Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! You might have noticed by now that we really enjoy grilled cheese sandwiches at the Djalali House. So today we have an easy St. Paddy’s Day recipe: a Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich with Sauerkraut and Dijon mustard. I love this for St. Patrick’s Day this year because it’s super casual, easy and delicious. So, crack open a Guinness, get a bag of salt and vinegar chips, and let’s get to the recipe!

Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

Corned Beef

I opted to get my corned beef sliced thin at the deli counter so I can fold and layer them in the sandwich, but thick slices work great for this too. I have rye bread, Fontina cheese, sauerkraut and Dijon mustard.

We want to start by browning the corned beef slices in a little oil over low/medium-low heat; Just so they warm through and get a little color on them. The browning will give the slices a nice crispy sear. While the corned beef is browning, get a separate pan warm, over low heat with a knob of butter. Spread Dijon over one side of one of the rye slices and lay both slices in the foaming, melted butter.

toasting the rye bread

When the corned beef has some nice browning, scoot it over to one side of your pan and add your desired amount of sauerkraut. I have a small handful that I have squeezed to drain off the excess brine. We only need to warm the sauerkraut through – so keep the heat low and just let it warm up while we build the sandwich n the other skillet.

browning the corned beef slices

Build the Sandwich

Take a peek at the toasted sides of the rye bread. If they are slightly toasted, we can build the sandwich. Start the layering by folding and layering slices of corned beef on the Dijon side of the rye bread.

Then pile the warm sauerkraut on the corned beef, and finally layer the Fontina slices on top of the sauerkraut. Carefully flip the other slice of rye on top of the Fontina, so the toasty side is facing out.

pressing the Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich with a bacon press

I have a bacon press to flatten the sandwich, if you don’t have a bacon press, you can use a sturdy spatula (a stainless steel one will work best). Lay the flat part of the spatula on the sandwich, and with an oven mitt on your other hand, press the flat part of the spatula to flatten the sandwich into the pan. Check the underside of the sandwich and if it’s toasted to your liking, flip it over and continue toasting the bread until it’s golden.

Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

Slice it in half and enjoy it while the cheese is hot and melty! Fontina is such a milky, creamy cheese with a mild flavor that goes really well with the corned beef and the sauerkraut. Serve it with some chips, if you like and maybe a Guinness. It’s a perfect St. Patrick’s Day lunch or dinner. Or if you’re having a full-on corned beef dinner with all the fixin’s, this would be a great way to enjoy the leftovers tomorrow.

Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Though I never went to any big St. Patrick’s Day parades, I did quite enjoy finding some live Traditional Irish music to see and while that’s not happening for us this year, there are so many great videos of live Traditional Irish music on YouTube. I particularly like this one from Dolan’s Pub in Limerick; have a watch and a listen!

Well, friends I hope that you give this Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich a try, honestly it’s delicious any day, no need to only enjoy it on St. Paddy’s Day! How do you enjoy celebrating St. Patrick’s Day? Let me know in the comments or reach out on Instagram! Take care and be well, everyone! xo Kelly

Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

Kitchen Tools Used in Today’s Recipe

Grilled Corned Beef and Fontina Sandwich

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Dinner, Main Course, Lunch
By Kelly Djalali Serves: 1 Sandwich
Prep Time: 5 Minutes Cooking Time: 15 Minutes Total Time: 20 Minutes

Seared Corned Beef slices sandwiched with melty, gooey Fontina Cheese, Sauerkraut and Dijon on Rye Bread. Toasted to perfection!


  • Corned Beef, sliced thin or thick
  • Fontina Cheese, sliced
  • Sauerkraut
  • Dijon Mustard
  • 2 Slices Rye Bread
  • Butter
  • Olive Oil



In a skillet over low/medium-low heat, drizzle a little olive oil and lightly brown the corned beef slices.


In a separate skillet, melt butter over medium-low heat and lay two slices of Rye bread in the skillet. Spread Dijon mustard on one slice of the bread.


When the corned beef has some nice searing, move it to one side of the pan and add the sauerkraut to the pan just to warm it though and turn off the heat.


Arrange the corned beef slices on the Dijon-coated slice of rye and then pile the sauerkraut on top of the corned beef.


Then lay the Fontina cheese slices on the sauerkraut and top with the other slice of rye, toasted side facing out.


Use a bacon press or a firm spatula to firmly press the sandwich into the pan.


Once the bottom slice of rye is toasted and golden, flip the sandwich and continue toasting the other side.


When both sides are toasted and golden, transfer to a plate, slice in half and enjoy!


Aside from two slices of Rye Bread, use whatever ratios of cheese, corned beef, Dijon and sauerkraut you prefer.

