These chicken kebabs are quick and easy to prepare yet so irresistibly juicy and packed with succulent flavor in every bite. Made with simple ingredients, homemade chicken kebab makes for a healthy and delicious meal that’s perfect for any occasion!
What is Chicken Kebab?
Chicken kebab, also known as chicken shish kebab or chicken tikka kebab, is one of my all-time favorite dishes to make for multiple reasons.
Not only are these chicken skewers quick & easy to prepare, but they are a flavorful source of protein that pairs well with a wide variety of side dishes to make a delicious, well-balanced meal.
Rooted in Middle Eastern cuisine, the word kebab signifies meat, fish, and/or vegetables roasted or grilled on a skewer, which has now claimed immense popularity all across the world with different variations of the dish.
When I first shared this chicken skewers served over garlic turmeric rice on Instagram, I received countless requests for the recipe which made it my top priority to share my easy chicken kebab for all of you to enjoy.
These middle eastern style kebabs are soaked in a chicken kebab marinade made with yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and spices to flavor and tenderize the chicken overnight, which can be baked or grilled depending on your preference.
Best of all, these chicken kebabs are so incredibly simple to prepare and are one of the best ways to make the juiciest, most tender pieces of chicken, all thanks to the ultra-flavorful yogurt marinade.
How do you make the Chicken Kebab Marinade?
One ingredient I always try to have in my kitchen is yogurt as it is perfect for adding a touch of creaminess to a variety of my meals, but it is also ones of the best ingredients to use when making a chicken kebab marinade.
Aside from making the chicken extra flavorful, the lactic acid and calcium in yogurt tenderize the chicken and help keep it moist during the cooking process, especially when the chicken is cooked over incredibly hot temperatures.
This makes yogurt the ideal marinade to use when cooking the chicken on the grill or in the oven, which gives the kebabs that beautiful char whilst maintaining all that juice and tenderness on the inside.
What do I need to make chicken kebabs?
This chicken kebab recipe is often my go-to for my weekly meal preps as they are quick and easy to prepare, and calls for ingredients that are easily found in your kitchen.
Here are all the ingredients you will need:
- Boneless, skinless chicken thighs: you can also use chicken breast upon preference, but I highly recommend using thighs as it results in juicier and more flavorful kabobs.
- Red onion, red and green bell pepper: added to the skewers for additional flavor and texture. You can also prepare the chicken on its own, or use your own preferred vegetables!
- Plain yogurt: 2% or whole-milk plain yogurt will work best for this recipe.
- You may use greek yogurt as well, but I’d suggest diluting the yogurt with a little water or milk to loosen the texture a bit.
- Olive oil + lemon juice: to add additional flavor and moisture to the chicken.
- Garlic: for that delicious garlicky flavor.
- Tomato paste, paprika, oregano, cumin, salt, and black pepper: to season the marinade.
- Fresh parsley: optional, for garnish
And that’s it! All the ingredients you’ll need to make the chicken kebabs in the comfort of your home.
How to cook chicken kebabs in the oven or a grill
Although kebabs are traditionally cooked on a grill, it may not be the most accessible method for everyone which is why I will be sharing both options for you to choose from.
Cooking chicken kebabs in oven also creates less mess to ensure minimal cleanup after the kabobs are done cooking, which can be especially helpful for the weekdays.
Cooking chicken kebab in the oven
To cook your chicken kebab in the oven, simply line your baking tray with aluminum foil or any broiler-safe material, then cook for about 20-25 minutes at 450°F (or 230°C), or until the internal temperature registers 165°F (or 74°C).
Make sure to flip the kabobs halfway through to ensure the chicken is evenly cooked, and run it on broil for about 2-3 minutes if you would like that beautiful golden brown char on your chicken.
Cooking chicken kebab on the grill
To cook your chicken kebab on the grill, preheat and grease your grill and cook the kabobs until golden brown and cooked through, turning skewers occasionally for about 10-15 minutes, or until the internal temperature registers 165°F (or 74°C).
What to serve with chicken kebabs
One of the best things about these chicken kebabs is just how versatile they are, as they are a flavorful source of protein that pairs well with practically any side dish that you can think of. 🙂
Here are some of my favorite side dishes to serve with chicken kabobs:
Rice: I highly recommend serving this over a steamy bowl of garlic turmeric rice, as the heavenly aromas of this soft and fluffy rice perfectly complement the kebabs, and turns it into an ultra comforting meal. Coconut rice, brown rice, or cauliflower rice are also great options.
Naan: pita bread, or dinner rolls. A plate of warm bread also makes for a wonderful side dish to some freshly cooked kebabs. You really can’t go wrong with bread!
Salad: I love serving chicken kebabs with either alongside a bowl of mixed salad or a Persian salad seasoned with some olive oil, lime juice, dried mint, salt, and black pepper.
