Rachel Sandwich

This delicious Rachel sandwich recipe is a twist on the classic Reuben sandwich using roasted turkey, Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and thousand island dressing on rye bread, then grilled to golden perfection.

Two halves of sandwich stacked up on a plate.

If you love Reuben, then you’re going to be fast friends with his sister, Rachel. This delicious sandwich has all the flavor we love about Reubens but with a little twist that is so delicious. I had actually never heard of this kind of sandwich until a couple of years ago. A friend of mine was having a laid-back brunch party with sandwiches as casseroles – nothing fancy – and she had a plate of Rachel sandwiches for everyone to enjoy. Oh, boy, were those sandwiches good. I loved the hearty bread with the classic Reuben ingredients and turkey in place of corned beef. From then on, I was a big fan of this twist on a classic, and I’ve been making them ever since.

I love to make these sandwiches for parties or weekend lunches when my kids and grandkids come over. They’re a great meal to have outside on the deck or to bring on picnics. The hearty bread stands up to being made ahead of time and then enjoyed on a nice blanket with the family or your significant other.

Rachel Sandwich

This hearty sandwich is loaded with everything we love about Reubens, but it has a tasty twist that any turkey lover will enjoy. It starts with hearty rye bread. Then, it’s topped with Thousand Island dressing, cheese, turkey, and coleslaw to give all that delicious flavor we love so much in these sandwiches. Finally, they’re toasted to perfection in a frying pan for an extra layer of flavor and buttery goodness. It’s the perfect sandwich, and it makes a simple, hearty meal that everyone loves.

A sandwich laying on a silver tray.

Why You’ll Love This Rachel Sandwich Recipe

  • It’s a delicious, hearty grilled sandwich packed with roasted turkey, Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Thousand Island dressing.
  • It only takes a few simple ingredients and a few minutes to make them.
  • Everyone enjoys grilled sandwiches, especially these super-flavorful ones.

Rachel Sandwich Recipe Variations

This recipe is so easy to make that I have zero tips for it. The entire recipe is just a matter of filling the bread and then grilling it. It’s easy peasy. I do, however, have some variations that I think you’ll enjoy.

  • Try this recipe with homemade Thousand Island or Russian dressing.
  • Mix things up with pastrami or corned beef in place of turkey.
  • Give this sandwich a different flavor with sauerkraut in place of coleslaw.
  • Use your favorite hearty bread like sourdough or pumpernickel.
A sandwich cut in half stacked up on top of one another.

Rachel Sandwich Recipe FAQ

If you have questions about this recipe, then read on. The following FAQ answers the most commonly asked questions about Rachel sandwiches.

What is a Rachel sandwich?

It’s one of several variations of the Reuben. It uses turkey or pastrami in place of corned beef.

Where does the Rachel sandwich come from?

Honestly, no one knows. The murky history of this sandwich has some evidence that it existed as far back as 1931, although it didn’t have much to do with how we know the Rachel today. There’s a mention of a pastrami-based Rachel in a 1993 issue of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. That’s about as much as we know.

Why is it called The Rachel Sandwich?

Just like the sandwich itself, the history of its name is a mystery, although we can guess that because the Reuben is said to have gotten its name from an 1871 song called “Reuben and Rachel” that the Rachel’s name comes from the same song.

What’s the difference between a Reuben and a Rachel sandwich?

Both the Reuben and Rachel are made with Rye bread, Swiss cheese, and Russian dressing. However, the Reuben uses corned beef and sauerkraut while the Rachel uses turkey and coleslaw. In addition, the Rachel is often made with Thousand Island dressing instead of Russian dressing.

Can I use a different kind of bread?

Absolutely. Any hearty bread will work. Breads like pumpernickel, sourdough, rustic brioche, and other substantial breads will work.

Can I use sauerkraut instead of coleslaw?

Absolutely. You can do anything you want with these sandwiches. Using sauerkraut will make your Rachel a bit more Reuben-esque.

A bite of sandwich being held up.

How to Make Thousand Island Dressing

It’s easy to make your own Thousand Island dressing. Simply mix the following ingredients thoroughly and chill them until ready to use.

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 2-teaspoons finely diced onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2-3 dashes tabasco (optional)

How to Store and Reheat This Rachel Sandwich Recipe

It’s best to make only as many sandwiches as will be eaten. However, if you do have leftovers, you can place them in an air-tight container and refrigerate them for up to 3 days.

