April 20, 2009

Kabab Deegi - Iranian Pan Kabab

کباب Kabab/kebob is one of the great dishes for outdoor parties. There are a variety of kababs such as koobideh (ground meat kabab), barg (beef tenderloin), joojeh kabab (chicken) or fish  kabab to name a few. 

However,since we haven’t had a chance to assemble our new grill yet, I have to settle for کباب دیگی/کباب تابه ای  kabab deegi (stove-top pan kabab) for now. I don’t know of any Iranian who doesn’t know how to make kababs. I think the love of a good kabab along with the method of preparation and cooking was passed down to us through our genes from generation to generation! However, this recipe is for people like my daughter who one day might get tired of eating campus food and may want to try to make something quick, simple and delicious such as this kabab.

Usually, we use 2-4 pounds of ground meat (ground beef, lamb or a combination of the two) for the flat metal skewer grilled kabab. Always making sure that there is enough food for everyone in the family and also having enough to serve an uninvited neighbor or a guest who happens to drop by unexpectedly. I must say this has almost never happened to me here, but it was very common back then when I was growing up in Iran. It won't take very long to cook the meat on the stove. You can also cook kabab deegi in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 50-60 minutes or until fully cooked.

Kabab Deegi- Pan Kabab

Serves 4

1 pound ground meat (beef, lamb or turkey)  
1 medium onion, grated
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 or 3 medium sized tomatoes, cut into wedges

  1. In a mixing bowl combine ground beef, onion, turmeric, salt and pepper, mix well.
  2. Choose a medium-sized frying pan, add a tablespoon of vegetable oil, flatten the meat mixture into the pan, starting at the center and working it to the outer edges. 
  3. Place the pan on the stove over medium-high heat for 10 minutes. Cut the meat lengthwise into strips (or if you prefer like pizza slices), turn them over one by one and place the tomatoes into the pan, cover and cook for another 25-30 minutes on medium-low heat or until fully cooked.

Sprinkle some sumac powder (available in Iranian grocery stores) on the kabab. Serve with rice, sabzi khordan, sliced onions and yogurt drinks (doogh).



  1. Oh my goodness, I am so glad that I have stumbled on your blog! I look forward to perusing your blog to see how my recipies fare with yours.


  2. Hi,

    Welcome to my blog and thanks for your kind comments.

  3. It looks great & being an Iranian love the taste too.... thank you!
    just realised that have not cooked this since we have got married 2 years ago!!

    A new & Yummy Iranian dish for me & my non-Iranian hubby tomorrow:))!

    Thank you for the inspiration again!

  4. Thank you dear, I am sure that your husband is going to love this dish and anything else that you cook for him. Noosh-e joonetan!

  5. thank you Azita jaan... many happy cookings to come for both of us hopefully!

  6. Ghorboonet Azita jAN!

    My fave childhood dish! Can not wait to cook up A STORM this evening!

  7. Hi Azita!

    Can I make this in the oven?



  8. Hi Shima! Yes, you can make this in the oven too. Thanks for visiting.

  9. yum yum
    i'm looking for koobiedeh kabab recipe and your blog is my favorite place to search for any persian food :)

    is this the same recipe to use?? and what do you prefer the ratio meat to fat ? i have lean mice lamb can i use it too?
    thanks alot :)

  10. Bent el Deera, this is basically the same recipe for koobideh. For pan kabab/kebab I prefer lean meat but for koobideh having some fat makes it more moist and tasty. I have used the 80% lean/20% fat for koobideh and it came out good. Thanks for your question, it reminds me to do a post on koobideh, hopefully soon!

    Thank you for visiting and it's so nice to see you again!

  11. i did it and it was AMAZING

    really really good

    thanks a lot :***

    i just post it in my blog

  12. hi love your blog, i just tried this technique..very good end result but I was a bit worried as I cooked it,one question about that, is the following normal? when you place the meat in pan on stove it intially releases alot of water( i threw some out) then once the water evaporates it starts to sizzle and brown..thank you in advance...miriam

  13. ps if that is normal..perhaps i can roll out meat to the size of pan/remove meat..place pan on heat and then when hot add rolled meat on..this way the meat will sear, and less juices escape..

  14. im sorry but i will reask..is it normal for meat to release alot of water at first?..and if so..should i heat pan first then place rolled out meat in it?

  15. Hi Miriam, I'm glad you like my blog and thank you for giving this recipe a try. Yes, it's normal for meat to release alot of water when cooked whether the pan is pre-heated or not. Don't worry the liquid will help to tenderize the meat and keep it moist and it will slowly dry out.

  16. What kind of oil do you use to fry the meat? You didnt mention adding oil here. Please advise. Ps. totally in love with your blog

  17. This dish was amazing, thanks for posting!

  18. Made this for dinner a few nights ago & my husband loved it so much, making it again tonight! Fantastic is the only way to describe this. Growing up in Persia, my Mom was from Azarbiajan provence & this is not one of the dishes amongst their wonderful other ones. Thank you so much for sharing it. Love your site.

  19. I'm so happy I found you. I just got married to a Persian man. I am a trained chef and know my way around a kitchen however his mother is AMAZING! I attempted pan kabob last week but I under seasoned it. Tonight I added lemon pepper garlic and kept the juice of the onion. I'm praying for a miracle as its on the stove now. Here's hoping I can satisfy his stomach like his mom can. I'll let you know how it turns out and I'm sorry I had to add other seasonings to your already fabulous recipe. Tomorrow night I'm making the beef Apple apricot stew. Can't WAIT for that!!

  20. love all your recipes! have made many of them and all my family and friends have enjoyed them too! Persian food is my favourite.

  21. I'm studying abroad in Australia this semester (cooking for myself full-time for the first time!) and due to the large time difference, she's not always available to give me recipes. Your blog really saves the day <3

  22. I LOVE your blog, so feel it's about time I comment. Unfortunately I do know at least one Persian who doesn't know how to make kebob, my husband. So thanks from an Anglo who is trying to pick up the slack! Your recipes are the best!

  23. I have a 2 year old at home and due to a hectic work schedule my mom helps me by making persian food for my daughter. She has been away for a week going to visit back home and my daughter is on a food strick refusing to eat my non-persian meals. You saved me ehen i found your recipes and she is happily back to eating persian food. I can't wait to surprise my mom with a full persian supper when she gets back to show off my new culinary skills. Thank you for your blog, it is now my go to for persian food.

  24. Thanks Azita. Thanks! Will make this tonight. My skewer koobideh fell into the BBQ last time but I rescued it and used a cast iron pan on the BBQ (don't tell my wife and kids). This looks much easier and reminds me of my mom's cooking when I was young. However I will do it outside on the gas burner because I remember the onion smell can last a long time! Will try it tonight. We love your recipes by the way. Great for a Persian husband and Greek wife with hungry kids in Canada.

  25. Thank you for this clever recipe. I use 1 lb. beef and 1 lb. lamb for a more Persian taste. In my experience, it takes less time than the recipe calls for for the kabob to cook. After the kabob is cooked, I cook a few chopped tomatoes and Anaheim chilis in the drippings and serve with the kabob. Mmm, delicious!