Garlic yogurt: yogurt sauce makes for a perfect addition to your kabobs, and can be served with all three options above.
To make the garlic yogurt sauce: simply combine 1/2 cup greek yogurt, a dash of olive oil, 1-2 cloves of garlic, and salt and pepper to taste.
All of these side dishes will perfectly pair with your chicken kebabs to make up a satisfying meal that is full of irresistable flavors, well-balanced, and comforting.
If you are serving to multiple guests, I highly recommend preparing a few of the options above for the guests to have a variety of options to choose from!
Sharing a meal with your loved ones is truly one of the best ways to heal your soul, and these chicken kebabs are the perfect crowd-pleaser that caters to a variety of different palates.
Best of all, they are so simple to make and can be a great activity amongst guests to prepare together as well!
I hope this easy & delicious chicken kebab recipe brightens up your week, and please do leave me a comment below or send me a message on Instagram if you have any questions. Happy cooking everyone!
Other easy Dinner recipes you may like:
- The Best Spicy Chicken Sandwich
- Easy Mongolian Chicken
- Melt-In-Your-Mouth Italian Meatballs
- Easy Dakdoritang (Spicy Korean Chicken Stew)
- Easy Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta
Easy Marinated Chicken Kebab
- 2 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into small chunks
- 1 cup red onion and bell pepper or any vegetables of choice, optional
- garlic turmeric rice naan or salad, to serve
- fresh parsley, lemon, and/or yogurt sauce to serve, optional
Chicken Kebab Marinade
- 1 cup plain yogurt 2% or full fat
- 6 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp oregano dried, or 1 tbsp fresh
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp salt or to taste
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- Combine all marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add chicken and vegetables if using, and toss until they are well coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 450°F (or 230°C). Prepare a baking tray by lining it with aluminum foil or any broiler-safe material (for grilling instructions, please see the notes below).
- Thread the marinated chicken and vegetables onto a set of metal skewers, and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the internal temperature registers 165°F (or 74°C).
- Switch the oven to broil and cook for another 2-3 minutes for a lightly charred finish. Garnish and serve with your preferred sides dishes. Enjoy!
♥ Did you make this recipe? Please give it a 5-star rating or leave a comment below to share your experience, or tag @cookerru on Instagram to showcase your creations!
Just made this for lunch. Delish! I’d never used yogurt in a marinade or baked kabobs (I’ve always grilled them.) I love the way the yogurt marinade becomes almost like a baked-on sauce. It adds a lot more flavor than the standard citrus-based marinade. Thanks for the recipe!
Made this lastnight it was really good. Considering I never made anything like this before. Husband even loved it.
Wow. Another absolute winner from this website.
I’ll start by saying that I hate yogurt, always have. Love kabobs though, so although I was a bit nervous about the yogurt ingredient, I thought I’d give this recipe a shot since I had excellent luck with a previous recipe from this site (the meatballs, try them, you will not be disappointed).
I am SO GLAD I did! These are the most tender chicken pieces I have ever had in my life. They literally melt in your mouth. The flavor is fabulous too. There’s no “yogurt” taste after cooking; however, the meat has a wonderful tangy flavor. It is scrumptious. Oh yeah, I also used the oven bake method, not the grill. Delish 🙂
I can’t praise this recipe enough. And I can’t wait to try making something else from here too.
Thank you for providing such awesome, delicious, and amazing content. <3
thank you thank you for this! and the garlic turmeric rice!! I’ve always wanted to try this, but it looked labour intensive. honestly your method is super easy, even for a beginner!
i’ve never tried a yoghurt marinated, and honestly i can’t wait to cook this again! even my dad who is picky said its a winner. all the herbs and spices were perfect!
i used an air fryer. i love grilled white onions with red capsicum/bell pepper. thank you for the recipes. i’ve been looking at your posts and recipes for months but haven’t had the courage to try. glad i did!
all the best xx
My second time making this meal. The rice was AWESOME and very tasteful. I used chicken breast and it came out very moist , marinated overnight. Thanks for sharing
Made this the other night along with the turmeric rice and OMG it was amazing! The leftovers were finished the next day. It’s a bit time consuming, but I highly recommend it!
This is great – I made it in the air fryer and it was perfect – so flavorful and juicy
Made it with garlic naan bread and rice, along with some tzatziki sauce. my family loved it, even my 4 year old grandson loved it. Everyone asked for seconds. I marinated it overnight and cooked it on the grill.
How about the rice recipe
we loved this recipe. Very flavoursome, juice and simple to make. I left out yoghurt since we have dairy allergy at home and used more oil, and added tumeric in, was delicious.
Made this last night, delicious, thank you
Can’t wait to try this recipe! Can you use Greek yogurt?
Hi Alyssa! Greek yogurt will work fine but as it contains less moisture, I recommend loosening it with a little bit of water or stock to properly coat your chicken. Hope you enjoy the recipe! 🙂