This is the 2nd time I have made this chicken shawarma and experience is a great teacher.  I bought a combination of chicken breasts and chicken thighs for flavor.  However, I had to cut them with a scissors to get them to the size I wanted.  Result – blister.  If you want to limit this preparation step, buy chicken tenders and you will have a lot less cutting to do.  The experience taught me to marinade the chicken for a good 24 hours to really let the spices blend into the chicken.   It also taught me to make sure not to over bake the chicken so it can get charred nicely in my iron skillet without becoming to dry.

Chix in new skillet 500

Top down 500

Plated 2 FG 2


  • 8 large skinless chicken breasts
  • 6 skinless chicken thighs
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 3/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Nonstick cooking oil spray
  • 2 tbsp canola oil

Ingred 500



Slice the chicken into small pieces.  The less regular the better.  Go for 1 – 2″ pieces.  In a big mixing bowl, add all the spices,mix well.

Spices 500

Next, and the olive oil and mix into the spices.

Oil added 500

Now, add the chicken and mix really well.  Use your hands and massage the spice mixture into the chicken.  Let marinate for at least a couple of hours – longer is better.  As noted, I marinated for about 18 hours.

Chix Marinade 500

Now, line baking trays (I needed 3 trays) with tin foil.  Spray the foil.  Then, place the chicken on the foil and give each piece room on the tray.

Chix on tray 500

Place in a 325 degree oven for 10 – 12 minutes.

After baking 500

Now heat your iron skillet on medium high heat.  Add the canola oil and cook for a few minutes until it warms.  Once warm, add the chicken in batches.  Cook for 2 – 3 minutes on each side.

Chix in skillet 500

Remove from skillet and finish charring until all the chicken has been cooked.  Add a little extra oil as you go if needed.  If you add oil, let it warm before putting the chicken in.

Low angle close 500


Top down 2 500

Serve over Middle Eastern yellow rice and enjoy!