Beyti kebab is a type of Turkish kebab where a tender and flavorful meat stuffing is encased in chewy flatbreads drizzled with melted butter, covered in tomato sauce and baked to perfection. It’s served with big dollops of garlicky yogurt on the side to dip the slices of kebab in. Yogurt balances out the tomato sauce perfectly, makes the kebab extra creamy and I would not dream of having a beyti kebab without yogurt!
Beyti kebab is one the easiest types of kebab to replicate at home. You don’t need a rotating spit or to grill anything over charcoal and if you’ve made sausage rolls before beyti kebab will be familiar territory. It’s the same process (preparing a meat stuffing and sealing it by rolling pastry/flatbread around it) with the addition of making 2 different sauces. It’s a tad more elaborate but so worth the effort!
Just wait until you bite into your first piece. Tender meat and bread,
lots of butter, covered in tomato sauce and dunk into garlicky yogurt, what could possibly better than this? Some people even sprinkle grated kaşar (mild cheese) over the tomato sauce. Beyti kebab has totally dethroned lasagna for me when it comes to delicious tomatoey meaty dinners.
→ What is lavash (lavaş)? Lavash is a thin and chewy flatbread made with flour, salt and water, and cooked in a tandoor. Lavash dough is usually leavened in Turkey and the flatbreads are used to make dürüm (wraps filled with thin slices of döner kebap). You can find lavash in the fresh bread section of Turkish grocery stores. I also spotted lavash at the supermarket next to sliced breads but I don’t think it’s that common.
Beyti kebab is more popularly made with sheets of yufka, rather than lavash. You can find fresh yufka in the refrigerated section of any Turkish grocery store or you can use 4 sheets of filo pastry that are roughly the same size as the pieces of lavash. The outside of a beyti kebab made with yufka will be crispier and more brittle. I prefer the way the tomato sauce softens the flatbreads and make the beyti kebab a bit ‘squishy’ but to each their own.
MESSY BUT YUMMY
There are dozens and dozens of different kinds of mouth-watering kebabs in Turkey but beyti kebab has a special place in my heart (followed closely by alinazik). It was the first kebap I ever ordered in a restaurant after I moved to Izmir and it was the one I was always coming back to. I especially loved beyti kebab when I ordered it online because by the time it finally got delivered it was all soggy and drenched in sauce. My flatmates were calling it a mess but for me it was hea-ven. Don’t worry, your beyti kebab won’t be a mess! After all you are not going to place it, while still hot, in a box with yogurt directly next to it and then shake the box for half an hour. (I’m kind of tempted now though) Beyti kebab is usually served with bulgur pilaf in restaurants but I find it quite filling on its own.
Looking for other recipes using ground beef? Check out some of my favorites;Print
Beyti kebab is one the easiest (and most delicious) kebabs to replicate at home. Tender and flavorful meat stuffing is encased in flatbreads, which are then sliced, covered with melted butter & tomato sauce and baked to perfection!
For the beyti kebab:
- ½ bunch of parsley, leaves only
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 large onion
- 300g ground lamb, not lean (1 ⅓ cup or 10 oz)
- 300g ground beef, not lean (1 ⅓ cup or 10 oz)
- 1 egg, whisked
- 80g breadcrumbs (⅔ cup)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cumin
- ⅔ tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp kirmizi biber, or use your preferred chili powder
- 85g butter (6 tbsp), cubed
- 2 big lavash flatbreads, or use the thinnest flour tortillas you can find*
- 1 tsp sumac (optional)
For the tomato sauce:
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp mild red pepper paste (biber salçası), or use tomato paste
- 80ml water, just boiled (⅓ cup)
- 380g passata/tomato puree (1 ½ cup)
- 1 tsp salt
- pinch of sugar
For the yogurt sauce:
- 355g Turkish or Greek yogurt (1 ¼ cup)
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- ½ tsp salt
- Make the stuffing. Finely chop the parsley and garlic cloves and place in a big mixing bowl. Peel the onion, discard the stems and grate the onion using a box/cheese grater. Discard most of the onion juice and add the pulp to the mixing bowl. Add the ground lamb, ground beef, egg, breadcrumbs and spices. Mix thoroughly with one hand to combine all the ingredients then knead the meat mixture for 5 min.
- Shape the beyti kebab. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat then set aside. If your lavash are as big as mine (65*40cm / 25*16 in), cut them in half so you have 4 rectangle pieces roughly measuring 33*40cm (13*16 in). Working with 1 piece at a time, lay a rectangle of lavash on a clean working surface with one of the long sides facing you. Brush the lavash with melted butter. Leave a small gap at the edge of the lavash then use ¼ of the meat mixture to shape a sort of 2cm (¾ in) wide meatball that strips all the way across the width of the lavash. Roll the flatbread over the filling and away from you, pressing lightly to make sure to pack the meat filling. Repeat with the rest of the flatbreads and meat filling. It probably won’t look as neat if you use round tortillas but it’ll still be delicious!
- Bake. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F)** and lightly grease a casserole dish. Using a sharp knife, cut the rolled strips into 4cm (1 ½ in) pieces and place them in the dish. Brush the top with the rest of the melted butter and bake for 30 min. (Be aware that after 20 min you’ll have to remove the casserole dish from the oven to pour the tomato sauce on top)
- Make the tomato sauce while the kebap bakes. Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the paste and cook mixing continuously with a wooden spoon for 2 min. Add the water and try to break any remaining clump of paste with the back of the spoon. Pour the passata and season with the salt and sugar. Mix thoroughly, bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for 5 min. Cover the top of the beyti kebab with the tomato sauce once it has baked for 20 min. Then place the dish back in the oven and bake for 10 more min.
- Make the yogurt sauce. Finely chop the garlic, place in a mixing bowl and sprinkle the salt on top. Add the yogurt and mix thoroughly with a whisk.
- Serve. Enjoy hot or warm with lots of cold yogurt sauce on the side (and a sprinkle of sumac on top if desired).
* you can also make this recipe with yufka (filo pastry)
**170°C (340°F) if you use a convection oven
- Serving Size: 12 pieces
- Calories: 1076
Keywords: turkish kebab, homemade kebab, kebap recipe