Savory Marinated Beef Kebobs

Savory Marinated Beef Kebobs

With an apology to my musical friends, I confess skewering kebobs reminds me of musical compositions: Variations on  a theme in proteins, vegetables and fruit.  As always, I let the local deals and seasonal ingredient dictate my “arrangement”. Top sirloin is on sale at a local grocer’s this week.  I’ve got a fistful of button mushrooms begging to be used: Dinner is decided.  I could write a novel about kebobs but I’ll spare you, sticking to beef kebob basics today.

I’ve always used well-soaked, flat-edged, bamboo skewers in the past. (The flat edges keep the  ingredients from spinning when turning the kebobs.)  My husband, however, received a “kebob rack and skewer” set for Father’s Day.  My first reaction was “oh, no…more basement clutter”. But I used it for the first time today, and it really was quite handy.  (Plus those metal skewers will be awesome for testing cakes!) Metal or soaked bamboo, the choice is yours.

To insure a tender “chew”, I always marinate my beef. The cut of meat will govern the marinate time.  My simple recipe for top sirloin below (plus 16 hours of refrigeration) is fool-proof.  I’ve also had great success with the Soy Vay line of marinades, available on most grocery shelves in town: Omit the first 7 ingredients and marinate beef in Soy Vay to cover.

For your meat and vegetables to finish cooking at the same time, you need to choose “sturdy” vegetables and cut them into uniform sizes.  This helps when grilling them at the same time as the meat. Mushrooms, onions and peppers are always a safe bet. I was “bold” and used extra-large cherry tomatoes.  One more minute on the grill, and they would have slipped through the grill grates.  I,however, simply adore grilled tomatoes so monitored them carefully.

Recipe: Savory Marinated Beef Kebobs


  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped ginger
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 6-8 metal or soaked wooden skewers
  • 2 pounds beef sirloin steak, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 large bell pepper, cut into 2 -inch pieces
  • 6 ounces fresh button mushrooms, stems removed
  • 1 pint large cherry or strawberry tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons chopped cilantro or parsley


  1. In a medium bowl, combine soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oils, ginger and garlic. Reserve about 1/4 cup of marinade for basting. Place steak in a large resealable plastic bag. Cover with remaining marinade, and seal. Refrigerate for 8 hours, or overnight. If using wooden skewers, soak in water.
  2. Preheat grill for high heat. Thread steak, peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes onto skewers in an alternating fashion. Discard marinade and the bag. Sprinkle beef with sesame seeds.
  3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Cook kabobs on the prepared grill for 10 minutes, rotating skewers frequently, or to desired doneness. Baste frequently with reserved marinade during the last 5 minutes of cooking time. Sprinkle cilantro or parsley over beef before serving.

Active Time: 45 minutes

Marinate Time: 12-24 hours

Number of servings (yield): 6 beefy skewers

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