Beef Shish Kabobs

Beef Shish Kabobs is a great recipe for the Memorial Day Weekend. My family made these kabobs on camping trips years ago. The first time we made this recipe, we couldn’t believe how tender and flavorful was the meat. The perfect supper cooked over an open fire under the mountain skies of the Blue Ridge Parkway or at home grilled on a charcoal pit. This simple recipe is one that I’ve stored away all these years. When a friend recently served kabobs at his daughter’s graduation party, I remembered our family recipe.

Beef Shisk Kabobs are cubes of marinated beef (or traditionally – lamb) which are grilled on skewers over a charcoal fire — or in a broiler. Usually chunks of vegetables are added onto the skewers. The recipe is adaptable — add whatever vegetables that are available in your home to the skewers along with the meat. It makes for a very healthy holiday entree.

With trial and error over the years, I’ve found that some vegetables don’t work so well — or you need to pre-cook them, such as carrots or potatoes, or just omit them entirely from the skewers. Now I do the latter. I’m not so sure that this is the best use for cherry tomatoes — but I love tomatoes — so they made onto these kabobs. It is also helpful to have everything cut about the same size, so everything finishes cooking at the same time.

My current list of vegetables to add includes colorful peppers, pickled or jarred pearl onions, cherry tomatoes, pineapple, zucchini squash from my garden.

For the beef, I like to use sirloin steak. Recipes often call for the top round cut of beef, but this can turn out very chewy. If you don’t mind, then use this cut of meat. The marinade is a very simple one using ingredients that are common – vinegar, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, canola or vegetable oil and spiced up with Creole seasoning, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

The thing that made my Liberian friend’s kabobs unique was that all the cubes of beef and colorful peppers were precisely cut in small cubes of the same size. Much more accuracy then I’ve ever used. Their kabobs were quite attractive and the beef had a peppery and spicy seasoning. Yum. I’ll try to improve on my accuracy of chopping.

When we went on camping trips, we’d cube the beef and add to the marinate before we left home. Then the beef was well seasoning and tender when we began to grill the kabobs. So marinate the meat as long as you can — from 4 hours to overnight. I don’t add the vegetables to the marinate, as some recipes instruct, but just baste them with remaining marinade as the skewers cook.

Also, it helps to soak wooden skewers in water. They don’t burn when added to a charcoal grill.

So get everything ready, add to skewers in colorful patterns and place on charcoal fire or roast in broiler about 6″ from the heat. For this recipe, I used three pieces of beef and one of each vegetable per kabob. This recipe makes approximately 16 – 18 kabobs. Soak a few extra skewers for any leftover vegetables. I roasted these in 2 batches in my oven.I basted the kabobs once at the beginning of grilling, then again after turning the kabobs over after 5 minutes. The kabobs don’t take long to cook, especially if you’ve cut them in to small cubes. These took 10 minutes to grill.  And I get my husband involved — he loads up each kabob and on occasion, grills them outside. Enjoy!

And have a safe Memorial Day holiday this year.

Beef Shish Kabobs from MayleesKitchen

  • Servings: 6 (about 3 kabobs per serving)
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients for Marinade:

  • 1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 tsp Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning or seasoned salt
  • 1/2 tsp salt (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • several dashes red pepper flakes

Ingredients for Kabobs

  • approx 18 bamboo skewers, plus a few extra for leftover vegetables
  • 1-1/3 to 1-1/2  lb sirloin steak or top round (3 cups cubed meat)
  • 1 each of red, yellow and green peppers (1 cup each pepper, cubed in 1″ pieces)
  • 2 to 3 small zucchini squash (about 1-1/3 cup cubed)
  • 1 (8 oz can) pineapple tidbits, drained
  • 1/2 cup jarred pearl onions, drained
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes

Method and Steps:

  1. Mix all the ingredients for marinade in non-aluminum bowl or glass jar.
  2. Trim and cut sirloin steak in 3/4″ to 1″ cubes and add to marinate. Mix to stir. Cover and place in refrigerator. Marinate for at least 4 hours to overnight. Stir occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, place wooden skewers in small flat Pyrex casserole dish and cover with water to soak. Set aside.
  4. Wash and sort vegetables. Carefully cut colorful peppers into approx 1″ squares, the same size as the beef. Set aside. Save remaining curved parts of peppers for another use.
  5. Slice the zucchini squash into 1″ chunks. Set aside.
  6. When ready to cook, remove meat from marinade, reserving the marinade.
  7. Arrange onto the skewers, alternating 3 pieces of beef cubes and one of each the vegetables for each kabob in colorful patterns.
  8. To cook, either roast under broiler in oven, about 6″ from heat, turning after 5 minutes, or roast on charcoal or gas grill outside, cooking 5 minutes on each side or until done. Baste prior to placing in oven or on grill and after turning. (Cooking times may vary with temperature of charcoal or gas grill.)


Leave a Reply