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turkish islim kebabi recipe

Aubergine Meatball Wraps (Islim Kebabı)

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Turkish
Servings 4 servings
Calories 605 kcal


Aubergine Stripes

  • 4 aubergines (medium size, preferably long ones to create long stripes)
  • sunflower oil (amount depends on the pan that you will fry the aubergine stripes)


  • 500 g minced beef (30% fat to meat ratio is ideal for juicy meatballs)
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 large white onion (finely chopped, preferably with a food processor or a grater)
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil (plus 1 tablespoon for frying the meatballs)
  • 3 cloves of garlic (preferably finely diced with a food processor or a garlic press)
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon sweet paprika powder

Tomato Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 300 ml warm water


  • 1 handful of fresh parsley leaves (finely chopped, for garnish)
  • 5 cherry tomatoes (sliced into half)
  • 3 green Spanish padron peppers or Turkish chilies (sliced into 2 cm cubes)


Aubergine Stripes

  • Wash the aubergines and dry them with a paper towel.
  • Peel the aubergines vertically in zebra pattern. Do not completely peel them.
  • Slice the aubergines vertically. Make sure each aubergine stripe is dry before frying them to avoid oil splashing. Set them aside.
  • Heat the sunflower oil in a frying pan.
  • Fry each side of the aubergine stripes until they get slightly brown.
  • Place the fried aubergines on paper towels to get rid of the excess oil. Set them aside.


  • Place the minced beef, egg, breadcrumbs, olive oil, onion, garlic, salt, black pepper, cumin powder and paprika into a deep mixing bowl.
  • Mix them with your hands until all ingredients are well combined, knead for about 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Divide a little piece from the mixture and roll them into a meatball in size of a walnut (these meatballs should be able to fit into aubergine wraps. Depending on the size of your aubergine stripes, you can make the meatballs slightly bigger or smaller).
  • Heat a frying pan with a splash of olive oil.
  • Fry the meatballs in the pan until they turn into slight golden color (you don't need to make sure the meatballs are completely cooked at this stage as they will cook further in the oven. Few minutes in the pan should be enough at this stage).

Tomato sauce

  • In a bowl or glass mix the tomato paste and the water until well combined. Set aside.

Assembling the Aubergine Stripes and Meatballs

  • Place 1 piece of padron green pepper or Turkish chili and half of a cherry tomato on each toothpick and set them aside. We will be using these toothpicks to secure our aubergine wraps.
  • Lay 2 fried aubergine stripes on top of each other to form a cross and place one meatball in the middle.
  • Bring first one end of the aubergine up to the top and then in turn the other three ends to form a wrap. Secure them with a toothpick. Repeat the same process until you finish all ingredients.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C .
  • Place the aubergine wraps in a baking dish.
  • With a table spoon gently pour the tomato sauce on the aubergine wraps. Do not pour the sauce directly on the wraps as this will cause them to fall over in the dish.
  • Place the baking dish in the oven until cherry tomatoes and green peppers look cooked. It will take around 20 minutes depending on your oven.
  • Give 5 minutes to cool down before serving. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with buttery Turkish rice pilaf.


Calories: 605kcalCarbohydrates: 46gProtein: 31gFat: 35gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 130mgSodium: 1118mgPotassium: 1737mgFiber: 17gSugar: 22gVitamin A: 667IUVitamin C: 90mgCalcium: 121mgIron: 5mg
Keyword Aubergine Kebab, Comfort Food, Dinner Ideas, Traditional Turkish Recipes
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