Last updated on May 27th, 2021 at 10:39 am
Food crush! This Vegan Reuben Sandwich has pan fried spiced mushrooms, homemade red cabbage sauerkraut, Russian dressing and pickles combine in each wonderfully messy and textured bite.
Use store-bought sauerkraut and this sandwich can be ready in 15-minutes flat.
Eating a plant-based diet is a challenge for me. I didn't turn the corner and all of a sudden start hating the taste of chicken and bacon or loathing goat's cheese. I love animals and don't want them on my plate but guiltily admit, they are a bit delicious.
This path would be a lot easier if the smell of bacon didn't still make me salivate just a little. I wonder if after all this time my reaction is simply sense memory rushing to the fore after a childhood of eating meat.
Given this, my dirty little secret, it is no wonder many of my recipes on this blog are veganised versions of foods I once enjoyed or simply variations on classics.
My One Pot Tomato Olive and Lemon Spaghetti is a twist on Puttanesca without the anchovies while there are no prizes for guessing the root of my Sneaky BBQ Mushroom Steamed Buns. I even have the best vegan pot pie recipe. This mushroom Reuben sandwich is another twist on a classic.
How to Make a Vegan Reuben Sandwich
Making a vegan Reuben is pretty darn simple. First we make a thirty-minute quick and dirty sauerkraut. Next we pan fry seasoned meaty mushrooms, add dill pickles and finish with a spicy vegan Russian dressing on toasted rye bread. This is a vegan version even the carnivores will love.
While I would no sooner eat a pile of corned-beef these days than I would eat my dog, this Vegan Reuben Sandwich is a "meaty" dish I can get behind. What's more, my non-vegan family love it too. Earthy spiced mushrooms invoke just enough meat essence to fool my tastebuds while the vibrant red sauerkraut and spicy dressing add texture and balance.
While my challenge continues each day, it becomes easier with a little invention and inspiration from the classics.
*Elizabeth Weil offers a wonderful and funny account of the Reuben Sandwich's contentious history and her family's part in it, here; it is well worth a read.
If you try this sandwich, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #mygoodnesskitchen on Instagram. I’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends.
If you like this, you might like to check out these recipes:
- vegan kimchi crispy mushroom burgers
- perfectly pickled mushroom fennel ceviche
- mind-blowing vegan sabich sandwich
Vegan Reuben Sandwich
- ½ cup vegan mayonnaise 125 ml
- 1 tablespoon chilli sauce 20 ml
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped dill pickles
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
Quick and Dirty Sauerkraut
- ½ head red cabbage approx 500 grams
- ½ teaspoon caraway or fennel seeds
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- ¾ cup water
- large pinch sea salt
- 150 grams mixed mushrooms - I used Pine and Swiss
- 1 garlic glove finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ¼ teaspoon fennel seed
- pinch sea salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil to fry
- fresh dill to serve
- 6 slices rye bread
- 1 teaspoon vegan butter
- 2 slices vegan cheese
- 3 dill pickles sliced
- To make the sauerkraut, simply slice the cabbage in to thin ribbons after removing the core and place it in a large saucepan.
- Add the apple cider vinegar, water, sea salt and caraway or fennel seeds and cook down over medium heat, stirring regularly, for 35 - 40 minutes. Add more water if the cabbage begins to brown at the bottom.
- Remove from the heat.
- To make the Russian dressing combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine.
- Finely slice the mushrooms. Heat a little oil in a large fry pan and sautée the garlic for 20 seconds before adding the mustard and fennel seeds.
- Add the mushrooms and toss through the spices. Cook for four minutes before seasoning with sea salt.
- To assemble the sandwich, lightly butter one side of the rye bread slices and place them butter side down on a pan. Grill until lightly toasted.
- Remove from the pan and smear the unbuttered side of one slice with a good dollop of the dressing before following with a generous handful of the mushrooms. If you are using cheese slices, add a slice now then add the sauerkraut and slices of the dill pickle. If you are using the cheese sauce, add a drizzle now.
- Place the second slice of bread on top (buttered side out) and return the sandwich to the pan and lightly grill until warmed through.
- Serve immediately.