This tasty Baked Keto Chicken Kofta is made with ground chicken, herbs, and spices. Served with a tangy homemade yogurt sauce, you can enjoy this light and fresh meal as an appetizer or with a side dish for dinner.Jump to Recipe
This perfectly seasoned and fresh Baked Keto Chicken Kofta With Yogurt Sauce is a must-try when you’re craving a light dinner or appetizer. Slightly different from the traditional Greek chicken kabobs we know and love, kofta kebabs are a Middle Eastern recipe that is made with ground meat, fresh herbs and seasonings, onion, and garlic. Bake or grill them for a fun change-up in your weekly meal plan!
This recipe is completely keto and low-carb friendly and uses gluten-free ingredients. Place the oven-baked chicken kofta kebabs on top of a salad for extra protein, enjoy them on their own for lunch, or prepare and keep the kebabs in your freezer when you need dinner in a hurry. You’ll love the full flavors that come from the chicken dipped in homemade yogurt and feta sauce.
What are chicken kofta kebabs?
Kofta is a Middle Eastern dish traditionally made from ground lamb, beef, chicken, pork, or a mix. The meat is mixed with plenty of herbs, spices, onions, and garlic and then formed into meatballs or around skewers. Kofta kebabs can be grilled or baked, depending on their shape or how they’ll be served.
Chicken kofta kebabs are much lighter than other varieties. The mixture of both chicken breasts and thighs is juicy, tender, and well seasoned. Serve one or two kebabs to each guest with fresh vegetables, rice, or salad.
Ingredients you’ll need to make keto chicken kofta kebabs
- Ground chicken – You’ll need both ground chicken breast and thighs for this recipe.
- Eggs – To act as a binder for the kofta meat and spice mixture.
- Herbs and spices – Paprika, cumin, sumac, za’atar, and parsley transform the plain chicken into a Middle Eastern favorite.
- Onion and garlic – For extra savory flavor in the chicken filling.
- Fresno chili pepper – This red pepper will add a slight spice to the kofta without being overwhelming. Feel free to swap this with chili powder or a jalapeno pepper for more heat.
- Homemade yogurt feta sauce – This is a light and simple dipping sauce you can make from yogurt, feta cheese, lemon, salt, and fresh dill.
How to make keto chicken kofta in the oven
Making chicken kofta is a hands-on process, literally! You’ll need clean hands or gloves to form the seasoned chicken patties around the skewers. From there, bake and enjoy! This is how it’s done:
- Make the kofta pulp mixture: Use a food processor or blender to combine the onion, parsley, chili pepper, and garlic. Process until everything is finely minced, then transfer to a fine-mesh strainer. Press it down with the back of a spoon to drain any excess liquid.
- Mix everything together: Combine the ground chicken, egg, salt, smoked paprika, cumin, sumac, and za’atar in a large bowl. Add the strained kofta pulp to the bowl and gently mix everything together with your hands until it has a paste-like consistency.
- Form the chicken patties: Scoop two heaping spoonfuls of meat mixture into your hands and flatten it into an elongated patty. Next, form the kofta patty around each skewer.
- Bake the chicken kofta: Add the kebabs to your prepared baking sheet and bake for around 10 minutes.
- Make the yogurt sauce: While the chicken is baking, make the yogurt sauce by mixing all of the ingredients together in a bowl.
- Serve: Serve the kebabs on a platter lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, cucumbers, and olives with yogurt sauce on the side for dipping!
How to serve baked keto chicken kofta kebabs
This is a bright and savory meal you can serve with a few accompaniments to really boost the presentation and flavor:
- With hummus drizzled with olive oil and pita bread.
- Over creamy mashed cauliflower.
- On top of a fresh Mediterranean salad.
- Place the kebabs on a platter with red leaf lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, fresh herbs, olives, and red onion for a beautiful presentation.
- With yogurt sauce or homemade garlic sauce on the side.
- Next to a variety of fresh side dishes like garlic butter rolls, brussels sprouts salad, French green beans, or sweet potatoes.
