Shawarma, a Middle Eastern favorite, is a tantalizing dish that brings together succulent marinated meat, aromatic spices, and a medley of vibrant flavors. This recipe offers a twist by adding a fiery kick of spice to create a mouthwatering Spicy Chicken Shawarma that’s sure to satisfy your taste buds. Whether you’re enjoying it wrapped in pita bread or served with a side of fresh vegetables, this dish is a celebration of bold flavors and culinary creativity
For the Marinade
- 500g boneless chicken thighs or breast, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Pita bread or flatbreads
- Sliced tomatoes
- Sliced cucumbers
- Chopped lettuce
- Sliced onions
- Tahini sauce or garlic yogurt sauce (optional)
- Fresh lemon wedges
Marinating the Chicken
- In a bowl, combine yogurt, olive oil, minced garlic, cumin, paprika, turmeric, coriander, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, salt, and black pepper. Mix it well so that it can form a smooth and silky marinade.
- Add the thinly sliced chicken to the marinade, ensuring each piece is well coated. Cover the bowl and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1-2 hours (or overnight for enhanced flavor)
Cooking the Chicken
- Take a grill or a skillet pan and heat it over a medium heat.
- Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature.
- If you are using a skillet, then in order to prevent sticking, tru adding a drizzle of olive oil. Place the chicken slices onto the hot skillet or grill pan, making sure not to overcrowd the surface.
- Cook the chicken for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until fully cooked and slightly charred. Cooking times may vary based on the thickness of the chicken slices.
- Once cooked, transfer the chicken to a plate and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing it into bite-sized pieces.
Assembling the Shawarma
- Warm the pita bread or flatbreads in a pan or microwave.
- Lay a piece of pita bread on a clean surface. Place a layer of chopped lettuce, followed by sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions.
- Add a generous portion of the cooked and sliced spicy chicken on top of the vegetables.
- Drizzle tahini sauce or garlic yogurt sauce over the chicken for added creaminess and flavor. These sauces provide a cool contrast to the spiciness of the chicken.
Rolling the Shawarma
- To wrap the shawarma, start by folding the sides of the pita bread over the fillings.
- Roll the pita bread from the bottom, tucking in the edges as you go, to form a tight and secure wrap.
Serve and Enjoy
- Serve the Spicy Chicken Shawarma immediately with fresh lemon wedges on the side for a burst of citrusy brightness.
- You can enjoy the shawarma as a hand-held wrap or cut it in half for easier handling.
- If you want more or less spiciness, try increasing or decreasing the added amount of cayenne pepper.
- Feel free to customize the fillings with your favorite vegetables, such as bell peppers, olives, or shredded carrots.
If you’re using wooden skewers for grilling, soak them in water for about 30 minutes before threading the chicken to prevent them from burning
With its bold flavors and enticing aroma, this Spicy Chicken Shawarma recipe is a delightful journey to the heart of Middle Eastern cuisine. Whether enjoyed as a quick weeknight meal or served at gatherings, this dish is sure to become a favorite that satisfies your craving for both heat and flavor