Thursday, May 26, 2011

Recipe for Marinated Beef Kabobs

This favorite recipe for Marinated Beef Kabobs is something I used to make at Lake Powell.

(This recipe was revisited and updated with photos and better recipe notes in May 2011.)   In one of my previous lives (before food blogging!) I used to cater houseboat trips on Utah's beautiful Lake Powell, and this recipe for Marinated Grilled Kabobs was one of my favorite things to make on the houseboat.   It's hard to believe that this recipe has been hanging out in the recipe archives without a single photo since 2005!  It's nearly Memorial Day Weekend, and everyone should be breaking out their grill by now, so I made this a few days ago and took some photos.  If you can find the wonderful double kabob skewers like you see in the photo they're perfect for this recipe, or any other type of kabobs.

If you're making this for the South Beach Diet, remember to choose beef with 10% fat or less.  (I used tri-tip and trimmed off most of the fat.)  I don't like my beef too well done, so I cut the meat in chunks about 2 inches across.

Mix together the beef stock (or red wine), balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, onion powder, garlic powder, steak seasoning, oregano, thyme, black pepper, and bay leaves to make the marinade.  (I rarely use onion powder or garlic powder, but I don't mind it in a marinade like this.)

Let the meat marinate at least 4-6 hours in the refrigerator, or longer is fine if you're at work all day.

Thread the meat on to kabob skewers and let it come to room temperature while the grill heats.

Be sure the grill is medium-high heat before you put the kabobs on.  As you can see, I was cooking World's Easiest Grilled Vegetables next to this on my grill!

When kabobs are nicely browned on one side, turn and cook until done to your liking. (See recipe for approximate cooking time.)

Marinated Beef Kabobs
(Makes 4 generous kabobs but recipe can easily be doubled, recipe created by Kalyn and cooked for years on houseboats at Utah's Lake Powell.)

2 pounds lean beef cut into 2 inch cubes
(Use cuts such as tri-tip, London broil, top sirloin, or top loin.  I used tri-tip and trimmed a lot of fat.  If you marinate longer you could use tougher cuts of meat.)

Marinade Ingredients:
2 T beef stock or red wine
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. steak seasoning (any brand, I used my homemade Montreal Steak Seasoning)
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
black pepper to taste
2 bay leaves

Trim most of the visible fat from the meat and cut into 2" cubes.  (If you're making this for the South Beach Diet, remember the guideline is meat with 10% fat or less.)

Stir together the beef stock (or red wine), balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, onion powder, garlic powder, steak seasoning, dried thyme, dried oregano, black pepper, and add bay leaves.  Put meat cubes into the smallest Ziploc bag (or plastic container with a snap-tight lid) that will fit all the meat, then pour in the marinade.  Marinate meat at least 4-6 hours in the refrigerator (or longer is fine if you're gone all day.)

When ready to cook, preheat grill to medium-high.  (You can only hold your hand there for a few seconds at that heat.)   Put meat tightly on skewers and let it come to room temperature while the grill heats.  

Grill kabobs to desired doneness, turning as soon as you get some browned spots on the first side.  Cooking time will depend on the thickness of the meat and how hot your grill is, but approximate times would be about 8-10  minutes for rare, 10-12 minutes for medium rare, or 12-15 minutes for medium.  With kabobs it's easy to take off one piece of meat and cut into it to see if it's done to your liking, or use a digital meat thermometer to check the temperature.

Let the kabobs rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.  This is great with World's Easiest Grilled Vegetables.

South Beach Suggestions:
This would be a perfect main dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet. For phase one, serve with Arugula and Gorgonzola Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette and Grilled Asparagus with Parmesan. For phase two or three you could add something like Lake Powell Spicy Rice

More Tasty Ideas for Kabobs:
(Recipes from other blogs may not be South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.
Grilled Pork Kabobs with Spicy Peanut Butter, Sesame, and Soy Sauce Marinade from Kalyn's Kitchen
Kubideh: Grilled Ground Meat with Mediterranean Spices from Kalyn's Kitchen
Grilled Zucchini and Sausage Kabobs from Kalyn's Kitchen
Chicken and Veggie Kabobs with Garlic and Basil from Kalyn's Kitchen
Kalyn's Souvlaki from Kalyn's Kitchen
Greek Chicken Kabobs from My Baking Addiction
Mount Olympus Meatball Kabobs from White Trash Barbecue
Colorful Fish Kabobs from The Leftover Queen
Moorish Pork Kabob from Seriously Good
Grilled Mahi-Mahi Kabobs from Home with Mandy
(Want even more recipes?  I find these recipes from other blogs with Food Blog Search.)
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More to Chew On:


  1. I think your blog looks great!

  2. Kalyn, I've been a fan of your blog for months now, and finally decided I should tell you just how much my friends and I enjoy not only your recipes, but the blog itself. It is very well put together, not only visually appealing but also well organized and user friendly, and easily navigable. Your images are beautiful as well! Thank you for all of your time and effort- I don't know if I could "South Beach" without you, and I tell others to check you out for conventional recipes as well.


