Kibbeh Meatballs with Spiced Yogurt Sauce

Good Morning & Happy Friday!

I don’t know about you but I am ready for the weekend. Hopefully you have something fun planned.  Today I am bringing you a Lebanese recipe for Kibbeh Meatballs with a Spiced Yogurt Sauce.


A few months ago I shared a recipe for Kibbeh that I made when I was visiting my Mom. 

When we made that kibbeh we baked it in the oven, which is how I grew up making it.  This recipe is a little different–you cook the meatballs in a skillet with olive oil.  I really enjoyed this recipe because it got the Kibbeh meatballs a little more crisp on the outside.  The flavors mixed with the ground beef (you can also use lamb for these) was perfect.

Meatballs 5

You can make these into smaller meatballs and serve as an appetizer alongside the spiced yogurt sauce, or make normal sized meatballs and serve on a bed of rice or in a pita sandwich.  At the end of the recipe I am linking over to some of my other Lebanese recipes that would pair great with this kibbeh.  My husband said this was the best Kibbeh recipe yet and my son devoured it.

These truly are a family friendly meal.

Kibbeh Meatballs

Kibbeh Meatballs with Spiced Yogurt Sauce

Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 6-7

Kibbeh Meatballs are ground beef or lamb mixed with bulgar, spices and served with a spiced yogurt sauce.
  • 1 ½ cups plain nonfat yogurt (Greek or regular)
  • 1 cup shredded cucumber, seeded
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp garlic, minced
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • ¾ cup bulgar, uncooked (cracked wheat)
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 lb. ground beef or 1 lb. lean ground lamb (20% fat)
  • ¼ cup minced shallots
  • ¼ cup minced fresh parsley
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp red pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  1. Combine the first 6 ingredients in a small bowl, chill in the refrigerator.
  2. Combine the bulgar with 2 cups of water in a medium bowl. Let the bulgar stand for 30 minutes on the counter, drain the bulgar by squeezing it with your hands to get rid of excess water.
  3. Combine bulgar, meat (lamb or ground beef) and next 7 ingredients (through red pepper) in a food processor and process until it becomes a smooth mixture.
  4. Cover the meat mixture and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  5. Form meat mixture into small balls making sure to roll each one evenly and to the same size as the others.
  6. Heat olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add meatballs (as many as fit) and cook for about 13-14 minutes, turning as they cook to brown all sides. Repeat with remaining meatballs.
  7. Let cool and serve with spiced yogurt sauce over a bed of rice, on a pita sandwich or as an appetizer.
You can freeze the leftovers warm up a few at a time as you need them. You can use ground lamb as well.

Source: Cooking Light

Check out these recipes to pair with the kibbeh:


Spicy Hummus

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus



Homemade Yogurt

Have a great weekend!


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    • A Cedar Spoon says

      Oh yes! I remember a dish you made using bulgar! This would definitely be another good use for it.

    • A Cedar Spoon says

      I think you will like it a lot! The flavors are really great with the spices that are in these.

  1. says

    These meatballs are superb! I love that it has bulgur in it, it gives a great flavor to any dish! And I imagine I dip some meatballs into that appetizing yogurt sauce! YUM! A great family dinner! BTW I love that wooden spoon, a unique one!

    • A Cedar Spoon says

      Thanks Zerrin. The yogurt sauce is great for these meatballs but would be great for other things like pita sandwiches!

    • Julia says

      I just fine but that is a preference because I like it the texture when it is smaller bulgar. You can use whatever you have on hand–I have used Bobs Red Mill and that works.

  2. says

    I want to make these so bad! I’ve only had kibbeh out and if its on a menu I just have to order it! These look so good, so glad you shared a recipe for them. :)

  3. Karime Korniloff says

    Hello! I like you recipe, but what do you mean with ” all spices”? . Please help me, I would like to do this :)

  4. Josh Lewis says

    These are the most similar to how my Seto (grandma) would make Kibbeh I have seen. There is one addition, she would put a little square of cream cheese in the middle! Thank you for sharing.

    • Julia says

      I love recipes that remind me of my Seto. What a great idea to add a little cream cheese to the middle. Sounds amazing! :) Thanks for sharing.

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