A little while ago, I went to a vegan restaurant with my grandmother called Positivitea in Verona NJ. Their whole menu was awesome, but they had one item that particularly stood out to me: a veggie burger with sauerkraut on a pretzel bun. I thought it was genius, so naturally I created a recipe to put my own spin on it.
Making this sandwich was a bit of a process because I made almost everything from scratch, including the pretzel buns, vegan cheese, and thousand island dressing. However, it does not have to be a time-intensive project if you don’t want it to be. In fact, with a few tweaks, this recipe can easily come together in less than an hour. The key ingredients to this sandwich are the corned tempeh, sauerkraut, and thousand island dressing. The pretzel buns are an awesome addition, but rye bread is also an easy and classic option for a reuben.
Making the vegan cheese was an interesting experience. I attempted to make a “sharp beer cheddar” (note: not all beers are vegan, so always check before purchasing!). The cheese came out…okay. I wasn’t particularly impressed with it, and I think the recipe should definitely be improved upon before sharing it with all of you. The sharp cheesiness and beer flavor worked well with the sandwich, but I think any vegan cheese variety would work for this. You could also use some avocado slices, or just omit that component completely! You have complete creative authority over your reuben.
- -For the Corned Tempeh-
- 3 cups Vegetable Broth
- 1 cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce
- 1 White Onion, quartered
- 4 Cloves Garlic, peeled
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1/2 tsp Black Peppercorns
- 2 8-oz. pkg. tempeh, sliced on the bias
- -For the Thousand Island Dressing-
- 1/2 cup Cashews, soaked in water, drained and rinsed
- 1/4 cup Fresh Water
- 1/4 cup Vegan Mayonnaise
- 1 Dill Pickle
- 2 tsp Sweet Relish
- 1 tbsp Pickle Juice
- 1/4 cup Ketchup
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- -For Sandwich Assembly-
- Vegan Cheese or Avocado Slices, optional
- 8 Pretzel Buns, or 16 slices of Rye Bread
- To make the Corned Tempeh, combine vegetable broth, soy sauce, onion, garlic,bay leaves, and peppercorns in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the sliced tempeh and bring to a boil. Then let it to simmer for 30 minutes. Cover and allow the tempeh to cool in the brine.
- To make the Thousand Island Dressing, blend the cashews, fresh water, vegan mayo, pickle, sweet relish, pickle juice, and ketchup in a high speed blender until smooth.
- To assemble the sandwiches, place the corned tempeh, vegan cheese, sauerkraut, and thousand island dressing (in that order) on your bread of choice.