Grilled Lamb Kebabs

A meal as perfect for weeknight dinner as it is for a crowd!

These lamb kebabs are inspired by the flavors of my favorite Middle Eastern kebab of all time: kofta kebabs! I love using ground lamb here, and it has such a rich, slightly gamey flavor that pairs beautifully with the bright fresh herbs and warming spices in my recipe. This mixture, along with plenty of onion and garlic, get formed into the classic kebab shape and grilled to perfection, resulting in a juicy, flavor-packed kebab. I finish mine off with a spicy pomegranate molasses glaze for that lick-your-lips sweetness and to balance out the deeply savory, herby meat.

Finally, for serving, I add a simple tomato salad and a zesty yogurt sauce for a cooling creamy note. Add some fresh pita, and you had a meal as perfect for weeknight dinner as it is for a crowd!

1. Kofta Inspiration

Kofta kebabs usually contain ground meat, herbs, and lots of warming spices. I keep my spices more simple here, which is why I say these are inspired by kofta!

2. What if I don’t like lamb?

Good news! This recipe will work perfectly with any ground protein of your choice!

3. Flat vs. Round Skewers

I HIGHLY recommend using a flat skewer when making kebabs from ground protein; it will hold and turn the kebab much better than a round one will!

Grilled Lamb Kebabs

Calories 821.41 kcal


For the Kebabs

  • 1 small red onion cut into large pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 3 large garlic cloves peeled and crushed
  • 1 bunch cilantro tough stems removed (about 2 cups, packed)
  • 1 bunch parsley tough stems removed (about 2 cups, packed)
  • 1 cup mint leaves packed, ¼ cup reserved
  • 2 pounds ground lamb
  • 1 ½ tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

For the Glaze

  • ¼ cup pomegranate molasses
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

For the Tomato Salad

  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • ¼ extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 pound tomatoes cored and cut into 2-inch wedges
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion

For the Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 cup yogurt I used non dairy
  • Reserved ¼ cup mint leaves chopped
  • ½ lemon zested
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


For the Tomato Salad

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, olive oil and crushed red pepper flakes. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Then add tomatoes and onions and gently stir to combine. Cover and set aside until ready to serve, stirring occasionally.

For the Yogurt Sauce

  • In a small mixing bowl, add yogurt, mint, lemon zest and juice and crushed red pepper flakes and stir to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

For the Lamb Kebabs

  • In the bowl of a food processor, add onion and garlic. Process until onion and garlic is finely chopped. Then add herbs, in stages if needed, and process until finely chopped, scraping down with a spatula a few times. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and add lamb and spices. Gently mix together until herbs are fully incorporated.
  • Separate meat mixture into eight 5-ounce portions and form each portion into a long log, roughly 6 inches long. Push a skewer through the middle of each piece and place onto a sheet tray. Refrigerate until ready to cook.
  • Five minutes before the kebabs are cooked, make the glaze. In a small skillet over medium low heat, add pomegranate molasses and crushed red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil and stir with a heatproof spatula. Cook for 2 minutes, then remove from heat and set aside.
  • Preheat a grill pan or grill over medium high heat and add oil. While pan is preheating, assertively season outside of kebabs with salt, then, working in batches if needed, sear each side of kebab for about 3 minutes, or until deeply golden brown. Flip and brush cooked side with glaze and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Flip kebabs over once more and brush the other side with glaze. Remove from heat and transfer to a serving platter.
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