Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Chicken Shawarma

In 2012 The Avengers movie came out. In it Iron Man, who has almost died saving the world from attacking aliens, brings up shawarma. "I don't know what it is, but I really want to try it." I guess even heroes reevaluate their lives when they almost die.

If you watch after the credits, you actually see a scene of them eating shawarma together in a mostly demolished building, all of them almost too exhausted and beat up to lift food to their mouths.

Well my husband recommended I learn how to make shawarma. My sister-in-law and I first made it together and it's become a favorite recipe in our house.

Click here to watch the 2 shawarma scenes.
Shawarma, an Arabic dish, is highly seasoned meat served on pitas. I love eating is with my homemade wheat pitas, recipe here. I use chicken, but you can make it out of a variety of meats, including lamb.


1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt (or use plain yogurt)
2 cloves of garlic, pressed or minced (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of cayenne
2 dashes Sriracha Rooster hot sauce (or hot sauce of your choice)
1 chicken breast, diced in 1 inch pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil for frying
4 pitas


Half a tomato, diced
Sliced cucumber
Plain yogurt or sour cream


1) Marinade: Whisk together yogurt, pressed garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and hot sauce. Stir in diced chicken, cover and let marinate in the fridge between 1 hour -- 2 days. About 45 minutes before cooking, pull out the chicken and place on the counter to let it come to room temperature.

2) Heat a large fry pan hot over medium to medium high heat. When a drop of cold water sizzles in the pan, add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Immediately add half the marinated chicken, making sure you dispose of excess marinade. The chicken hitting the hot oil will nicely brown the chicken as it cooks. 
Flip after about 3 minutes, when the pieces are brown, and cook the other side similarly, about 1-2 minutes.

Repeat with the other half of the meat.

3) Serve with pita bread and toppings as desired. Makes enough for 4 pitas (serves 2 hungry people).



  1. Fun! My kids are picky eaters, but they might just eat something Iron Man likes! :) PS - found you from WFMW. Thanks for sharing!

    1. I'm glad you have a new idea! You can cut back on the hot sauce if your kids don't like things spicy, but I think my 5 -year-old niece has eaten this fine.
      I love the WFMW links. I find such good stuff there.