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Shish Kabob Recipe

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Do you love camping and RVing, but dread the thought of having to cook over a campfire? Fear not – with this shish kabob recipe, you can have a delicious and easy-to-prepare meal while enjoying the great outdoors. Plus, it's perfect for using up any leftover meat or veggies that you may have on hand. So what are you waiting for? Get cooking!

shish kabob recipe

What is the best meat for shish kabobs?

Shish kabobs are a popular dish made of meat and vegetables grilled on a skewer. The word “shish” comes from the Turkish word for skewer, and kabob is derived from the Persian word for roasted meat. There are many different meats that can be used for shish kabobs, but some are better suited than others.

Steak kabobs, and of course beef and chicken are the most popular options. Beef kabobs are usually made with chunks of steak or roast beef, while chicken shish kabobs are typically made with boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Both beef and chicken are relatively lean meats that cook quickly and evenly on a grill. However, beef shish kebabs may add more flavor than chicken, so it may be a better choice if you're looking for a more robust taste. Whichever meat you choose, make sure to cut it into uniform pieces so that it cooks evenly on the skewer.

People may argue that the internal temperature of the meat will not be adequate until the veggies are completely overcooked and burned. We beg to differ! Skewers should be cooking above the flame, allowing vegetables to slow roast on the skewer. At the very end of cooking, allowing them to get a little blackened on the heat is a great finish, but they should not overcook in the time it takes to finish cooking the meat. If you are having issues with certain things on your skewer becoming overcooked, adjust the heat and consider whether you have the right vegetables and cuts of meat on the skewers. When you think about it, skewers and roasting are ancient cooking methods. It can be done over any sort of camp fire or cooker!

Ideas for an easy recipe for grilling

We encourage you to use whatever leftovers you have as a way of using up what you have so that there is no waste but here are a few of our favorite meat choices. The cut of meat does affect how long you need to cook your kabobs. For example, tender beef will cook faster as you grill kabobs. Marinated beef that has been tenderized will also cook somewhat faster than any roast chunks will. Choose a meat that you can easily chew. This means any tougher meats need to be marinated and tenderized prior to putting on the skewers.

Try:

  • chicken breast
  • sirloin tips
  • beef tenderloin
  • top sirloin steak
  • fillet mignon
  • strip steak
  • stew meat
  • New York strip
  • kielbasa
  • Beef chunks of any cut of roast
shish kabob recipe

What vegetables are good on shish kabobs?

Shish kabobs are a delicious and easy way to enjoy a variety of vegetables. Common choices for shish kabobs include red onion, cherry tomatoes, red bell peppers, green peppers, and juicy pineapple. Red onion and cherry tomatoes both have a good amount of firmness to them, so they won't slip off your skewer easily. Red bell peppers and green peppers will also add a nice crunch to your kabob, while the pineapple will provide a sweet contrast to the other savory ingredients. Other good options include mushrooms, zucchini, and squash. When choosing vegetables for shish kabobs, it is important to choose ones that will cook evenly and not fall through the grill. For this reason, it is best to avoid delicate vegetables such as lettuce or spinach. With so many delicious vegetables to choose from, there is no reason not to enjoy a healthy and flavorful shish kabob.

Plant Based Options

Thinking of trying kebobs meatless? Go for it! Western food culture often leans toward meats as the protein in any dish. However, an option for delicious –and filling– kabobs is to use only plant-based foods. Larger chunks of eggplant are ideal, and roast beautifully over the grill. You can also do cubed yellow and green squash, zucchini, tofu, and more.

If you have it available, plant based sausage is also a delicious choice. Most plant based meats are available in rope sausage form, so you can cut it horizontally and add veggies of choice.

How do you cut onions for kabobs?

Onions are a common ingredient in kabobs, but they can be difficult to cut into uniform pieces. The best way to cut onions for kabobs is to first peel the onion and then cut it in half. After that, Cut each half of the onion into slices, about 1/2″ in thickness. The thin slices will make it easier to pierced by the skewer and will also cook more evenly. They do shrink down over an open fire in the grill, so be careful not to cut slices too thin. While it may take a bit more work to slice the onions, it will pay off in the end with a better-tasting kabob. So next time you're making kabobs, don't be afraid to take an extra minute or two to properly prepare your onions. It'll make all the difference in the final product.

shish kabob recipe

Should you marinate your vegetables for kabobs?

For grilling season, we are usually thinking of marinating many foods, including the veggies, prior to firing up the grill. Whether you're using chicken, beef, or vegetables, kabobs are a great way to add flavor to your meal. One question that often comes up when making kabobs is whether or not to marinate the ingredients. There are benefits and drawbacks to marinating your kabobs, so it's important to weigh your options before you start cooking. 

One benefit of marinating is that it can help to tenderize tough meat. This is especially true if you're using cheaper cuts of meat, which can be difficult to cook without drying them out. Soaking the meat in a flavorful marinade can help to break down the tough fibers, resulting in a more tender and juicy kabob. In addition, marinating can also add loads of flavor to your dish. By combining olive oil, soy sauce, lemon juice, and other seasonings, you can create a marinade that will give your kabobs a delicious zing. If you are not a fan of marinating, you can prepare great tender chicken and beef by doing a dry rub prior to cooking. The salts in any dry rub will also break down tough meats.