To reheat these sandwiches, wrap them in aluminum foil and baked them in the oven at 325 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.

Three halves of sandwiches stacked up and sitting on a silver plate.

Rachel Sandwich Recipe Ingredients

It only takes a handful of simple ingredients to make this sandwich. You’ll find them all easily at your local grocery store.

  • Roasted turkey breast
  • Deli Swirl Rye and Pumpernickel bread
  • Swiss cheese
  • Coleslaw
  • Butter
  • Thousand island dressing

How to Make This Rachel Sandwich Recipe

Making this sandwich is a snap. It only takes a few minutes!

Step 1: Butter the Bread

Butter one side of each piece of bread for the sandwiches.

Step 2: Construct the Sandwiches

On the other side of each slice of bread, add a tablespoon of Thousand Island dressing. Then, layer 4 slices of bread with cheese, turkey, and coleslaw and then add the top piece of bread.

Step 3: Grill

In a large skillet, grill one or two sandwiches at a time over medium-high heat until both sides are golden brown. Repeat until all sandwiches are finished.

A double photo collage of a Rachel sandwich.

Try This Delicious Rachel Sandwich Recipe Today

This Rachel sandwich recipe is so easy to make and so full of flavor. It’s the perfect combination! With tons of sweet and tangy Thousand Island, creamy coleslaw, Swiss cheese, and tender roasted turkey breast, these sandwiches are super hearty, super flavorful, and super easy to make. It doesn’t get better than that! Give this recipe a try, and I guarantee you’ll find yourself making it again and again.

A three photo collage of Rachel sandwiches sitting on a light silver tray.

More Sandwich Recipes for You to Enjoy

Monte Cristo Sandwich –  A delicious sandwich that is half French toast, half deli sandwich that is then coated in a light dusting of powdered sugar.

Patty Melt – A Whataburger copy cat recipe made with two hamburger patties, grilled onions, special sauce, and placed on two slices of thick Texas toast.

Sub Sandwich – A hearty sandwich made with three different types of lunch meat, provolone cheese, condiments, and fresh lettuce and tomatoes.

Also, try this Club Sandwich from Deliciously Seasoned. It’s made with perfectly toasted bread, turkey, ham, cheese, and fresh lettuce and slices of tomato.

Two halves of sandwich stacked up on a plate.

Rachel Sandwich

Great Grub, Delicious Treats

The Rachel Sandwich is a hearty and filling sandwich made with turkey, swiss, thousand island dressing and coleslaw.

Prep Time 15 mins

Cook Time 5 mins

Total Time 20 mins

Course Dinner, Lunch

Cuisine American

Servings 4 Sandwiches

Calories 454 kcal


  • 1 rotisserie roasted bone-in turkey breast
  • 8 slices deli swirl rye and pumpernickel bread
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • 14 ounce bag Dole® coleslaw salad kit
  • cup softened butter
  • ¼ cup thousand island dressing


  • Heat a large frying pan over medium high heat.

  • Remove turkey breast off the bone and place on a plate until ready to use.

  • Butter one side of each piece of bread.

  • On the other side of each piece of bread, add a tablespoon (or more) of thousand island dressing.

  • Next, layer 4 slices of bread with cheese, turkey, coleslaw and the remaining 4 pieces of bread.

  • Grill one or two sandwiches at a time until golden brown on both sides then repeat with remaining sandwiches.


Nutritional values are approximate.


Please note that these values can change with different brands and any modifications made to the recipe. For the most accurate information, use a nutritional calculator with the exact brands and measurements.


Calories: 454kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 12gFat: 28gSaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 61mgSodium: 731mgPotassium: 312mgFiber: 6gSugar: 8gVitamin A: 749IUVitamin C: 37mgCalcium: 245mgIron: 3mg

Keyword Rachel Sandwich, Rachel Sandwich Recipe, The Rachel Sandwich

Here are a few pics that are perfect to save to your favorite Pinterest boards on Pinterest. Also, you can follow us on PinterestFacebook and Instagram. Remember to “like” or “follow” us on all social media.

Enjoy, Terri

A sandwich cut in half and stacked up on a silver plate.
A bite of a Rachel sandwich being held up.

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