Tender Beef Kebabs (Shashlik) Recipe

These Beef kebabs are mouth-watering. The marinade, by itself, smells tantalizingly good. What a great idea for your summer BBQ menu.

Beef Kebabs (or Shish kebabs) are a very important food and specialty of the Slavic people, but it’s not just limited to beef. Lamb, pork , chicken and even veggie kabobs are often on the menu!

Beef skewers are a little tricky to master. The key is to give your kabobs plenty of time to marinate and don’t rush it! I like to marinate at least 4 to 6 hours.

My sister’s families stopped by to enjoy these shashlik and folks were going back for seconds! I served them with buttery corn on the cob and roasted baby red potatoes. It was a perfect and simple summer BBQ menu.

Read on for the recipe and to get our best tips for great BBQ!

Tender Beef Kabobs (Shashlik) Recipe @natashaskitchen

Tips for great BBQ kabobs:

1. Using bamboo or wood skewers is best. The heat from a metal skewer can start cooking your meat from the inside, ruining that juicy pinkness that you might desire.

2. Soak your wooden skewers in water at least 30 minutes so they don’t scorch or burn completely on the grill.

3. Don’t crowd your skewers. You want a little space between your meat and veggies so your food grills on all sides.

Ingredients for Beef Kebabs (Shashlik)

2 lbs good quality beef (I used top sirloin), cut into 1 1/2″ pieces
2 Bell peppers, any color, sliced into 1 1/2″ wide pieces
1 large Purple Onion, sliced into 1 1/2″ wide pieces
15 medium bamboo or wood skewers

Ingredients for Beef Kebabs Marinade:

1 cup mild olive oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 medium lemons)
1 tsp salt (we love fine sea salt)
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, pressed
3 Tbsp fresh or frozen dill, chopped (or 1 Tbsp dry dill weed)
2 dry bay leaves

Tender Beef Kabobs Recipe

How to Make Tender Beef Kabobs Shashliki:

1. Combine all of your marinade ingredients in a large glass or plastic bowl (do not use aluminum) and stir to combine.

Tender Beef Kabobs (Shashlik) Recipe-2 copy

2. Slice meat and transfer it into the marinade bowl, stirring well to coat. Marinate beef in the refrigerator 4 to 6 hours, stirring a few times while marinating to make sure meat is evenly marinated.

Sometimes after long periods of refrigeration, the oil in the marinade can firm up a bit; it will liquify again if you let the marinated meat sit at room temp 30 minutes before skewering.

Tender Beef Kabobs Recipe-3

Tender Beef Kabobs (Shashlik) Recipe-6

3. Soak bamboo or wooden skewers at last 30 min before skewering. After the meat is done marinating, slice veggies and skewer them with meat onto Bamboo skewers. Brush/ pour remaining marinade over skewers.

Tender Beef Kabobs Recipe-4

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4. Grill steak kabobs over med/high heat for about 8-10 minutes or until you’ve reached the desired doneness, rotating every 2-3 minutes for even grilling. Remove kebobs from grill and let them rest at least 5 minutes before eating. If you cut into them right away, they will juice out and end up dry.

Tender Beef Kebabs (Shashlik) Recipe @natashaskitchen

Come on little guys, you can scoot off that skewer right into my mouth (after a quick dunk in the A1 sauce) #yum.

Tender Beef Kabobs (Shashlik) Recipe

5 from 8 votes
The key to great kabobs is to give your meat plenty of time to marinate and don't rush it! I like to marinate at least 4 to 6 hours.
Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com
Skill Level: Easy/Medium
Cost to Make: $17-$20
Servings: 15 medium skewers

Ingredients

Ingredients for Steak Kabobs:

  • 2 lbs good quality beef I used top sirloin, cut into 1 1/2" pieces
  • 2 Bell peppers any color, sliced into 1 1/2" wide pieces
  • 1 large Purple Onion sliced into 1 1/2" wide pieces
  • 15 medium bamboo or wood skewers

Ingredients for Steak Marinade:

  • 1 cup mild olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice from 2 medium lemons
  • 1 tsp salt we love fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves pressed
  • 3 Tbsp fresh or frozen dill chopped (or 1 Tbsp dry dill weed)
  • 2 dry bay leaves

Instructions

  1. Combine all of your marinade ingredients in a large glass or plastic bowl (do not use aluminum) and stir to combine.
  2. Slice meat and transfer it into the marinade bowl, stirring well to coat. Marinate beef in the refrigerate4 to 6 hours, stirring a few times while marinating to make sure meat is evenly marinated. Note: Sometimes after long periods of refrigeration, the oil in the marinade can firm up a bit; it will liquify again if you let the marinated meat sit at room temp 30 minutes before skewering.
  3. Soak bamboo or wooden skewers at last 30 min. After the meat is done marinating, slice veggies and skewer them with meat onto Bamboo skewers. Brush/ pour remaining marinade over skewers.
  4. Grill over med/high heat for about 8-10 minutes or until you've reached the desired doneness, rotating every 2-3 minutes for even grilling. Remove kebobs from grill and let them rest at least 5 minutes before eating. If you cut into them right away, they will juice out and end up dry. Serve with your favorite steak sauce

Recipe Notes

Tips for great BBQ kabobs:
1. Using bamboo or wood skewers is best. The heat from a metal skewer can start cooking your meat from the inside, ruining that juicy pinkness that you might desire.
2. Soak your wooden skewers in water at least 30 minutes so they don't scorch or burn completely on the grill.
3. Don't crowd your skewers. You want a little space between your meat and veggies so your food grills on all sides.

