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Durum vs. Kebab: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Updated on October 5, 2023
Durum is a type of wheat used in pasta and bread; kebab is a dish of skewered and grilled or roasted meat.

Key Differences

Durum and kebab are words from the culinary world, each referring to entirely different elements. Durum is a hard variety of wheat primarily used to make pasta, semolina flour, and certain types of bread. It’s recognized for its high protein and gluten content, which imparts strength and elasticity to the dough, essential for the texture and integrity of the pasta and bread it produces.
Kebab, on the other hand, pertains to a culinary dish, commonly featuring pieces of meat, and occasionally vegetables, threaded onto skewers and cooked, usually by grilling or roasting. Originating from Middle Eastern cuisine, kebab has diverse variations, with ingredients, preparation methods, and serving styles varying by region. It can include an array of meats, marinades, and accompaniments, reflecting regional tastes and culinary traditions.
While durum is a key ingredient in producing specific food items, kebab is a prepared dish, rich and diverse in its manifestations. Durum's culinary significance lies in its ability to yield products with distinct texture and quality, serving as the backbone of myriad pasta and bread recipes. Its high protein content contributes to the durability and cohesiveness of the dough, essential in producing quality pasta and bread.
In contrast, kebab is celebrated for its savory flavors and versatile nature, adapting to different culinary cultures and preferences. It encompasses a spectrum of recipes, each boasting unique blends of meats, spices, and cooking techniques. Kebab's appeal lies in its adaptability, allowing for an array of ingredients and preparations, offering a rich tapestry of flavors and textures to delight the palate.
In essence, durum is a specialized wheat variety, instrumental in crafting certain culinary creations, valued for its distinct properties and contributions to food texture and quality. Kebab represents a culinary delight, a versatile dish evolving through cultures, each rendition reflecting diverse ingredients, preparations, and culinary heritage.

Comparison Chart


A type of wheat.
A dish made of skewered and cooked meat.

Role in Cuisine

Ingredient used in making pasta and bread.
A prepared and served dish.

Nutritional Value

High in protein and gluten.
Varied, depends on the type of meat and ingredients.


It is a variety of wheat.
Originates from Middle Eastern cuisine.


Primarily used in various pasta and certain bread.
Numerous, with variations in meat and preparation.

Durum and Kebab Definitions


A wheat variety high in protein and gluten.
The high gluten content in durum makes the dough elastic.


Pieces of meat, and sometimes vegetables, cooked on a skewer.
The lamb kebab was marinated in a blend of aromatic spices.


The wheat that is ground into a coarse powder.
Durum, when ground, yields a coarse powder used in various culinary applications.


A dish of skewered and grilled or roasted meat.
We enjoyed a delicious kebab at the local Middle Eastern restaurant.


A hard variety of wheat.
Durum is essential for making high-quality pasta.


A culinary dish with variations in ingredients and preparations.
The chicken kebab was served with a side of rice and salad.


The wheat used to make semolina flour.
Semolina, made from durum, is a key ingredient in pasta.


A savory dish often accompanied by sauces and sides.
We ordered a kebab platter with a variety of sauces and flatbreads.


A wheat type used for specific pasta and bread.
Many Italian pasta recipes specifically call for durum.


Shish kebab.


A type of wheat (Triticum turgidum subsp. durum syn. T. durum) having hard grains with high protein and gluten content, thought to have been developed in the Middle East in the Neolithic period and now used chiefly in making pasta.


(British) A dish of pieces of meat, fish, or vegetables roasted on a skewer or spit, especially a doner kebab.


Ellipsis of durum wheat
Durum pasta
Durum bread


(AU) A hand-held dish consisting of pieces of meat roasted on an upright skewer mixed with fresh vegetables and sauces and rolled up in a round piece of unleavened bread.


Wheat with hard dark-colored kernels high in gluten and used for bread and pasta; grown especially in southern Russia, North Africa, and northern central North America


(US) A shish kebab or any other food on a skewer.


A restaurant that sells kebabs
Let's go to the kebab after the club.


(chemistry) The outward growing portions of a shish kebab structure.


A Muslim, usually of southern European, Middle Eastern, or North African descent.


The vulva.


(GUI) menu icon of three vertical dots


(transitive) To roast in the style of a kebab


To stab or skewer


See kabab and kabob.


Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables


A versatile dish reflecting regional culinary traditions.
The Turkish kebab is distinct from the Greek version but equally tasty.


Can kebab be cooked in different ways?

Yes, kebab can be grilled, roasted, or even baked.

Is durum a type of grain?

Yes, durum is a specific variety of wheat grain.

Can durum be used to make bread?

Yes, durum can be used to make certain types of bread, like Italian pane di Altamura.

Is durum the same as regular wheat?

No, durum is a harder variety with high protein and gluten content.

Is kebab always made of meat?

While traditionally made with meat, variations with vegetables or substitutes exist.

Is durum wheat used for all types of pasta?

While it is preferred for many pastas, not all pastas are made from durum.

Is kebab healthy?

Depending on the ingredients and preparation, kebab can be a healthy choice.

Can durum be used in desserts?

Yes, durum, as semolina, is used in some desserts like halva.

Is durum wheat gluten-free?

No, durum contains gluten and is not suitable for those with gluten intolerance.

Can you use durum flour to make cakes?

It’s not ideal for cakes due to its high gluten content; other flours are preferable.

Is there a difference between shish kebab and doner kebab?

Yes, shish kebab is skewered and grilled, while doner kebab is sliced from a rotating spit.

Is durum flour the same as all-purpose flour?

No, durum flour, made from durum wheat, has higher protein and gluten content than all-purpose flour.

Does kebab only refer to Middle Eastern dishes?

While it originates from the Middle East, variations exist worldwide.

Can you make a vegetarian kebab?

Yes, vegetarian kebabs using vegetables or plant-based meat substitutes are possible.

What are the accompaniments usually served with kebab?

Kebabs are often served with rice, flatbreads, salads, and various sauces.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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