Total Time
Prep 15 mins
Cook 20 mins

These are the well-known Turkish Kofta, delicious little meat balls or patties. You can make them with beef, but lamb is traditional and makes them very special.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Make the bread crumbs by breaking up 2 slices of stale but not dried out whole wheat bread into the bowl of a food processor.
  2. Whizz until finely crumbed.
  3. Add the ground lamb and the egg, and process until blended.
  4. Add the spices, garlic and parsley.
  5. Process the meat well to achieve a fine texture.
  6. Roll the mixture into small meatballs (I use a melonballer) or finger shaped patties using dampened hands.
  7. You may cook them at once, or refrigerate the mixture for several hours.
  8. (If your meat is very fresh, you can divide it in half and wrap part well in plastic for the next day's meal.) Heat the oil in a heavy skillet, and fry the balls or patties until cooked through and evenly browned.
  9. The meatballs should be stirred several times, the patties turned once.
  10. Remove them with a slotted spoon to drain.
  11. Serve the meatballs hot or at room temperature as an appetizer.
  12. Lovely with a yogurt or tahini sauce, on a bed of rice or in a pita.


Most Helpful

these are really good and a nice change from the usual. i made these into patties and served them in pitas with tzatziki sauce. i served them with baked french fries which i seasoned with cumin. nice week night dinner.

chia February 28, 2004

I lived in Turkey for several years and this recipe comes as close to the best koftes I ever had there. They are very good grilled and served with other meats (chicken kebabs, lamb chops) as part of a "mixed grill" along with the yogurt/cucumber/garlic sauces, a shepherd's salad (tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, olives with lemon/olive oil dressing) and some raki (like ouzo) for good measure. These are always a huge hit in my house!

Kimchi1 June 19, 2014

We just got back from England where we had these meatballs in a Turkish restaurant. I loved them and couldn't wait to get back home so I could try to make them myself. These are every bit as good as the ones we ate while we were away. I cooked mine on a charcoal grill and that added another flavor dimension.

Food911 April 12, 2011

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a