 

Credits: Marinade adapted from the Russian Tea Room Cookbook’s recipe for Karskiy Shashlik (I added more garlic and more dill). The original recipe calls for various parts of Lamb to be used in leu of sirloin and does not include veggies.

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Tender Beef Kebabs (Shashlik) Recipe @natashaskitchen
I haven’t tried this marinade on anything except beef but I’m so tempted! The marinade, by itself, smells tantalizingly good. What’s your favorited food in the world to grill? (Note: Hot dogs is an acceptable answer)

natashaskitchen

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

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Read comments/reviewsAdd comment/review

  • tile and grout cleaning baton rouge
    July 20, 2018

    whoah this weblog is wonderful i like reading your posts.

    Stay up the good work! You realize, a lot of people
    are searching around for this info, you can aid them greatly. Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      July 20, 2018

      Thanks so much! Reply

  • Dillon
    August 19, 2017

    I tried this recently and I absolutely loved it!

    I added about 1/2 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar for some extra tang and acidity (though this isn’t necessary), and I threw some cherry tomatoes on the skewers too only because they are SO juicy and delicious when grilled.

    Per the recipe’s suggestion, I paired them with roasted red potatoes, and it was a perfect combo. Would absolutely recommend this while it’s still grilling season! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 21, 2017

      Hi Dillon, I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe and thank you for sharing your amazing review! 🙂 Reply

  • Joy
    July 22, 2017

    Can I make the kabobs a couple hours ahead and refrigerate? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 22, 2017

      Joy, I think that would still work. Enjoy the recipe 😬 Reply

  • Angela W Broyles
    January 26, 2017

    yUM!! Really love the dill here! Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 26, 2017

      I am so glad you enjoyed it Angela! Reply

  • January 3, 2017

    Hi to every one, the contents existing at this web
    page are really amazing for people experience, well, keep up the good work fellows. Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 4, 2017

      Thank you! Reply

  • Rowena B.
    June 5, 2016

    Im going to make this for our family barbecue by the lake. I know this will be delicious! Thank you Natasha! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 5, 2016

      You’re very welcome and I hope you all have a great time at the lake! Reply

  • Z-S
    June 3, 2016

    wow what a coincidence. a few days ago, I did beef kebab almost the same recipe as you posted here. One thing that I did differently that I used my nutri bullet to blend everything together such as garlic cloves, white onion, olive oil, lemon juice, mix pepper corns and sea salt. Ended up delicious and juice as well. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 3, 2016

      That is a wonderful coincidence! I love the idea of using the nutri bullet! Reply

  • diana
    May 14, 2016

    And also it says to use mild olive oil. Can I just use regular ? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 14, 2016

      Yes, a regular olive oil would work fine and you can sub for other oils as well. Reply

  • diana
    May 14, 2016

    What do you think if I use beef tenderloin? And also if I leave it over night with lemon juice do you think that’s okay? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 14, 2016

      Hi Diana, I think a top sirloin is a better option for several reason – it has more marbling and flavor and is less prone to overcooking and drying out. Overnight marinating is ok but I have found that all it really needs is 4-6 hours with the amount of lemon in it. Reply

  • YanaP
    May 12, 2016

    Hi Natasha – have you tried this recipe using Lamb? Reply

    • YanaP
      May 12, 2016

      one more thing.. what is the serving size? Reply

      • Natasha
        natashaskitchen
        May 12, 2016

        It makes 15 medium skewers so it depends on how many skewers you want to serve per person. If it’s the main meat, I would say 2 skewers per adult (but my husband could probably eat 3!) 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 12, 2016

      Hi Yana, I haven’t but if you test it out, I’d love to know what you think of it! 🙂 Reply

  • JESSICA
    September 30, 2015

    what is the yield? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      September 30, 2015

      It makes about 15 medium skewers. Reply

  • Janet
    August 29, 2015

    I confused on whether I marinate the meat as a slab or marinate as cut up for the skewer.
    Please advise Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 29, 2015

      Janet, slice the meat first and than marinate :). I hope you’ll love it. Reply

  • ALINA
    July 22, 2015

    I’m a little concerned about 1/2 cup of lemon juice. Can you really taste the lemon in the done product? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 22, 2015

      You can cut it down if you want to, but it does add some nice flavor. Just don’t marinade way to long or the lemon juice will toughen the beef. Reply

  • Martin Kimeldorf
    July 13, 2015

    You must know that separating veggies from meat gives far greater control for finishing items that take different times t cook…don’t keep the myth going that veggies belong on the same skewer as meat…and onions can take the longest, often done first Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 13, 2015

