How to Assemble and Cook Kebabs: A Step-by-Step Guide

These tips will help you grill your kebabs to tender perfection.

Related To:

You can skewer up meat, veggies or tofu to make great kebabs.

Skewers

Skewers

Skewers
Most skewers are made out of metal or bamboo. If you're using bamboo, soak them before cooking so they don't burn — submerge them in room-temperature water for 30-60 minutes before grilling.

Beef

Beef

Beef
For tender, flavorful results, use the tri-tip cut of beef.

Chicken

Chicken

Chicken
Use boneless breasts or thighs when making chicken kebabs. Breasts are lean, while thighs are juicy and fuller-flavored. Keep in mind that white meat will cook faster than dark meat.

Prepping the Meats

Prepping the Meats
Cut beef and chicken into 1 1/2-inch cubes to keep them juicy. If you're using a marinade, marinate the pieces of meat before you thread them. Discard the marinade after removing the meat.

Add Veggies

Add Veggies
Thread meat and veggies onto the skewers. Choose softer vegetables that will cook in the same time as the meat, like zucchini, mushrooms and peppers. Slower-cooking vegetables like potatoes should be partially cooked beforehand.

Spacing

Spacing
Leave space between the items on the skewer so the heat can circulate and cook everything evenly.

Foil

Foil
Lay double-thick foil strips on the edge of the grill to protect the ends of the skewers. This will prevent wooden skewers from burning and metal ones from getting dangerously hot.

Setting Up the Grill

Setting Up the Grill
Set up the grill for direct and indirect heat. Then oil the grill and wait until the oil smokes.

Start Grilling

Start Grilling
If you made the kebabs ahead of time, bring them to room temperature while you preheat the grill. Pat the kebabs dry. If not marinated, season them with salt and pepper. Then lay the kebabs on the direct-heat side of the grill with the skewer ends overlapping the foil. Space them out to let them cook evenly. Don't move them until the bottoms look slightly charred and they release easily from the grill. Then turn the kebabs as necessary to sear all sides.

Indirect Heat

Indirect Heat
Once they're seared, the meat may need a little extra cooking. Move the kebabs to the indirect-heat side of the grill and cover. Chicken should take 10-12 minutes and beef about 8-10, for medium-rare.

Ready to Serve

Ready to Serve
Once cooked through, remove from the grill and let the kebabs rest for a few minutes before serving. Now you have a perfect summer meal. Watch our how-to video for more.

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Grill Steak: A Step-by-Step Guide

These grilling tips will help you get delicious steaks every time.

How to Grill Chicken: A Step-by-Step Guide

Use these tips to get juicy chicken cooked all the way through with perfectly crisp skin.

How to Grill Salmon: A Step-by-Step Guide

Grilling perfect salmon is easy with these simple steps.

The Basics of Steaming: A Step-by-Step Guide

Follow these techniques to make simple and healthy dishes, then watch our how-to video.

How to Bake a Cake: A Step-by-Step Guide

Follow this easy guide for mixing, prepping and baking a cake, then watch our how-to video.

How to Cook in Parchment: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn to cook delicate ingredients, like fish or vegetables, in parchment, then watch our how-to video.

Take the Right Temperature

Hot Tips from Food Network Kitchens' Katherine Alford: To check a steak for doneness, insert a thermometer into the side, not the top. Aim the tip of the thermometer toward the center of the meat.

50 Kebabs

Food Network Magazine designed dozens of dinners you can make (and serve!) on a stick.

How to Make a Basic Tomato Sauce: A Step-by-Step Guide

Read these simple steps for making a delicious tomato sauce, then watch our how-to video.

How to Julienne, Dice and More: A Step-by-Step Guide

Flip through this guide to learn how to chop and dice like a pro, then watch our how-to video.

Latest Stories