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Grilled Pork Shoulder Kebabs with Peppers, Onions, and Spice Rub (with Tailgating Tips)

  • Total Time: 1 hour 36 minutes
  • Yield: 12 skewers 1x


Grilled Pork Shoulder Kebabs with Peppers, Onions, and Spice Rub recipe. With bonus Tailgating Tips!


  • 3 pounds boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and seeded, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored and seeded, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cored and seeded, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 large red onion, peeled and trimmed, core discarded, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes

Spice rub

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper


  1. Prep the pork, veggies, and spice rub: Mix the spice rub ingredients in a small bowl. Cut the pork into 1 1/2 inch cubes. Core and seed the peppers and cut into 1 inch pieces. Trim the onion, peel off the skin, cut the onion in half, and discard the inner core, leaving yourself the outer four layers of the onion. Cut onion into 1 inch pieces, then break each piece in two - each piece of onion should be two layers deep.
  2. Skewer the kebabs: Skewer the kebabs in the following pattern: one piece of pork, one piece onion, two pieces of peppers of different colors. Repeat until you are at the end of a skewer, then add a final piece of pork, and a cherry tomato to protect the point of the skewer. (If you run out of any of the ingredients, make a lopsided skewer - some pork, lots of peppers, half onions, whatever you have left.) Once all the skewers are filled, sprinkle evenly with the spice rub. Put the spice rubbed skewers in a gallon zip-top bag, zip the bag halfway, squeeze out as much air as possible, then zip the bag closed. Let the kebabs marinate in the spice rub, refrigerated (or on ice in your tailgating cooler) for at least one hour, up to overnight.
  3. Prepare the grill: Set the grill up for cooking with direct medium heat. For a gas grill, I preheat the grill on high for ten to fifteen minutes, brush off the grill grate, then turn the burners down to medium. For a charcoal grill I light a chimney charcoal filled 3/4 full (about 50 briquettes), wait for the charcoal to be covered with gray ash, then spread the charcoal in a tight single layer on my charcoal grate.
  4. Grill the kebabs: Put the kebabs on the grill over direct medium heat. If cooking on a gas grill, cook with the lid closed as much as possible. I treat each kebab like it has 4 sides, and grill each of those sides. Grill until the pork is well browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes, then give the kebabs a quarter turn. Grill on the second side until browned, 4 more minutes, then another quarter turn. Grill on the third side until browned, 4 more minutes, then flip to the final side, and grill until browned and the pork is tender, about 4 more minutes. It’s tough to overcook pork shoulder - if in doubt, cook it longer.
  5. Serve: If you can, take the kebabs off the fire and let them rest for ten minutes before eating. If not, warn your hovering friends to be careful, because the pork will be hot straight off the grill.
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 16 minutes
  • Category: Grilling
  • Cuisine: American