10 Foods to Make with Bamboo Skewers

Have you ever needed a bamboo skewer? Just one.

I don’t remember why I needed one bamboo skewer, but I did. And I could only find them in packs of seven thousand.

Okay, not really seven thousand, but it felt like an awful lot. I think it was a hundred or a hundred forty-four or something.

Since I had so many left over, I came up with a lot of uses for them.

how to use bamboo skewers

In fact, I had to go buy more because I ran out.

Who would’ve thought?

Oh, by the way, if you are going to cook bamboo skewers (presumably with food on them, on the grill or in the oven), you’re supposed to soak them in water for 30 minutes before you use them. Otherwise, they burn.

Or so I’ve heard.

{ahem} Moving on.

10 Foods to Make with Bamboo Skewers

  1. Shish kebabs on the grill. This is the obvious one, right? Spear your meat and veggies with the bamboo skewer (after you’ve soaked it). If you’re going to make shish kebabs with both meat and veggies, you must precook the meat so that you’re just heating it. Otherwise, by the time the meat is cooked, the veggies will be charcoal.
    Also, make sure the foods that take longer to cook (like onions and peppers) are cut into smaller pieces than the quick-cooking foods (like pineapple and cherry tomatoes) so that nothing burns.
    Oh, and I like to use marinated, pre-cooked meats. It makes the whole thing tastier.
  2. Fruit skewers. Just like above, you can put similarly sized chunks of fruit onto a skewer, chill, and serve. It’s even better if you serve a yogurt or cream cheese dip or chocolate fondue with them.
  3. Fresh veggie skewers. Whether you cook them or not, a skewer makes veggies infinitely more appealing to children. The novelty might get veggies into little tummies where they otherwise would not go. As with the fruit, if you serve a dip with them, they might go over better.
    Or, forget the kids and make grilled mushrooms to add to a steak. This recipe looks amazing!
  4. Chicken satay. I’ve never actually made this, but I think it’s a really neat departure from the typical skewer recipe. The recipe I linked is from Tyler Florence at Food Network.com.
  5. Teriyaki beef. Very similar to chicken satay but made with beef and different seasonings, these teriyaki beef skewers would make awesome appetizers at a party or a cool way to serve dinner on a special occasion.
  6. Garnish drinks. I think these garnishes from Better Homes and Gardens are the cutest Halloween food ever. They use skewers to hold them in drinks, but you could stick them in a cake, too. (Slide 1 is by far the best one, in my opinion.)
  7. Make rock candy. I’ve done this many times with my students, and it works beautifully. The really fancy rock candy you buy in gift shops almost always has a skewer as a base.
  8. Dip foods in chocolate. Whether we’re dipping peanut butter balls, pretzels, or cheesecake bites into melted chocolate, we use skewers to hold them during the process.
  9. Poke holes in a cake. Bake a chocolate cake according to the package directions (any incarnation of chocolate will work – devil’s food, German chocolate, chocolate fudge, whatever). Allow it to cool for 5 minutes. Use a skewer to poke lots of holes in the hot cake in a grid, but try not to go the whole way through the bottom of the cake. One at a time, pour 3/4 cup of fudge topping, 3/4 cup of caramel topping, and 3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk over the hot cake. (Let each soak in fully before adding the next.) Allow the cake to cool completely, and spread 8 ounces of Cool Whip over the cake. Top with crushed candy bars, Skor is my favorite.
    You can do something very similar with a white cake mix and orange Jello.
  10. Test a cake or pan of brownies. This isn’t a food exactly, but a skewer makes a perfect cake tester. Stick it into the center of the pan, and if the batter sticks to it, the cake or brownies aren’t done.

More Tips for Cooking Food with Bamboo Skewers

  • Don’t forget to soak the skewers if you’re going to cook them.
  • Leave a little space between the foods so that the heat surrounds each piece. They will cook more evenly and faster.
  • If you’re using foods that cook a lot faster than the rest  (cherry tomatoes, asparagus, mushrooms, etc.), consider putting them on a separate skewer so they don’t get done too quickly.
  • Even better (and especially if you’re going to take the foods off of the skewers for serving), keep one kind of food on each skewer. Do all of the pork on one, chicken on another, onions on a third, etc. That’s not at cool as the fancy many foods on a stick ones, but it will give you more control of the cooking process.
  • Don’t forget to turn the skewers, especially on the grill.

How do you use bamboo skewers?

Have you seen the rest of the series?

Photo source

Happily submitted to Top Ten Tuesday, Kitchen Tip Tuesday, and Works for Me Wednesday

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© 2010 – 2013, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

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