Beef Shish Kabobs on the Grill Recipe

Grill Recipe For Beef Shish Kabobs

Kabobs, Kebabs, which is which and what is what?

Let’s begin this tutorial with a quick note. If you conduct any online search looking for “kabobs,” chances are that you will find your results written in the British form, “kebab.” Perhaps it is because, in America, the term is not used as widely, and when it is used it usually is to refer to shish kabobs which is one specific dish.

In contrast, throughout Europe and Asia, the term is used more widely and for a huge variety of dishes. As such, the internet may have more hits on the word “kebab” than the word “kabob.” So, there you have it. That’s just a little note, and the more you know the better it gets.

While the American “kabob” is more popularly known as the “meat on a stick” dish, the international “kebab” embodies many different dishes that represent the culture and country where they come from. Let’s explore the multifaceted “kebab” and see how our beef shish kabobs on the grill are alike and different from the rest of the world.

What are kabobs? (or kebabs)

The word itself, however you choose to spell it, comes from the Afghani and Turkish language all the way from the 17th century the kebab refers to the meat, which is marinated for days in order to maximize its flavor. It is then grilled and served with vegetables and put together (most notably with shish kabobs) on a stick.

However, your kabob experience is not limited to beef, and the spices vary from dish to dish.

Kabobs (Kebabs) 101

When the good people of Turkey created this dish, they literally threw it out of the ballpark with their kebab recipes. The most important factor is the flavor. The original Turkish sis kebab is loaded with seasonings, especially sumac and cumin. Mint leaves, fennel, turmeric and dill are also on the list of favorites.

The second most important factor is, of course, the meat. Lamb, chicken, beef, goat, turkey, pork, and even fish are all allowed in the game. The meat can be ground, cut into layers, or cubed. The important thing is to season the meat to perfection so it is ready to cook.

The third factor for a perfect kabob is to form the meat (if it is ground) around a metal rod. If the meat is pounded flat or minced it can be skewered into wooden skewers or bamboo sticks, combined with vegetables.

The last part is roasting the meat over an open fire, or a direct heat source that will evenly cook the meat and vegetables together. Keep in mind that the source of the fire will make a difference. There is a difference in flavor, as most of you already know, when meat is cooked over charcoal, wood chips, versus infrared heat.

Smoke flavor for beef kabobs

Here are some other popular kebab options that are known and loved worldwide:

Adana - A popular choice in Turkey where it originated in the city that gives it its name. This kebab is made with ground lamb, red pepper flakes, and traditional Turkish flavors such as cumin, sumac, pepper and garlic. Most Adana kebabs are skewered to a metal rod and served with pita bread due to the juicy and greasy nature of the meal (and to catch the drippings).

Beyti Kebab - This kebab can be made with lamb or beef. Lamb or beef is the main meat components of this kebab. These are served on a huge pita bread, naan Indian bread, or on a doughy loaf called a “lavish”. They are topped with yogurt and, sometimes, tomato sauce. This is a super popular version of kabobs among college students in Europe, since most food trucks offer this dish wrapped in aluminum foil and ready to go for those heavy party nights. You may even find that a gyro is a super similar version of this kebab.

Chicken Adana - This is the same version of the original lamb-based Adana but using ground chicken instead. The ground beef is worked around a metal rod and cooked to perfection. Texture-wise, the chicken version of the Adana is not too different than lamb; the secret to make it really outstanding is to stick with the seasonings that are so unique to Turkey.

Step by Step Guide: Cooking Beef Shish Kabobs On The Grill

For this recipe, we'll make beef shish kabobs. We will use cubed meat instead of ground.

You will need:

8 shish kabob rods, ​wood charcoal/wood chips for the grill.

Optional meat thermometer or a guide to meat temperature (I include here suggested meat temperatures).

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Adobo seasoning (or salt, pepper, garlic to taste)
  • 16 caps of bella mushrooms
  • 2 green bell peppers into chunks
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 16 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 pounds of your favorite cut of lean beef, cut into 1-inch cubes

For best results, I would recommend skirt steak, sirloin, or New York strip as choices for your meat.

Procedure

  1. ​For best results, make sure that all ingredients are cut in the same size. This helps all food to cook evenly.
  2. ​Spray olive oil on all of your ingredients.
  3. ​Sprinkle adobo on the meat.
  4. ​Marinate the meat (and veggies if you wish) in a combination of soy sauce, orange juice and Worcestershire sauce. Let the meat marinate for at least 1 hour.
  5. ​Fire your grill to high, and then bring to medium high heat.
  6. ​Skewer your ingredients in a pattern.
  7. Set up your skewers on the grill, and remove them when the internal temperature of the meat reaches your favorite finish.



