Chicken Schawarma Recipe

Chicken Shawarma Plate

This Grilled Chicken Shawarma recipe is full of spices and served with jeera rice, homemade naan, cumin and lemon slaw, hummus and cucumbers. An authentic recipe that is sure to please!

Chicken Schawarma Recipe
Delicious dinner plate with chicken schawarma with jeera rice, hummus and vegetables and homemade naan.

This is a meal that I’ve had so many times before but rarely make myself. Living in the UK years ago meant lots of Indian food and it quickly became one of my favorite meals. On our recent trip back to the UK, we searched out and easily found Traditional Shawarma everywhere! We weren’t back in the states for a week before a massive craving hit and I had to make chicken shawarma at home!

I think the craving actually started with the naan. You can find the recipe for Easy Homemade Naan HERE. Authentic Naan is a leavened flatbread that is soft inside with just bit of crispiness on the outside. It is traditionally made in a tandoor oven but since I don’t have one, I have found that homemade naan is still amazing when cooked in a skillet on the stove.

Once I decided that a fresh batch of naan was a must, I decided to go for a whole plate of Indian inspired dishes for dinner.

Advance prep makes this dinner easy!

One of the greatest things about this dinner is that you can do the steps throughout the day or a couple of days to make the actual cooking so fast and easy.

The chicken is fabulous with the sides as shown but is just as awesome on its own. I took some leftover chicken and slaw and wrapped it in a tortilla the next day (the naan was gone, of course!). It was so good for lunch, even cold it was drool-worthy!

How to make chicken shawarma at home

Chicken Schawarma Plate
Delicious chicken shawarma with jeera rice, hummus, and vegetables.

Start with the chicken

This recipe seems to have a lot of ingredients but most of them are SPICES!

The first and most important step is to marinate the chicken. This marinade is a little spicy and so fresh tasting! Marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for up to 3 days before grilling and serving it.

Get started on the Naan

Make the Naan following the recipe HERE. You should start the Naan about 1 1/2 to 2 hours before you will serve dinner. It will take about 10 to 15 minutes to make it and then an hour to rise.

After the dough rises, the process of rolling out and quickly cooking the naan bread is fast.

Make the rice

Jeera rice is traditionally basmati rice seasoned with cumin. Soaking the rice for 30 minutes prior to cooking will allow the rice to fully absorb the liquid during cooking and will also help it to cook more quickly.

You’ll want to make a large batch of this Jeera Rice and keep it in your refrigerator for lunch or a quick dinner throughout the week.

Make the Slaw

You could choose to make the slaw up to a day in advance but I prefer to make just before serving. This allows the vegetables to retain their crispiness, just the way I like it!

In order to keep prep time limited and make things easy, go for the bag of pre-shredded slaw vegetables. There is no need to shred your own carrots, broccoli, cabbage, etc!

A few tips for the perfect plate of chicken shawarma:

  • Make sure that your chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165℉ but not much higher! You want that chicken to be tender and juicy, not dry and hard!
  • Place a few wedges of fresh lemons on the grill when the chicken is almost done grilling. Serve a wedge or two on each plate. Grilling sweetens the lemon slightly and adds a wonderful flavor when squeezed over the entire plate!
  • You can, of course, choose to leave off any element you choose but the fresh cucumbers, hummus, crumbled feta, and lemon slaw just set each other off so nicely. I can eat just those items for lunch and be completely content.

What is the difference between shawarma and gyro?

Some people tend to think that gyro and shawarma are the same things.

Gyro is a Greek dish that is typically made from lamb or beef, seasoned with herbs and served with tzatziki.

The ingredients to make Shawarma are either chicken, lamb, or turkey seasoned with warm spices such as cinnamon and turmeric. It is often served with hummus, tahini, and pickled vegetables.

What do you serve with Chicken Shawarma?

Authentic Chicken Shawarma is often served with flatbread and salads such as falafel or tabouleh. It is also eaten on its own as a quick grab and grow meal.

Chicken Shawarma is great to serve a family because Shawarma Bowls are so customizable! Lay out all of the ingredients and let everyone make their own plate or bowl.

You could also make a chicken shawarma wrap!

Chicken Schawarma Plate

Recipe by Tanya Ott


Prep time


Cooking time



for the shAwarma

  • 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken

  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed or 1 Tablespoon garlic paste

  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

  • Juice of 1 lemon

  • 2 Tablespoons honey

  • 2 teaspoons paprika

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger

  • teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • For the Slaw
  • 8 ounces Prepared slaw veges (broccoli, brussel sprouts, etc)

  • Juice of one lemon

  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 tespoon salt

  • Jeera Rice
  • 2 cups long grain basmati rice

  • 4 cups water plus extra for soaking

  • 2 Tablespoons butter or ghee

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves or 3 whole cloves

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 Tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

  • Optional:
  • Lemon wedges

  • Hummus

  • Cucumber slices

  • Crumbled Feta


  • Marinate the chicken: Place the chicken in a large Ziplock bag. Add in the garlic cloves, olive oil, honey, lemon juice,and all spices. Toss to combine, coating the chicken evenly.
  • Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.
  • Make the slaw while the chicken marinates: Add the cabbage, lemon juice, olive oil, cumin and salt in a large bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside, or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Make the jeera rice: Rinse the rice twice and then cover with water and allow to soak for 30 minutes. Drain the rice and set aside. Heat a pan over medium-high heat and add butter or ghee. Once it is hot and melted, add spices. Fry it for about 10-15 seconds and then add rice.  Saute the rice for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the water and cook about 6 or 7 minutes, until boiling. Cover and reduce heat to low. Continue to cook for 5 more minutes then turn off the heat. After 5 minutes, remove the lid to allow steam to escape. Allow rice to sit for 5 minutes then fluff with a fork, remove the bay leaf, cinnamon stick and whole cloves if used. Sprinkle on cilantro and serve.
  • Grill the chicken: Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Add the chicken, cooking for 10-12 minutes, flipping once halfway through. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board to rest for a minute or two, then thinly slice. 
  • Assemble the bowls: Add a large spoonful of hummus to the bottom of a large, shallow bowl. Add in the slaw and sliced chicken shawarma. Top with thinly sliced cucumbers, crumbled feta, grilled lemon wedge, fresh cilantro, jeera rice and homemade naan. 


  1. I just checked, I have 18 sous-vide recipes, should add another one next week, maybe.

    go here

    and scroll down to sous-vide and they are all there, clickable for you.

  2. This is a thing of beauty, and probably one of my favorite types of meal – it has everything I adore… agree with you on the advice not to overcook the chicken – I’ve been relying on sous-vide for that…

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