- With rice, quinoa, couscous, or cauliflower rice on the side.
Tips and variations
- Don’t have any chicken at home? You can replace it with ground beef or turkey instead.
- Can’t find ground chicken thighs? Instead, cut the whole thighs into smaller pieces and pulse in a food processor.
- If using bamboo or wood skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes so they don’t burn or catch fire in the oven.
- Don’t have skewers? Form the patties into meatballs instead and serve them in lettuce cups.
- If you’d rather grill the chicken kebabs, I recommend using a grill pan as the chicken mixture can be a little loose and some pieces may fall through the grill.
- Protect your hands when working with the sticky chicken filling by wearing gloves or dampening your hands with water.
- Use a meat thermometer to ensure the chicken is done cooking. The chicken kebabs are ready when their internal temperature has reached 165ºF.
Storing and reheating leftovers
You can make the chicken kofta kebabs ahead of time by forming the patties around the skewers and then placing them in the freezer. Cover them well in foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Let them thaw overnight in the fridge before baking.
The yogurt sauce will also stay fresh in the fridge for about 2 or 3 days if you decide to make it ahead of time. Keep it in a sealed container or jar.
I recommend enjoying the chicken kofta immediately after it’s done baking for the tastiest and juiciest bite. If you end up with leftovers, simply store them in a shallow, airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To reheat, place the chicken kebabs on a baking sheet and bake in a 400ºF oven for about 15 minutes or until heated through.
More light and flavorful keto recipes
Try any of these keto recipes for a healthy dinner, light lunch, or for a flavorful appetizer:
- Garlic Grilled Shrimp Skewers
- Air Fryer Asian Pork Meatballs
- Salmon Patties With Homemade Tartar Sauce
- Instant Pot Cheeseburger Soup
Baked Keto Chicken Kofta With Yogurt Sauce
Chicken Kofta Mixture
- 1 lb ground chicken breast
- 1 lb ground chicken thighs If you can’t find ground chicken thighs, cut whole thighs into smaller pieces, and pulse in the food processor.
- 1 large egg
- 3 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp sumac optional
- 1 tsp za’atar optional
Pulp for Kofta Mixture
- 1 small sweet onion peeled and quartered
- 2 cups parsley loosely packed
- 4 cloves garlic
- ½ Fresno chili pepper seeds removed, or use ¼ tsp chili powder
Yogurt Feta sauce
- 1 cup yogurt full fat
- ¼ cup feta crumbled
- ½ lemon
- 2 tbsp fresh dill or other soft herbs
- Salt to taste
- 1 head red leaf lettuce
- 5 small campari tomatoes
- 5 small cucumber
- ¼ cup dill and parsley chopped
- ½ cup kalamata olives
- ½ small red onion sliced
- Preheat the oven to 450ºF. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set it aside.
Pulp for Kofta Mixture
- In a food processor or blender, combine the onion parsley, chili pepper, and garlic. Process until everything is finely minced and creates a pulp. Transfer to a fine-mesh strainer and use the back of a spoon to drain off any excess liquid.
- In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken breast and thighs, egg, salt, smoked paprika, cumin, sumac, and za'atar.
- Add the onion, parsley, garlic, and chili pepper pulp to the bowl and lightly mix the mixture with your hands. Don’t over mix. After a minute it will have a sticky paste-like consistency.
- Tip: Use water and damp your hands to help make working with the sticky paste easier. Scoop two heaping spoonfuls of meat mixture into a damp hand, flatten it in your hand into an elongated flat pattie.
- Add a skewer stick to the pattie and start forming the kofta around the skewer.
- Add to the baking sheet. Repeat for the rest until you get 10 koftas.
- Bake for 10 minutes on the top rack, until the kofta patties are cooked through or no longer pink when cut through the center and golden brown. A meat thermometer should read 165ºF when they're done.
- Add all ingredients to a bowl and mix well. Add additional salt as needed, then set aside until serving.
- Serve the kebabs on a platter with lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, cucumbers, olives, and yogurt sauce.