      It worked well together on the skewer. I think it’s important not to crowd the skewer and you can definitely skewer them separately. Reply

  • Inna
    March 20, 2015

    These look bomb! Will tri tip work with this recipe ok? Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 21, 2015

      I think tri tip would work fine. I hope you love it! Reply

      • Inna
        March 25, 2015

        Tried it with tri tip and the flavor was awesome! Hubbs was impressed! Thank you! Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          March 26, 2015

          I’m so happy you both loved the recipe :). Thank you for reporting back and sharing that with me 🙂 Reply

  • March 14, 2015

    We made these kabobs for dinner tonight. Great flavor, used top sirloin and had great taste and was tender. The only complaint I got from my husband was that when grilling they flared terribly when brushing marinate on. Flames were excessive. Has anyone else had this problem? Would like to keep making, so any input would be greatly appreciated. Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 15, 2015

      I talked to my husband (he does the grilling) and he didn’t recall excessive flames but suggested to make sure the portion of the BBQ that covers the flames is kept clean and also to try use a water spray bottle to tame flames. I hope that helps 🙂 Reply

  • Tania
    July 3, 2014

    Do you think tri tip beef will work? Your recipes are awesome!!! Keep them coming 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 3, 2014

      I think tri tip would work well. I hope you love the kebabs! 🙂 Reply

  • alana
    June 14, 2014

    making these delish kebabs for fathers day!!! Thanks girl!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 14, 2014

      Oh I’ hope you all love them! Have a fun father’s day! 🙂 Reply

  • June 12, 2014

    I grew up eating shashlik – love it! Your version looks lovely, great that you marinaded the meat! I miss lamb shashlik and ground beef shashlik. We would often eat it with plov, as a special occasion meal! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 13, 2014

      Oooh ground beef shashlik sounds nice! Do you happen to have a recipe for it? I’ve made them before but they were more of moroccan flavors 🙂 Reply

  • June 12, 2014

    These look absolutely mouthwatering and grilled meat is not always easy to photograph! I am pinning the recipe for sure as I am always keen to try different marinades. Have you ever heard of “Please to the table. The Russian Cookbook” by Anya von Bremzen? I’ve looked through so many Slavic cookbooks but that one stood out as the most interesting one. Definitely not an over-saturated market. I think I might have one in me. 😉 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 12, 2014

      I haven’t looked at that one before but I probably should. It sounds like a good reference! Have you tried any of the recipes? Reply

      • June 12, 2014

        I have tried a few recipes from that book but it also reads as a memoir and covers the food from all former Soviet Union. Just fun read all around. Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          June 12, 2014

          That does sound fascinating! Thanks so much for the tip! 🙂 Reply

  • June 12, 2014

    They look wonderful! Pinning and making them soon! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 12, 2014

      Thank you so much! I sure appreciate the pin 🙂 Reply

  • June 11, 2014

    These pictures are awesome! So summery! Wish I had some of these now I’m sure they taste amazing! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      Thanks Jaclyn. Anything simmering on the grill says summer to me! Maybe that’s why it’s so hard to cover up the grill at the end of the season and why we dust it off before most normal people 😉 Reply

  • June 11, 2014

    I love beef kebabs, these look mouth watering. Pinned! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      You’re so sweet! Thank you so much for pinning! I sure appreciate it 🙂 Reply

  • Angel
    June 11, 2014

    Natasha, metal skewers will not dry out the meat if its cooked properly! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      I’d love to know your tips for grilling beef on metal skewers. We use metal with pork and chicken. Reply

  • June 11, 2014

    Oh, I love kebabs! I tried many times to find a perfect meat for them. They said it should be “ошеек”, have no clue what it is in local terminology. Think only chicken worked well for me. I will try top sirloin and your marinade, Natasha! Thank you Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      Interesting. I’ll have to ask my husband about that. I’ve never heard of ошееk :). I hope you love these kebabs! 🙂 Reply

  • June 11, 2014

    Agreed! We LOVE our kebabs! 🙂 Yours look amazing and so colorful! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      Thanks Kate 🙂 I’m already thinking about my next kebab recipe! 😉 Reply

  • Oh my these kababs look extra delicious! That marinade is to die for Natasha! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      Thank you so much Layla! That marinade is wonderful and it smells so so good too 🙂 Reply

  • Alina
    June 11, 2014

    Wow!! We looove BBQ! And these look amazing.. I love how the different colors of veggies look so appetizing with the meat 🙂 can’t wait to try it out! Thanks Natasha for another great recipe! I really enjoy cooking from your website 🙂 always so inspiring.. Great job!! Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      Alina thank you so much for your sweet compliment 🙂 It sure inspires me to keep on keepin’ on! 😉 Have an awesome day! Reply

  • June 10, 2014

    Oh Natasha! This looks heavenly, I will give this one a try. Anything grilled works for me 🙂 Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      June 11, 2014

      I know it, I just love the smell of the grill. I can smell a grilled steak a mile away…. 😉 Reply

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