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kofta kabob
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5 from 3 votes

Beef Kofta Kabob (Kebab) Recipe

Tender and juicy beef kofta kabob recipe. May also use lamb or a mixture of both.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time4 hrs 40 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Assyrian, Middle Eastern
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 363kcal


  • 1 large onion
  • 2 T. dried parsley (or 1/2 cup fresh)
  • 2 tsp. dried mint
  • 2 lbs. ground beef 20% fat
  • 1 lb. ground lamb
  • 2-1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2-1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 T. sumac powder
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon


  • Place the chopped onion into a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Squeeze the liquid out of the onion and discard.
  • Next, add the parsley, and mint in a food processor. Pulse until the herbs are ground finely.
  • Add the onion, herbs, and the remaining ingredients to a bowl then mix by hand until thoroughly combined.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.
  • Divide the meat into 8 or 16 equal portions, depending on which size kabobs you're making.
  • Take one portion of the meat mixture and roll into a meatball. Push a flat skewer through the meat. 
  • Using the same hand that's holding the meatball, begin forming the meatball onto the skewer. If the meat is too sticky, wetting your hand will help.
  • Flatten the meat onto the skewer until you have formed a 6" kabob. If you want to make 12" kabobs, use twice as much meat.
  • Heat and oil the grill. Place skewers at an angle to give the kabobs the grill marks.
  • Turn the skewers over every minute. If they get stuck, use a spatula to carefully free them from the grill. Cook for 4 minutes or less per side. Don't overcook or they will dry out.


  • Wetting your hands when forming the kabobs over the skewers not only helps with forming them but also keeps the meat from sticking to your hands.
  • The difference between kofta kabobs and Shish Kabobs is that Shish Kabobs are skewered chunks of meat, while Kofta Kabobs are made with ground meat.
  • This recipe will yield eight 12" kabobs or sixteen 6" kabobs. 


Serving: 2small kabobs | Calories: 363kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 974mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g