Reubens for St. Patrick’s Day

Reubens for St. Patrick’s Day has been a new tradition our family started three years ago, and I can honestly say before that, I had never eaten corned beef. However, we now eat Reubens a few times a year, and not just on St. Patrick’s Day. Just last week, when I was grocery shopping, ALDI had corned beef for sale. On a whim, I decided to buy one and also make Rye Bread. And now, as I sit here sharing this deliciousness with you, I scroll through images and realize that we ate all of the Reubens before I could get a decent picture of one plated. They were just that good.

sliced homemade Rye bread on wood cutting board

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Published March 17, 2022
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What makes Corned Beef Special

Our family is not Irish, so we do not have ties to St. Patrick’s Day in a bigger way. To celebrate St. Patrick, the patron Saint of Ireland, the people of Ireland would feast on stew and roasted meats. However, once immigrants arrived in the United States, they opted for corned beef as a less expensive alternative.

Traditionally, Jewish groups ate corned beef as it was cured with salt and therefore sold as Kosher. When Irish immigrants came, they then purchased corned beef as an alternative. Using a brining solution to cure the beef brisket helps to tenderize the cut of meat.

The process to create corned beef takes anywhere from five-to-seven days and includes seasonings such as bay leaf, black peppercorn, mustard seed, dried red pepper and coriander. These, in addition to the pink curing salt, salt-nitrite, gives corned beef the unique flavor and color.

In the 17th century, all grains were called “corn”. When beef brisket was placed in the brine solution, the spices were a similar size to the “corn”, also known as spices. Therefore, this brisket was named “corned beef”, as it was covered in salt pieces and spices the same size as grains like oats and barley.

Thanks to Food Network for this amazing information on corned beef. To learn more, click the link below.
What Is Corned Beef? And How To Cook Corned Beef | Cooking School | Food Network

How to Cook Corned Beef

There are many ways to take a corned beef brisket and cook it before making Reubens. Typically, I cook corned beef in my Crock-Pot, low and slow. Corned beef can also be baked in the oven or simmered on the stove.

To cook corned beef brisket in the oven, first preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Then place the beef brisket in a baking pan with 1-inch of water. Cover the meat with the contents of the spice packet. Then cook, covered, in the oven for 1 1/2-2 1/2 hours or until the temperature reaches 160 degrees. Once done, remove the corned beef from the pan and rest for 20-30 minutes, then cut the meat across the grain.

Corned Beef Brisket can also be simmered on a stove. To do this, place the brisket fat side down in a pan and cover with water. Add contents of the spice packet, cover the pot and bring to a boil. Then, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours to an internal temperature of 160 degrees. When done, remove the brisket from the pot, let rest on a cutting board for 20-30 minutes before slicing across the grain.

Rye Bread for Reubens

Rye bread is a staple in most grocery stores through the year. However, shopping at ALDI, rye bread is hard to come by. Which is weird as ALDI has so many European foods. To combat the lack of rye bread when I want, I then buy Rye Flour and can have it on hand. Early in the morning, I baked two loaves of fresh rye bread to use with our delicious Reubens. Check out the recipe I used for rye bread by clicking the link to my blog below.

homemade rye bread for Reubens

Reubens Recipe

Ingredients

Rye bread
1000 Island Dressing
Sauerkraut
Corned Beef
Swiss Cheese
Butter

Directions for Reubens

1. Cook the corned beef brisket three different ways:
To cook in the oven: Firstly, preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Then place the beef brisket in a baking pan with 1-inch of water. Cover the meat with the contents of the spice packet. Then cook, covered, in the oven for 1 1/2-2 1/2 hours or until the temperature reaches 160 degrees.
Simmered on a stove: To do this, place the brisket fat side down in a pan and cover with water. Add contents of the spice packet, cover the pot and bring to a boil. Then, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours to an internal temperature of 160 degrees.
In a Crock-Pot: Place the corned beef brisket in the Crock-Pot ceramic container, then season with the seasoning packed provided if using. Place the cover on the pot and set the temperature on LOW for 6-8 hours or HIGH for 4-6 hours or until the temperature reaches 160 degrees.

2. When done, remove the brisket from the pot, let rest on a cutting board for 20-30 minutes before slicing across the grain. Cut the entire brisket to 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick slices.

corned beef brisket resting on cutting board fully cooked

3. Heat a large griddle or skillet to 350 degrees. We use this skillet for eggs, pancakes, Reubens, open-faced sandwiches, tortillas, Naan and more. Click the link below for my recipe for Homemade Rye Bread.

