Beef Gyros with Tzatziki Yogurt Sauce
Ahhhhh. That’s the sound of a happy mom who’s getting a little bit of a break! My two daughters are away for the week spending time with their grandparents on the farm. They will be showing goats and exhibiting their culinary and artistic creations at the county fair that I grew up attending. It’s SO much quieter with just one kid in the house. The grandparents came to pick up my little ladies on Monday so I served them these amazing Greek style beef gyros with tzatziki yogurt sauce for a quick easy lunch.
I used beef in this recipe instead of a more traditional lamb. Beef is usually a bit more palatable since lamb can sometime be VERY gamey. Plus, I have plenty of beef on hand since we get beef from the farm in large quantities. A good rub with Greek seasonings like oregano, garlic, rosemary and marjoram followed by a searing on the grill, locks in the Mediterranean flavor. Then the roast is slow cooked for 6-8 hours to be fall-of-the-bone tender. Shredded into bite size bits and placed in a whole wheat pita, the meat is topped with a tzatziki yogurt sauce that becomes the flavor punch that makes these gyros all come together.
Tzatziki sauce is a traditional Greek sauce that combines plain unsweetened Greek yogurt (you can use coconut milk yogurt for dairy free), cucumber, dill and garlic. This sauce is awesome for dipping vegetables into as well. Another spoonful? Don’t mind if I do… and I’ll gladly lick that spoon too!
- 1 beef roast (2-3 pounds)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons marjoram
- 2 teaspoons rosemary
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- whole wheat pita (or use bibb lettuce for gluten free gyro wraps)
- cucumber slices
- tomato slices
- red onion
- TZATZIKI SAUCE:
- 2 cups plain unsweetened Greek yogurt (use coconut milk yogurt for dairy free)
- ½ cucumber, shredded
- ½-1 teaspoon salt depending on taste
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon dill
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Stir together garlic, marjoram, rosemary, salt, oregano, pepper and olive oil.
- Rub spice mixture on all sides of the roast. If you have extra rub, no worries. Save it to put in the crock pot.
- Heat a grill on high heat. Alternately, heat a cast iron skillet on the stovetop to med-high.
- Sear all sides of the roast on grill (or skillet) about 2 minutes per side.
- In a crockpot, add the seared roast, diced onion and any remaining spice rub.
- Cook 6-8 hours on low until roast is easily shreddable and falls off bone.
- Take meat out of the crock pot and shred in separate bowl.
- After shredding, add a few ladles of the seasoned juice from the crockpot to the meat and stir.
- TZATZIKI SAUCE:
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
- If you prefer the sauce more smooth, put all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
- Assemble gyros by adding meat, cucumber slices, tomato slices, red onion, lettuce and a generous spoonful of tzatziki sauce into a pita.
Tzatziki will keep in refrigerator for a couple of days up to a week.