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When I'm trying to turn chicken thighs into something extraordinary, I make chicken thighs with lime and coriander, chicken with garlic and honey over low heat or this super tasty chicken shawarma.
Every time I go to my local Mediterranean restaurant, I order the chicken shawarma. It has a lot of flavor, is always perfectly tender and works very well in sandwiches, salads and rice dishes. My homemade version is as good as you would get at a restaurant, and it's pretty easy to make, too!
What is chicken shawarma made of?
Shawarma is meat marinated in olive oil and spices, traditionally cooked vertically on a spit. The meat is sliced from the saliva, then served as is or sometimes fried for a crispier texture. In this case, we are using the same great marinade that you would get in a restaurant, but we are cooking the chicken on the grill or in the oven, since a rotisserie is not practical for domestic use!
How is chicken shawarma made?
Make a marinade by mixing lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and a variety of spices. Place the boneless, skinless chicken thighs in the marinade, then let the chicken marinate for at least an hour, or up to 24 hours. Remove chicken from marinade and grill or bake. Cut the meat into slices and then serve it. If you prefer a crispier texture, you can take the sliced meat and cook it in a pan until the cut surfaces are browned.
Tips for the perfect shawarma
- I recommend using chicken drumsticks for this recipe as they are more flavorful and less likely to dry out. With that said, I also made this recipe with chicken breasts to good effect. You can even use other meats like steak or lamb with the same marinade.
- You can freeze the raw chicken in a bag full of marinade. Thaw the bag in the refrigerator, then cook according to the recipe instructions.
- This dish will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, making it ideal for meal preparation.
- I prefer to cook my chicken on the grill because it gives more smoke flavor. I cook meat outdoors on a charcoal grill, or cook it indoors on a grill pan.
Chicken shawarma sauce
Chicken shawarma is often served with a creamy sauce, such as tahini sauce or yogurt sauce. You can add flavor to store bought tahini by adding lemon juice, salt, pepper, and freshly chopped herbs. Make a plain yogurt sauce by combining 1 cup plain Greek yogurt with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, salt, pepper, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1 tablespoon minced parsley, and 2 teaspoons juice of lemon.
What is the difference between a gyroscope and a shawarma?
The biggest difference between gyro and sharwarma is that gyro is always made with beef, pork, lamb, or a combination of meats. Shawarma can be made with any type of meat and is often made with chicken. Shawarma meat contains more spices and flavorings than gyroscopic meat. The gyroscope is often served in a sandwich shape, while the shawarma can be served as a bowl and often contains more ingredients and sauce than gyros.
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I adore the bold flavors on this plate, and I love putting a large plate of sliced chicken along with plenty of bread and toppings, so everyone can make their own creations.
More delicious ways to enjoy chicken
- Souvlaki chicken
- Creamy Chicken Stroganoff
- Baked chicken dumplings
- Hunan chicken
- Cornflake chicken
This chicken shawarma is tender chicken drumsticks topped with a flavorful marinade, then grilled or roasted to golden perfection. Slice the chicken and serve it with flatbread for a hearty and delicious meal.
Preparation time: 15 minutes Cook time: 25 minutes Marinating time 1 hour Total time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings: 6 Calories: 303kcal
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 1/2 cup of olive oil
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons of kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon of sweet paprika
- 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Flat bread, tomato, lettuce and cucumber to serve
- Yogurt or tahini sauce for serving See the text of the publication for recipes
- Place olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, black pepper, cumin, coriander, sweet paprika, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, turmeric, and cinnamon in a bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Add chicken to bowl and pour marinade over top.
- Marinate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
- Grilling Instructions: Preheat a grill or inner skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken. Grill 5-6 minutes per side or until cooked through.
- Baking Instructions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place chicken thighs on baking sheet covered with cooking spray. Bake 30-35 minutes or until cooked through.
- Slice the chicken. If desired, you can heat an additional tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet and add the sliced chicken to make it crisp.
- Serve chicken with sauce, flatbread, lettuce, tomato, and cucumber.
Calories :: 303kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 30 g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 144mg | Sodium: 712mg | Potassium: 418mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 408 IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 2mg