Chelo Kabab Koobideh Recipe

Chelo Kabab Koobideh, a cornerstone of Persian cuisine, is a simple yet flavorful dish consisting of grilled ground meat served with steamed rice (chelo). This guide will take you through the steps to create this authentic Iranian delicacy at home.


For the Kabab:

  • Ground lamb or beef (or a combination) – 500g
  • Large onion, grated and drained – 1
  • Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Sumac (optional for garnish) – 1 teaspoon
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Chelo (Rice):

  • Basmati rice – 2 cups
  • Salt – to taste
  • Butter or oil – 2 tablespoons
  • Saffron water (optional for color) – 2 teaspoons


  • Metal skewers or flat, wide skewers
  • Grill or barbecue

Preparing the Kabab Mixture

  1. Combine Ingredients: In a large bowl, mix the ground meat with the grated onion, turmeric, salt, and pepper. Knead the mixture well for about 10-15 minutes. This is key to getting the kababs to stick to the skewers.
  2. Rest the Mixture: Cover the bowl and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or overnight for best results.

Shaping and Grilling the Kababs

  1. Prepare the Skewers: Take a handful of the meat mixture and mold it around the length of a skewer, forming a long, thin kebab.
  2. Grill the Kababs: Preheat your grill. Place the skewers on the grill and cook for about 4-5 minutes on each side, until nicely browned and cooked through.

Cooking the Chelo (Rice)

  1. Wash and Soak Rice: Rinse the rice under cold water until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in salted water for at least 1 hour.
  2. Boil the Rice: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drain the rice and add it to the boiling water. Cook until the rice is al dente.
  3. Drain and Steam: Drain the rice and return it to the pot. Add butter or oil, and saffron water for color. Cover and steam on low heat for about 30 minutes.

Serving Chelo Kabab Koobideh

  1. Serve the Kababs: Slide the cooked kababs off the skewers.
  2. Plate the Dish: Serve the kababs over a bed of fluffy chelo. Garnish with sumac, if desired.
  3. Accompaniments: Typically, Chelo Kabab Koobideh is served with grilled tomatoes, raw onions, and a side of yogurt or a slice of lemon.

Tips for Perfect Chelo Kabab Koobideh

  • Kneading the Meat: Properly kneading the meat ensures it sticks to the skewers.
  • Grill Temperature: Ensure the grill is hot enough so that the kababs cook evenly and acquire a good char.
  • Quality of Meat: Use high-quality, fatty meat for juicy and flavorful kababs.

Chelo Kabab Koobideh is more than just a meal; it’s a celebration of Persian culinary traditions. Whether for a family dinner or a special occasion, it brings the flavors of Iran to your table. For more insights into Persian cuisine, explore 10 Best Persian Foods to Try.

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SURFIRAN Editorial Team

SURFIRAN is an Iranian tour operator and travel agency offering tour packages to those interested in Iran. It provides the tourists with services needed to travel to Iran, offers tours across the country, and assists the tourists in obtaining Iranian visas.

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