Whether you call them steak kebabs or kabobs, beef kabobs on the grill are classic with colorful bell peppers, and extra flavorful drizzled with pesto. Serve with a side of Parmesan pasta for a quick and complete meal.
This quick dinner cuts out marinating time, swapping it for a flavorful drizzle of pesto at the end.
No need to cut a million veggies, I used sweet and tangy red bell peppers for that veggie crunch and taste.
Serve this easy dinner with a Parmesan pasta and you have a complete meal in no time.
Grilled beef and vegetable kabobs recipe
Classic beef kabobs are made by threading marbled pieces of steak on a skewer with bell peppers, onions, zucchini and other veggies.
Often they come with a beef kabob marinade recipe to soak up extra flavor.
I've simplified that standard beef and veggie kabob and just used tangy and sweet red bell peppers.
In place of a marinade that takes extra time, I brush the grilled skewers with prepared pesto. That basil, garlic, and umami sauce give these quick beef shish kabobs an extra boost of flavor.
Kebab or Kabob?
Oh the age-old question of what to call those delightful grilled skewers.
Almost exclusively on the American continent the term kabob is used. The classic English, kebab, is a derivative of shish kebab, meaning small pieces of meat cooked on a skewer.
Turkish and other Middle Eastern cultures cook meat and vegetables on separate skewers when shish kebabs are made.
Around the world, the terms kebab, kebap, even kabob are used to describe either ground or cubes of meat cooked on a skewer. So really, you are welcome to use any term that suits you.
I use the terms interchangeably as well. In my cookbook I used the most standard spelling of kebab. Even though I grew up saying kabob. I'm a firm believer you can just pick one and go with it!
What is the best beef for kebabs and steak skewers?
I use a beef sirloin steak for these kebabs. Here's how to choose the best beef cut for kabobs or kebabs:
You'll want tender beef for skewers if you are cutting the meat into chunks. Sirloin, from top to tip, is lean, relatively tender with quick-cooking and budget-friendly.
Flat Iron steak or Strip Steak are also great choices for tender cuts that don't need marinating to help soften the bite. They are flavorful and easy to find like Sirloin.
Beef Tenderloin will be the most expensive cut, but it's absolutely fabulous on shish kabobs. It is tender and stays that way after a quick cook on the grill.
How to cut bell peppers for pepper steak kabobs
Sweet bell peppers are all you need for that extra bit of flavor on my steak kebabs.
You'll want 1-inch or a generous 1-inch sized pieces of bell pepper for the skewers.
I use a paring knife or the tip of my chef's knife to cut a circle around the stem and pull it out. Tap extra seeds out from this hole and discard the seeds.
Slice down the center of the bell pepper and then make one-inch slices the length of the pepper.
Trim the white pith from each strip of pepper.
Then, simply cut each strip into about 1-inch pieces.
I use metal or wooden skewers for these steak kebabs.
If you use wood skewers, be sure to soak them in water for 30 minutes before using to prevent them from burning on the grill.
Metal skewers are great, but get very hot. Make sure to use grill tongs to move them around the grill and remove them. Let them cook before handling them with bare hands.
Find all of my kitchen tool recommendation on my Amazon shop page.
FAQs about Steak Kebabs
Use a tender cut of beef for kebabs. Skewers cook quickly so you want to choose a steak like a sirloin, or strip steak with plenty of marbling. Flat Iron steak is also a good option.
Beef tenderloin is the most tender and most expensive, but delicious for kebabs and kabobs.
Most kabobs have a variety of vegetables with the meat threaded onto the skewers. A simple side dish like potatoes, pasta, or rice is a great compliment to the meat and veggies.
You can also serve grilled bread with olive oil as a side for kabobs.
Pesto & Pepper Beef Kabobs On The Grill
- 1¾ lbs boneless beef sirloin steak cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 large red bell peppers seeded, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 8 oz dried linguine or fettuccine
- ⅓ cup prepared pesto
- ⅔ cup finely grated Parmesan
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Thread meat and peppers onto skewers and brush with 2 tablespoon oil. Season with salt.
- Cook pasta in very salty water until done. Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat grill to medium-high; oil grill grates and cook kabobs, turning frequently, until the meat is done, 7 to 9 min for medium. Remove from grill. Using a clean brush or spoon, coat kabobs generously with pesto.
- Toss drained pasta with Parmesan, 1 tablespoon oil and black pepper; serve with kabobs.
- Use my Classic Pesto recipe to make your own.
What you need for these beef kabobs on the grill:
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About Tara Teaspoon
I’ve been in the food publishing business for over 20 years, creating recipes & food-styling for magazines, books, television & advertising. Order my new cookbook & stick around for amazing things to eat.
Recipe by Tara Bench. Photograph Antonis Achilleos Food Stylist Anne Disrude. Prop Stylist Christina Lane. Originally published LHJ 7/09
Moriah Garnett says
Steak kabobs are probably one of my favorite things to cook on the grill. I had never made them with pesto before. These were juicy and flavorful; perfect for dinner. I'll definitely make these again.
Ahh glad I could share a recipe that is up your alley. Fantastic.
I would have never thought to put pesto on a kebab! These were so easy and delicious, they'll definitely be a repeat recipe at our house. Thanks!
These look fabulous! Can't wait to try. Thank you!
Megan Palmer says
Pesto is one of my favorite things to cook with. Kebobs are good all year long, may need to make these for super bowl weekend coming up.