Make your own Greek food at home with this easy Chicken Souvlaki recipe. Quick and easy to make with a flavorful marinade of Greek yogurt, lemon juice, and spices, you can have dinner on the table in under an hour!
Don't stress if you forgot to plan dinner! Chicken Souvlaki Pita Bowls come together in minutes and are easy to customize. Thanks to the Greek yogurt in this easy marinade, you can get loads of flavor in just 30 minutes. Chop up the vegetables while the chicken is marinating, and you can have a fresh, healthy dinner on the table in under an hour that tastes way better than take out.
Why you'll love this recipe
✔︎ The chicken is juicy. Adding Greek yogurt to this marinade keeps the chicken tender and juicy, even after cooking!
✔︎ It's fast! Given the high acidity in this marinade, you can get great flavor in as little as 30 minutes.
✔︎ It's an easy dinner that is packed with protein thanks to the chicken, hummus and feta cheese.
You can get everything you need for chicken souvlaki in one trip to the grocery store.
Chicken Souvlaki Ingredient Notes:
Chicken: You can use boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs.
Greek Yogurt: Full-fat Greek yogurt gives the best flavor, but you can also use 2% with good results.
Lemon: Fresh lemon juice is best. The bottled juice has preservatives that alter the taste.
Spices: We used dried oregano and parsley in this marinade, but feel free to swap in fresh herbs if you have them on hand.
A quick spin in this yogurt-based marinade gives you the juiciest chicken.
Add the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, oil, vinegar and spices to a bowl and whisk to combine. Add chopped chicken to bowl and stir to fully immerse the chicken in the marinade. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours.
Thread marinated chicken on skewers and discard excess marinade. Cook in grill pan or on grill for 6 minutes and flip over and grill for additional 6 minutes. Cook until chicken is cooked to 165°F, remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Marinades that have a lot of citrus in them should not be marinated for more than 4 hours. After that time, the acid in the juice breaks down the proteins in the meat too much and you are left with a mushy mess.
Souvlaki meat is marinated and cooked on skewers while Gyro meat has been thinly sliced off a rotisserie. Traditional Souvlaki can be made with chicken, pork, beef, or lamb that has been marinated and threaded on skewers before cooking, while Gyros are generally lamb.
No, the yogurt marinade gives you a nice crust on the chicken when you grill it, whether it is in a grill pan or on the outside grill. Discard the excess marinade in the bowl after you remove the chicken.
✘ Freeze the chicken breasts for 30 minutes before cutting. Slightly frozen chicken breasts are easier to cut.
✘ Cut the chicken into chunks that are the same size for even cooking times.
✘ Don't let the chicken sit in the marinade for too long as the citrus will break down the chicken and alter its texture.
✘ If you are cooking your chicken on the grill, soak the skewers in water for 15 minutes before threading the marinated chicken onto them to prevent burning.
Substitutions and Shortcuts
▶︎ Boneless skinless chicken thighs can be used in place of chicken breasts if you prefer. Additional cooking time may be needed to reach 165°F.
▶︎ Need a low-carb option? Swap out the pita bread and add a bed of lettuce to the bowl for an entreé salad. Drizzle a lemon vinaigrette on top for an extra flavor kick.
▶︎ Pickled red onions add great flavor in place of raw onions and only take 30 minutes to make!
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- 3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon fresh garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1½ inch cubes
- pita bread
- ½ cup feta cheese
- ½ cup hummus
- ½ cup cucumber, chopped
- ½ cup kalamata olives, cut in half
- ½ red onion, sliced
- ½ cup tomatoes, chopped
- Mix Greek yogurt, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, spices and olive oil in a medium bowl and whisk to emulsify.3 tablespoons Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, 1 teaspoon dried parsley, 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Cut chicken breasts into 1½ inch cubes and immerse in marinade. Let sit for 30 minutes and up to 4 hours.3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- Thread marinated chicken on skewers and discard excess marinade.
- Heat grill pan over medium high heat. Cook chicken for 6 minutes and flip over and grill for additional 6 minutes. Cook until chicken is cooked to 165°F, remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes before serving. Serve with pita bread, feta cheese, hummus, cucumber, kalamata olives, onion and tomatoes, if desired.pita bread, ½ cup feta cheese, ½ cup hummus, ½ cup cucumber,, ½ cup kalamata olives,, ½ red onion,, ½ cup tomatoes,
Nutrition info not guaranteed to be accurate.