There’s something about cooking your meal on a stick that is just so fun! It cooks quickly, looks colorful, and is easy to eat.
Traditionally we think of making kabobs on the grill, but if the weather doesn’t cooperate it’s good to have an oven method handy. That’s why today I am making my beef kabobs in the oven, but also including instructions for the grill.
It’s all about the beef marinade
Anyone can stick hunks of meat and/or veggies on a stick and cook it. But to really get great flavor and texture, a good marinade is key. Over the years I’ve developed a combination that works perfectly for me, and I am confident you will like it too!
The foundation is bottled Italian salad dressing and olive oil. Add some yellow mustard and Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic and red wine vinegar, and voila! A marinade is made!
Mix all the marinade ingredients together in a bowl or ziplock bag. Cut the meat into one to two-inch pieces and submerge the chunks in the liquid. Minimum marinate time is one hour, but up to six hours is even better. Give that flavor a chance to penetrate into the meat!
What’s the best cut of beef for making kabobs?
I’ve made kabobs with different cuts of beef: chuck roast, chuck short ribs, even stew meat. Many advocate for sirloin steak kabobs. But by far my favorite is beef tenderloin. It’s a better, leaner cut and that really makes a difference for these kabobs. Each bite is tender and delicious!
Threading the skewers
If using bamboo skewers like me, be sure to pre-soak the skewers in water for 20-30 minutes before using. Bamboo is quite …. shall we say …. flammable. We don’t need that kind of excitement in the kitchen!
Just before loading the skewers, you might also decide to immerse the mushrooms into the marinade. Completely optional, but it does seem to impart a little extra flavor to mushrooms.
Keep in mind, the choice of vegetables is completely up to you. I went pretty traditional with onions, mushrooms and some bell pepper. Sometimes I add some tomatoes, but I feel that cherry tomatoes cook way too fast, so I try to find slightly larger Campari tomatoes if I’m in the mood for the tomato taste. You might decide to just do meat and mushroom kabobs – make them your own!
The one caution I would give is regarding potatoes. I dearly love them and tried so many times to cook potato chunks on the meat kabobs. I was never happy with the result. So now, when I want potatoes, I cook them separately. When making the beef kabobs in the oven, it is very convenient to simply roast potatoes right in the oven with the skewers. I typically start the potatoes first, to give them a head start on cooking time.
Cooking the beef (or steak) kabobs
To cook your kabobs on the grill: preheat the grill to high heat and lightly oil the grates. Place the skewers directly on the grill and cook, turning frequently, until meat is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
To cook beef kabobs in the oven: preheat oven to 375F. Place filled skewers on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cook 15-20 minutes, turning midway, until meat is cooked through.
For both cooking methods, remove the skewers to a shallow pan and cover with foil. Rest the meat for 10 minutes before serving.
Serving suggestions for Beef Kabobs
In theory, kabobs are pretty much a whole meal. You’ve got protein and veggies, what more could be necessary, right? Well, some of us like just one more thing on our plate.
And here, I decided to make some roasted potatoes which made it such a “meat and potatoes” meal.
Beef Kabobs in the Oven or Grill
- 1 ½ - 2 pounds lean beef cut into cubes
- 16 oz mushrooms stems removed
- 1-2 bell peppers seeded and cut into chunks
- 1 large onion cut into large squares
- 1/3 cup Italian salad dressing oil based
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- Combine marinade ingredients in a bowl or bag. Add beef cubes and cover or close. Let beef marinate for at least one, but up to 8 hours.
- Thread meat and vegetables onto skewers. (If using bamboo, presoak the skewers in water before using)
- Oven method: preheat oven to 375F. Place filled skewers onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Cook for 15-20 minutes, turning midway, until meat is done.
- Grill: preheat grill for high heat and lightly oil the grates. Place skewers directly on the grill grates and cook, turning frequently, until meat is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
- Once cooked (both methods) remove skewers to a shallow pan and cover with foil. Rest meat for 10 minutes before serving.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.
As long as you’ve got that packet of skewers out, here are a few more “meat on a stick” ideas:
Like grilling? These are always well received: