Philadelphia, PA: Kabobeesh’s Chapli Kabab (Is It A Burger?)

4201 Chestnut St
Philadelphia, PA
(215) 386-8081

Ok folks, we’re gonna need a ruling…is this a burger?
Add a slice of cheese, a big squishy bun, and oh heck, a slice of bacon and tell me that wouldn’t be about the best darned grilled burger you’ve ever seen?

Of course you won’t get any of that at Kabobeesh, one of West Philly’s hidden gems (which happens to be a Halal restaurant so forget the bacon).  This Pakistani/Afghani/Indian restaurant located in an old diner just blocks from UPENN’s campus is home to some amazing grilled meats, exotic vegetable dishes, truly friendly staff and the delicious (and potentially burger-ish in nature) dish pictured – the Chapli Kabab.

According to the web’s most reliable information clearinghouse – wikipedia:

Chapli kabab is a dish from Peshawar … which is very much popular in Pakistan and Afghanistan. An iconic dish among the Pashtuns, chapli kabab is made from minced beef or lamb, lightly spiced, and cooked on a large flat griddle in animal fats.

Kabobeesh’s version of Chapli Kabab is more than lightly spiced, but nothing outrageous.  This burger tended towards spicy, but was not off-putting in any way.  Maybe zippy is a better way to describe the heat.  Kabobeesh is known for their grilling and the two patties you get with your order came with perfect grille marks.  These were super juicy thanks to the higher fat content of the meat and just shy of medium done-ness.

Now, is it a burger?

The grilled naan bread more than made up for the lack of a bun so…

They are round and of general burger thickness…another

No mustard or ketchup in sight, but several unique condiment options available including a neon green mint-y sauce…

They were darn tasty…

There you have it – burger it is/was (and will be again).

Menu via menupages
Kabobeesh on Urbanspoon

One thought on “Philadelphia, PA: Kabobeesh’s Chapli Kabab (Is It A Burger?)

  1. As an Afghan, I think the right question is: is the hamburger a chapli kabob?

    But no, it’s not. It should be much too thin to confuse anyone.

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