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Delicious Chicken Shawarma Bowl Recipe – Middle Eastern Flavors

Chicken Shawarma Bowl

Are you craving a delicious and satisfying meal that is packed with flavors? Look no further than a chicken shawarma bowl! This Middle Eastern-inspired dish combines tender and juicy chicken with a medley of fresh vegetables and aromatic spices. In this article, we will guide you through a step-by-step recipe for preparing a mouthwatering chicken shawarma bowl. Get ready to embark on a culinary journey filled with bold flavors and delightful textures.



Chicken shawarma is a popular dish that originates from the Middle East, particularly from countries like Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey. The term “shawarma” comes from the Turkish word “çevirme,” which means “turning” or “rotating.” This refers to the method of cooking the meat on a vertical spit, slowly rotating and roasting it to perfection.

The concept of cooking meat on a rotating spit can be traced back thousands of years to the time of the Ottoman Empire. It is believed to have originated from the doner kebab, a traditional Turkish dish. As the Ottoman Empire expanded, so did the popularity of this cooking technique, spreading across the Middle East and Mediterranean regions.

Over time, the dish evolved and adapted to the culinary preferences of different cultures. The chicken shawarma we know today is a delicious variation of the traditional lamb or beef shawarma. It gained popularity due to its succulent and flavorful chicken, making it a favorite among both locals and international food enthusiasts.

Popularity of Chicken Shawarma Bowl

In recent years, the chicken shawarma bowl has gained significant popularity in various parts of the world. Its appeal lies in its versatility, as it combines the rich flavors of shawarma with a wholesome and well-balanced meal. The chicken shawarma bowl offers a convenient and satisfying way to enjoy this beloved dish.

One reason for its popularity is its health-conscious nature. The bowl typically includes a base of nutritious grains or greens, topped with marinated chicken, fresh vegetables, and a variety of flavorful toppings. This combination creates a well-rounded meal that satisfies both the palate and nutritional needs.

Moreover, the rise of global cuisine and cultural exchange has contributed to the widespread appreciation of chicken shawarma bowls. It has become a go-to option for individuals seeking diverse and exciting flavors while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Today, you can find chicken shawarma bowls served in Middle Eastern restaurants, food trucks, and even fast-food chains around the world. Its enticing flavors, vibrant colors, and aromatic spices continue to captivate food enthusiasts, making it a beloved choice for a satisfying and wholesome meal.


Marinating the Chicken1 hour
Preparing the Shawarma Sauce15 minutes
Cooking the Chicken20 minutes
Assembling the Shawarma Bowl10 minutes

Please note that the times provided are approximate and may vary depending on individual cooking preferences and equipment used. It’s always a good idea to refer to specific recipe instructions for more precise timing.


Boneless, skinless chicken breasts2 pieces (about 1 lb or 450g)
Greek yogurt1/4 cup
Lemon juice2 tablespoons
Olive oil2 tablespoons
Garlic cloves, minced2 cloves
Ground cumin1 teaspoon
Ground paprika1 teaspoon
Ground coriander1/2 teaspoon
Ground turmeric1/2 teaspoon
Salt1/2 teaspoon
Black pepper1/4 teaspoon
Mixed salad greens or lettuce2 cups
Cherry tomatoes, halved1 cup
Cucumber, sliced1/2 cup
Red onion, thinly sliced1/4 cup
Fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped2 tablespoons
Cooked quinoa or rice (optional)1 cup
Hummus1/4 cup
Tahini sauce2 tablespoons
Pita bread, warmed (optional)2 pieces

Please note that the quantities mentioned are for a 2-person serving and can be adjusted according to personal preferences.


Marinating the Chicken

  1. Prepare the marinade: In a bowl, combine Greek yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, minced garlic, ground cumin, ground paprika, ground coriander, ground turmeric, salt, and black pepper.
  2. Marinate the chicken: Place the chicken breasts in a resealable plastic bag or a shallow dish. Pour the marinade over the chicken, making sure it is evenly coated. Seal the bag or cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld.

Preparing the Shawarma Sauce

  1. Prepare the sauce: In a small bowl, mix together Greek yogurt, lemon juice, minced garlic, and a pinch of salt. Set aside.

