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Grilled Chicken Shawarma

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Grilled Chicken Shawarma with Garlic Yogurt – an easy, grilled chicken version of the classic Turkish street food which is usually cooked on a rotating spit.

Grilled Chicken Shawarma with Garlic Yogurt – an easy, grilled chicken version of the classic Turkish street food which is usually cooked on a rotating spit.
Chicken Shawarma

Chicken shawarma is perfect over couscous with yogurt and cucumbers as I did here, or try it with rice pilaf, or on a pita. Other sides that would work are tomatoes, tahini, olives, feta, or hummus. Harissa would also work great to add some spice. I made this with chicken breast, but you can also use thighs like I did with this Chicken Shawarma Kebab! Cook this outside on a gas grill, on a grill pan or in the air fryer! If you don’t like dairy, try it topped with tahini or baba ganoush.


I just returned from an incredible 10-day cruise along the Mediterranean on the brand new Carnival Vista, which started in Barcelona and made stops in France, Italy, Turkey and Greece. Now that I’m back, all I’m craving is Mediterranean food! What an experience of a lifetime traveling to Rome, Pisa, Tuscany, Naples, Florence, Arles, Aix-en-Provence, Kusadasi, Crete, Rhodes and Athens with my family.

Rhodes, Greece


Are you craving something delicious and packed with flavor? Look no further than this Grilled Chicken Shawarma with Garlic Yogurt recipe. This easy and healthy version of the classic Turkish street food is sure to be a hit with your taste buds.

While in Rhodes, Greece, I purchased these beautiful bowls which originate from Turkey. So I thought it’d be fitting to share this Turkish inspired recipe and serve them in my beautiful new bowls.

How To Make Chicken Shawarma

  1. To make the marinade: mix together extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, cumin, smoked paprika, turmeric, curry powder, cinnamon, crushed red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Marinate 1 pound of skinless chicken breasts (cut in half lengthwise) in the mixture for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Grill: preheat your grill or grill pan and grill the chicken until fully cooked.
  3. Yogurt Sauce: While the chicken is grilling, make the garlic yogurt sauce by mixing together a 7-ounce container of 2% Greek yogurt (I like Fage), 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 2 finely minced garlic cloves, and 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt.
  4. Serve: Serve the grilled chicken over rice if you wish, with the garlic yogurt sauce on top, and garnish with chopped parsley.


  • Use chicken thighs in place of chicken breast.
  • If you want to make this dairy free, try it topped with tahini or baba ganoush.

Shawarma Spiced Grilled Chicken with Garlic Yogurt Sauce

Shawarma Spiced Grilled Chicken with Garlic Yogurt Sauce-2

More Grilled Chicken Recipes:

Shawarma-Spiced Grilled Chicken with Garlic Yogurt Sauce

4.98 from 104 votes
An easy, grilled chicken version of the classic Turkish street food which is usually cooked on a rotating spit. It is perfect served over couscous with yogurt and cucumbers as I did here, or try it with rice pilaf, or on a pita.
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Shawarma-Spiced Grilled Chicken with Garlic Yogurt – an easy, grilled chicken version of the classic Turkish street food which is usually cooked on a rotating spit.
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 25 mins
Yield: 4 servings
Serving Size: 3 ounces chicken, 2 tablespoons sauce



  • 1 pound 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice from 1 medium lemon
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Garlic yogurt sauce:

  • 7-ounce container 2% Greek yogurt (I like Fage)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/8 tsp kosher salt
  • Chopped parsley, for garnish


  • Place the chicken breasts, 1 at a time, in a Ziploc bag.  Pound each breast to an even thickness, about ½-inch thick, being careful not to puncture the bag. Place pounded chicken breasts back into bag and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, combine olive oil and lemon juice.  Whisk until combined.  Add the garlic, cumin, paprika, turmeric, curry powder, cinnamon, red pepper, salt and black pepper and whisk again.
  • Pour the marinade into the bag with the chicken, massaging it to evenly coat.  Refrigerate and marinate for at least 1 hour, up to overnight.
  • In a small bowl (or right in the container), combine the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice and salt.  Stir to combine and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Over medium-high heat, grill the chicken for 3 minutes or until it no longer sticks to the grill. Turn the chicken and grill an additional 3-4 minutes.  Allow the chicken to rest for 5 minutes then slice it thinly, across the grain.  Top each breast with 2 tablespoons sauce and a sprinkle of parsley.  Serve.

Air Fryer Method:

  • Air fry 400F 4 to 5 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.

