Elena Ruz Sandwich Recipe (2024)



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Actually, the cranberry sauce taste (which I enjoy) would be repellant in this sandwich. Why is it so hard for readers to try the recipe--then post comments--instead of just coming up with entirely new recipes to (cough) share.


So excited to see this recipe! On a visit to Miami several years ago, a friend, who’s Cuban, took me to a little sandwich joint in Hialeah and they had this sandwich. I thought, “Turkey with cream cheese and… strawberries? But that is unusual enough that I bet it’s awesome.” And it was. So so good and I am going to make this ASAP.


Sadly, I can only get this sandwich when visiting the Greater Miami area--not found in all restaurants--lighter than a "Cubano" it goes well any time, particularly for a late night snack. Some restaurants over do it with the strawberry preserves. Flavors should balance--saltiness of cream cheese and turkey with strawberries preserves. Yes, one can experiment, but if changing more than one ingredient it is not longer Elena Ruz.


I made this just like the recipe, but with one change. I omitted the strawberry preserves (I'm not too fond of those tiny seeds) and added cherry preserves, which added a bit of tartness. Everyone liked it. The next time I made it, I put a slab of ham on there with the turkey, which is a more traditional Cuban sandwich, and it was even better. For the guy who said he disapproved of changing recipes, well, here you go.


Lingonberry jam… so yummy with Turkey or chicken


@Juarroz: Towards the bottom of this page, at least at the time I first saw it, there is a heading that says something like "Tip: if you want, you can use leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving instead of preserves." Perhaps instead of readers "coming up with entirely new recipes to (cough) share", they are, well, reading.

Christina Morales

Hi Gigi! Sorry about the difficulties with the bread. I’d recommend anything that’s slightly sweet. Besides challah, Hawaiian bread may be another substitute. The texture won’t be the same, but the sweetness goes well with the sandwich. Hope it helps!


I grew up in Miami eating Cuban food and this sandwich is one of my favorites. Thanks for the reminder. I wondered what to use since I can't get medianoche rolls where I live now. A brioche bun sounds like a good substitute.

Bill G.

This recipe is great for supper on the day after Thanksgiving. Use brioche hot dog buns and 3 1/2 ounces of turkey. Do not overfill. I used Neufchatel cheese and needed a little more than the suggested amount to get the 1/3 inch layer. Strawberry preserves contains whole strawberries and can be difficult to spread evenly. Some might prefer strawberry jam.


For years my family has loved a post - Thanksgiving sandwich related to this: white sandwich bread, toasted, turkey, cream cheese, cranberry sauce, lettuce. Bacon optional.


Lightly toasting the sandwich in the pan is only to toast the bread. The filling should be cool.


I would try with hot-pepper jelly !


When in Miami I try to stop in the Versailles Restaurant if I have time but would never think to try their Elena Ruz Sandwich which I note is priced at $7.50. Since I was going to ALDI today I got their brioche hot dog buns (6 ea), thin sliced turkey breast, strawberry preserves and whipped cream cheese and made one of these sandwiches. It was really tasty and will add it to my regular sandwich list. I spent more than $7.50 but have enough to make at least 6 sandwiches.

Melanie Bowman

This recipe is very similar to one of my Mother's signature dishes. In her recipe you mix the cranberry sauce and creamed cheese and add walnuts. Spread it on a croissant with turkey and lettuce. So delicious! But I am going to try this as written, it sounds great!


I made it more contemporary by using grape jelly, spam and blue cheese spread on a croissant to ad a french accent to the dish. You could call it American in Paris visits Cuba. Gives it a nice vintage feel imo.


Loved it!! Very tasty.


Please, dismiss “ the tip” at the end of this recipe. Do not substitute the strawberry preserves with leftover cranberry sauce!!! The combination of strawbery preserves and cream cheese in the Elena Ruz is what makes this sandwich unique and delicious. No substitutes, please!

tink lizzie

Also yummy with turkey, cranberry sauce and a little shaved red onion

Alejandro Benes

NIce. But I'm always curious as to why a dish as classic as this (and the Cuban sandwich) is subject to alteration. In my opinion, once the strawberry jam is substituted by any other fruit preserve, the sandwich is no longer the Elena Ruz. I am all for the evolution of recipes and their improvement or customization. Just call it something else.

Marnie O.

yum. i make this w/ fig jam. and it's fab. sweet and salty, nothing better.


Absolutely delicious! This recipe reminds me of living in South Florida. Being far from there, I used split Brioche hot dogs rolls. Definitely a good substitute for the beloved medianoche roll. It's sweet and savory qualities are welcomed Cuban comfort food. This sandwich will be on rotation at our home.

Carrie Anderson

Tried this with a brioche hot dog bun and had a bit of a mess in the pan. Used a brioche hamburger bun on the second try and most of the spreads stayed on much better. My six (6) year old and my husband loved this. This will be on rotation for a nice cold weather lunch.


I made this as written on brioche sliders side by side with ones where I subbed jellied cranberry sauce. Even with just a little strawberry jam we found the original too sweet. The combo was a little jarring at first bite which was surprising because I love salty/sweet. To be fair, I find most jams too sweet for my taste so I'm sure it's me.Not to say I'd never have it again but I've loved the cranberry version for years so that's probably going to be my first choice. Thank you for sharing.

Bobby Natlos

I tried this recipe but made my own substitutions. Instead of the bread I used an everything bagel and omitted the turkey and jelly. It was really good!

Bobby Natlos

Unusually good.


Delicious. Thanks for this simple way to use up leftover turkey.

A Pandey

Tasty and so quick to throw together. If you’re like me and prefer the swine - ham it up. But I’m sure a nice savory turkey would be fab too. I could see making this weekly.


Also delicious on Hawaiian Rolls

Lisa B

We love this sandwich, and we use a marionberry-habanero jam. Killer.

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Elena Ruz Sandwich Recipe (2024)
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