This is one of my all-time favorite recipes! The best thing about it? No use of store-bought spice mixture or sauce but everything home-made from scratch. The flavor of the spiced chicken goes so well with the home made tzatziki and the warm pita bread with salad makes it so perfect. Chicken Gyros, heaven on a plate!
Gyros is a typical Greek dish but the way it is executed varies a lot. On the Greek Island Corfu it is eaten in a sauce and in other parts of Greece the meat is grilled and served with that wonderful garlic yogurt-cucumber sauce called Tzatziki. Although I like the version made in sauce I really fell in love with the grilled version. Traditionally Gyros is made with pork but I prefer to make it with chicken because lets face it, we can never prepare the pork at home like the pros make it on their huge Gyro Rotisseries. Chicken is a lot easier to prepare and I love the structure of it so I always make Chicken Gyros.
As you might know about me already I always try to make as much as possible myself, however I must admit that I never tried to make my own pita bread yet. I will give that a go soon and will let you know the result. Anyway, the herb and spice mixture for this recipe is easy to prepare and most probably you will have most ( if not all) ingredients at hand. Now of course you can get store-bought Tzatziki like this one but let me tell you, it is really easy to make yourself and so tasty. It is also a lot cheaper, has no additives and you have complete control over the amount of salt you use. Lets be honest, it is scary to realize how we get used to eat more and more salt because of eating store-bought sauces, spice mixtures, pizzas etc etc. Enough reasons for me to make as much as possible myself. With this recipe I do indulge in one store-bought item simply because it is the best and I don’t think it is even possible to come close to it if i tried: Sriracha Sauce. I love that stuff! I even eat it on my peanut butter sandwiches!
Pita Bread or Fries
Gyros is great with salad and of course tzatziki in a warm pita bread but it is also really good with fries. I sometimes make loaded fries and add some cheese and raw onions on top of the fries and gyros meat. Delicious! Well enough about all this now, just scroll to the recipe and get cracking! By the way, want more chicken recipes? Take a look at my Indonesian chicken in Sambal Sauce or my Asian inspired sticky chicken. If you want less heat have a look at my easy chicken bacon and mushroom pasta.
Greek Chicken Gyros with home-made tzatziki
Fantastic recipe of Greek chicken gyros with home-made tzatziki and home-made spice mixture. Easy to prepare and super delicious.
- for the Gyros Spice mix
- 2 tsp mild paprika powder
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tsp dried oregano
- 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 3 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
- 2 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp onion powder
- salt to taste
- For the Tzatziki:
- 1 cucumber, halved, de-seeded and coarsely grated
- 1 tsp salt
- 200 grams Greek yogurt see notes
- 2 small cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Other ingredients:
- 1 kg chicken breast
- 200 grams iceberg salad, shredded
- sriracha sauce to taste ( optional)
- 4 pieces pitta bread
- 3 tbsp olive oil
For the spice mixture simply mix all ingredients together and transfer to a container.
For the Tzatziki:
Put cucumber in a colander and stir in the teaspoon of salt. Put colander on a bowl and let cucumber stand for at least half an hour and squeeze vigorously. Pat dry with paper towels. This will get out as much of the liquid as possible so you won't end up with a watery tzatziki.
Mix yogurt with garlic, parsley, cucumber and lemon juice and add salt and pepper to taste. You can make this up to 2 days in advance, it will even taste better if you leave it overnight!
For the chicken: Because nowadays a lot of water is added to chicken ( at least in my country there is, sadly) I found it next to impossible to pan-fry my chicken gyros because it would always end up soggy. A good way to avoid that is to pre-heat the oven to 230 degrees Celsius. Season the chicken breast with the gyros spice mix and put it in the oven for about 20 minutes.
Take the chicken out of the oven and cut it into small chunks. Heat oil in a large frying pan and fry chicken until golden and crispy. Or broil chicken until golden and crispy. A tiny bit charred will only make it taste better.
Prepare pita bread following the instructions on the package. Spread tzatziki all over the inside of the pita bread and add a small amount of salad. Add chicken and some more tzatziki. Drizzle on sriracha sauce ( optional).
You can use any type of Greek yogurt you like, it doesn't matter if it is full fat or low fat.