vegan reuben sandwich

Tofu, tempeh and edamame are all products of soybeans. They are a complete protein. These soybean products are also full of fiber, antioxidants, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Spectacular Soybeans

Soybeans in any form make a great addition to most diets. Here are just a few of their many benefits:

  • A three-ounce (85 grams) serving of edamame or tofu provides eight grams of protein, while the same serving size of tempeh has eleven grams of protein.
  • They are low in carbohydrates, and also have a low glycemic index (GI).
  • Soybeans are a good source of several vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin K1, folate, copper, phosphorus, and thiamine.
  • They are low in calories. Three and a half ounces (100 grams) of boiled soybeans only contain 173 calories.
  • Soybeans contain a lot of water!

An Abundance of Recipes

There are so many wonderful recipes you can prepare for breakfast, lunch and dinner using tofu, tempeh or edamame.

From tofu scramblers to asparagus and smoked salmon wraps with bacon-flavored tempeh, tofu lettuce wraps to tofu veggie stir fry, Vegan tempeh Reuben sandwiches, and no-tunafish tofu salad … the recipes are endless!

These healthy options are most often mentioned throughout my recipes and under the “Melissa’s Modifications” section at the bottom of recipes. I use them as replacements for fish, chicken or beef.

Today’s recipe is one of my favorite sandwiches, a Vegan Reuben made with tempeh. You can marinate the tempeh or buy it already bacon-flavored. The taste is a spot-on match to the traditional sandwich.

To Healthy Eating!


Vegan Reuben Sandwich

Don't like fatty corned beef, pastrami, or any meat at all? I've found that tempeh is a great alternative to the delicious Reuben of my childhood (actually, it's a staple of most Jewish kids' childhoods). Easy-to-make and satisfying with its chewy, nutty texture. BTW, the fries in my photo (my guilty pleasure) are made with an air fryer ... crispy and delicious with no oil!
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Brunch, Lunch
Cuisine All American
Servings 1 person


Reuben Sandwich

  • 2 pieces Rye bread Pumpernickle, marble or regular rye. Alternative is sprouted rye seed bread or a whole-grain bread of your choice.
  • 4 oz Tempeh Bacon-flavored or regular. Swap with tofu or roasted eggplant.
  • 1-2 fork fulls Sauerkraut A lot of great organic & fermented sauerkraut options out there ... your choice!
  • 1-2 slices Cheese Violife swiss or cheddar or Field Roast's Chao Vegan cheese, optional.

Russian Dressing

  • 2-3 tbsp Vegan Mayonnaise Vegenaise brand
  • 1 tbsp ketchup Low or no-sugar brand
  • hot sauce Optional, dash
  • 1 tsp Prepared horseradish To taste
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Optional, to taste
  • Salt & Pepper To taste
  • Earth Balance Vegan Butter To use on skillet

Marinated Tempeh (if don't use bacon-flavored)

  • 4 oz Tempeh
  • 1/2 cup Veggie Broth
  • 1 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp Liqiud smoke
  • 1 tsp Onion powder
  • 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder


  • Place tempeh in a marinade of onion powder, liquid smoke, smoked paprika, and garlic with vegetable broth. Marinate for 30 minutes.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat using a tablespoon of oil. Cook tempeh for 5 minutes, until both sides are nicely browned.
  • Make the Russian dressing, combining all the ingredients with a whisk. Set aside.
  • In a large skillet, melt vegan butter on the pan and place the bread inside. Cook for 3-4 minutes on both sides of bread.
  • Add the Russian dressing to one piece of bread. Add sauerkraut on top, then top with sautéed tempeh. Add a slice or two of cheese. Cover for a few minutes for the cheese to start melting.
  • Top with the second slice of bread and continue to cook until bread is browned and everything is cooked all the way through. Carefully flip over to brown on both sides.
  • Serve with a creamy tomato soup (also has a lot of anti-inflammatory properties) or a salad.


Melissa's Modifications:  Tofu, tempeh and edamame are all products of soybeans. They are a complete protein. These soybean products are also full of fiber, antioxidants, and omega-3 fatty acids. It was hard to choose one recipe to share with you. Since this sandwich feels like a comfort food to me, even though it's low in fat and high in protein, it felt like the right choice to share.
As noted, you can modify this recipe using tofu or grilled eggplant ... very delicious as well. This sandwich has a rich, nutty flavor.
Nutritional Value: Whole Sandwich - Calories 527; Carbs 39g; Fat 12.7g; Protein 19g
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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