This Chicken Shawarma recipe is absolutely delicious. It’s a very tasty Middle Eastern recipe that will make you want to make it again and again! The chicken thigh is seasoned with a homemade Shawarma seasoning spice blend. The perfect marinade, consisting of everyday spices and made from scratch! Yum.
Today, you will learn how to make one of the most popular Middle Eastern dishes right at home! This chicken shawarma has incredible flavors. It tastes as good if not better than the shawarma at many of my local Lebanese restaurants! So, please skip the take out and make your own chicken shawarma!
This chicken shawarma recipe is perfect for any weeknight dinner, or your next gatherings!
You can make this Shawarma in large quantities then freeze for later use. and. It’s the perfect time-saving make-ahead freezer meal for busy weeknights!
This Middle Eastern chicken shawarma is gluten-free, low carb, and keto-friendly.
Shawarma is a dish in Middle Eastern cuisine. It consists of a combination of spice-marinated meat that is cut into thin slices, stacked, and then slowly roasted on a vertical rotisserie or spits. It’s one of the most world’s most popular street foods, especially in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries.
Making your own chicken shawarma at home isn’t as difficult as you might think. This chicken shawarma recipe is absolutely an easy dish to make!
How to Make Chicken Shawarma at Home:
It’s so easy and there are only 3 key steps to follow:
· Make the Middle East Shawarma Spice Mixture
· Marinate the chicken thighs in the spice blend
· Cook the meat in the oven, outdoor griller, grill pan, or Instant Pot.
If you are an Instant Pot user then no worries and keep reading! I am going to show you how to make this shawarma using an electric pressure cooker below.
Chicken Shawarma Seasoning Spice Blend:
The secret this amazing chicken shawarma is in the spice mixture! It is made of garlic, coriander, cumin, paprika, lemon, cinnamon, allspice, turmeric, cayenne pepper, olive oil, salt, and black pepper.
This spice marinade will infuse the chicken with those flavors of the Middle East! It’s so aromatic, it makes the house smell outstanding while cooking the shawarma!
CHECK OUT MORE MIDDLE EASTERN-INSPIRED RECIPES:
- RED LENTIL SOUP (STOVETOP + INSTANT POT INSTRUCTIONS)
- LAMB KOFTA KEBABS
- EASY ZA’ATAR ROASTED CHICKEN BREAST
- MOROCCAN COUSCOUS WITH CURRANTS AND PINE NUTS
- CARROT AND LENTIL SOUP (HIGH IN PROTEIN!)
- INSTANT POT LAMB STEW WITH APRICOTS
Chicken Shawarma Marinating:
The marinating process should take at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours in the fridge. A marinade prevents the meat from drying out. It also adds flavor to the meat and makes them more tender and juicier.
In this recipe, I personally marinated the chicken for 24 hours!
How to Cook Chicken Shawarma:
Next step! After you marinate the chicken with the homemade Middle East spices, it’s now time to cook it.
The cooking process is very easy. Anybody with even basic cooking skills can do this. You don’t need a vertical rotisserie spit to make super delicious chicken shawarma at home. What you need is a sheet pan if you are going to roast the chicken in the oven, or a grill pan / outdoor grill if you are going to grill it!
In this recipe, I cooked the chicken shawarma in the oven. I roasted at least 425°F for about 30 minutes. To get a nice brown and crisp on the edge, I broiled it for about 2-3 minutes. Please note, If you are going to do this extra step, be sure to watch carefully so you don’t burn the chicken.
How to Serve Chicken Shawarma:
Shawarma is commonly served as a sandwich or wrap, in a flatbread such as a pita. You can also serve it on a plate along with rice pilaf, and salads on the side.
My husband always prefers Shawarma wrap but I personally enjoy building my own Shawarma plate that consists of rice vermicelli pilaf, hummus, tzatziki sauce or garlic sauce, or tahini sauce, and garnish with tomatoes, pickles, onions, and chopped lettuce.
Or serve with this delicious Tomato Cucumber Salad recipe.
