Kofta Recipes

Kofta is a meat dish popular in the Middle East and South Asia. Usually, it features balls of minced meat, boiled in broth, baked, or fried. There are countless kofta recipes (at least 300 of them in Turkey alone) due to centuries of history and regional differences.

Cook It will share with you several ways of preparing kofta. Traditionally, the main ingredient is lamb or beef, but you can experiment with other meats. Make a note of these kofta recipes and add them to your culinary repertoire.

Turkish Kofta Bozbash


  • 1 lb (500 g) lamb meat;
  • 7 oz (200 g) brisket;
  • 4 ½ oz (130 g) tail fat;
  • 6 oz (170 g) onion;
  • 3 potatoes;
  • 6 ⅓ oz (180 g) chickpeas;
  • 1 ⅓ oz (40 g) rice;
  • 4 plums;
  • 1 pinch saffron;
  • 1 pinch turmeric;
  • salt to taste, ground black pepper to taste.


  1. Cover the brisket cut into small pieces and whole peeled onions with water and start heating; bring to a boil and add pre-soaked chickpeas. Reduce heat to low and cook for one hour. Season with salt a few minutes before the end of cooking.
  2. Remove onions from the broth and strain it. Put chickpeas with brisket aside. Pour a little boiling water over saffron.
  3. Grind lamb meat with tail fat and onions in a meat grinder. Season the minced meat with salt and pepper, add rice (pre-soak it for an hour or so), and turmeric; mix thoroughly.
  4. With wet hands, form balls of about 7 oz (200 g) from the minced meat. Put slices of plum or cherry plum (also dried) inside. Bring the broth to a boil and cook the meatballs (koftas) in it. Cook under a closed lid over low heat for 10–15 minutes.
  5. Add the diced potatoes and pour in the saffron solution. Cook until the potatoes are done. Place the koftas, brisket, chickpeas, and potatoes on serving plates. Cover everything with the broth (strain it again, if necessary).

Echmiadzin (Armenian) Kofta


  • 2 ¼ lb (1 kg) ground beef;
  • 1 egg;
  • 1 ½ fl oz (45 ml) vodka or cognac;
  • 3 onions;
  • 2 cups achar;
  • 2 oz (60 g) butter;
  • salt to taste;
  • cooking oil.


  1. Pre-soak achar (coarsely crushed wheat grits) in water for several hours. Drain the water and transfer it to boiling water (take 2 ½ cups of water per 1 cup of achar). Season with salt, add butter and cook until it is ready.
  2. Dice onions and fry them in vegetable oil. Combine them with the achar, mix, cover with a lid, and continue to cook on low heat for 5–8 minutes.
  3. Pour cognac or vodka into the minced meat and whisk using a handheld blender. Add salt, egg, and whisk again until homogeneous and viscous.
  4. Form large balls from the resulting mixture. Transfer them to a pot with cold water and cook on low heat for 40–45 minutes. Serve the koftas with the achar.

Izmir Kofta


  • 1 lb (500 g) beef;
  • 1 lb (500 g) potatoes;
  • 2 onions;
  • ½ bunch parsley;
  • 1 tbsp adjika sauce;
  • 5 fl oz (150 ml) water;
  • 1 chili;
  • 2 tomatoes;
  • 7 oz (200 g) soft part of the bread;
  • salt to taste;
  • spices (dried mint, jeera, black pepper) to taste;
  • cooking oil.


  1. Finely chop one onion and parsley. Moisten the soft part of the bread with water and let sit for a few minutes.
  2. Add the onion, parsley, and bread to minced meat. Season with salt and spices, mix thoroughly.
  3. Form balls from the mass, transfer them to a baking sheet, and pop it in the oven, pre-heated to 480 °F for 15–20 minutes.
  4. Cut potatoes into large pieces, then fry them in a pan until golden brown. Separately, fry the second onion diced into small cubes. Add adjika sauce mixed with water to the onion.
  5. Remove the koftas from the oven, put them next to fried potatoes and onions, as well as sliced ​​tomato and chili.
  6. Return the baking sheet to the oven, lowering the temperature to 390 °F and bake for another 20 minutes.

Lamb Kofta in a Pan


  • 14 oz (400 g) lamb meat;
  • 1 tbsp jeera;
  • 1 tbsp thyme;
  • ½ tsp ground red pepper;
  • 1 tsp paprika;
  • salt, ground black pepper to taste;
  • zest of 1 lemon;
  • 2 tbsp olive oil.


  1. Grind the meat in a meat grinder. Add salt and all spices to the minced meat, as well as grated lemon zest; mix thoroughly.
  2. Form two pairs of medium-sized koftas from the minced meat. Pierce them with wooden chopsticks (previously soaked in water) and send them to the freezer for 10–15 minutes.
  3. Heat olive oil in a pan and fry the koftas. Cook for approximately 10 minutes over medium heat, occasionally turning the meat over to make sure it fries evenly on all sides.

Deep-Fried Beef Kofta


  • 1 lb (500 g) ground beef;
  • 2 potatoes;
  • 1 onion;
  • 1 egg;
  • 10 ½ oz (300 g) breadcrumbs;
  • 1 bunch parsley;
  • salt, ground black pepper to taste;
  • vegetable oil for deep-frying.


  1. Finely chop onion and parsley, grate potatoes, beat the egg with salt and pepper. Combine the prepared ingredients with minced meat.
  2. Form koftas from the resulting mass – balls the size of a small lemon. Roll them in breadcrumbs and deep-fry until golden brown.
  3. Put the finished koftas on paper towels to remove excess fat. Serve the dish with fresh vegetables and herbs.

Oven-Baked Kofta


  • 9 oz (255 g) beef;
  • 2 oz (60 g) onion;
  • 2 cloves garlic;
  • 1 egg;
  • 3 ½ oz (100 g) breadcrumbs;
  • 2 ½ oz (70 g) tomato paste;
  • 1 fl oz (30 ml) vegetable oil;
  • 1 fl oz (30 ml) red wine;
  • ⅔ oz (20 g) butter;
  • salt to taste;
  • spices (cumin, jeera, cinnamon, paprika, allspice) to taste.


  1. Grind meat, onions, and garlic in a meat grinder. Season the minced meat with spices and salt. Beat in one egg, add breadcrumbs, and mix thoroughly.
  2. Roll balls weighing about 2 oz (50 g) from the resulting mass. Place them on a baking sheet greased with vegetable oil and pop in the oven, preheated to 360 °F for 20 minutes.
  3. Prepare the sauce: mix red wine with tomato paste and softened butter. Pour the sauce over meatballs and cook them for another 7–8 minutes.

Regardless of the preparation method, it is customary to serve the koftas whole. Cooked in broth, they are excellent as the first course, whereas baked or fried, they go well with a side of vegetables, rice, or pasta. Save this selection of kofta recipes to bookmarks and use them as soon as possible.


I am an English major with a love of languages and fiction, and with an incurable travel bug. In my free time, I read fantasy, drink copious amounts of coffee, and like to go see movies. Culinary art means everything to me. My main hypostasis is the taster, though. The music school has taught me to appreciate the symphony of airy meringues, to create harmonious overtures of light snacks, hard rock of meat, fish, and vegetables on the grill. Choir classes have accustomed me to hear and feel the people nearby and create perfect harmonies of sounds.

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