Marinating Meats

However, there are also some drawbacks to marinating your kabobs. The most obvious downside is that it takes time – usually at least a few hours, and sometimes even overnight. If you're short on time, this can be a turnoff. Additionally, not all ingredients benefit from being marinated. For example, delicate vegetables like mushrooms or cherry tomatoes can actually become mushy if left in a marinade for too long. In general, firmer vegetables like onion or peppers are better candidates for marinating. 

As you can see, there are pros and cons to marinating your kabobs. Ultimately, the decision depends on your personal preferences and the ingredients you're using. If you have the time and you're using tougher meats or firm vegetables, go ahead and whip up a batch of marinade. Otherwise, feel free to skip it – your kabobs will still be delicious! Our personal preference is to only marinate your proteins.

How long do kabobs take to grill?

The kind of meat you're using will largely determine how long your kabobs will take to grill. If you're using beef, for example, you'll want to choose a cut that's fairly tender, like sirloin or filet mignon. These cuts of beef will only take a few minutes to cook through. However, if you're using a tougher cut of beef, like chuck roast, you'll need to cook the kabobs for a bit longer. In general, beef shish kabobs should be grilled for about 10 minutes total. If you're using chicken or pork, you'll want to cook the kabobs for 8-10 minutes. And if you're using fish, the kabobs should only need about 6-8 minutes on the grill. With any kind of meat, it's always best to err on the side of caution and grill the kabobs for less time rather than more. You can always put them back on the grill if they're not quite cooked through. But if you overcook them, there's no going back!

Again, be sure to place kabobs on the grill not directly in the open flame. Place directly on the hot grill grates, and make sure the grill has been seasoned or greased to avoid delicate chunks of meat from sticking. Your cook times will vary with the size of the kabobs and what meats and veggies are on separate skewers. However, they should have a grilled appearance for extra flavor. Remember, you can turn up the grill heat at the end and add any glaze or reserved marinade for a great flavor.

What is the best marinade for Shish Kabobs?

There are a variety of different marinades that can be used for shish kabobs. Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, and Italian dressing are all common ingredients that can be used to create a flavorful marinade. However, balsamic vinegar is also a popular choice for shish kabob marinades. The acidity of the vinegar helps to tenderize the meat, while the sweetness complements the other flavors in the marinade. As a result, balsamic vinegar is an excellent choice for those who want to create a flavorful and juicy shish kabob.

Our favorite way to marinate is zesty Italian dressing. We put all of our meat into a large baggie with zesty Italian dressing and let it marinade for 1 hour. We do not marinade our veggies.

Shish Kabob Recipe

To start, you'll need wooden or metal skewers. If using wooden skewers, make sure to soak them in water for 30 minutes before beginning to prevent them from burning. Then, simply alternate your choice of meat – steak, chicken, shrimp, etc. – with vegetables like onions, peppers, mushrooms, and cherry tomatoes. Once everything is skewered, simply grill over medium-high heat until the meat is cooked to your liking. You can use a cast iron skillet or simply cook them on the griddle.

Bamboo skewers can also be used, but they will need to be soaked in water for at least an hour before beginning. Additionally, chicken tends to work best on bamboo skewers as it is more tender than steak. So if you're looking for an easy and delicious summer dish, be sure to give shish kabobs a try!

Now that you know how to make shish kabobs, it’s time to get cooking! What is your favorite way to make them? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below. And don’t forget to share this recipe with your friends and family – they’re going to love it!

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Shish Kabob Recipe

shish kabob recipe

Make this easy Shish Kabob recipe on the campsite or cooking out at home!

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lb boneless meat of choice- chicken, steak, or beef, cubed into large bite size pieces
  • 2 lbs vegetables of choice- see post for ideas
  • 1/2 cup Zesty Italian Salad Dressing
  • BBQ Sauce, Additional Zesty Italian, or Teriyaki sauce for glazing, Optional

Instructions

On a cutting board, cube or slice all veggies into 1-2" pieces, set aside.

After vegetables are cut, slice meat into bite size pieces. If you are using a tougher cut of meat, you can tenderize using salt or a meat tenderizer. We recommend marinating beef cubes either overnight or for several hours before adding to your skewers.

If using wooden skewers, soak in water for 30 minutes prior to adding meat and veggies, or until thoroughly soaked throughout to prevent burning.

Skewer meat and vegetable bites alternately, stacking close together to help flavors mix.

Set Skewers into a large pan or baking sheet and pour Zesty Italian dressing over them. Marinate for 30 minutes up to several hours. Flip the skewers as needed.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Make sure grates are well seasoned or oiled prior to heating to prevent Shish Kabobs from sticking.

Lay skewers flat and allow to cook 5-6 minutes per side. For tougher meats cuts such as roast, you may have to roast on indirect heat prior to laying flat on the grates to ensure they are cooked throughout and tender. You can elevate the skewers onto a second shelf, or use a baking tray to better roast the meat. Be sure to "finish" the Shish Kabobs using high grill heat, to ensure they are crispy and full of flavor.

During the last 1-2 minutes of cooking time, you can optionally coat the Shish Kabobs with additional dressing or another sauce for a glaze. Use a grill tool to for safety.

Enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 618Total Fat 25gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 173mgSodium 824mgCarbohydrates 37gFiber 10gSugar 14gProtein 58g

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