Chicken Shawarma Lettuce Wraps - Cooking Up Clean

Chicken Shawarma Lettuce Wraps


After many small moments of chaos last weekend, like the brakes not working properly on our moving truck (kind of a big deal), and then having the electricity taken out by a careless driver running into one of the poles and knocking down the transformer, we finally got moved in.  Normally, the electricity going out wouldn’t be that big of deal (the driver who hit the pole was fine, by the way), but when you move to an acreage that is on well water and septic, it meant we also had no water and no sewer since the electric powers the water pump to get to the house.  Luckily, the wonderful electric company had the power back on by nightfall.  Plus, it gave us opportunity to meet the neighbors when they generously brought over a generator to borrow so we could plug in our refrigerator. Such nice people!!  We may be moved in but not quite settled. It really does feel like home and we are all enjoying the space and especially the sound of nothing but the breeze, birds and crickets out my back door.  Even more fun, I have a chicken coop in my backyard which will someday host a small flock of chickens.  Speaking of chicken… let’s talk chicken shawarma lettuce wraps! 

Chicken sha-what did she say?!   Chicken Shawarma.  It’s sort of like a taco, sort of like a gyro, and all sorts of wonderful with a middle eastern flavor.  As usual, this recipe is easy. Combine spices with a pound of chicken. I used pasture raised chicken thighs since they tend to have a deeper flavor and have a bit more fat content than chicken breasts which is good for maintaining tenderness while grilling.  You can put the delicious chicken filling in a lettuce wrap as I chose to do or in a pita.  Then add your toppings of red onion, tomato, cucumber and a to-die-for yogurt sauce and your mouth will be VERY happy.


Chicken Shawarma Lettuce Wraps
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main Dishes
Serves: 4
  • 1 to 1¼ pounds chicken (I used thighs)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup plain unsweetened yogurt (dairy or non)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon tahini
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • cucumber, diced
  • tomato, diced
  • red onion, diced
  • cilantro, roughly chopped
  • large lettuce leaves for wraps (use two leaves per wrap for added stability)
  1. Combine marinade ingredients in a bowl or large zip top bag and toss with the chicken. You can grill right away if you choose or let the flavors combine and marinate for up to 24 hours.
  2. Turn grill onto indirect heat by lighting one burner on medium for a gas grill or moving coals to one side of the grill for charcoal grilling.
  3. Place chicken on the grill and turn every 5-10 minutes until cooked through approximately 30-40 minutes.
  4. While chicken is grilling, whisk together yogurt sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. When chicken is finished cooking, dice into small bite size pieces.
  6. Assemble wraps using two lettuce leaves like a taco, top with chicken, cucumber, red onion, tomato, cilantro and yogurt sauce.


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