Shami Kabab – Minced meat and yellow split pea kabab

Shami Kabab 1

The sizzling sound in the frying pan and the aroma that surrounds is sensational while preparing shami kababs.  AND the taste…delightful!


Kababs are immensely popular throughout Bangladesh.  There are different types of kababs and numerous ways they can be prepared.  There is also a considerable regional variation of kababs in Bangladesh.  Amongst all, Shami kabab is the most common and immensely popular for festivals, weddings and any other celebrations or just to enjoy with the family.


Shami Kabab 2


Bangladeshi cuisine refers to the Bengali cuisine prevalent in Bangladesh.  Although Indian cuisine from West Bengal is also referred to as Bengali cuisine, the usage of beef greatly sets Bangladeshi cuisine apart from the cuisine in West Bengal in India. Bengali cuisine of Bangladesh incorporates many Persian-Arabic elements and Beef is an integral part of it.  Beef dishes are a must item in parties, celebrations and banquets.  Traditionally, shami kababs are made of minced beef, but can also be prepared with chicken or a combination of the two.


Shami kabob 3

If you make a big batch like I do and freeze, the kababs are a great protein source that take only minutes to prepare with various meal options to choose from at the end of a long working day.  Though there are several steps to making the kababs, the steps are not hard.  The best part is that the kababs freeze very well so you can make several days or weeks ahead of time if you are planning to serve at parties or family get together.  They become soggy and fall apart when completely defrosted, so fry them in medium heat within 10-15 minutes after taking out of the freezer.


Shami Kabob 4


If you walk into my home unannounced, chances are I will have some of these kababs in the freezer. Depending on the time, I serve them as snack with salads and a chatni(the radish chatni or the green sauce pairs very well) or make a sandwich for lunch with regular bread or pita, or serve with rice dishes for dinner.  You get the point?  They are versatile and can be served anytime of the day.



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  1. says

    One of my favourite kebabs but I didn’t know they were so popular in Bangladesh. Yours are so perfectly shaped and golden brown. Reminds me it’s been a while since I had some. I know in Hyderabad they are extremely popular and my aunts always have them on hand. They really have a unique taste to them with the daal. The Hyderabadi ones are heavy on the cardamom and cinnamon, which I love also. So, Lail, where do you guys live?? Texas? I’m coming through there next week :) I hear you have shami kebabs on hand at all times :)


    • says

      Oh, Nanzeen, I would have loved to meet you and invite over to serve some of these kababs. Only if you had sometime to spare for me :(

      Better luck next time. Have a great trip.

  2. says

    I have always wanted to try make shammi kabab, but somehow they are in my ‘difficult list’. Yours turned out so delicious looking, and I like the idea of frozen kebabs ready for snacking in matter of minutes! Great minds, Lail:-)

  3. says

    Wow, your page has loaded in no time and thankfully, i can comment on lovely Kebabs.
    I feel to grab them and feel it again & again when I look at it. :)

    Take care dear, love

    • says

      Thank you for your kind words, dear.

      So glad that you are able to access the page. I am not sure what happened. Please let me know if you face similar issues again.

    • says

      Shami kababs are addictive. Agree, they are lot of work. That’s why, I am always making a big batch and freezing the shami kababs so that we can enjoy some later as well.

  4. AA says

    So glad to have found you, but more importantly, your incredible culinary secrets, again! Much love to you and the daughter. –Nupi

    • says

      Wow! Are you really the Nupi I used to know during the college years? I often think about you and tried to look you up on FB but in vain. So glad to find you. Much love to you too.