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.
A Quick and Easy Chicken Shawarma Recipe
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 it 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.
What is Chicken Shawarma
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.
The Perfect Seasoning for Shawarma
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!
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 More Middle-Eastern 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
- 3 pounds boneless and skinless chicken thighs
Shawarma Spice Seasoning Mix:
- ¼ cup olive oil, (for Instant Pot users only, use ½ cup of olive oil)
- 5 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1½ tablespoon minced garlic
- 1½ tablespoon ground cumin
- 1½ tablespoon ground coriander
- 1 tablespoon ground paprika, (regular or smoked)
- 1½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1½ teaspoon ground allspice , (or use ground cardamom)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, (use more according to your liking)
- 2 teaspoon kosher salt, (or use less of it if you are salt-sensitive)
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1-2 large red onion
- ½ cup Greek whole milk yogurt
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 small cucumber, (seeded, finely grated and drained)
- ½ tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon freshly chopped dill , (or use a small pinch of dried dill)
- salt, (to taste)
- black pepper , (to taste)
- Optional: ½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- In a bowl, mix all shawarma spice seasoning mix until combined. Place the chicken thighs and spice into a large zip-lock bag. 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.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F and remove the marinated meat from the fridge.
- Add onion onto the chicken marinade, mix well. Transfer the mixture to a large sheet pan. Spread everything across it evenly. Roast for about 30 minutes, or untill the meat has a nice crisp on the edge and is fully cooked.For a crispier meat (optional), broil the cooked chicken for 2-3 minutes. Be sure to watch it carefully, do not burn. Or slice the chicken, add 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan, then sauté until crisp.
- Tzatziki Sauce: In a medium bowl, whisk together all Tzatziki sauce ingredients until combined. Serve and enjoy!
To Cook on the Grill:
Preheat the grill pan over medium heat. Dip a paper towel in a little oil, using tongs, wipe the oil evenly over the grate.
Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or on a plate. Enjoy!
To Cook in an Instant Pot:
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.
Carefully open the lid and transfer the chicken onto a plate.
To Crisp the Chicken:
Remove from the heat and serve with pita bread or on a plate.