Turn your ground chicken into these flavourful and moist chicken kofta! Easy to make and only needs 20 minutes - these chicken koftas can be grilled or pan fried, flavoured with onions, parsley, and other pantry ingredients. Let's walk through how to make them, step by step.
What is Chicken Kofta?
"Kofta" in general is an Arabic term that refers to patties made from ground meat, similar to meatballs. The most popular type of Kofta is made from ground beef or ground lamb. Chicken Kofta is the same idea - but using ground chicken instead of ground beef.
Ground chicken is higher in protein and is quite healthy! However, its not as flavourful as ground beef so this recipe adds a lot of spices and herbs to get the best flavour profile but with minimal effort.
Aside from chicken kofta, you may have also heard of chicken kebabs, which are made from boneless pieces of chicken as opposed to ground chicken, and they are threaded onto a skewer. Both delicious, but quite different!
Chicken Kofta Cooking Methods
One of the main reasons I love chicken kofta is because you can cook it in a variety of different ways, as well as serve it in multiple ways:
- My preferred method of cooking is using a stove top grill pan, like a cast iron grill (this is the one I use), and grilling them to get beautiful grill marks. You can also do this using an outdoor grill.
- Or you can shape them into circular patties and pan-fry them in a non stick skillet. This is a great kid-friendly way of serving them. You can make little chicken burgers or sliders.
- Finally, you can also shape them into small meatballs and use them in other dishes like pasta or with yellow rice.
Ingredients You Will Need
Here's what you'll need for this recipe:
- Ground chicken for the base of the kofta.
- Onions, garlic and parsley to add moisture and a lot of flavour. You can finely chop by hand or to make things easier, throw them in a food processor and finely chop them that way.
- Spices including paprika, cumin, coriander, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. You can add more black pepper if you like it with more heat.
- One egg, to add extra fat and moisture and to help bind the mixture together.
- Breadcrumbs, either panko or Italian style. The breadcrumbs are important for ensure the kofta remains juicy and soft.
- Olive oil for a bit more fat since chicken is quite lean, and a little bit of tomato paste to add a bit of acidity.
How to Make Chicken Kofta - Step by Step
Start by finely chopping the onions, parsley and garlic. I do this using a small food processor to make it easier.
In a bowl, combine the ground chicken, the onion parsley and garlic mixture, and all the other ingredients.
Mix well using your hands until the ingredients are combined very well and a chicken dough forms.
Shape the chicken kofta into the desired shape. I created long log shapes to form a kofta, but you can also shape into meatballs or small circular patties.
Heat a cast iron grill pan or a non-stick skillet and add a few tablespoons of oil. Once hot, add the chicken kofta and cook on each side for 2-3 minutes. Continue to flip over and cook until the inside is no longer pink.
Feel free to break open a piece of kofta to ensure it is cooked through.
Serve the kofta hot with vegetables, salad, or rice.
How to Store Chicken Kofta
Here are the fridge instructions:
- If storing shaped chicken kofta uncooked: place in an air tight container and store for 1 day. When ready to cook, bring to room temperature and following cooking instructions.
- If storing cooked chicken kofta: place in an air tight container and store for 2-3 days. Heat through in a microwave, oven or in a pan over the stove top until warm.
Here are freezing instructions:
- If freezing uncooked chicken kofta, only do this if you have used fresh ground chicken to make the kofta. Never re-freeze thawed out ground chicken. Place the shaped kofta on a lined tray and flash freeze for 1-2 hours. Once solidified, remove each kofta and place in a freezer bag. Freeze for a few weeks and cook directly from frozen, adjusting the cooking time as needed.
- If freezing cooked chicken kofta, simply place in a freezer bag. I typically portion out 4-5 koftas per bag so I can just pull out and thaw enough for 1 meal. Freeze for a few weeks and warm through in the oven or microwave.
What to Serve with Chicken Kofta
Here are a multitude of ways we enjoy these chicken koftas:
- In a sandwich or wrap, with sliced onions, tomatoes, parsley and with a garlic lemon and tahini sauce, or with a cucumber yogurt sauce.
- In a bowl, with yellow rice or with vermicelli rice, alongside a simple chopped salad.
- Thrown into pastas or stews like this dawood basha stew (sub the beef for chicken meatballs).
Other Kofta and Chicken Recipes You'll Enjoy
If you tried these recipes, please consider leaving a star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page - I'd love to hear from you! You can also hop on over to Instagram and say hello!
20-Minute Chicken Kofta (Grilled or Pan-Fried)
- 454 g ground chicken
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 cup parsley
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- ½ teaspon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper more per preference
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup breadcrumbs panko or italian
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste or ketchup
- Start by either finely chopping the onions and parsley, or using a small food processor, chop to a fine consistency.
- In a large bowl, add the ground chicken, the parsley and onion mixture, along with all the other ingredients.
- Shape the chicken into kofta shapes if desired, or shape into small circular patties, per preference.
- Place 1-2 tablespoons of oil either on a cast iron grill pan, or in a non-stick frying pan.
- Pan fry or grill the koftas for 2-3 minutes on each side, until they turn a lightly golden brown, Flip and cook 2-3 minutes on the other side. Cover with a lid and cook for 1-2 minutes to ensure the inside is cooked through.
- Test one piece of kofta by breaking it open to ensure it is fully cooked on the inside.
- Remove from the pan and serve with chopped vegetables like onions, parsley and tomato, in sandwiches or with a salad.
- You can shape these chicken kofta either as log shaped koftas for grilling, or circular patties for sliders or burgers.
- You can also bake these chicken kofta, but I prefer to pan fry in a bit of oil to add more fat and moisture.
- Store in an air tight container and in the fridge for a few days, or freeze them to use for later. Read the post instructions for how to freeze.