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Beef Kofta Kebabs with Cumin and Zaatar

Beef kofta kebabs with Lebanese influences, flavoured with zaatar, cumin & fresh coriander these minced beef bites are a real belly pleaser.

Preparation takes just 5 minutes and cooking takes just 10 minutes. Simply mix everything together and let it sit for an hour or so and these bad boys are ready to rock!

Minced beef kofta kebabs served with salad, pita bread and sauces.

Minced Beef Kabobs

Who doesn’t love food cooked on sticks, I have no idea why, but it just feels right!

These minced or ground beef kebabs join dishes like chicken tikka kebabs, chicken shashlik, BBQ chicken kebabs, lamb souvlaki and vegetarian harissa halloumi kebabs in that category.

I even have some wonderful minced lamb kofta kebabs that are very much a sister recipe to this dish with slightly different spices.

They are supremely easy to make, the only chopping required is for the fresh coriander. Other than that it is a case of chucking stuff in a bowl and mixing.

Flavour wise they have loose Lebanese influences with cumin and zaatar doing much of the heavy lifting. Smoked paprika and turmeric join the party with garlic and onion granules rounding everything out.

When it comes to cooking we go from really easy to even easier, and quicker!

Throw them in a griddle pan or on a BBQ and after a bit of flipping, they are ready to eat in less than 10 minutes!

You can even take the meat, stuff it in to pita breads and grill/bake them and turn them into arayes!

Close up Lebanese influenced minced beef kofta kebabs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the best way to cook these kebabs?

The BBQ does give better results, that smoky flavour is superb. But in reality, I cook and eat these kebabs all year round and the stovetop makes perfectly good kebabs.

Do I have to use bamboo skewers?

No metal skewers work just as well. I tend to avoid skewers with a round profile because I find them more difficult to flip over!

Do I have to allow the meat to sit for an hour?

No, they will still taste great if mixed and cooked straight away. But marinating does amplify the flavour.

Can I use lean minced or ground beef?

I would honestly say no! The fat in the beef is the “conduit” for the spicing and using lean minced beef both reduces the flavour but also leads to dry kebabs.

Lime wedges being squeezed over Lebanese influenced beef kofta kebabs.

Serving Suggestions

I like to serve this beef kofta kebabs with griddled pita bread, some salad, wedges of lime and some sauces.

I would slide off the meat and stuff the pita bread and turn them into salad-laden kebabs.

Sauce wise I favour kebab-shop style garlic sauce and rather than chilli sauce I add a drizzle of pomegranate molasses.

When it comes to salad, I would usually chop some red onion, cucumber, lettuce and tomatoes simply dressed in olive oil.

But if you wanted something a little different then my spicy cucumber salad or giant couscous salad would work really well with these beef kofta.

Overhead beef kofta kebabs served with salad, pita bread and sauces.

Equipment Used

I don’t usually recommend specific brands of kit unless I think that it will genuinely help. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
  • Chopping board.
  • Sharp kitchen knife.
  • 6 Skewers, I favour bamboo skewers with a square profile.
  • Stovetop or BBQ.
  • Griddle pan if cooking on a stovetop.
  • Mixing bowl.
  • Cling film.
Lebanese influenced minced beef kofta kebabs served with salad, pita bread and sauces.
Yield: 2 Servings

Beef Kofta kebab Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Marinade Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

These quick and easy beef kofta kebabs with Lebanese influences are superb cooked in a griddle pan or on a BBQ and marinade time aside take just 20 minutes to prepare and cook.

Ingredients

  • 350g (12oz) Minced Beef (15-20% fat)
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 1 Tbsp Zaatar
  • 1 Tsp Onion Granules
  • ½ Tsp Garlic Granules
  • ½ Tsp Salt
  • ½ Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 Tsp Smoked Paprika
  • ¼ Tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 20g (1 Cup) Fresh Coriander
  • 1 Lime

Instructions

  1. Place all of the spices and salt in a bowl with the minced beef.
  2. Chop the coriander as finely as you can and add it to the beef with the egg yolk.
  3. Mix everything together, getting stuck in with your hands squidging everything together.
  4. Cover with cling film and place in the fridge for at least an hour. The longer you leave the marinade the better the flavour of the kebabs. Leave them for up to 24 hours.
  5. If you are using bamboo skewers allow them to soak in cold water for 30 minutes before cooking.
  6. Separate the beef into 6 portions and form them into sausage shapes around the skewers.
  7. Place them into the fridge to firm up whilst you heat the griddle pan or fire up the BBQ.

To cook on a stovetop:

  1. Heat a griddle pan over a high heat and when it is searingly hot brush with a little oil.
  2. Add the kebabs and cook for 90 seconds to 2 minutes, flip them over and cook for the same time on the other side. Flip each kebabs onto the sides and sear them for 30 seconds just to finish the colouring of the meat.
  3. Finish the kebabs with a squeeze of lime juice whilst they are very hot.

To cook on a BBQ or Grill:

  1. When the BBQ is hot brush the grill plate with a little oil.
  2. Cook the kebabs and cook for 60 to 90 seconds over direct heat, the flip them over and cook for the same time on the other side. Flip each kebabs onto the sides and sear them for 30 seconds just to finish the colouring of the meat.
  3. Finish the kebabs with a squeeze of lime juice whilst they are very hot.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 520Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 248mgSodium: 835mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 49g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

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