Chicken Souvlaki is marinated in the classic Greek flavours of lemon, garlic and dried oregano, then grilled on skewers. Wrapped in homemade pita bread with lettuce and tomatoes, with a generous drizzle of tzatziki, it’s not hard to see why it’s so popular.
My daughters have just returned from a European vacation, part of which they spent on the Greek islands of Mykonos (the party island), Ios and Paros.
Before their departure, they commented on how they weren’t that interested in drinking and partying, they just wanted to sit in the sun and relax. Really?
Sooooo, was l that surprised when they sent me a short video of a bar on Mykonos Island with both of them in the foreground, and what seemed like the majority of the patrons dancing on tables?
No partying hey!
Anyway, to celebrate their return from their non drinking, non partying vacation, l served up chicken souvlaki with my homemade tzatziki and pita bread. They were pretty happy! And l didn’t even have to dance on the table!!
If you are pushed for time or can’t be bothered fiddling around with skewers, cook the chicken thighs whole.
You won’t miss a thing because with souvlaki, it’s all about the marinade.
Preparation Time: 15 mins Cooking Time: 15 mins Servings: 4 – 5
- 1 kg / 2 lbs chicken thighs (note 1)
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 3 garlic cloves, grated
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 – 3 tbsp dried oregano (note 2)
- 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp oil for cooking
- sliced tomatoes
- sliced onions
- pita bread
8 – 10 pre-soaked skewers (note 3)
- Place the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and mix. Set aside.
- Cut the chicken thighs 2.5 cm / 1 inch chunks (see photo).
- Place the chunks in a bowl.
- Pour the marinade over the chicken pieces.
- Use your hands to mix the marinade into the chicken.
- Marinate for 2 hours to overnight. See note 4 for quicker marinating options.
- Thread the chicken comfortably onto the skewers.
- Add 1 tbsp oil to a frying pan/skillet over high heat. If using a griddle pan, brush oil over the ridges.
- Cook the skewers for 6 -8 minutes, turning occasionally until all sides are nicely coloured and cooked through.
- Place the lettuce, sliced tomatoes and the sliced onions on pita bread. Lay 2 skewers on top. Drizzle the chicken souvlaki with tzatziki (l like to sprinkle my tzatziki with a little paprika). Wrap and enjoy.
- You could also use chicken breast. I find the thighs more forgiving if you overcook them.
- I tend to use a lot of oregano. I love it!
- Pre-soaking the skewers will prevent them from burning. It may be necessary to trim them a little to fit the size of your pan.
- If you are pushed for time, don’t place the chicken skewers in the fridge. Keep them at room temperature while you prepare the rest of the ingredients, then cook.