4. Butter both sides of a slice of Rye Bread and place on the hot skillet.

buttered rye bread slices on hot skillet for Reubens

5. When one side is toasted, flip the piece of bread.

sliced corned beef brisket on cutting board by skillet with cooking rye bread

6. Lay a piece of swiss cheese on the toasted rye bread.

Swiss cheese and corned beef assembling onto rye bread for Reubens

7. Lay a slice of corned beef on the cheese. This was Tyler’s job today, we tag-teamed Reuben’s assembly style!

8. Use a fork to scoop out 1 Tbsp sauerkraut and then spread it evenly over the corned beef.

sauerkraut on top of corned beef for Reubens

9. Drizzle the sauerkraut with 1000 Island Dressing.

Tyler assembling Reubens on skillet

10. Finally, top with the second piece of toasted rye bread.

flipped Reubens to toast both sides after assembled on hot skillet

Serve with extra 1000 Island Dressing on the side and enjoy!
~Monica

Reubens served on a white plate

Reubens Recipe

Ingredients

Rye bread
1000 Island Dressing
Sauerkraut
Corned Beef
Swiss Cheese
Butter

Directions for Reubens

1. Cook the corned beef brisket three different ways:
A. To cook in the oven: first preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Then place the beef brisket in a baking pan with 1-inch of water. Cover the meat with the contents of the spice packet. Then cook, covered, in the oven for 1 1/2-2 1/2 hours or until the temperature reaches 160 degrees.
B. Simmered on a stove: To do this, place the brisket fat side down in a pan and cover with water. Add contents of the spice packet, cover the pot and bring to a boil. Then, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours to an internal temperature of 160 degrees.
C. In a Crock-Pot: Place the corned beef brisket in the Crock-Pot ceramic container, then season with the seasoning packed provided if using. Place the cover on the pot and set the temperature on LOW for 6-8 hours or HIGH for 4-6 hours or until the temperature reaches 160 degrees.
2. When done, remove the brisket from the pot, let rest on a cutting board for 20-30 minutes before slicing across the grain. Cut the entire brisket to 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick slices.
3. Heat a large griddle or skillet to 350 degrees.
4. Butter both sides of a slice of Rye Bread and place on the hot skillet.
5. When one side is toasted, flip the piece of bread.
6. Lay a piece of swiss cheese on the toasted rye bread.
7. Lay a slice of corned beef on the cheese.
8. Use a fork to scoop out 1 Tbsp sauerkraut and spread evenly over the corned beef.
9. Drizzle the sauerkraut with 1000 Island Dressing.
10. Finally, top with the second piece of toasted rye bread.
Serve with extra 1000 Island Dressing on the side and enjoy!
~Monica

family time while eating Reubens

Published by Monica's Scratch Kitchen

I have not always had the skills to cook and bake from scratch. As a young wife, I bought every meal frozen or boxed and presented it to my husband with a flourish, believing myself a decadent cook. As our budget shrunk, and our family grew, I looked for ways to stretch our money to nourish our kids with the best for their hungry appetites. Hoping to find recipes and meals that they would love to eat. Through the last 5 years, I have learned so many cooking and baking lessons, and experienced many wins and failures. Come along with me on this journey as I share my recipes that work, how to make them on the cheap, and my tips and tricks to get my kids to eat homemade deliciousness! I will also share updates to our house that we have done in the last year since our move. With one income, we do most of the work ourselves and with amazing family and friends to help out, cutting costs but keeping style and money in the bank! I am a wife and mother of 3 boys and 1 princess. When I was a kid, I remember being asked what I wanted to be or do when I grew up. My response was, "a mom", and I am proud to grow up and be a mom to 4 amazing kids! Samuel is 11, Matthew is 8, Levi is 4, and Elliana is almost 2. We have been blessed to have kids who love to explore foods, to try new recipes, and enjoy helping us around the house. With 4 kids, you better believe they help clean! My husband Tyler and I have been married almost 13 years. We love our kids, we love outdoors, camping, canoeing, grilling, watching movies, and just hanging out making memories. A few years ago I gifted Tyler with his own "menu" book, where we write meals and foods we have loved to eat. Weekly our family decides what our meals will be and I make up a grocery list with what we need. It literally is my favorite chore! I love to shop, so shopping for food on a budget is my biggest win! Thank you for taking the time and visiting my site, Subscribe so you do not miss a post! Keep coming back to hear about new recipes, updates on our home, fun times with our kids, and how to make homemade deliciousness! ~Monica

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