Beshbarmak (5 fingers): How to Cook It?

Beshbarmak is a traditional and national Kazakh dish, also popular in other Central Asian countries.

Beshbarmak in Kazakhstan means five fingers, and its name backs to the time people used to eat with their hands.

Although in Kazakhstan, they cook Beshbarmak with horse meat, we use bone meat in this recipe. It consists of boiled meat (usually lamb or beef) served over homemade noodles and is often accompanied by a flavorful broth.

If you want to know the Beshbarmak recipe, stay with us in this article to learn.

How to cook Beshbarmak?

Here are the ingredients for the Beshbarmak dish and the noodles.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time1 hr 35 mins
Prepare Noodles40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Kazakh


  • 2 lbs Lamb or beef (900g) - Cut into large chunks
  • 3 Onions Sliced into rings
  • 1 Bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper To taste
  • 2 quarts Water (2 liters)
  • Fresh dill, parsley, or cilantro For garnish

Noodle Ingredients

  • 600 gr Flour
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 Large egg or 2 small eggs
  • ½ cup Water (120ml)


  • In a large pot, combine the meat and onion.
  • Add 2 quarts (2liters) of water and boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 1.5-2 hours or until the meat is tender. Skim off any foam that forms on the surface during cooking.
  • Then, add the rest of the chopped onions into the pot and bay leaves, salt, and pepper.
  • Allow them to boil for 5 to 10 minutes on mild heat.
  • When the meat is tender, please remove it from the pot and set aside.
  • It is time to separate bones from the meat and cut them into pieces depending on your desire.

How to prepare Noodles for Beshbarmak?

  • Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl to prepare the noodles.
  • Make a well in the center and add the egg and water. Mix until a dough forms.
  • Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
  • Cover with a towel to avoid light penetration, and let it rest for 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes pass, pour flour on the table and cut the dough into squares or rectangles, about 2×2 inches (5×5 cm) in size.
  • Cook the noodles in the boiling broth for 3-4 minutes or until tender.
  • Remove the noodles with a spoon and put them on a serving platter.


If you don’t have time to make noodles, use lasagna instead to save time.

How to serve Beshbarmak?

To serve Beshbarmak, follow these steps:

  1. Arrange the cooked noodles on a large serving platter or individual plates.
  2. Place the cooked meat on top of the noodles. You can either shred the meat into smaller pieces or leave them as they are, depending on your preference.
  3. Pour some hot broth over the meat and noodles, and moisten the dish evenly. Doing this adds some flavor to the dish and keeps it warm.
  4. Garnish the Beshbarmak with fresh herbs such as dill, parsley, or cilantro.
  5. Place ringed-cut onions on the dish.
  6. Serve the remaining broth in a separate bowl or cup alongside the Beshbarmak. This allows your guests to add more broth to their dish if desired.
  7. Although Beshbarmak is traditionally eaten with the hands, it sounds challenging to eat with hands as a guest, so for a modern approach, you can place a fork and knives beside the plates.
  8. Accompany the dish with traditional Kazakh side dishes or salads, such as pickled vegetables or a simple tomato and cucumber salad, to make your table colorful.

Remember, Beshbarmk should be served as it is hot, so ensure all your guests are around the table and ready to eat.

Beneficial Advantages of Beshbarmk

  1. Beshbarmak is a hearty and filling dish, providing a good source of protein from the meat and carbohydrates from the noodles.
  2. The homemade noodles are made with simple ingredients and do not contain any preservatives or additives, making them safe.
  3. Depending on your desire, this dish can be easily customized by adjusting the type of meat, herbs, and seasonings used.
  4. Beshbarmak is a healthy dish that is not fried, so you don’t have to worry about any harmful effects of fried foods.

The last words

Beshbarmak is a traditional main course dish that originates from Kazakhstan. The name “Beshbarmak” literally translates to “five fingers” in Kazakh, which refers to how the dish is traditionally eaten -with the hands.

This dish has simple ingredients, including beef meat, onions, herbs, and homemade noodles.

Since Beshbarmak is typically used in large portions, it becomes a sign of hospitality and generosity and is meant to be shared with family and friends.

We have provided a simple and clear Beshbarmak recipe to encourage you to cook this popular dish and have an enjoyable time with your guests on the weekend.

Have you tried Beshbarmak before? What does it taste like? Did you include any extra ingredients we did not mention in this article?

Please share your experience with us in the comment section below.

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