Chicken Shami Kebabs

Chicken Shami Kebabs

Shami kebabs are one of the most popular kebabs from Mughlai cuisine.They are a loved appetizer during Eid Celebrations and otherwise as well in the Indian subcontinent and its neighboring countries. While the most common ones are made with meat and beef, there is also a chicken version known as Chicken Shami Kebabs which I am making today. Basically,it is  a kebab made with minced meat and Chana Dal(lentils).They are succulent,  moist and easily favorites of many a Indians when it comes to Indian starters and appetizers. Be it on occasions, or otherwise these chicken patty like kebabs are the most common amongst all the kebabs along with sheekh kebabs probably.

Mostly relished during celebrations or an eating out occasion,  Chicken Shami Kebabs  are one of the easiest Kebabs to prepare with outstanding results of taste, texture and flavor. An amalgamation of varied Indian spices added to the chicken and lentils effectuates its royal flavor. Addition of the egg gives a certain crispiness to the outer edge of the kebabs. The right balance of lentils and chicken is the trick to these  melt-in-the mouth morsels of yum. Copious amount of lentils can make it taste more like lentil kebabs.

There are generally two different types of chicken pieces that are mostly used, both yeild almost the same results.Either boneless chicken thighs or minced chicken. I generally use Godrej Real Good minced chicken( or Kheema as called in Hindi) for ease of cooking. Furthermore,the original way of preparation of the mixture is to boil both the chicken,lentils and few other ingredients together. However , I like to slightly saute them in ghee before adding water to a boil. This ,I think imparts a beautiful aroma of the ghee  and enhances its flavor .

Another important point to note is the use of homemade roasted garam masala powder. This is what ultimately gives the rich aromatic flavor to kebabs. Readymade garam masala powder may not be able to justify the perfect taste.


I have made a small video for the recipe explaining the process.


Absolutely gorgeous in taste, these kebabs evoke royalty and a professional appeal much like the restaurant style kebabs. Perfect in flavor and taste, they are the pride of Mughlai Cusine .If you desire for a great kebab fanfare then these are a must try for your next house party. This certainly will be the defining element of your starters that lights up your perfect house event.A perfect concoction of right taste,aroma and flavor that can transport you to the tingling of Mughlai gourmet food.

Besides this,  if you desire for a vegetarian version then you can also look at the veg shami kebab recipe( also called as kala chana kebabs).

Veg Shami Kebabs(Kala Chana Kebabs)

Kala Chana Kebabs/ Vegetarian Shami kebabs


Chicken Shami Kebabs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Chicken Shami kebabs are one of the most popular kebabs from Mughlai cuisine and is a loved appetizer .Like the original Shami Kebabs that's made with meat these chicken Shami kebabs are also made in a similar way with Chana Dal and minched chicken .These are succulent and tender kebabs that almost melts in your mouth .With just minimal spices they are perfect for your tastebuds.
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: Mughlai
Serves: 20
  • Minched Chicken 500 gms
  • Chana Dal ½ cup soaked
  • Onion sliced 1
  • Cinanamon stick 1inch
  • Bay leaves 2
  • Cloves 5 to 6
  • Black cardamon 2
  • Ghee(Clarified Butter) 1 tsp
  • Garlic cloves 5 to 6
  • Ginger (chopped) 1 inch
  • Salt as per taste
  • water 2 cups
  • Red Chilli Powder
  • For making patties
  • Green Chillies chopped 2
  • Mint Leaves chopped ¼th cup
  • Coriander leaves chopped ¼th cup
  • garam masala powder 1 tsp
  • Nutmeg powder ½ tsp
  • Egg 1
  • Roasted Cumin Powder 1 tsp
  • Salt as per taste
  • Ghee for frying
  1. In a pan add ghee,sliced onion. Fry for 2 mins , minched chicken,soaked chana dal, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, black cardamons, cloves , coriander seeds,4 to 5 chopped garlic cloves, chopped ginger, , salt ,red chilli powder , add 2 cups water and bring to a boil until chicken is dry. Strain, remove the whole spices
  2. Blend the minched chicken-chana dal mixture with chopped green chillies,coriander (dhaniya)leaves and mint(pudina) leaves, egg, garam masala powder, roasted cumin powder. Make small round flat patties . Deep fry them in oil until golden
You can take minched meat or chicken thighs as well. However I like the texture of minched meat better and easier.

Also, you can desire for a little lesser amount of lentils as well, more the lentils, less will be the flavor of chicken

Extremely important point to note is use of homemade garam masala powder if available.This is what takes the taste to a different level. This can be made with a blend of cardamon, cinamon stick, cloves, nutmeg and mace.Needs to be dry roasted and blended into powder. You can store them in air tight jars for futher use as well

Dont substitute ghee(clarified butter) for oil, as ghee gives these beautiful kebabs a certain richness.


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