CHECK OUT THESE DELICIOUS INSTANT POT RECIPES:
- INSTANT POT GARLIC PARMESAN CHICKEN WINGS (NINJA FOODI + OVEN-BAKED INSTRUCTIONS)
- DRY RUB CHICKEN WINGS (OVEN-BAKED/INSTANT POT/NINJA FOODI)
- KOREAN BBQ WINGS (INSTANT POT + OVEN-BAKED INSTRUCTIONS)
- INSTANT POT CHICKEN WINGS WITH BUFFALO SAUCE
- INSTANT POT BLACK-EYED PEA SOUP WITH HAM HOCK AND SPINACH
- INSTANT POT GOULASH
- INSTANT POT QUESO DIP RECIPE
- INSTANT POT HAMBURGER HELPER
- INSTANT POT CARNITAS – MEXICAN PULLED PORK
- INSTANT POT BEEF STROGANOFF
- INSTANT POT BRISKET AKA PULLED BEEF FOR SLIDERS!
- INSTANT POT GREAT NORTHERN BEAN SOUP
- INSTANT POT ITALIAN SAUSAGE KALE SOUP
- 3 pounds boneless and skinless chicken thighs
- 1½ tbsp minced garlic
- 5 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ¼ cup olive oil (for Instant Pot users only, use ½ cup of olive oil)
Shawarma Spice Seasoning Mix:
- 1½ tbsp ground cumin
- 1½ tbsp ground coriander
- 1 tbsp ground paprika (regular or smoked)
- 1½ tsp ground turmeric
- 1½ tsp ground allspice (or use ground cardamom)
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper (use more according to your liking)
- 2 tsp kosher salt (or use less of it if you are salt-sensitive)
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1-2 large red onion
- ½ cup Greek whole milk yogurt
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1 small cucumber (seeded, finely grated and drained)
- ½ tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp freshly chopped dill (or use a small pinch of dried dill)
- salt (to taste)
- black pepper (to taste)
- Optional: ½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Make the Shawarma Spice Seasoning Mix: In a medium-size bowl add the olive oil, cumin, coriander, paprika, turmeric, allspice, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Mix all spices until well blended.
- Marinate the Chicken: Place the chicken thighs into a large zip-lock bag. Add in the spice mixture then seal the bag, pushing out as much air as you can. Massage the spice onto the chicken thoroughly.Transfer the chicken and spice mixture into a fridge. Marinate for at least 2 hours and up to 24 hours.
To Roast the Chicken Shawarma in the Oven:
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Remove the marinated meat from the fridge. Quarter the onion and add them onto the marinade.
- Place the chicken and onion on a large sheet pan. Spread everything across it evenly.
- Transfer the sheet pan into the oven and roast for about 30 minutes, or until it is browned. There will be a nice crisp on the edge when fully cooked.
- Optional: for a more browned and crisper meat, you can broil the chicken in the oven for 2-3 minutes. Be sure to watch it carefully, do not burn.Or you can crisp the chicken on a large pan over high heat. Simply slice the chicken, add 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan, then sauté until crisp.
- Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or on a plate. Enjoy!
Or Grilling the Chicken Shawarma:
- Preheat the grill pan over medium heat. Dip a paper towel in a little oil, using tongs, wipe the oil evenly over the grate. Place the marinated chicken thighs, and onion onto the grill pan and cook for about 4 minutes, then turn and cook the other side for about 3-4 minutes or until the chicken thigh is fully cooked.
- Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or on a plate. Enjoy!
For Instant Pot Users Only:
- Transfer the marinated chicken with marinade sauce, and onion into the Instant Pot. Give a quick stir. Follow the manufacturer's guide for locking the lid and preparing to cook. Set to pressure cook or manual on high for 8 minutes.After the cooking cycle finished, wait and let pressure inside the pot to come down on its own (natural release).
- Carefully open the lid and transfer the chicken onto a plate.
- To Crisp the Chicken: You can broil the chicken in the oven for about 2-3 minutes. Be sure to watch it carefully, do not burn.Or you can crisp the chicken on a large pan over high heat. Simply slice the chicken, add 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan, then sauté until crisp.
- Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or on a plate.
To Make Tzatziki Sauce:
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt, cucumber, garlic, lemon juice and dill. Season with salt and pepper, and add oil. Stir to combine. Serve and enjoy!