Ranch-tested recipe: Kabobs for lazy people like us

At the risk of subjecting the world to one too many recipes, I submit this one for an Arvik family summertime favorite:  kabobs.  This recipe pairs up a great mix of skewer-worthy ingredients with a mouth-watering marinade.

Unfortunately, the thing about kabobs is this:  Who has the time to manually skewer enough food to feed several hungry people?  I don’t know if I truly don’t have enough time or if I don’t use the time I have efficiently, but honestly, accomplishing this to-do list…

  1. Remember to buy skewers at the store.  Yes, actually remember to buy skewers.
  2. Laboriously cut up veggies and meat.
  3. Leave enough time to marinade the works for 24 hours.
  4. When ready to cook, remember to soak the skewers in water beforehand (if using wooden).
  5. Now:  String every single last veggie and every single last piece of meat on a skewer before grilling.
  6. Eat in shifts, because one hungry man can eat a grill-full of hot kabobs all by himself.

… has been very difficult (if not impossible) for me here in my grown-up years, especially since I became a mother.

Then, about a year ago, I had an epiphany!  I have discovered that I can achieve all that great kabob flavor without ever touching a skewer!  Here’s my secret:  these days I just drain the marinade off of the raw ingredients when they’re good ‘n’ ready, throw the fixings on a broiler pan, and throw the pan on a very hot grill (or, in a pinch, under a broiler).  In a matter of minutes I have a panful of sizzling hot, smoky and flavorful supper that we can all dig into:


Not that we don’t eat off of plates here at the Blake house.  Because that… totally… happens.

Bonus to my method:  no concerns here about swallowing slivers that might inadvertently pull off the skewers along with the cooked steak.

The only trick to Lazy Lady Kabobs, of course, is to make the time 24 hours in advance to prep the ingredients and throw them in the marinade.

Disclaimer:  I still cannot promise that your kids will not gag if you feed them a neat little piece of delicious grilled mushroom.  Kids are persnickety, and I just can’t fix everything.

Here’s the recipe!


Mix together the marinade:

  1. 1 c. soy sauce (hope you like saltiness!  We really do)
  2. 2/3 c. vegetable oil
  3. 2/3 c. white vinegar
  4. 2 cloves crushed garlic
  5. pineapple juice (see below)

Prep the fixings and throw them in the marinade:

  1. bell peppers in pieces (the more colors the better!)
  2. mushrooms (I love good ol’ white button)
  3. 1 onion (peeled to core, not cut, especially if you’re planning to skewer the pieces)
  4. 2 cans chunk pineapple with juice (fresh pineapple would also be delicious; if using fresh, just be sure to add 1 c. pineapple juice to marinade)
  5. sirloin steak, trimmed and cut into chunks
  6. grape tomatoes

When you’re ready to eat (after 24 hours of marinating):

  1. Drain the marinade from the fixings.
  2. If you’re a glutton for punishment, string the fixings on skewers and grill.  Enjoy!
  3. If you are a lazy lady or fella, just divide the fixings between two disposable foil pans (or broiler pans; I have quite a collection of broiler pans because I’ve stolen one from every house we’ve ever lived in, and I find infinite uses for them — they stand up well to the heat of the grill).  Place the pans (one at a time) on a very hot grill and allow the fixings to cook with the lid closed, turning once.  Remove when the steak is still pink inside.  Hopefully the veggies will be charred on the edges.  Enjoy!

© Tami Blake

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