Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs
March 2, 2019
Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs are juicy bites of delicious kofta packed with fresh herbs, citrus, spices and grilled to perfection. Perfect for a party!
These little lamb kabobs are delicious all on their own but absolutely awesome wrapped up in a flatbread and topped with a little hummus, fresh veggies, grilled veggies and mint leaves. You are just going to love Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs because they are packed full of flavor with ground onions, garlic, turmeric, spices, lemon and mint leaves.
What the heck is a kofta?
A Kofta is a type of meatball found in the Indian subcontinent, South Caucasian, Middle Eastern, Balkan, and Central Asian cuisines. Koftas are made with minced or ground meat such as beef, chicken, lamb, or pork and then mixed with spices and onions.
Lamb vs other Ground Meats
We are huge lamb fans. What about you guys? If you do not like lamb, you can make this recipe with ground beef or ground turkey instead. Do you know who else is a huge fan of lamb? You guessed it! It’s the Healthy World Cuisine Cleanup crew and mascot. As soon as these delicious juicy Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs hit the grill this little guy was going nuts. The aroma from the stove was just more than he could take. He was running around the kitchen island and circle to see what the heck was going on, on top of the “Alter of Awesomness” ie: STOVE.
Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs Make Ahead Party Plan
Are you ready for spring? We sure are. The shoveling a snow path out to the BBQ Grill is so overrated. Today, we brought the party inside and used a grill pan on the stove top. Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs makes for a fun interactive party with friends. You can prepare everything in advance and just grill the kabobs when they arrive. We served our kabobs with flat breads (pita breads), Better than Store Bought Red Pepper Hummus, olives, Middle Eastern Rice and Lentils (Mujadara), fresh cut tomatoes, cucumbers, Easy Tabbouleh Lebanese Salad, grilled red bell peppers, fresh mint leaves, lettuce and fresh lemons. If you are looking for a perfect MAKE AHEAD sweet ending to this party, be sure to try our Lemon Rose Cardamom Cheesecake Mousse.
Can you reheat your Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs?
You most certainly can, but they are much better fresh and hot off the grill. If you do want to make your Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs in advance or cook once and eat twice for meal prep, do not reheat in the microwave. It is best to do on the stove top with a little olive oil and a couple of teaspoons of oil and a lid on the pan and let them steam for a few minutes until heated through to keep them moist.
How long should we cook ground lamb kebabs?
Lamb is best cooked to about medium rare so about 3 minutes on each side. In order for the Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs to cook evenly it is best to get your kofta in the same shape and a bit flat for cooking even. If you want to bake instead of grill, preheat oven to 425 degrees F and bake for about 15 – 17 minutes or until medium. Check out this step by step process…
What spices should we add?
The addition of spices is completely up to you and what you have in your pantry. At bear minimum you need to onion, garlic, salt and pepper. We additionally added turmeric, paprika, lemon zest and a few mint leaves. If you have ground sumac or coriander those are also lovely additions. We really like the little fresh lemon zest and mint leaves help to balance the richness of the lamb. We also like to drizzle a little fresh lemon juice upon serving. tzatziki sauce can be served as a delicious topping too. However, dairy and us have not been on good terms lately so we skipped it.
Tips and Tricks for Making Delicious Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs
- Soak your wooden skewer sticks for at least 30 minutes before grilling. You will need two wooden skewers for each of the Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs so it is easier to turn on the grill.
- If you can find the traditional flat metal Lebanese skewers, even better and easier for you.
- Use a food processor to finely chop the onion, garlic and mint
- Squeeze out all the extra juice from the onion, garlic and mint BEFORE mixing it in the ground lamb. This is a very important step to help the lamb stick to the skewer sticks. If the lamb mixture is too moist, it will not adhere to the skewers and it will just be a one hot mess.
- Another quick tip is to freeze your Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs on the skewer in the freezer for about 30 minutes just before grilling and this helps them keep their shape on the grill.
Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs
March 2, 2019
Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs are juicy bites of delicious kofta packed with fresh herbs, citrus, spices and grilled to perfection.
- Prep: 30 mins
- Cook: 10 mins
- Yields: 4 servings
1Soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes before grilling.
2Place onion, garlic and mint leaves into food processor and pulse until finely grated. Squeeze all the extra juice out from the onion, garlic and mint leaves with your hands. (Very important step so that your ground lamb stays on the skewers)
3Place your ground lamb, ground onion, garlic and mint leaf mixture in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste, turmeric, paprika and lemon zest and mix well.
4Roll your lamb mixture into large meatball and then take 2 of your pre-soaked skewers and place on the meatball. Make the meatball into a long sausage shape and then flatten out the sausage between 2 fingers so that it is a bit flatter so it cooks evenly. You should end up with 4 – 6 ground lamb skewers.
5Place the lamb skewers on a lined baking sheet with parchment paper so that it does not stick. Place the lamb skewers in the freezer for 30 minutes (important step to keep the ground lamb on the skewers)
6Preheat grill or stove top grill plate to medium high heat and grease with a little olive oil. Grill for about 3 - 4 minutes on each side or until medium. Do not overcook lamb or it will be dry.
7Drizzle the Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kabobs with a little fresh lemon juice and serve with fresh pita (flat breads, fresh cut cucumbers, tomatoes, onion slices, hummus, fresh mint leaves, lettuce) and enjoy.
8Chef's Notes: Feel free to substitute ground beef or turkey instead of lamb. However, if you use beef or turkey you will have to increase your cooking times on the grill. If you do not have a grill or grill pan, you may also bake at 425 degrees F for about 15-17 minutes for lamb or until medium.