These 30 minute Chicken Kofta Kebabs are going to be your new weeknight favorite! They are perfectly spiced and pair wonderfully with Jerusalem salad and Lemon Dill Yogurt Sauce. Enjoy warm stuffed in a pita with additional fresh herbs.
📋 About the Recipe
- Mediterranean meatballs - Kofta is defined as “a spiced meatball.” It can be spelled kafta, kefta, kofte, and other variations depending on which place of origin the recipe or dish comes from. Kofta is made flavorful using a unique combination of spices and is most commonly served in middle eastern, mediterranean, Indian, Persian, and central asian cuisines.
- Quick and easy weeknight dinner - No need to buy pre-made meatballs for dinner. You can have these homemade chicken kofta kebabs along with the yogurt sauce and Jerusalem salad all ready in under 30 minutes.
- Grill option - If it's too hot to use the oven, cook these chicken kebabs on the grill instead! Great for warm summer nights and hosting.
A few notes about the ingredients:
- Ground chicken - Kofta kebabs are traditionally made with minced beef and lamb, but I love using ground chicken for a lower fat option.
- Breadcrumbs - These chicken kebabs do not contain any egg and instead use breadcrumbs to bind the kebabs together.
- Parsley - Fresh parsley will give these kebabs the freshest, brightest flavor. If necessary, you can use dry parsley flakes in a pinch.
- Olive oil - Oil will keep the kebabs moist and juicy when baking. I love using olive oil, but you can use any neutral oil like avocado oil or vegetable oil.
- Spices - I use a simple mixture of coriander, allspice, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, and cumin when making homemade kofta. Allspice brings a warm, slightly sweet flavor and is balanced with the savory coriander and cumin.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. If using wooden skewers, soak them for at least 15 minutes to prevent them from burning while cooking.
- Prepare a baking sheet. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and lightly spray with cooking spray.
- Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl, then mix to combine. This is easiest to do with clean hands but you can also use a spatula or a large serving fork.
- Separate the chicken kofta mix into 8 equal parts. Again, using your hands, roll each part into 8 individual ovals and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Leave enough space between each to allow room for each skewer.
- Insert the skewers. Once the skewers have sufficiently soaked to prevent burning, poke each one horizontally into the bottom of the kofta kebabs.
- Bake. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, flipping the kebabs halfway through until evenly browned on both sides. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165 degrees F when fully cooked through.
- Serve kebabs warm with Jerusalem salad, lemon dill yogurt sauce, and a warm pita.
⁉️ Substitutions and Alterations
- Substitute another protein - Try using ground turkey, beef, lamb or a mixture of any of the above.
- Breadcrumb alternatives - You can use Panko breadcrumbs for a crispier chicken kofta kebab, or a gluten free breadcrumb, if needed.
- Grill option - Grease the gates of the grill to prevent any sticking, then warm the grill over medium heat. Place the chicken kebabs directly on grill and cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.
❄️ How to Store
To store: Store any leftover kebabs in an airtight container or wrapped tightly in tin foil. These kebabs will last for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.
To freeze: Kebabs can be frozen for up to 3 months. Make sure they are tightly wrapped to prevent freezer burn for optimal results.
To reheat: Reheat leftover chicken kebabs on a baking sheet at 325 degrees F for 8 to 10 minutes or until warmed through. Alternatively, you can microwave these kebabs for 1 minute and additional 30 second bursts, if necessary until hot. Microwaved kebabs will be less crispy, but still very good.
Yes, cooked chicken kofta can be frozen. Allow the kebabs to cool completely after baking, then freeze in an airtight zip top bag with all air removed for up to 3 months. Reheat from frozen in a covered baking dish at 325 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes, or until warmed through.
These kofta kebabs are made with chicken and are a leaner, healthier alternative to the traditional lamb kebabs.
If you are having trouble forming your kebabs, try adding an additional tablespoon of breadcrumbs at a time until the meat holds together better.
Kofta tastes like meatloaf filled with warm, earthy spices and fresh herbs. If made with lamb or beef, it has a more gamey flavor than this recipe that uses chicken.
💭 One More Tip
Enjoy chicken kofta kebabs warm right from the oven. It is much better served warm than cold. If necessary, reheat them to enjoy as leftovers.
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Chicken Kofta Kebabs
- 1 pound ground chicken
- ¼ cup plain, unseasoned breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. If using wooden skewers, soak about 8 of them in water for at least 15 minutes to prevent them from burning while cooking.
- Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with foil and nonstick spray or parchment paper.
- Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl. Mix to combine.
- Divide the mixture into 8 even parts. Using the palms of your hands, roll each part of the mixture into a ball, then shape into an oval.
- As the meat is shaped, place it onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving enough space in between for the skewers. Once the skewers are done soaking, poke each one horizontally into the bottom of the formed meat.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, flipping halfway through, or until the outside is lightly golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
- Serve with jerusalem salad, lemon dill yogurt sauce, and a warm pita.
- I love ground chicken for this recipe. However, if you’d prefer to use ground turkey, beef, or lamb, you can substitute.
- I highly recommend using fresh parsley, but if you don't have any on hand, you can use 1 tablespoon dry parsley flakes instead.
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This was fantastic!! We have been making chicken dishes from all over the world, and this one had such great flavor. We loved the whole meal- salad, sauce, chicken - all so delicious.
The combination of all 3 definitely makes the dish! So happy you enjoyed it.
We made the Chicken Kofta Kebabs and were pleasantly surprised at how authentic they tasted. The various spices melded together providing an array of unique flavors. The lemon dill yogurt sauce complimented the Kebabs and we also used the sauce to dip our raw vegetables. The meal was thoroughly enjoyable and we will definitely put this on our repeat list.
The lemon dill sauce is one of my favorites too! Glad you enjoyed it 🙂