Chicken souvlaki

Chicken souvlaki

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(95 ratings)

Prep: 45 mins Cook: 40 mins plus at least 3 hrs marinating


Serves 4

Marinate the chicken for these Greek-style spiced kebabs as long as possible to soak up all the flavour and make it really tender. Serve with warm bread, salad and tzatziki

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal707
  • fat34g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs52g
  • sugars4g
  • fibre4g
  • protein46g
  • salt2.3g
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  • 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

For the marinade

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 tsp dried oregano



    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

  • 1 tsp dried mint



    There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…

  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • zest and juice 1 lemon, plus 1 lemon cut into wedges to serve



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed

For the pitta wraps

  • 250g strong white bread flour
  • 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • 1 tsp golden caster sugar
  • 2 tsp olive oil, plus a little for greasing
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

For the tzatziki

  • ½ cucumber
  • 200g Greek yogurt
  • small bunch mint, finely chopped



    There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…

  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed
  • juice ½ lemon



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

To serve

  • 1 butter or round lettuce



    Lettuce are available in a vast number of varieties, and are either crisp or floppy, growing…

  • 4 large tomatoes, seeds removed, chopped



    A member of the nightshade family (along with aubergines, peppers and chillies), tomatoes are in…

  • 1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced

You will need

  • 4 long metal skewers


  1. Tip the chicken into a large bowl and add the marinade ingredients, along with 1 tsp salt and plenty of black pepper. Mix well, ensuring each thigh is well coated. Cover and chill for at least 3 hrs, or up to 48 hrs if you have time.

  2. A few hours before you want to eat, make the pitta. In a bowl, mix the flour, yeast, sugar and 1/ 2 tsp salt with your fingertips. Add 150ml lukewarm water and 2 tsp olive oil, and combine to a dough. Tip onto a work surface and knead for 8-10 mins (or use a tabletop mixer for 5 mins). Clean, then lightly oil your bowl, return the dough and cover loosely with cling film. Leave to rise for 1 hr or until nearly doubled in size. 

  3. Divide the dough into four equal pieces. Roll out to circles, as thin as you can. Cover with sheets of oiled cling film and leave to rise for 15-20 mins.

  4. To make the tzatziki, halve the cucumber lengthways and scoop out the seeds. Finely chop, then combine with the remaining ingredients, along with a pinch of salt. Chill until ready to serve.

  5. Heat the grill to its highest setting. Line a roasting tin with foil and find 4 metal skewers long enough to sit across the top with a little space underneath. Remove the chicken from the fridge, take one thigh and thread it over 2 skewers, so it has a skewer through either side. Thread another piece of chicken on top, leaving a slight gap between each piece; you should fit 6 thighs on each pair of skewers. Position the skewers on top of the roasting tin and set aside while you finish the pittas.

  6. Heat a large frying pan (or two if you have them) over a medium-high heat and brush the breads with oil. Gently lift one into the pan. It should sizzle, and bubbles should appear on the surface after 1-2 mins. When the underside is golden, flip it and cook for another 2-3 mins. Continue until all the breads are cooked, wrapping them in foil as you go. Keep the bread warm in the bottom of the oven while you cook the chicken. Alternatively, cook on the barbecue for 5-8 mins, turning occasionally.

  7. Put the chicken under the hot grill and cook for 15-20 mins, brushing with oil and any juices from the bottom of the tin regularly, and turning halfway through cooking. Once cooked, remove from the oven and rest for 5 mins.

  8. Cut through each pair of skewers to make four kebabs and serve in the warm bread, with lettuce, tomato, red onion, lemon wedges and tzatziki.

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Comments, questions and tips

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fosters323's picture
1st Jun, 2020
I set the chicken thighs to marinade overnight, then grilled them on the bbq. Absolutely superb! Very juicy and excellent flavour. I will definitely be doing this again. Highly recommended.
4th Apr, 2020
The marinade is spot on and it keeps the meat juicy even after grilling. I used 4 chicken legs and 2 chicken breasts as I had no more at home. The tatziki is awesome but I swapped the pita bread for rice. Really highly recommended. Well do it again.
16th Jan, 2020
Delicious! I've made this several times and I use the same amount of chicken, but I double the herbs and spices in the marinade. I make the tzatziki adding a teaspoon of mint sauce from a jar as well as the fresh mint because I find this peps the taste up a bit. I don't bother making the pitta breads, although I might have a go when I have the time. My daughter said it was the best Greek food she'd ever tasted - bless her!
9th Sep, 2019
Really moist and delicious! I more than doubled all the ingredients in the marinade but kept the meat about the same. I marinated overnight and basted the meat as it cooked. I didn't have cucumber, so i just made a sauce with the other tzatziki ingredients which was still very nice. Didn't bother with the pitta breads but bought some wraps from the shop. Would definitely make again.
26th Aug, 2019
Very tasty. Chicken moist inside and grilled on the outside. I used chicken breasts cut into large chunks and the meat stayed moist. Marinated for 3 hours and basted the chicken a couple of times while cooking with the rest of the marinade. I used slightly less chicken than the recipe but kept the marinade quantities. Will defintely make again!
2nd Jul, 2019
All of the family, from toddler to grandad, cleared their plates of chicken with this marinade. I didn't make any of the other parts.
13th Jul, 2018
I made a vegan version with soy chicken, soya yogurt for the tzatziki. Delicious but time consuming.
tillyfloss80's picture
11th Jul, 2017
The chicken was delicious, unbelievably tasty, tried the flatbreads and they turned out great! The whole recipe is a bit time consuming but is actually really easy, well worth trying x
koolk_2009's picture
1st Jun, 2017
This was absolutely delicious! The chicken was really tasty and juicy and the pitta breads were really tasty and fun to make.
9th May, 2017
My family LOVED this. I added plain greek yogurt to the marinade as the children don't like tzatziki and, as I was using thinly cut chicken breast instead of thigh, I thought it would be too dry without it. Plus, life's too short to be making homemade pita bread when my local bakery sells such good ones! ;) Absolutely delicious and a new regular family favourite!


27th May, 2020
Is it possible to cook these in the oven?
lulu_grimes's picture
29th May, 2020
Hello, These are best cooked under a hot grill or on a BBQ so they don't dry out. You could cook them in the oven but if you do make sure the chicken is sitting flat on the skewers so it cooks through evenly. I hope this helps, Lulu
2nd Aug, 2019
Has anybody ever frozen the cooked flatbreads?
goodfoodteam's picture
3rd Aug, 2019
Thanks for your question. It is possible to freeze the bread. We'd recommend defrosting and then warming through in the oven before serving.
29th May, 2019
Really nice recipe but are you sure this is Gyros? Gyros is made from whole portions of chicken (or lamb) cooked on a vertical spit and sliced thinly into a wrap or pitta.(Gyros = 'turning' in Greek) Shouldn't this recipe be referred to as Souvlaki?
goodfoodteam's picture
3rd Jun, 2019
Thanks for pointing this out. We have made the changes as suggested. We appreciate your feedback.
29th Jan, 2017
Thanks for your question. Yes you could!
13th Aug, 2016
Re "coriander" in the marinade - I'm presuming this is ground, not fresh? Thanks!
19th Feb, 2019
After I put the chicken onto the skewers, I coated chips with the left over marinade before cooking which made them full of flavour and taste great.
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