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  • Susan
    March 17, 2021 at 8:23 am

    I decided since it is only my husband and me, I would try one of your skillet pizzas,only try to make it Irish in content-layer cheese,cabbage,onions,bacon and more cheese. Serving with beer of course and see how that goes. May the luck of the irish always be with you,etc. Best wishes! keep up the posting. I really emjpy your cooking ideas,etc.

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2021 at 8:38 am

      Happy St. Patrick’s day, Susan! That sounds like a fantastic way to celebrate the holiday! Definitely let me know how the skillet pizza goes for you, the combination sounds amazing! Thanks so much for sharing your plans! May the Luck of the Irish be with You! xo Kelly

  • Ann Ailsworth
    March 17, 2021 at 8:46 am

    Kelly, I I am an experienced cook, but love the simplicity and variety of the recipes on your blog. You take simple recipes, as well as more complex ones, give easy- to- follow directions with beautiful photographs and make any dish easy to prepare. Thank you for a blog thst I look forward to reading daily.

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2021 at 9:00 am

      Good Morning, Ann. Thank you so much for reaching out! I am so happy that my posts resonate with you, especially since you’re an experienced cook! My goal is to simplify recipes and inspire intuitive cooking, so it means a lot to me to get your feedback. Have a great day and thank you again! xo Kelly

  • Terry
    March 17, 2021 at 10:49 am

    Good morning, I like this recipe will make this with the left overs ❤️Mom

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2021 at 11:01 am

      Nice, Mom! You’ll like it. xo Kelly

  • Terry
    March 18, 2021 at 9:32 pm

    We made this it was great. ????❤️Mom

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 19, 2021 at 8:39 am

      That’s great Mom! I am so happy you liked it! xo Kelly

  • Deanna
    March 17, 2022 at 10:01 am

    We usually make out Corned Beef sandwiches with Swiss cheese. Definitely going to give your recipe a try with the Fontina cheese. And with the Dijon mustard!

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2022 at 10:53 am

      Hi Deanna, Swiss is always great. I love the fontina because it’s so buttery. Give it a try and let me know how you like it! xo Kelly

      • Susan
        March 17, 2022 at 7:24 pm

        I had originally planned a deli sandwich of corned beef, baby swiss, coleslaw and thousand island dressing – then I read your blog and switched it up slightly- mixed up the Dijon mustard with thousand island dressing, warmed up the corned beef, layered it on the hot bread with my secret sauce and cheese and then when the pressed sandwich came off the stove top, added the coleslaw! It was great! We listened to your Irish music too!

        • Kelly Djalali
          March 18, 2022 at 8:29 am

          Hi Susan! I am so happy you changed up your menu and it was a hit! Also, Isn’t that a great little performance video. I really love traditional Irish music, and this video was fun to watch and listen to. Thanks for writing in! xo Kelly

  • Mari
    March 17, 2022 at 10:17 am

    Sadly no one here eats corned beef, including me. We didn’t eat it growing up, but my daughter did marry into an Irish American family, and corned beef was a thing at their house. I grew up in a German Irish town, and March 17th always produced a sea of green. Friends teased us by wearing orange, although at the time I didn’t realize the implications of orange! Our achool uniforms were blue plaid with green and yellow interspersed. Some kids wore green cardigans or scarves, or. carried novelty handkerchiefs. In my family, we didn’t do that. My mother’s nod to the day was to ignore it! Later when I lived in Chicago, which was home to a lot of Irish Americans,, there was a big parade, and Lake Michigan was colored green, all in good fun. Mayor Daley was always there at the parade. Regardless of political affiliations, he was Chicago for a long time. I can’t pass up grilled cheese, so Im using pastrami on my sandwich. While Im still ambivalent about St. Patrick’s Day, I’m not ambivalent about gooey melted cheese. Being of Welsh descent, I give a nod to Saint David’s Day by buying a lovely bunch of daffodils. We will have sandwiches tonight and drink to your health, which is the only Irish tradition we have. ? Happy Thursday to my Djalalis, Terry and the blog sisters. I still don’t wear green!

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2022 at 10:57 am

      Hi Mari, Pastrami will be a good substitute for the corned beef. I am sure you will enjoy the super-melty Fontina! It’s been many years since I went out for St. Patrick’s Day, I surely don’t mind raising a shot of good Irish Whiskey in toasting. Have a wonderful evening, let me know how you like the sandwich! xo Kelly

  • Terry
    March 17, 2022 at 10:35 am

    Good morning happy Patrick’s day ☘️?
    I totally forgot about this sandwich so glad you reposted we are having this for dinner tonight.. have a great day cheers ?mom

    • Kelly Djalali
      March 17, 2022 at 10:58 am

      It’s a great sandwich, Mom; too good to pass up for this year’s St. Paddy’s Day! Happy St. Patrick’s Day! xo Kelly