Reuben Quesadilla with homemade thousand islands dressing

I’m all about classic recipes but sometimes I like to change things up a bit.  Especially when I have a lot of leftovers and don’t want to keep repeating the same thing.  I always start with the corned beef dinner, followed by corned beef hash the next morning and lunch is the much anticipated Reuben on rye bread.  At this point, since I cook like I have a husband and five children, but really only have one son at home who is not a big eater like most 19 year olds boys are, I still have some leftover corned beef to use.

One year I made a Reuben pizza, cut into squares, it was a really neat appetizer.  This year, feeling like I didn’t need all the pizza carbs with summer around the corner, I decided to use tortillas and make quesadillas!

As for the sauce, you can always purchase a bottle of thousand islands dressing.  I just can’t get myself to do that, so I’ve been following Ina Garten’s recipe, substituting the ketchup for chili or cocktail sauce.  Ina had served this dressing for a dip for roasted shrimp.  I also like to saute my sauerkraut slightly to remove any excess moisture, warm and slightly caramelize before assembling my Reubens.

Reuben Quesadillas

2 8 inch tortillas, your choice, I used a whole wheat

1/2 cup leftover corned beef

1/2 cup swiss cheese, grated

1/4 cup drained sauerkraut

Thousand Islands dressing, recipe below or use store-bought

In a large skillet, saute the sauerkraut until warm.  Add in the shredded corned beef and warm gently.  Remove and set aside.  Either add a touch of olive oil or spray the skillet.  Place in the tortillas, layer on the cheese, sauerkraut and corned beef, about 1 tablespoon of dressing on each and more cheese.  Fold over the tortilla and cook until golden brown, turing once.  Serve with additional dressing if desired.

Thousand Islands Dressing

Adapted from Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup chilli sauce (or cocktail sauce – which I like to use when dipping in the roasted shrimp or ketchup as Ina uses)

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon capers, minced

1 teaspoon gherkins, minced

1 tablespoon sweet pickles, minced

Pinch of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mix all together.  Keeps for about a week in the refrigerator.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

38 thoughts on “Reuben Quesadilla with homemade thousand islands dressing

  1. Indeed, those grill marks are a dream!

    great idea to make quesadillas for your leftover corned beef – now, my beloved won’t touch sauerkraut, but I would make a slaw with raw cabbage, he’d go for that

    hope you are having a nice Sunday!

  2. I love the idea of sauteing the saukraut (sp) before serving it, i will remember this tip.. these sandwiches look very tasty, I also have the problem of cooking for SIX when there is only john and I.. leftovers galore, lucky i have cats and dogs and chickens who eat them all up! c

  3. I love a reuben. In fact it’s the only way that I’ll eat corned beef and sauerkraut. I agree with the others…the grill marks are fantastic! You are expert at that. 🙂 I remember those from your eggplant last year too. Yum! I’ve never attempted to make my own thousand island dressing before, but this looks so easy and I’m sure tastes much better.

    1. Oh the homemade is really easy, but you do have to have on hand the gherkins and sweet pickles, which I don’t always keep. And as for the grill marks, it seems I can make better marks on my indoor that outside gas grill!

  4. I love all these ingredients but we can´t get corned beef here…will just have to dream. And I laughed at the way you described how much you cook…Big Man always tells me I should have worked in Army Catering because of the amounts I cook for the two of us 😉

  5. I haven’t made a reuben for my husband yet – and it’s his favorite sandwich! I can hardly wait to try it now and I’m going to saute the ‘kraut first too. That sounds so much better! (Isn’t everything better when caramelized?)

  6. I, too, cook for an army and there’s really no excuse for it. When it comes to corned beef & cabbage, though, I don’t mind one bit. Bring on the sandwiches or, in this case, the quesadillas! And making them Reubens is the only way to fly. 🙂

  7. I like that you made the reuben into a quesadilla. my preference for all sandwiches is that they have melted cheese and a nice crispy bread that has been buttered and grilled or pressed! This sandwich tops the cake! LOVING IT TO PIECES!

  8. Hi Linda,
    The first time I heard of a Reuben was through an episode of Man vs Food. I like the sound of what you’ve made here, making me hungry!

  9. I love a great reuben sandwich and the homemade thousand island dressing is absolutely calling me. To say I won’t make this would be a lie girl.. I’m makig this lol

  10. This reuben Quesadilla is full of flavor punches. I think it would be the perfect hangover food as well. YUMMY! I love that you cook up a storm and manage to use all of the cornbeef in such delicious ways. My 17 yr. old is NOT a big eater also. That’s weird, huh. I hate when I bake or cook something delicious and the family is like, “whatever”. Sometimes it’s a bummer. I can usually count on my daughter to appreciate the deliciousness though. That’s a relief.

  11. I am the same way too!! I absolutely hate wasting food and thus I love it when leftovers are innovated to be made into a brand new dish! Quesadillas are such a great idea!!!

  12. Wow, my reply actually timed out – hee.hee, I’m too slow!

    Let’s try again.

    How cool is that plate vessel? Gorgeous grill marks my dear and I’m totally impressed that you made your own thousand islands dressing… I love dipping my sandwiches into dressing! How yum.

  13. I’ve had a dickens of a time trying to reply to this post! I kept getting a you timed out message? Anyw ay I love this – I can imagine the crunchy tortilla followed by the flood of juicy tangy meat and kraut.m Makes my mouth water!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *