It’s grilling season! We love to fire up the grill around here, especially if it involves plenty of fresh seasonal produce on the side. I’m always excited to add new favorites. I love experimenting with creative ethnic dishes especially, so I thought I’d try making kofta kebabs and they turned out really well!
If you’ve tried and liked my Greek meatballs with tzatziki, you’ll probably like these too.
What Are Kofta Kebabs?
As you probably know, kebabs simply means food on a stick. Fewer people know what kofta is. Kofta is a meatloaf or meatball entree.
When it’s put on a stick and grilled, it’s a kofta kebab!
Several eastern European and western Asian cultures have their own kofta recipes. While the herbs and spices vary from place to place, what remains common is that they’re used to flavor ground meat. Sometimes it’s ground beef or lamb (as it is in this recipe), but ground chicken or pork would work too.
Kofta kebabs are sometimes served alongside a salad like tabbouleh or wrapped in a flatbread. I recommend serving them with a big Greek salad. It’s a delicious combo.
Making and Cooking Kofta Kebabs
Making these kebabs is pretty straightforward. Planning ahead is the tricky part.
It’s important to make these in advance and then refrigerate them overnight before cooking to let the flavors meld. I like to put them on the sticks before refrigerating so that they’re all ready to go when I’m ready to cook the next day. Watch this pro put them on sticks — it’s kind of mesmerizing!
When you’re making your kebabs you can make them long and skinny like logs or fatter like an oblong meatball. Just keep in mind that the thicker they are, the longer they’ll take to cook (and vice versa).
Grilling Tip: Kebabs like to slide around the stick, making them difficult to flip. I recommend using two pairs of tongs or a pair of grilling gloves. Once they start to cook they’ll stick a little better.
Kofta Kebabs Recipe
- If using bamboo skewers, place 8 in water to soak.
- In a medium size bowl, mix together the ground lamb, onion, parsley, garlic, salt, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, red pepper flakes, and pepper.
- Divide the mixture evenly into 8 balls.
- Roll each ball into a log shape and squeeze onto a skewer until the meat is covering most of the length of the skewer.
- Place on a baking sheet and refrigerate overnight to let flavors meld.
- Preheat an outdoor grill on high heat and cook about 3 minutes per side until the lamb is cooked.
Have you ever made kofta kebabs? Do you have any tips and tricks to share?