Cooking the Chicken

  1. Cook the chicken: Preheat a grill or a skillet over medium-high heat. Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and let any excess marinade drip off. Cook the chicken for about 10 minutes on each side or until it is cooked through and nicely charred. Cooking times may vary depending on the thickness of the chicken breasts. Ensure the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
  2. Rest and slice: Once cooked, transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it rest for a few minutes. Slice the chicken into thin strips.

Assembling the Shawarma Bowl

  1. Prepare the base: Divide the mixed salad greens or lettuce between two serving bowls or plates. If desired, you can also add a bed of cooked quinoa or rice to the base.
  2. Arrange the toppings: Top the greens with the sliced chicken, cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, red onion slices, and fresh parsley or cilantro.
  3. Add the sauces: Drizzle the shawarma sauce and tahini sauce over the bowl. You can also add a dollop of hummus for extra flavor.
  4. Serve and enjoy: Serve the chicken shawarma bowls immediately with warmed pita bread on the side, if desired.

Remember to adjust the toppings and sauces according to your taste preferences. Enjoy your delicious and satisfying chicken shawarma bowl!

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

Nutrition InformationAmount Per Serving
Serving Size1 bowl
Total Fat18g
Saturated Fat3g
Trans Fat0g
Total Carbohydrate34g
Dietary Fiber6g

Please note that these values are approximate and can vary based on specific ingredients used and portion sizes. It’s always a good idea to consult specific product labels and conduct your own nutritional calculations for accurate information.


  1. Chicken tenderness: For tender and juicy chicken, consider pounding the chicken breasts to an even thickness before marinating. This helps in achieving even cooking and prevents overcooking the thinner parts.
  2. Marinating time: While marinating the chicken for at least 1 hour is recommended, you can enhance the flavor even more by marinating it overnight. This allows the spices to penetrate the meat and intensify the taste.
  3. Grilling alternatives: If you don’t have a grill or skillet, you can also cook the chicken in the oven. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) and bake the chicken for approximately 20-25 minutes, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
  4. Vegetable variations: Feel free to customize the vegetable toppings based on your preferences. You can add sliced bell peppers, shredded carrots, or avocado for additional flavors and textures.
  5. Sauce adjustments: If you prefer a spicier sauce, you can add a dash of hot sauce or a pinch of cayenne pepper to the shawarma sauce. Additionally, you can experiment with different herbs and spices in the tahini sauce, such as minced garlic or a squeeze of lemon juice.
  6. Additional toppings: Get creative with your toppings! Consider adding olives, feta cheese, or pickled vegetables to enhance the flavors and add a tangy twist.
  7. Meal prepping: This recipe is great for meal prepping. You can marinate and cook the chicken in advance, then assemble the shawarma bowls when ready to serve. Store the components separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
  8. Vegetarian option: If you prefer a vegetarian version, you can substitute the chicken with grilled tofu or chickpeas marinated in the same spice mixture. The rest of the recipe remains the same.

Pros & Cons

✔️ Bursting with flavorful spices❌ Requires marinating time
✔️ Versatile and customizable❌ Cooking chicken requires a grill or skillet
✔️ Healthy and nutritious option❌ Multiple steps involved in preparation
✔️ Provides a balanced meal❌ May require some unfamiliar ingredients
✔️ Great for meal prepping❌ Potential for chicken to dry out during cooking


In conclusion, the chicken shawarma bowl recipe offers a delightful culinary experience that combines vibrant flavors, wholesome ingredients, and a customizable approach. With its tender marinated chicken, fresh vegetables, and aromatic spices, this dish brings the authentic taste of the Middle East to your plate.

The pros of this recipe include its explosion of flavorful spices, versatility for customization, and its health-conscious nature, providing a balanced and nutritious meal. Additionally, it lends itself well to meal prepping, making it a convenient option for busy individuals.

While there may be some cons, such as the need for marinating time and specific cooking equipment, the end result is well worth the effort. The rich blend of spices and the vibrant medley of ingredients create a harmonious and satisfying bowl that will leave your taste buds wanting more.

