Vegetarian "Reuben"



Author Notes: I started making this sandwich when I became a vegetarian because I love reuben sandwiches. My family, who was not vegetarian, loved this sandwich equally. This is the recipe I want to be remembered by, because I would eventually like to open up a deli that specializes in grilled cheese sandwiches. I like to call this a "vegetarian reuben", but it's really not a reuben at all. I make my own "pickled" red cabbage and replace the meat with mushrooms. Instead of a Thousand Island dressing, I make a concoction of mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and dill relish. I generally use rye bread, because I love, love, love rye and pumpernickel breads. So as you see, this is really not a reuben at all. But let's be honest, who's stopping me from calling it one?Brussels Sprouts for Breakfast

Food52 Review: Cows everywhere, rejoice! This vegetarian "reuben" is quite possibly better than the real thing. Gooey Swiss, tangy red cabbage, creamy dressing, garlicky mushrooms and crisp, buttery rye make this sandwich utterly irresistible. Thanks to Brussels Sprouts for Breakfast, I have now been ruined for all other sandwiches -- and I'm ok with that!Rachel Snow

Makes: 2 sandwiches
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20 min

Ingredients

  • 4 slices rye or pumpernickel bread
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese (lacey, baby, or regular)
  • 10 to 15 button mushrooms (cleaned and sliced)
  • 1/4 head red cabbage (sliced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons dill pickle relish
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 pinch sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 serving unsalted butter, for spreading
  • 1 splash Olive oil
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. The first step in assembing this grilled cheese is to prepare all your ingredients. Heat two saute pans over medium heat. Add some olive oil to each pan. In one pan, add the mushrooms, garlic, and black pepper. Let cook for 5 minutes.
  2. In the second pan, add the red cabbage, salt, and pepper and let cook in oil for 2 minutes. Add the vinegar and horseradish and let cook for 5 more minutes.
  3. While both the mushrooms and cabbage are cooking, mix up the dressing. Combine mayonnaise, Dijon, and relish in a small bowl.
  4. Butter one side of 2 pieces of bread generously. On the other side of the buttered pieces of bread, spread the dressing. Add mushrooms to each sandwich. Add a slice of cheese on top of the mushrooms. Cover the cheese in cabbage. Add one more slice of cheese on top of the cabbage.
  5. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Place the slices of bread, buttered side down, on the skillet. Add the second slice of bread to the top of the sandwich and place a couple cubes of butter on top of each slice. Put the pan you used to cook the mushrooms or cabbage on top of the sandwiches (unless you have a foil-covered brick or some other cool device).
  6. Flip after a few minutes and cook the other side without the pan. The bread should be nice and crusty, and cheese should be melting out the sides.

More Great Recipes:
Sandwich|American|Vinegar|Horseradish|Mayonnaise|Quick and Easy|Fry|Spring|Game Day|Weeknight Cooking|Winter|Vegetarian

Reviews (21) Questions (0)

21 Reviews

Frances K. December 12, 2017
I made this sandwich tonight. I love Reubens and we are trying to cut out meat. My family praised me more for this meal than any meal I have made for them in 12 years!!!! Seriously I teared up. It's better than the meat version in my book. Don't think about it - make it tonight!
 
name P. January 21, 2017
I'm pretty seriously surprised by how well this came out. I did use sauerkraut instead of vinegar, but otherwise stayed faithful. Here's how mine came out: http://imgur.com/a/KO11A
 
Rose October 7, 2016
Just made this for dinner.....OMG!! Fabulous! I love Reubens and was hesitant to try this. I am so excited about recipes like this. I am 2 weeks in with whole food based diet and so far am loving it! Thank You!<br />
 
laurie July 9, 2016
This had delicious flavor but i couldnt get it to hold together (any suggestions?)
 
krikri September 5, 2015
I love reubens, I love pastrami... So this recipe caught my eye. Never mind it has no pastrami; neither do we! In fact, we had no Swiss so I used cheddar. And horseradish morphed into fake-wasabi-in-a-tube. Rye or pumpernickel (also unavailable, or at least rarely seen) meant whole wheat. And we blew off the pickle relish.<br />I guess this recipe was really a springboard. A delicious one! Even the dubious 16-yr-old liked it and the three of us fought over the 4th sandwich.<br />Great recipe. I highly recommend it.
 
Heather September 24, 2014
This is a veggie sandwich which FILLS you up with flavor, texture and deliciousness. I've made these twice in the last month and am ready to have them again. Thank you for a veggie meal which leaves you saying "ahhhh, that hit the spot".
 
Author Comment
Brussels S. September 24, 2014
Yay, glad you loved in Heather! It's definitely one of my all time favorites.
 
foxeslovelemons March 28, 2013
Congrats on the Community Pick! My thoughts:<br /><br />Full disclosure: I've never actually had a Reuben sandwich. So, do this sandwich taste like a "real" Reuben? I have no idea. Does it taste great? Absolutely. It was incredibly simple to put together, especially because you cook two of the main components (mushrooms & cabbage) in two different pans, but at the same time. The mushrooms added a filling and "meaty" element, and the sauce was equal parts tangy, creamy, and spicy. It was the perfect dinner for Meatless Monday!<br />
 
thefood March 22, 2013
i absolutely hope you win with this one! yummmmm!
 
Author Comment
Brussels S. March 22, 2013
Thanks, thefood! It's a crowd pleaser for sure!
 
Tanya T. March 11, 2013
OMG - The Reuben is my FAVORITE sandwich and since becoming a vegetarian, I've been stumped on how to make one. THANK YOU - I will try it after we return from spring break vacation...with dark rye, of course!!!
 
Author Comment
Brussels S. March 22, 2013
Thanks, Tanya! I hope you get to enjoy it!!
 
gina.hellman.7 October 14, 2012
Delicious! Made them twice in one week!
 
constanterratic August 10, 2011
I'm tired of the typical veggie sandwiches I see on menus and in cookbooks (as if vegetarians only eat tomatoes and cheese, or really weird exotic things), so your recipe was a welcome sight. You've punched up two simple staples, the mushroom and cabbage- with incredibly satisfying results. This is one sandwich I would kill to see on menus everywhere!
 
Author Comment
Brussels S. August 12, 2011
Thanks, constanterratic! I would love it if I showed up at a restaurant and they were serving it!
 
susan G. April 28, 2011
I love the directions you've gone with the Reuben concept. Our 80's natural food deli served Tempeh Reubens, and it was very popular. I'm trying this ASAP.
 
Author Comment
Brussels S. April 27, 2011
Thank you everyone! Please try it out and let me know your thoughts/suggestions!
 
clintonhillbilly April 27, 2011
Sounds delicious!
 
Jennifer A. April 26, 2011
I love your idea for a vegetarian reuben, and am going to give this a try over the weekend.
 
Bevi April 26, 2011
I won't stop you! This sounds really good, and I hope your dream comes true!
 
student E. April 26, 2011
YUM!