Beef Patty Kebabs

Chapli Kebab


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in



By Durkhanai Ayubi

Published 2020

  • About

These are flavour-packed thin beef or lamb patties full of fresh herbs and spices. In Afghanistan, they are a popular street food. My mother recalls that, when she was a child, on long family road trips, they would make pit stops at chapli kebab stalls on the roadside. She remembers the redness of the patties, as they were usually packed with chilli and served wrapped in hot tandoori-baked naans with fresh vegetables and some tangy chutney on top.


  • 1 small brown onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 fresh long red chilli, coarsely chopped, plus extra, halved lengthways, to serve
  • 1 small handful fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves and stems, coarsely chopped, plus extra leaves to serve
  • 1 garlic clove, coarsely chopped
  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) minced (ground) beef
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle
  • 1 tablespoon chilli flakes
  • 16 g (½ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 8 spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced
  • 1 large egg
  • 250 ml (1 cup) sunflower oil
  • Naan flatbread, thinly sliced red onion, chutney sabz and chutney morcheh sorkh, to serve


Process the brown onion, fresh chilli, coriander and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Place the minced beef in a medium bowl and add the blended ingredients along with the spices, flour, spring onion, egg, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Mix thoroughly with your hands for 5 minutes, or until everything is well combined and the texture is slightly sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to chill.

Divide the meat mixture into 8 equal portions and roll each into a ball between your palms. Lightly grease your hands with oil, then flatten the balls on a non-stick baking tray into patties roughly 10 cm (4 in) in diameter and 1 cm (½ in) thick.

Add the oil to a large frying pan over high heat. When it reaches 180°C (350°F) on an oil thermometer, add the patties to the pan in batches and fry at this temperature, turning occasionally, for 2–3 minutes, so they half-cook and retain their shape. Transfer the patties to a plate lined with paper towel and repeat this high-temperature frying until all the patties are half-cooked. Reduce the heat to low and fry the patties again in batches for 5 minutes each side, or until they are crisp and deep golden brown. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to drain the excess oil.

To serve, wrap the freshly cooked chapli kebabs in large pieces of Afghan flatbread, then top with chutney, onion slices and extra chilli and coriander to taste.