So why not embark on a culinary adventure and give this chicken shawarma bowl recipe a try? Whether you’re a fan of Middle Eastern cuisine or simply looking for a flavorful and nourishing meal, this recipe is sure to delight your senses and satisfy your cravings. Embrace the bold flavors, customize it to your liking, and enjoy a homemade dish that will transport you to the vibrant streets of the Middle East.


  • 🌍 Fact 1: A Culinary Journey from the Middle East to the World 🛫
    • Shawarma, the foundation of the chicken shawarma bowl, has its roots in the Middle East, specifically Lebanon and Turkey. From there, it traveled and gained popularity worldwide, delighting taste buds with its savory flavors and becoming a global street food sensation. 🌍🛫
  • 🔥 Fact 2: The Art of Vertical Cooking 🥙
    • One of the unique aspects of traditional shawarma is the vertical rotisserie or spit used for cooking the meat. The marinated chicken is stacked on a rotating spit, allowing the outer layers to get crispy and flavorful while the inside remains juicy. It’s a true art form of culinary engineering! 🔥🥙
  • 🌶️ Fact 3: Spice it Up, Shawarma Style! 🌶️
    • The secret to the mouthwatering taste of chicken shawarma lies in its aromatic spice blend. The combination of cumin, paprika, coriander, and turmeric infuses the chicken with a tantalizing blend of flavors. Get ready for a burst of spices that will transport your taste buds to new heights! 🌶️👅
  • 🌿 Fact 4: Versatile Veggie Medley 🥒
    • The beauty of the chicken shawarma bowl is the freedom to personalize the vegetable toppings. From crisp cucumber slices to juicy cherry tomatoes, tangy red onions to refreshing lettuce, you can create a vibrant medley of flavors and textures that suits your preferences. Get creative with your veggie choices! 🌿🥒
  • 🌯 Fact 5: Shawarma on the Go! 🚚
    • Shawarma has become a beloved street food worldwide, often served in portable wraps or sandwiches. However, the chicken shawarma bowl provides a convenient twist, allowing you to enjoy the same delicious flavors in a wholesome bowl format. It’s the perfect meal for people on the move or for cozy nights in. 🌯🚚


Can I use bone-in chicken for this recipe?

While boneless chicken breasts are recommended for ease of slicing, you can use bone-in chicken if desired. Adjust the cooking time accordingly to ensure the chicken is cooked through.

Can I use a different type of meat instead of chicken?

Yes, you can adapt the recipe and use other meats like beef, lamb, or even shrimp for a different flavor profile. Adjust the cooking time accordingly for different meats.

Can I make the marinade in advance?

Absolutely! You can prepare the marinade a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator. Ensure proper storage in an airtight container and give it a good stir before using.

Can I skip the tahini sauce?

Yes, you can omit the tahini sauce if you prefer or substitute it with another sauce of your choice. The recipe is versatile, and you can customize it according to your taste preferences.

Can I make this recipe vegetarian or vegan?

Certainly! To make it vegetarian, you can substitute the chicken with grilled tofu or chickpeas marinated in the same spices. For a vegan version, use plant-based yogurt and skip any animal-based ingredients.

Can I use store-bought shawarma sauce?

Yes, if you have access to store-bought shawarma sauce, you can use it as a convenient alternative. However, making the sauce from scratch allows you to adjust the flavors to your liking.

Can I grill the chicken outdoors instead of using a skillet?

Absolutely! Grilling the chicken outdoors on a barbecue is a fantastic option, adding a smoky flavor to the dish. Ensure proper cooking time and internal temperature to avoid undercooking or overcooking.

Can I make a larger batch of the recipe for a crowd?

Yes, you can easily scale up the recipe to serve more people. Simply adjust the ingredient quantities accordingly and follow the same preparation steps.

Can I substitute the quinoa or rice with a different grain?

Yes, you can substitute the quinoa or rice with other grains like bulgur, couscous, or even cauliflower rice for a low-carb option. Prepare the grains according to their specific cooking instructions.

Can I add additional spices or herbs to the marinade?

Absolutely! Feel free to experiment and add your favorite spices or herbs to the marinade to customize the flavor profile. Just ensure not to overpower the dish and maintain a good balance of flavors.