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Cheater’s Shawarma

Vijaya Selvaraju

Don't have a spit in your kitchen? No worries, the shortcut to shawarma is easy-ish — and delicious.



  • For the chicken:
  • 4 chicken breasts, butterflied
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • For the salad:
  • 1/2 English cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 4 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 medium sweet white onion, diced
  • 1 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • Tahini sauce:
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Salt, to taste
  • To assemble:
  • Warm pita
  • Hot sauce

Let's get Cooking...

  1. Combine all chicken ingredients in a bowl. Cover, and allow to marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hours to overnight.
  2. In a pan on medium-high heat, heat vegetable oil and add chicken breasts, making sure not to crowd the pan.
  3. Cook until chicken is browned and slightly crispy on both sides and juices run clear. Set chicken aside to rest, then chop into small pieces.
  4. Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl, and set aside until assembly.
  5. Combine all tahini sauce ingredients in a blender, and blend until smooth.
  6. To assemble, place salad on pita, followed by chopped chicken, tahini sauce and hot sauce to taste. Enjoy immediately.