  3. Sabrina thank you so much for the very nice feedback.

  4. Thank you so much for your wonderful recipe and for all those marvelous links. Look forward to trying them very soon!

  5. Paddy, hope you enjoy the kabobs!

  6. Kalyn, this looks yummy! Have a fab Memorial Day weekend. :)

  7. I'll bet these were very popular with your houseboat clients. They are summer epitomized.

  8. Heather, Memorial Day weekend still has good memories of the end of school, so I'll definitely enjoy it. Happy weekend to you too!

    Thanks Dara; they were always a hit.

  9. Memorial Day grilling brings out the carnivore in me! These will definitely be on the menu alongside some grilled asparagus spears.

  10. Lydia, I'm not usually that much of a carnivore, but grilling season brings it out in me as well!

  11. I love your blog!! I would love for you to link up one of your healthy recipes to my new linky party called "Fit and Fabulous Fridays". It runs all day tomorrow, so come join the healthy recipe party:) You have wonderful things to share...Happy eating!

  12. Love beef kabobs....yum yum!

  13. These really do look amazing. Perfect for the holiday weekend!

  14. Amee, thanks for thinking of me, but I've been blogging for so long that I don't do those kinds of things any more.

    Pete, thanks!

    Maris, bring on the weekend!

  15. Those look fantastic, Kalyn! We're kabob fans, but don't thave them that often. But I believe we need to have these immediately! I'll be looking for those double skewers to use--great idea. Had no notion that you had a previous life catering for houseboat guests ... lucky folks!


  16. Shirley the double skewers are fantastic. Wish I could remember where I got them! I catered and organized the houseboat trips for about ten years; lots of fun at the lake!

  17. Oh, I bet these tasted so good! They look great! Thanks for sharing :)

  18. Just to let you know how great is your blog! Have a nice weekend and thank you for sharing all those gorgeous recipes.

  19. Cooking Creation, glad you like it.

    Mamatkamal, thanks for the nice feedback, and happy weekend to you too!

  20. I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoy your blog. Great recipes and pics! You have inspired me to try Southbeach again (and maybe this time I can stay on track....)

  21. Oh Heidi, I LOVE hearing that. And staying on track is a one-day-at-a-time thing for all of us. If you get off track, just get back on the next day!

  22. Hi Kalyn,
    I did a little search and found the skewers you use are Elizabeth Karmel's Grill Friends Double Kabob Skewers. Hope that does not come across as an advertizement or endorsement, but the skewers look like they work well and I was wondering were you got them also. Now you know!

  23. Thanks Steve! I just searched on my blog and found a post where I mentioned that I got them at Plaza Gourmet in Healdsburg, California when I visited my sister-in-law a few years ago. I just googled the brand name you found and it looks like you can buy the same Double Kabob Skewersat too. (Full disclosure, if anyone clicks that link and buys them, Kalyn's Kitchen does earn a small commission.) Maybe I need to write a post about them, because I do love these skewers!

  24. Kalyn,
    These look and sound really delicious. Love the skewers. My last attempt at beef kabobs was a disappointment so I'm tossing that recipe and will try this one soon.
    Have a great weekend!

  25. They look so succulent! The hours of marinating really works! Lovely pictures, too!

  26. You are heavenly. No really… heavenly. I went to Greece for the first time this year. I ate this every day in Athens. I think I just started crying out of joy.

  27. Suzanne, I've been to Greece and loved it. I think this recipe for Souvlaki might be more like what you had there:

  28. Just made this for dinner. Yum. This will be a regular for me.

  29. Excellent marinade. Made this last night and will definitely make again. Thanks

  30. When it says 2T in the measurement does that mean tablespoons??

    1. Yes, T = Tablespoon and tsp. = teaspoon.

    2. Thanks very much ! :) going to try it for bbq on fathers day !


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