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5 from 2 votes

Grilled Lamb Skewers (Yang Rou Chuan)

Chinese Lamb Skewers, or Yang Rou Chuan, are made with a cumin, caraway, red pepper, and black peppercorn dry rub and grilled to perfection.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time8 minutes
Total Time23 minutes
Course: main dishes
Cuisine: Chinese
Servings: 4
Author: Kevin


  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless lamb shoulder cubed
  • olive oil

Yang Rou Chuan Spice Rub


  • In a spice or coffee grinder coarsely grind cumin seeds, peppercorns, caraway seeds, red pepper flakes, sugar and salt until only a few whole spices remain. This will be a coarse spice rub.
  • Clean and heat grill to 425°F, indirect heat (for a charcoal grill, bank coals on one side of grill; for a gas grill, leave one or two burners off on one side).
  • In a bowl or plastic bag add cubed lamb and spice rub. Massage lamb, pressing spice blend onto the meat with your hands to coat.
  • Thread lamb cubes onto 8-12 skewers, leaving a small gap between each piece of meat. Drizzle with olive oil.
  • Grill lamb over direct heat, turning every minute or so, until browned and you see visible char marks, about 4 minutes. Move to cooler side of grill and continue to grill until lamb is cooked to desired doneness, about 4 minutes longer for medium-rare.
  • Allow to rest for 5 minutes on platter before serving.


  1. I serve these with steamed rice and Bok Choy Stir Fry or as pictured, warm Pita, Hummus and Tahini Yogurt Sauce for a Middle Eastern twist.


Calories: 164kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 384mg | Potassium: 382mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 325IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 3mg