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Middle Eastern Salmon and Lemon Kebabs
with cauliflower rice / citrus and avocados

Active: 45 min Total: 45 min
Alternating salmon and lemon makes kebabs that are eye-catching and flavorful. We featured these kebabs back in 2015 but are giving them a fresh take in this bright and colorful citrus-packed meal.
Smarts: This meal takes quite a bit of prep, from threading the salmon onto skewers to chopping the citrus and avocado. Feel free to simplify by leaving the salmon filets whole and just searing in a pan. (Top with the lemon slices.)


Cauliflower Rice:
  • Cauliflower florets - 12 oz
  • Butter - 1 Tbsp
Middle Eastern Salmon and Lemon Kebabs:
  • Skewers, wooden, bamboo, or metal - 16
  • Salmon - 1 1/2 lbs , cubed (look for skinless salmon filets or ask the fishmonger to remove the skin)
  • Za'atar - 1 Tbsp
  • Lemons - 2 , sliced thinly into rounds
Citrus and Avocados:
  • Shallots - 1 clove , diced
  • Mustard, Dijon - 1/2 tsp
  • Vinegar, red wine - 2 tsp
  • Oil, olive - 2 Tbsp
  • Citrus fruit - 1 lb , chopped (grapefruit, oranges, or a combination)
  • Avocados - 2 , chopped


  1. Cauliflower rice - (Double if making Wednesday’s meal.) Pulse florets in a food processor until broken up into ‘rice’-sized bits. Cook rice in one of two ways: 1) Microwave for 4 to 5 minutes and then fold in butter. Season with some salt and pepper; or 2) Heat a pan over medium-high heat and add butter. Saute cauliflower in heated butter for ~5 minutes, until tender but still crunchy. Season to taste with some salt and pepper. Watch this video for the full how-to on cauliflower rice. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Skewers - (If cooking on the grill, get grill heating before continuing with prep.) If using wooden / bamboo skewers, soak in water for 10 minutes.
  3. Make vinaigrette - Dice shallots. Whisk shallots with mustard and vinegar. Add oil while whisking. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  4. Salmon - Rinse and pat dry. Chop into 1” / 2.5 cm cubes. (Note: Don’t worry if some pieces aren’t perfectly cubed; you can fold them over when threading them onto skewers.) Toss salmon with za’atar and some salt and pepper. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  5. Lemons - Thinly slice into rounds. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  6. Citrus fruit / Avocados - Prep as directed and combine.
  7. Assemble skewers - Alternate threading salmon and lemons (folded into halves or quarters) onto skewers. (Using two skewers together can make it easier to flip the skewers as they cook.)


  1. If cooking on a grill: Heat grill to 450F / 232C degrees. Clean grates and brush with some oil. Add salmon kebabs and sear on both sides until salmon is just cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes total.
  2. If cooking on the stovetop: Heat a grill pan over medium heat. Brush pan with some oil. Add salmon kebabs and sear on both sides until salmon is just cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes total.
  3. Toss citrus and avocados in vinaigrette. Season with a pinch of salt.
  4. If cauliflower rice was made ahead, reheat in the microwave (reserve half if doubled).
  5. Serve salmon skewers with cauliflower rice and citrus / avocados on the side. (The citrus / avocados and vinaigrette are great spooned over top of the cauliflower rice.) Enjoy!

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