Beef Shish Kabobs
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Beef Shish Kabob Recipe

Shish kabobs are the best and most versatile idea for a meal. Let’s explore the multifaceted “kebab” and see how our beef shish kabobs on the grill are alike and different from the rest of the world.

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Shish Kabob
Servings: 4
Calories: 182kcal

Equipment

8 shish kabob rods
Wood charcoal/wood chips for the grill
meat thermometer

Ingredients

  • 1/2

    Cup

    Soy sauce

  • 1/3

    Cup Olive oil

  • 1/4

    Cup Orange juice

  • 1

    Tablespoon

    Worcestershire sauce

  • Adobo seasoning (or salt, pepper, garlic to taste)

  • 16

    Caps

    Bella mushrooms

  • 2

    Green bell peppers into chunks

  • 1

    Large onion, cut into chunks

  • 16

    Cherry tomatoes

  • 1 1/2

    Pounds

    Your favorite cut of lean beef, cut into 1-inch cubes

Instructions

  • For best results, make sure that all ingredients are cut in the same size. This helps all food to cook evenly.

  • Spray olive oil on all of your ingredients.

  • Sprinkle adobo on the meat.

  • ​Marinate the meat (and veggies if you wish) in a combination of soy sauce, orange juice and Worcestershire sauce.

  • Let the meat marinate for at least 1 hour.

  • Fire your grill to high, and then bring to medium high heat.

  • ​Skewer your ingredients in a pattern.

  • Set up your skewers on the grill, and remove them when the internal temperature of the meat reaches your favorite finish.

Nutrition

Serving: 81g | Calories: 182kcal


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Quick Guide to Meat Temperature

  • Rare - 125 degrees Fahrenheit- This is your very red steak
  • Medium rare - 135 degrees Fahrenheit- A favorite temperature for red meat, this will make the meat look gray in the outside and red on the inside.
  • Medium - 145 degrees Fahrenheit- This is another favorite temperature. The meat is pink in the middle.
  • Medium well - 150 degrees Fahrenheit- Some pink on the meat, but not as bright as with medium.
  • Well done - 160 degrees Fahrenheit- No pink on the meat whatsoever.

Drinks and side dishes to complete the meal

The more elaborate and complex you make your shish kabobs, the more fun it will be to pair them to other foods and drinks. Shish kabobs are cooked on the grill, which means that they go great with other “outdoors” dishes.

Side Dishes

  • Potato salad
  • Potato chips
  • Fresh, house salads
  • Watermelon slices (make a great side dish for meats)
  • Baked potatoes
  • Macaroni salad
  • Crudites
  • Nachos

You may want to choose side dishes that do not overpower or deflect from the taste of the kabobs. Focus on garnishing your kabobs more than fixing side dishes. Let the kabobs be the star of the show.

Drinks

As far as drinks, the sky's the limit. Most picnic foods, like shish kabobs, pair perfectly with drinks that are fresh and hydrating. As far as alcohol goes, shish kabobs pair perfectly well with Belgium beers (with an orange base) and Pale Ales. Light beer is also a great choice because it does not overpower the flavor of the meat.

Wines - As a red meat, shish kabobs pair perfectly well with strong reds such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Pinot Noir. If red wine is not your thing, try a white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio. A sweeter wine, like Moscato, could be an addition to your meal, if you want a combination of sweet and savory.

Soft Drinks - Nothing complements shish kabobs better than a homemade lemonade with all the trimmings. Mint Juleps are also fantastic not only as a refreshing drink, but the mint is also a natural aid for digestion.

Add side dishes and drinks for kabobs

Wrap up

Get fancy the easy way with a Mediterranean favorite that is also healthy. With shish kabobs, you can get really creative in terms of how you want to mix your protein and veggies for the day. You also get a filling snack that can be low in calories and carbohydrates.

Most importantly, it is a meal that is cheap, easy to make, and so much fun to eat. Feeling creative? You can always substitute veggies for fruit and roast them together with the meat as well. Roasted fruits can also be delicious. Pineapple, grapefruit, and other delicious additions can all play along when it comes to shish kabobs.

Having a luau party? Bring out the kabobs! Birthday party? Picnic? Fun in the sun? You name it! Shish kabobs are the best and most versatile idea for a meal. Sound off in our comments section and let us know how you make your own beef shish kabobs on the grill!

Frequently Asked Questions

What cut of beef is best for shish kabobs?

How do you cook shish kabobs on the grill?

Is stew meat good for kabobs?

What should I serve with beef kabobs?

What kind of skewers should you use for shish kabobs?

Each Share Saves a Steak From Being Cooked Well Done