow the meat to cool in the cooking liquid.

Make the Russian mayonnaise by combining the whole egg mayonnaise with the chilli sauce, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice and onion, set aside.

Drain the meat, pat dry and remove any fat. Cut the meat into 3-4 mm thick slices, set aside.

Spread the rye bread slices with butter on one side. Place half of the bread slices butter side down onto a board and spread with the Russian mayonnaise. Divide the meat slices evenly between the sandwiches top with sauerkraut and Swiss cheese. Spread Russian mayonnaise on the inside of the remaining bread slices and top the sandwiches, butter side out.

Heat a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and place the sandwiches into the pan.

Cook for 7-10 minutes each side or until the rye bread has toasted and the filling is hot. Serve with dill and garlic pickles.



• Cook the meat the day before to save time. It is also best to have all of the sandwich fillings at room temperature before assembling, this will make sure that you have a piping hot centre in your Reuben sandwich when its cooked.


Photography by Petrina Tinslay, styling by David Morgan and art direction by Anne Marie Cummins.