Chelo Kebab

Chelow Kabab Recipe ( Iranian Rice with Kebab )

Chelow Kabab Recipe
Chelow Kabab Recipe

Chelow Kabab is a popular Persian dish which consists of cooked rice (Chelo) and a variety of broiled (Kebab) mutton or veal (though less popular) and is served with butter, egg yolk, powdered sumac, raw onions, broiled tomatoes, and fresh sweet basil. It is served in the form of a mound with some butter buried inside.

Ingredients of Chelow Kebab


  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless leg of lamb, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 18 grape tomatoes Cooking spray (small tomatoes)


  • 1 ½ cups uncooked basmati rice
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and divided
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Coriander
  • 1 lemon, cut into 6

How to Make Chelow Kabab

Step 1

To prepare kebabs, place onions and garlic in food processor; process 2 to 3 minutes or until pureed. Combine pureed onion mixture, lemon juice, 3 tablespoons oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add lamb; seal and marinate in refrigerator 8 hours, turning bag occasionally.

Step 2

Preheat grill to medium-high heat or broiler.

Step 3

Remove lamb from bag; discard marinade. Thread lamb onto 6 (10-inch) metal skewers; thread tomatoes onto 2 or 3 (10-inch) metal skewers. Place skewers on grill rack or broiler pan coated with cooking spray; cook tomatoes 4 to 5 minutes and lamb 10 to 12 minutes or until desired degree of doneness, turning occasionally.

Step 4

To prepare chelo (rice), place rice in a fine sieve rinse 1 to 2 minutes with warm running water. Drain. Bring 6 cups water and 2 teaspoons salt to a boil in a large, heavy nonstick skillet over high heat. Add rice; boil, uncovered, 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. (Rice will be slightly crunchy.) Drain rice through a sieve into a bowl, reserving rice and cooking liquid. Rinse rice with warm running water.

Step 5

Combine 2 tablespoons reserved rice cooking liquid, 2 tablespoons melted butter, 1 tablespoon oil, and saffron in nonstick skillet; place over high heat. Add one-third of rice, stirring to coat. Spread evenly over bottom of pan. Add remaining rice (do not stir), spreading evenly. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon melted butter. Place a clean dish towel over rice, folding towel to fit within perimeter of pan. Cover pan with lid. Cook over high heat 3 to 4 minutes or until rice begins to brown on bottom. Reduce heat to low, and cook 20 minutes or until rice is tender and a crisp, browned layer forms on bottom of pan. Remove lid and towel; invert rice onto a plate.

Step 6

Spoon about ½ cup rice onto each of 6 plates. Remove tomatoes from skewers. Place a lamb skewer and 3 tomatoes on each plate. Combine green onions, mint, and cilantro; sprinkle 1 tablespoon over each serving. Serve with lemon wedges.

Chelow Kabab Recipe
Chelow Kabab Recipe