Last Step:

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Serving: 3 ounces chicken, 2 tablespoons sauce, Calories: 240 kcal, Carbohydrates: 5 g, Protein: 30 g, Fat: 11 g, Saturated Fat: 2.5 g, Cholesterol: 75 mg, Sodium: 208 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g, Sugar: 2 g


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371 comments on “Grilled Chicken Shawarma”

  1. This chicken was excellent.  Only had an hour to marinate but it was full of flavor.  Used a dairy free yogurt, So Delicious plain, unsweetened yogurt and the sauce was so so good.  Paired it with Jasmine rice.

  2. Love this recipe! It’s delicious – incredibly flavorful (but not overpowering) and so easy to make!  It’s going to be a permanent part of the rotation! Thank you, Skinnytaste! 

  3. This is hands down my favorite new recipe (my mom and I have both separately made this twice in one week…that’s how good it is). With a Turkish husband, this is high praise! Will absolutely stay in rotation. Thank you! 

  4. This recipe is in my regular rotation now!  It’s so yummy and flavorful.  I double the recipe and meal prep lunches served with your Mediterranean quinoa.  My husband loves it too.  Thank you!  

  5. One of my all time favorites! I serve it with couscous in a bowl (for my Dad) and my husband likes to make a pita sandwich from all the fixings! The flavors are outstanding! This is definitely something I make often!

  6. Excellent recipes for both the Grilled Schwarma Chicken and the yogurt sauce. We made the recipe with 2 chicken breasts, which is recommended for four. My husband and I had no leftovers. They were small chicken breasts. Absolutely will make this again. We prepped the chicken – flatten and marinate – an hour before grilling. Turned out great. If we have company, I will make this again but prep both chicken and yogurt sauce earlier, just to have more time with company before grilling.

  7. Wow! This is absolutely amazing! Oh my word, so so tasty! Will be a new regular meal for me for sure. Thank you 🙏

  8. So good!! And easy! My chicken took closer to 10 minutes total, but I think that’s because I didn’t pound it thin enough. The flavors are outstanding, and the sauce is good even with 0% yogurt.

  9. This was amazing! So much flavor! Served with a tomato, cucumber salad, couscous, and pita for my kids. Everyone gobbled it up. My husband and oldest debated telling the rest of the family it was terrible and keeping it all for themselves!

  10. One of my new faves!!!!! Used chicken tenderloins instead and just cooked on the stovetop and it was still delish. Served with some cucumbers and sliced red onion over rice. Will be a part of the weekly rotation for sure. Very easy too after the chicken is marinated.

  11. Made this tonight and served with feta cheese, grape tomatoes, cucumber slices and romaine lettuce. Along side some butter/garlic rice. Everything was just amazing. The chicken was over the top phenomenal. Super easy and delicious recipe. 

  12. Fantastic recipe, Gina
    I cooked on my preheated Ninja Foodi grill ( high for 12 minutes) It was so moist and tastey.
    I served it with the cauliflower rice from your chicken biryani (without the chicken)

    I will be making this again, many times. Thanks for your hard work

    Would you please consider a curry cauliflower rice recipe.

  13. This meal was such a delightful surprise! I made it according to the recipe with pita and chopped cilantro. The yogurt, the chicken and I heated and toasted a whole wheat pita.
    Yum! Love 💕 

  14. This was the happiest thing I’ve eaten in a long time. Made with the skinnytaste rice pilaf and thoroughly enjoyed- even my 11 yo picky eater son liked this! I’ll likely make it again this week- I can’t stop thinking about it! Thank you, Gina!!!!

  15. This was so flavorful and good! I’m happy to have found a recipe simple enough that I can make it at home and not have to go to a Mediterranean restaurant. Thank you!

  16. WOW!! Once the first bite hits your taste buds you get all the Awesome flavors you didn’t know you were missing! Definitely definitely doing this again , next time in a big family gathering! 
    This recipe hits all the notes for me flavor wise! 
    I’m Thankfull for running into this recipe! Thank you!!

  17. This was so good! The seasonings came together perfectly for that familiar shawarma taste. The sauce is also delicious and I’m amazed at how well it works with the chicken. I used the 0% Fage as that’s what I had on hand and it worked great. 

  18. Avatar photo
    Jillian Kozak

    This is a delicious recipe! So good it makes you forget it’s figure friendly. I can’t wait to make it again tonight – my chicken is in the fridge marinating!

  19. One of my all time favorite dinners!! Make lots of grilled (charred pretty dark) red onions to go on it… you won’ t be sorry!